Telecom News

No Mobile Roaming Charges By Next Year: Sibal

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An average Indian mobile phone users spends a lot of money on mobile roaming. What if you were told that mobile roaming charges will be a thing of past soon? Yes, the news is true. While this policy was approved in May this year, implementation will most likely take some time as the government is working on spectrum auction formalities right now.

Union telecom minister, Kapil Sibal said in a meeting that there will be no mobile roaming by next year. As of now, users are charged Rs 1 for incoming and Rs 1.5 for outgoing calls on roaming. This move will affect the operators big time, thereby, all of them are opposing this initiative.

In May, the Central government had unveiled its National Telecom Policy for the year 2012, which apart from terminating roaming charges, also envisioned one inter circle mobile number portability that would allow one to retain his number even while shifting to another circle. The no-roaming policy will infact enable this to happen, Mobile Indian reported.

In the meanwhile, R Chandrashekhar, secretary, Ministry of Telecom, Government of India said that the government will soon start working on the termination of roaming charges. He said, “We are first going to attend to all issues linked to spectrum auction. The moment NIA (Notice Inviting Applications) is issued this week, we will focus on UL (Unified Licenses). After details of full UL are worked out, the modalities for free roaming will follow.”

However, free roaming could actually mean higher mobile tariffs. Stay tuned!

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