Airtel defends its ‘fastest network’ claim against Reliance Jio’s allegations

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Airtel defends its ‘fastest network’ claim against Reliance Jio’s allegations

After Jio made serious allegations about network speed test company Ookla, colluding with Airtel to give the title of “officially the fastest network”, India’s largest telecom company has come to its defence and is sticking to the claim of being the fastest network.
Jio had filed a complaint with the the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI). The bone of contention was Airtel’s use of the phrase “officially the fastest network” which, according to Reliance Jio was “misleading”.
Airtel countered this allegation with a statement from Rajiv Mathrani, chief brand officer at Bharti Airtel. He stated, “our latest advertising campaign is based on the findings by Ookla… Ookla’s findings are based on rigorous and extensive testing across millions of devices. We are rather amused by the allegations being made against our campaign. We believe that this is a deliberate attempt to malign our brand and misguide customers through a campaign of misinformation, which is something we now come across on a regular basis, in particular, on social media platforms.”
Even Ookla defended Airtel’s claim by backing them on the title of the fastest network. “We are always improving how additional information is collected and analyzed through our Speedtest applications to allow Ookla to accurately reflect internet performance. We have taken dual SIM information into consideration and fully stand behind Airtel being named India’s Fastest Mobile Network,” said Jamie Steven, COO at Ookla.
Jio had made allegations claiming that since there is no government office awarding the title, it cannot be official. “The claim of Airtel that it is India’s fastest network is false, misleading and incorrect. This claim is being made by Airtel acting in a mala fide manner in collusion with Ookla, LLC,” Jio said in its complaint filed before The Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI).
“This is clearly mentioned in the ad. Ookla’s findings are based on analysis of millions of internet speed tests logged on ‘modern devices’ by mobile customers across India using its popular Speedtest app. The results include all mobile tests, regardless of connection technology,” the Airtel spokesperson said.
Reliance Jio claimed that the Ookla charges money for giving out such awards. The Mukesh Ambani-led company themselves got an offer from the speed-test application in the same quarter when Bharti Airtel was awarded the title.
In a legal notice to Ookla, Jio said it was informed by the broadband testing company that Jio’s network was the fastest mobile network in India and can be given the tag of fastest network in India which Jio can use leveraging Ookla’s brand but Ookla will “charge substantial sums of money for this purpose and especially for publicly using the award and test results”.
“You purportedly issued a certificate dated February 24, 2017 to Bharti Airtel…certifying their network to be India’s fastest mobile carrier for the same period,” Jio notice to Ookla said.
Jio has also found a fault with the methodology used by Ookla, which attributes speed result to sim used in the primary slot of mobile phones even if Jio sim delivering high speed has been used in the secondary slot.
The company claims that the use of the word “officially” is misleading as the title has not been given out by any government body.
“The word “officially’ when used in the context of telecom services is linked to only Trai and DoT in the minds of general public. The use of this word deceives the telecom consumer into believing that the certification is from the the telecom regulator namely Trai or the licensor namely DoT,” Jio said.

By | 2017-03-22T07:13:56+00:00 March 22nd, 2017|Business|0 Comments

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