Canadian mobile device maker Datawind has plans to invest Rs 100 crore in telecom services business in the first six months of getting a license and offer data services at Rs 200 per year. The company, known for making low-cost tablets and smartphones, has applied for a pan-India virtual network operator (VNO) license in the country. The license will enable it to offer mobile telephony and data services but only in partnership with existing telecom operators.
“We are hoping that we should get license in a month or so. Datawind will invest Rs 100 in the first six month to launch the business with focus on data services,” Datawind president and CEO Suneet Singh Tuli said on the sidelines of launch of first Punjabi education tablet.
Datawind’s 3G-enabled VidyaTab-Punjabi was launched for Rs 3,999 in presence of Canada’s Minister of small business and tourism Bardish Chagger and High Commissioner of Canada to India Nadir Patel. Tuli said the company plans to offer data plans that will not cost Rs 20 per month or lesser. ALSO READ: DataWind MoreGMax 3G6 with ‘free internet for 1 year’ launched, priced at Rs 5,999: Specifications, features
“Jio’s Rs 300 plan is affordable for those who have been spending Rs 1,000-1,500 per month. This would be only top 300 million people. Rest of the people spends around Rs 90 a month and for them it’s not that cheap. “We will look at data plans around Rs 20 per month or lesser. One year of data service should not be more than Rs 200,” Tuli said.
Reliance Jio has announced to provide unlimited calls and SMS for Rs 303 a month starting April 1 which includes 1GB of data with 4G speed per day to those who register for its prime service offer before March 31. There are other plans too from Jio. Tuli said that Datawind will look at providing 3G or 4G speed for which details are being worked out. Talking about Datawind’s tablet business, he said that company has daily production capacity of 10,000 tablets in its Hyderabad plant and 5,000 in Amritsar plant. ALSO READ: Datawind launches manufacturing facility center in Hyderabad
“We are currently producing around 11,000 tablets per day. We want to set up third plant also somewhere in the east but have kept it on hold for this year,” Tuli said.
As per reports, Datawind led Indian tablet market with 35 percent share in 2016. ALSO READ: Tablet shipments in India grow by 7.8%, Datawind leads the market: IDC
“We are eagerly looking at states to roll out their promise of giving mobile devices to people. We hope that states will not only look at affordable devices but also content bundled with them,” Tuli said.
The company has partnered with educational content and app maker Vismaad for its VidyaTab.
“We are having learning content in English. Today we launched content in Punjabi and now we will look at content in Hindi and Telugu. Gradually in other Indian languages where demand is high,” Tuli said.