Reliance-Jio

Reliance Jio now has over 1.5 million test users on its network, the company reported (pdf) for the quarter ended 30th June 2016. It claims that the average monthly data consumption on its network is over 26GB per user per month, while the average voice usage per month is over 355 minutes per user. The numbers are up significantly from April when the company claimed 500,000 users on the network, with an average data consumption of over 18GB per month.

Other than this the company claims to have sold more than 2 million LYF smartphones by now, a brand it launched in January this year. Interestingly, a Cyber Media report released last month stated that LYF smartphones recorded a 13% market share among all LTE smartphones shipped in India during Q1 FY16, with Jio coming in 3rd among vendors shipping LTE devices. As of now, Jio sells 20 LYF models with prices ranging from Rs 3,000 to Rs 15,000, both online and offline. The company has 3,383 retail stores across 679 cities.

Note that Reliance Jio missed launch of its commercial telecom services in March this year. Meanwhile the telco has been providing SIM cards with 4G to consumers on an invite-only basis, which work only on LYF smartphones. Restrictions like these and competitive pricing strategies by making cheaper devices could have helped LYF smartphones acquire a record share among shipments in the country.

Samsung tie-up: Interestingly, earlier this month, Jio tied up with Samsung smartphones to offer 3 months of unlimited data and 4,500 minutes of voice calls, unlimited video calls and SMS, and access to Jio apps, bundled with Samsung smartphones. This was the company’s first third party tie up, although it’s not clear which Samsung phones will be supported.

Jio apps: The company has 11 different mobile apps for users, which seems more like a replacement for existing utility apps. They are: MyJio, JioChat, JioPlay, JioOnDemand, JioBeats, JioMaags, JioXpressNews, JioDrive, JioJoin, JiMoney, and JioSecurity. Most of these app are available only to users with a Jio ID—just like Apple ID but think about it like an ID for Jio users. The ‘My Jio’ app assigns a unique “Jio ID” which allows a user to access Jio’s apps and check for other balance/validity related information.

Jio funding: Earlier this month, Reliance Jio raised Rs 2,000 crore through five year bonds via private placement. In October last year, Jio raised Rs 3000 crore by issuing secured redeemable non-convertible debentures to aid its 4G roll out. In May 2015, the company had raised a $750 million loan (~Rs 4500 crore) from nine banks on a 10 year repayment period, to finance goods and services from Samsung and Ace Technologies.