All the private telecom operators in India are desperately trying to do one thing: create a great mobile app. Whether it’s Jio or Airtel, or Vi; all are in the race to make their mobile app a great app that not only contains features to top up or check data balance but much more.
For example, Vodafone Idea now allows users to stream music, play games, and even find jobs through its mobile app. Telcos are trying to create a whole market or ecosystem within their app, and Vodafone Idea seems to be doing a lot of unique things.
But Bharti Airtel is not left out either. Airtel has a whole bank of online payments in its mobile app. Now that counts for something. Bharti Airtel is the only telecom operator to offer online banking services in the app. Additionally, there is Airtel Thanks and more which allows the operator to monetize its mobile platform by partnering with multiple brands.
As for Reliance Jio, the telecom operator offers a wide range of mini apps that can be downloaded from the app. There’s JioSaavn, a music streaming service, JioHealthHub, and more.
Building super mobile apps will allow telcos to better monetize the platform
The more customers these telecom operators acquire, the more they can register and be integrated into their applications. These mobile apps offer telecom operators the opportunity to partner with several other platforms to offer services and earn extra money.
Indian telecom operators cannot rely solely on their mobile revenues, which are undoubtedly on the rise. But to build a robust revenue model, these telecom operators must also make money in other ways. This is where these mobile platforms come into play.
It’s a simple business model and one that only works at scale. The more customers these telecom operators have on their applications, the more third-party platforms will want to be part of them.
It also opens the possibility for telecom operators to see the behavior of their users. What kind of music are they listening to, what kind of entertainment are they looking for, and more. This data is very important because advertisers can pay a high price for it.
So the next time you see telcos offering you a better deal in their mobile app or tricking you into signing up, know that in the long run, they’re looking to make money from your data or presence.
Note that none of these “business plans I mentioned” above are confirmed by the telecom operators themselves.