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Airtel withdraws controversial VoIP data packs, puts the ball in TRAI's court

Airtel’s plan to charge its subscribers extra for using VoIP services like Skype or Viber, and the data pack it announced have come under heavy criticism. Today however the carrier has issued a stat

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Airtel’s plan to charge its subscribers extra for using VoIP services like Skype or Viber, and the data pack it announced have come under heavy criticism. Today however the carrier has issued a statement saying that it will be temporarily withdrawing the controversial data pack.

The company is waiting for TRAI to issue a consultation paper relating to services offered by OTT (Over The Top) players like IM and VoIP apps. In the meantime Airtel has decided to withdraw its VoIP data pack. It says, “We have no doubt that as a result of the consultation process a balanced outcome would emerge that would not only protect the interests of all stakeholders and viability of this important sector but would also encourage much needed  investments in spectrum and roll out of data networks to fulfill the objective of digital India.”

ALSO READ: F*ck you, Airtel

As mentioned above, Airtel’s proposed move has come under heavy criticism from all quarters. Consumers have taken to the social media to vent their frustration against the carrier’s plan that is against the very essence of net neutrality.

Airtel’s statement follows.

In view of the news reports that a consultation paper will be issued shortly by TRAI on issues relating to services offered by OTT players including VOIP, we have decided not to implement our proposed launch of VoIP packs.

We have no doubt that as a result of the consultation process a balanced outcome would emerge that would not only protect the interests of all stakeholders and viability of this important sector but would also encourage much needed  investments in spectrum and roll out of data networks to fulfill the objective of digital India.

  • Published Date: December 29, 2014 10:48 AM IST
  • Updated Date: December 29, 2014 10:50 AM IST