India’s richest man Mukesh Ambani offers free 4G to one billion people


India’s richest man has launched Jio, its 4G LTE network and is offering unlimited free voice calls forever to anyone who signs up for its services. It is also claiming to offer the cheapest 4G LTE data rates in the world.

The free network, which cost Mr Mukesh  $20 billion, building almost 100,000 towers across the country, rolled out on september 05, 2016 is expected to reach out to more than 80 % of the country.

Indians, already enjoying one of the lowest voice call rates in the world, will be able to use Jio for free until the end of 2016, and pay as little as 50 rupees ($0.70) for 1GB data after that. Voice calls will be free for life.

Jio’s network is being touted as the largest 4G LTE deployment anywhere in the world, Ambani said, having coverage available in 18,000 cities in the country, and over 200,000 remote areas. The company aims to extend the coverage to 90 percent of India’s population by next year.

Jio, which means “live life” in Hindi, looks to become another mega business in Reliance’s stable of energy, media, chemicals and retail operations.

“Anything and everything that can go digital is going digital — at an exponential rate,” Ambani told investors last week at his company’s annual general meeting. “Life is going digital.”