Reliance Jio has decided to withdraw its Jio Summer Surprise offer in accordance with telecom regulator’s advice.
In a statement on Thursday, the telecom operator said: “Today, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has advised Jio to withdraw the 3 months complimentary benefits of Jio Summer Surprise.”
“Jio will be withdrawing the 3 months complimentary benefits of Jio Summer Surprise as soon as operationally feasible, over the next few days,” according to the statement.
Users who signed up for the offer by making a first-time recharge will, however, continue to get complimentary benefits. “All customers who have subscribed to Jio Summer Surprise offer prior to its discontinuation will remain eligible for the offer,” Jio said.
Under the Jio Summer Surprise offer, subscribers who enrolled before April 15 and recharged for plans of Rs 303 and more were entitled to get three months of complimentary service.
The Summer Surprise offer was announced by Jio on March 31. The offer was available to all those who had subscribed to the Jio Prime membership, priced at Rs 99 per year, and had done a recharge of Rs 303 or more on their Jio number. The offer effectively gave Jio users another three months of free Jio service.
Importantly, Reliance Jio on Thursday noted that those who have already subscribed to the Summer Surprise offer will get it. It’s just that the offer is no longer open to new users. “All customers who have subscribed to JIO SUMMER SURPRISE offer prior to its discontinuation will remain eligible for the offer,” noted Jio.
As part of the Summer Surprise offer, which Reliance chairman Mukesh Ambani had called shagun offer, Jio had said that consumers will get the same service that they were getting as part of the Happy New Year, which in itself was a continuation of the Welcome Offer that Jio provided users when it went live with the service in September last year. This means Summer Surprise offer provided users with 1GB free data every day along with free calls and messages another 3 months. The recharge they Jio users had done to avail the offer was supposed to be used only after the completion of the three months.
The Jio Happy New Year offer expired on March 31. However, Ambani said that the company had witnessed great rush for the Jio Prime membership and hence he extended the deadline to subscribe to Prime until April 15, along with continuing the free service until April 15.
Trouble earlier too
This is not the first time Jio face some pushback about its promotional offer. Although this is first time TRAI has seemingly put an end to one of Jio’s offers. Earlier when Jio launched the service in September with Welcome Offer that gave Jio users free service, Airtel, Vodafone and others approached TRAI against the offer. They argued that no company could provide a promotional for more than 90 days. TRAI agreed and asked Jio to end the Welcome Offer on December instead of on December 31, which the company did. However at the same time, Jio also announced the Happy New Year offer, which gave Jio users same sort of service they were getting under Welcome Offer for another 3 months until March 31.
Also Read: End of free Jio, new Prime deadline, Summer Surprise offer: Read full text of Mukesh Ambani’s letter
When Happy New Year offer ended, Jio announced the end of free services, albeit after giving users another extension with free services for 15 days. At the same time, it also said that the users who subscribe to Prime and do a value recharge will get another three months of free service. This time apparently TRAI decided that Jio’s offer of free service was violating the rules.
Although Summer Surprise offer has ended, some questions remain. Jio says that people who have already subscribed to the Summer Surprise will continue to get it. It is not clear how that will not be a violation of TRAI rules in case the Summer Surprise offer is violation. Hopefully in the coming days there will be more clarity on the matter.