Understanding the call-drop trouble!
- There has been a wavering rise of call-drop incidents in India wherein mobile-users are unable to complete calls.
- As per norms, call-drops shouldn't be more than 3% of total calls made on a network.
- Industry-averages of call-drops increased by two-fold to 12.5% at the end of March 2015 as compared to 6.01% on March 2014 on 2G-networks while it increased by 65% on 3G-networks.
The background to the call-drop trouble
- Telecom-secretary, Rakesh Garg held a meeting with mobile-operators in April to review issues related to quality of service in telecom-networks across the country.
- In a meeting called by DoT on 13 July, the mobile-operators were enquired for frequent call-drops and network related issues in parts of India.
- In the meeting, the mobile-operators were directed to submit a report on their network-performance by 16 July.
Telecom-companies refuse to take blame!
17 Aug 2015
- India's top telecom-operators denied responsibility regarding call-drops and poor-network and shifted the blame to the government's lack of mobile-tower infrastructure and spectrum holdings in a media-conference housing the CEO's of leading telecom-operators.
- The government was planning to penalize companies plagued by poor-connectivity, calling for a special-audit to investigate the matter.
- Telecom-associations stated that around 1-lakh towers are required to support data-connectivity in next 24-months.
Government gears up to eradicate call-drops!
2 Sep 2015
- To address the problem of call-drops, the government has instituted measures, asking regulator TRAI to seek information from telecom-operators about their capacity to provide effective services.
- TRAI is soon going to disclose information related to the services provided by telecom-companies to help customers make the right choice.
- TRAI is preparing to publish an information-paper giving a detailed analysis of call-drops in Delhi and Mumbai.
Telcos now to compensate users for call-drops
16 Oct 2015
- TRAI mandated the telcos to start compensating users for call drops from 1 January 2016.
- Users will be compensated ₹1 for each call drop, limited to three dropped calls daily per user.
- Telcos will have to intimate the user about the credit, through SMS within four hours of a call drop.
- Currently, only Telenor India (formerly Uninor) compensates its users for call drops.
TRAI says telcos won't be fined till 6 January
23 Dec 2015
- TRAI gave the Delhi HC an undertaking that it will not be taking "coercive steps" against telecom companies till January 6.
- However, it clarified that regulations imposed on 16 October would come into effect from January 1.
- The telecom minister also announced that private telecom operators had installed 29,000 new telecom towers across India due to the government's strict stance against the call-drop menace.
SC to hear plea against TRAI's compensation rule
4 Mar 2016
- The Supreme Court agreed to hear a plea of Cellular Operators' Association of India to exempt telecom firms from paying compensation to consumers for call drops.
- The association approached the court challenging the Delhi high court order that made service providers liable to compensate consumers for dropped calls.
- The SC also demanded to know why operators cannot rectify their system to avoid call drops.
SC to hear call drops plea today
10 Mar 2016
- The Supreme Court will hear plea from representatives of telecom companies, challenging the Delhi High Court order over compensation for call drops.
- The apex court issued notices to Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) and the Central Government over the telecom companies' plea.
- Operators have been unable to adhere to court guidelines which mandated a basic quality of service including improved transmission infrastructure.
Telecos doing nothing to fix call drops: AG
22 Apr 2016
- Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi stated that a "cartel" of 4-5 telecom firms were making ₹250 crore a day but not making investments on their network to improve services.
- He told the Supreme Courth that these companies "have stupendous growth but they are making minimum investment on their network to stop call drops."
- Rohatgi also defended the penalty imposed by TRAI on such telecom companies.
SC: Cannot charge operators for call drops
11 May 2016
- The Supreme Court ruled to strike down the TRAI regulation imposing costs on telecom companies for call drops, calling it unreasonable and arbitrary.
- The SC bench consisting of justices Kurian Joseph and R F Nariman also asked the parliament to come up with a suitable legislation regarding the same.
- The decision brings relief to several telecom operators who had challenged TRAI's decision.
Telecos to invest ₹12000 crore to improve network
11 Jun 2016
- Telecom Secretary JS Deepak said mobile service providers committed to invest ₹12,000 crore in the next three months to improve networks, in an attempt to address the call drops issue.
- He stated that telecom companies promised to add 60,000 new cell sites where they need to improve their quality of service.
- The statements were made at a meeting with the heads of Indian telecos.
Telecom Minister denies penal power to TRAI
15 Jun 2016
- Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad denied TRAI's request to amend the TRAI Act and give powers to penalise erring operators.
- Clarifying the ministry's stance, Prasad said "since TRAI has wide ranging powers, the need to change the TRAI Act is not felt at this juncture."
- TRAI had approached the Department of Telecommunications seeking power to impose fines and jail terms for regulatory violations.
Telcos to assist TRAI in call-drop audits
30 Jan 2017
- Telecom companies will now help TRAI by cooperating in operator-assisted audits of call drops in the country to ensure telecom services in India meet quality standards.
- TRAI will conduct five "operator-assisted test drives along with conducting independent test drives" in Jaipur, Bhopal, Hyderabad, Bengaluru and Kolkata.
- It will start in February, to assess call success-rate, blocked call rate, call dropped rate and signal strength.
Telcos to invest Rs 12,000 crore to improve networks: JS Deepak, Telecom Secretary - The Economic Times
SC strikes down TRAI regulation imposing cost for call drops, major relief for telcos | Latest News & Updates at Daily News & Analysis