December 07, 2008


Data card tariff comparison

In a TV commercial of Reliance Netconnect, they position the USB modem as the SIM card of laptop. The ad is unimaginative, but the essence is if you have laptop, you are going to need the data card. I have tried connecting through my phone, but it simply doesn't work.

I am an user of Reliance NetConnect for almost an year. I can't really say a happy user as I would say about their mobile phone service. It merely addresses the need of the hour like sending mails. No heavy downloads and watching YouTube is blasphemy.

We have subscribed to 1 GB plan, which costs Rs 730 per month (inclusive of taxes.) I recently came across plans of Idea Cellular which are much cheaper. That made me think about state of other operators. So, here is the comparison of plans from various operators. The quality of the service/bandwidth may not differ much from one telco to another. So, price seems to be the only decider.

Telco 512 MB/Month 1GB/month Unlimited Data Card Price
Airtel 350 599 999 2999
BSNL - - 550 2800
Idea 299 399 849 2490
Reliance - 650 1500 2490
Vodafone 499 699 - 2999
Tata Indicom 500 650 1099

Verdict: Idea is the clear winner by wide margin. If you are buying a new connection, the decision is obvious.

Unfortunately, you can't switch the operators once you have bought the device. So, the only hope for existing users is to wait for their service provider to become competitive some day.

I had written to Reliance about the offering from Idea and told them how their service is far more expensive. In reply they sent me a long templatized mail describing the advantages of USB data card and one single line saying they are looking into it. So much for "customer care."


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Thanks for this. Although I remember getting a bill from my Tata Indicom that's comparable to the Idea minimum, so its possible they are competitive.
One should never buy Reliance data card. It is the worst in speed & most of the time , it dies in 5 minutes. We must file the case against them for loss of our valuable. I have just thrown it in river as I was more frustrated.
Ajay Mehta
I am using the bsnl data card on rental basis and quite satisfied with them
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