Are you facing call drop issues indoors? Good news, telecom minister to meet telcos to bring relief

By: | Published: August 31, 2017 5:09 AM

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) will come out with its recommendation on the contentious issue of Net neutrality by October.“This is the third in the series of discussions which we have had on net neutrality.

Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, Trai, Net NeutralityThe Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) will come out with its recommendation on the contentious issue of Net neutrality by October.(Image: IE)

Telecom minister Manoj Sinha is likely to hold a meeting with telecom operators on Friday to deliberate on the situation of call drops as well as discuss additional measures that will be required. Sources said that Sinha is scheduled to meet the telcos on Friday to discuss the situation of call drops. The deliberations will also include how to address call drops happening indoors. The issue of the latest Quality of Service (QoS) norms by regulator Trai is also expected to be discussed. This will be the operators’ first meeting with the department of telecom (DoT) after Trai came out with its QoS norms on August 18. The regulator has come out with more stringent QoS regulations for telecom operators in which it has not only done away with past methods of calculating call drops, but has also hiked the penalty amount exponentially to Rs 5 lakh.

The regulator has come out with more stringent QoS regulations for telecom operators in which it has not only done away with past methods of calculating call drops, but has also hiked the penalty amount exponentially to Rs 5 lakh. The new methodology for calculating call drops will now be based on a percentile basis, which will check poor performance of those base transreceiver stations (BTS) or cells that have not been performing up to the mark for some days during the observation period, and remained hidden due  to the previous averaging  formula for calculating the call drop rate.

Besides, Trai has also raised the penalty or financial disincentive amount to Rs 5 lakh, which is the maximum penalty that can be imposed on an operator for breaching norms. Earlier the penalty amount was Rs 1 lakh. According to the DoT data, call drops reported by subscribers have dropped from 64% in December 2016 to 57% at the end of March 2017, a drop of nearly 7% in three months. To tackle call drops, DoT had last year launched the Integrated Voice Response System (IVRS) in a phased manner between December 2016 and March 2017, covering all states in the country, to collect direct feedback from subscribers on call quality.

Between December 2016 and March 2017, IVRS made 26.97 lakh calls to subscribers, of which 3.56 lakh (about 13%) participated in the survey. Of those participating, 2.15 lakh (about 60%) subscribers reported experiencing frequent call drops. Based on the feedback from subscribers, DoT
said that it has been observed that the complaint is mostly indoors.

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