Reliance Jio has just made the disruptive announcement of the year at its Annual General Meeting conference. Isha Ambani, the daughter of Mukesh Ambani, Chairman and Managing Director of Reliance Industries, today unveiled JioGigaFibre, the optical fiber-based broadband service.
JioGigaFibre will be based on Fiber to the home (FTTH) technology. It is expected to disrupt the segment of home broadband services now. Reliance is likely to offer an attractive combo of fast broadband connectivity at initial data speeds of 100 Mbps (with huge dollops of free data thrown in).
FTTH, as the name suggests, means installing the fiber cable right up to the individual building. At present, the fiber cable reaches only to the main premises while the last connections to individual homes/offices are through traditional copper cable.
The company will extend fiber connectivity to homes, merchants, and SMEs. 1,100 cities will offer most advanced fiber-based broadband connectivity solutions. Two of the main features of JioGigaFibre will be smart home technology and TV call. JioGigaFiber broadband will come with a set-top box for TV. It will have enabled the voice command feature on TV.
An aggressive FTTH service launch by Jio can cause two sets of disruptions, according to Rohan Dhamija, partner & head for India, South Asia & Middle East at Analysys Mason. First, it can immediately disrupt home broadband pricing, forcing rivals such as Airtel to slash rates. Second, it could also have a secondary impact on the larger mobile services market, if Jiochooses to bundle generous wired broadband packs with its current 4G plan.
Users can register for the services in the available city starting August 15 next month. It will be interesting to see how aggressive the company goes with the pricing this time around.