It isn't just the incumbent telcos that have been badly hit by Reliance Jio's tsunami of freebies. The closely related consumer router market too has become a casualty of Jio effect with people preferring to opt for the new entrant’s free data services, using their mobile devices as hotspots or it's portable WiFi devices for wireless internet.
According to a report in Economic Times, citing International Data Corporation findings, the router unit shipments saw a significant 19 percent fall in router unit shipments in the last quarter of 2016 which consequently led to a 22 percent fall in vendor revenue.
The Economic Times report said, major players such as Netgear, Digisol and TP Link witnessed a sharp slowdown in demand from mainly a home or home-office users, with people using Jio's hotspot instead of buying expensive routers. Mukesh Ambani's company was offering free voice and data services till 31st March 2107 and even after that, its services are available at rock-bottom prices.
Not so surprisingly, between the months of November 2016 and January 2017 many entry level routers remained stuck with distributors. Online marketplaces such as Amazon and Flipkart suddenly found themselves holding huge stocks of inventory that they were unable to sell off.
Interestingly, JioFi Hotspots devices did pretty well during the same time. The company managed to sell off around 3 million devices between 2016 and 2017 with over 50 percent sales occurring in the last quarter! And the slowdown is expected to continue until at least June.
To rub some more salt on others' wound, Jio is currently offering over 100 percent cash back on a router that costs INR 1,999. And you get 10 free vouchers of 5GB each that can be used over a period of 10 months, once the current offers expire.
We told you, Mukesh Ambani has an unending kitty of offers. So keep Jioing!