Reliance Jio Infocomm Limited (RJIL) has been in the news for some time now with its ambitious plans. The Mukesh Ambani owned mobile network provider has already received a pan-India 4G license and is expected to roll out services soon. What was initially seen as a purely data driven network later expanded to include voice calls too with the purchase of airwaves in the 2G spectrum auction this February.
To provide glitch-free services all over India, RJIL, affiliated with Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) established lease agreements with Indian telecom companies like Reliance Communications and Sunil Mittal owned Bharti Airtel. Now, RJIL has tied up with Viom Networks to lease mobile phone towers. The company in a statement on Monday, 17th March said that it had agreed to lease mobile phone masts from infrastructure provider Viom Networks. Viom has 42,000 mobile towers in India. Viom is not a publicly listed company. It’s a joint venture between India’s SREI Infrastructure Finance Ltd and mobile carrier Tata Teleservices.
RJIL’s inking of this deal comes on the backdrop of the company not only establishing tower-sharing pacts with other telecom companies, but also sharing Network with Sunil Mitta’s Bharti Airtel. Bharti Airtel is the parent company of Bharti Infratel, among those whom RJIL will share towers with.
Reliance Jio’s involvement in India’s hotly contested telecommunications industry began in 2010, when it bought 4G airwaves and acquired a pan-India license for the same. The company also laid down an optic-fibre network with the hope of offering a stand-alone broadband service. This was done in the States of Odisha and West Bengal. It is expected that the Mukesh Ambani owned company will launch 4G services in India sometime during 2014. Also, the company taking into consideration the fact that handset compatibility would be a critical issue to operate 4G services, RJIL has tied with Asian manufacturers to produce handsets.