Missed those data usage warning and getting massive bill shocks for over data usage on your fixed or mobile broadband connection. Well, the Indian telecom watchdog has put forward a new directive for delivering broadband service in a transparent manner.

Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has directed telecom operators to provide adequate information to all broadband subscribers. This includes providing timely SMS alerts to subscribers about their data usage limits under their broadband plan. Also, the regulator has asked operators to maintain the minimum download speed of 512 kbps.

Operators must SMS customer about data usage limits + minimum 512 kbps speed - TRAI

Now operators need to inform their broadband subscribers through SMS or e-mail, when their data usage reaches 50 percent, 90 percent and 100 percent of the data usage limit under their chosen broadband plan. Also, operators should provide an easy access portal or website through which users can check their daily usage.

TRAI also directed operators of fixed broadband services to ensure a minimum download speed to 512 kbps even after the subscriber has hit the data usage limit. This will be applicable to all broadband plans which have a fair usage policy (FUP) limit attached. For example, if you have subscribed to an unlimited broadband plan with 2Mbps speed and reaches a FUP or data quota cap of 8GB before the billing cycle is over, the operator may reduce the speed for the remaining period. TRAI has now asked operators to maintain this speed to minimum 512 kbps.

Key highlights from new TRAI directive

  • Operators should inform customers about their data usage limit via SMS or e-mail.
  • For fixed broadband subscribers, the operator should maintain a minimum speed of 512 kbps even after the FUP limit.
  • All advertisement from operator must carry information about the speed, FUP limits, and network technology in use.

According to the directive, all advertisement (published through any media) from operators should carry all information in respect to a broadband tariff plan. This includes the data usage limit, fair usage policy, broadband speed before and beyond the data usage limit. For mobile broadband services details such as data usage limit with specific network technology (4G/3G/2G) and speed beyond the data usage limit should be provided.

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