Latest Trai queries on RedX plan doesn't factor in facts, service quality data: Voda Idea

The company, in its letter dated August 10, has urged the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) to closely examine its periodic filings on the quality of service (QoS) parameters on the VIL network to objectively draw conclusions on its que...

KOLKATA: Vodafone Idea (VIL) has once again dismissed the telecom regulator’s concerns about its premium RedX plan, saying the latter’s latest set of queries are “bereft of a proper appreciation of the facts and material available with it”.

The company, in its letter dated August 10, has urged the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) to closely examine its periodic filings on the quality of service (QoS) parameters on the VIL network to objectively draw conclusions on its queries regarding RedX. It has also underlined that it “is meeting Trai’s mandated QoS norms for wireless data, including for 4G data”.

ET has seen a copy of VIL’s letter.


Trai is examining whether the mix of faster data speeds and network priority access services offered under VIL’s RedX and Bharti Airtel’s Platinum offers degrade services quality of VIL and Airtel users not on these plans.

VIL has also told the regulator that it uses a specific mechanism under the global 3GPP standards governing 4G LTE networks to offer faster speeds and priority network access to RedX users. This, it said, ensures faster data transmission for the specific set of users during congestion without spoiling network experience of other users since both RedX and non-RedX subscribers have common network resources and enjoy same traffic treatment for core operations - signalling, transmission and VoLTE services.

The company has also rejected Trai’s contention that the priority network feature can only be offered to users whose role is that of emergency responders during disaster-like situations, and that such features are available only under the multi-media priority services (MPS) – a separate category under 3GPP rules.
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The rules, VIL said, “don’t mandate (providing priority network) for a single use, i.e, MPS”. The 3GPP standards, it added, merely give an option to networks supporting the MPS feature to offer prioritisation, which “does not mean that the parameter (read: priority network) can only be used for MPS and not for any other prioritisation”. It added that “certain operators in US and Europe were using prioritisation to offer higher speeds on some plans”.

VIL has disclosed that RedX customers on an average enjoy “at least 1.5 times faster data speeds” than its other users, but said all customers have been informed that factors beyond the control of an operator determine actual data speeds, including nature of handset, location of access server, server performance and topography.

It has conceded that “no mobile network can commit a minimum speed,” but added the priority feature gives RedX customers a better experience, especially during peak hours or in crowded areas.

VIL has assured Trai that the RedX priority feature has not impacted data speeds of other users. “Speeds for non-RedX (customers) have increased, with no perceptible difference between overall network download speeds and non-RedX download speeds,” VIL claimed in its letter.
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VIL had earlier told Trai that merely 1.27 lakh RedX users -- not even 0.1% of its 4G user base — couldn’t degrade services of its other users.
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