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Thursday, November 12, 2015
Important Topic For IAS UPSC Civil Services Mains Examination 2015 - Call Drops
· Call Drop Issue
o India is the world’s second-largest mobile user market after China.
o The fast-paced expansion of telecom connectivity coupled with inadequate infrastructure and overloaded networks is leading to many callers being cut off mid-sentence.
o A call drop represents the service provider’s inability to maintain a call once it has been correctly established.
o In India, call drops are a performance indicator for the country’s telecom networks.
o Mobile users have to rush from one room to another or drive around neighborhoods to find better signals.
o Some accuse telecom services providers, who charge for call by the minute, of deliberately engineering call drops to increase revenues.
o India keeps adding millions of new mobile users each quarter and the country’s active subscriber base of 869 million is fast closing in on a billion. Telecom operators, however, have been unable to adequately ramp up infrastructure and technology to keep pace.
o Call drops are on account of a multitude of factors involving the government, consumers, telcos and the regulator – like spectrum, network capacity, geographical coverage, capacity utilization, switching between towers and even technical failures.
o Call drops could be the undoing of several booming sectors, including India’s mobile-powered e-commerce industry, where frequent call drops make consumers nervous about payments.
o Call drops could indicate connectivity problem in India’s villages and towns where millions access Internet solely through mobile phones.
o It could be a setback for the Digital India program which aims to bringing connectivity – as well as financial inclusion, access to government services etc – to thousands of Indian villages.
o Call drops now figure among the top customer issues with telcos in several Indian cities. There is very little transparency on call drop data but it can be safely said that most companies have multiple sites where the call drop incidence is much above the stipulated 2 percent ceiling.
o The problem has reached such dire proportions across the country that India’s Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, the industry regulator, has indicated that telecom service providers need to compensate users for dropped calls.