Busines-Mobile bill woes,Bharti Airtel hikes call tariff by 20% in six circles

Busines-Mobile bill woes,Bharti Airtel hikes call tariff by 20% in six circles-Telecom major Bharti Airtel on Friday announced an increase in the prepaid tariff rates of its 'Advantage' pack.
The company announced that users of advantage packs,which are based on per minute billing,will have to pay 60 paise per minute for local and STD calls to mobile phones and 90 paise for local and STD calls to landlines.

Bharti Airtel
Furthermore, Re 1 and Rs 1.5 will be charged for local and national SMSes,respectively. Existing users will have to pay for new rates after the validity of their existing voucher ends.
There is no increase in the tariff of its 'Freedom' pack, which is based on per second billing.

Call tariffs were hiked by 20% in six major circles including New Delhi, Andhra Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh.

Sources say that other telecom players will follow suit.

Bharti Airtel added 2.12 million mobile subscribers in June, taking its total to 169.2 million, data from Cellular Operators Association of India said.

India is the world's second-biggest mobile-phone market after China. Bharti, the fifth-largest mobile operator globally by subscribers, operates in 19 countries in South Asia and Africa.

Earlier this month, Bharti Airtel announced it was streamlining its India and South Asia operations to create a leaner cost structure in order to boost its financial performance.

The restructuring comes as Bharti battles fierce domestic competition that has slashed call rates and is grappling with high interest costs on debt accumulated to purchase mobile licences in India and to expand into Africa.

Bharti paid $10.7 billion last June for the Africa business of Kuwaiti telecom operator Zain.

Its interest costs have soared due to the African purchase as well as from paying $3.3 billion to buy third-generation ( 3G) spectrum in India to offer mobile and wireless broadband services.

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