Tata DOCOMO, India’s sixth largest mobile network operator, started in 2008 as a joint venture between Tata Teleservices and Japanese NTT Docomo. It is a part of the Tata Group in India, is a mobile network operator that provides GSM, CDMA and data services.
Tata Docomo has been granted licenses by the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) to provide GSM mobile services in 19 telecom circles and has been allocated spectrum in 18 of the 19 circles.
It started service first in South India and presently operates mobile services in 18 of 22 telecommunication circles in India.
It has been given licenses by the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) to provide services in Delhi but has not been allocated spectrum by the Government of India.
It provides both prepaid and postpaid mobile services. Tata Docomo’s one second pulse pricing format has gained high popularity especially in semi urban and rural parts of the country.
Currently, its mobile network covers the following telecommunication circles in India: Karnataka , Kolkata, Tamil Nadu, Himachal Pradesh, Kerala, Orissa, Bihar, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Punjab, Rajasthan, , Mumbai, Madhya Pradesh-Chhattisgarh, Haryana, West Bengal, Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh, and Gujarat.
Tata Docomo was the 3rd mobile network provider to provide 3G services in its allocated circles. Negotiations are going on between Tata and Japanese NTT Docomo regarding Tata Docomo’s plans to provide 4G services in a few telecom circles in the country.
Docomo also provides CDMA mobile services through two other brands – Tata Indicom and Virgin Mobile.
Tata Docomo, which is predominantly a GSM brand has taken the market leadership in offering state of the art mobile services, particularly with the mobile network’s offering of 3G based mobile services.
It has a total of over 90 million subscribers spread across 500,000 towns and villages all over India. Tata Docomo’s prepaid mobile GSM plans has attracted a large customer base due to low financial commitment required from subscribers and the absence of annual contracts.
In Nov 2010, it became the first private mobile network to start offering 3G mobile services in India. Its HSPA+ 3G network provides high-speed internet with speeds well over 22 MBPS. Docomo also provides 3G Internet devices like e-sticks and dongles.
In July 2011, Docomo and Aircel announced a pact to cross share 3G spectrum in each other’s circles. In the 2012 spectrum auction, Aircel won 3G licences in 13 of 22 telecom circles in India , while TATA DOCOMO won 3G spectrum in 9 circles.
This gave both networks 3G spectrum in a total of 19 telecom circles across India (excluding Delhi, Mumbai and Himachal Pradesh). The networks share three circles – Karnataka, Punjab and Kerala.
However, the agreements were nullified in Dec 2011after the government On December 14, 2011, Docomo ended its agreement with Aircel. Both operators ended the deal after Department of Telecom (DoT) declared such agreements as illegal.
In October 2011, Tata DoCoMo brought all its various brands – CDMA, GSM, Walky and Photon – under the Tata Docomo umbrella brand name. Subscribers to these services were transferred to the Docomo brand in Oct 2011.
Docomo’s other brands – Virgin Mobile and T24 – were however not part of the rebranding and will continue using their respective branding.
Tata Docomo Pay-as-You-Go Plan
The network’s prepaid plans vary among the different telecom circles. Below is an indicative list of Tata Docomo online top up plans. For detailed prepaid mobile refill plans in India, logon to http://www.tatadocomo.com
New user can buy a Tata Docomo SIM card, costing INR 49 which comes with lifetime validity, and comes with a talk time of INR 5 on activation. For outgoing calls (both Tata Docomo and other networks) users pay 1 paisa per second.
Long distance STD calls are charged the same rate (1 paisa per second) for one after activation. Thereon the cost will be 2 paisa per second. SMS cost is INR 1 per SMS to local mobile numbers, INR 1.5 to national networks, and INR 5 for international SMSs.
Internet access using Tata Docomo’s WAP or GPRS network will cost 10 paisa per KB.
Though Tata Docomo subscribers get lifetime validity with their prepaid plans, they must recharge their Tata Docomo data card recharge account with a minimum of INR 200 every six months in order to keep their account alive.
Given the varied mobile needs of subscribers, the network provides Tata Docomo mobile recharge plans that provide cost saving features such as affordable local and long distance talk time.
Tata Docomo mobile recharge plans worth INR 32 and INR 69, with validity period of 30 days and 60 days respectively gives local mobile calling for only 1 paisa per 2 seconds. However this is not applicable for roaming.
For INR 24, the in network free recharge delivers inexpensive local Tata Docomo network mobile calls at 10 paisa per minute, while long distance local Tata Docomo network mobile calls cost 20 paisa per minute, and it comes with a 30 day validity.