Bengaluru start-up may soon compete against Ambani’s Jio in the ‘cheap data’ race

By VARINDIA - 2020-01-24

Bengaluru start-up may soon compete against Ambani’s Jio in the ‘cheap data’ race

A Bengaluru based start-up offering 1 GB data for as low as Re 1, it could emerge as a tough competition for Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Jio. Incepted in 2016, WiFi Dabba aims to provide “reliable and affordable service” and fix connectivity issues. It was the same year when Jio launched its services.

 

“When we started … we believed the key issue was in last mile connectivity and pricing. So, we worked as ISP aggregators, buying connections from players who use fibre technology,” Karam Lakshman, CEO, WiFi Dabba said in an interview.

 

While Jio brought the data revolution in the country with cheap internet prices and even when data prices in the country are the cheapest globally, they are still quite high for many users with data remaining elusive to many.

 

WiFi Dabba realised the issue which was with the fibre and came up with a solution called supernodes. “We realised that fibre is the key issue so worked on developing a solution for the middle mile - supernodes,” the CEO said.

 

According to him, the cost of providing and accessing the internet remains high because of the third-party hardware, software and networking infrastructure. Moreover, companies also have to bear the cost of digging trenches to lay fibre optic which further pushes up the cost.

 

WiFi Dabba on the other hand is able to save cost as it does not deploy third-party hardware, software or infrastructure. The start-up fortunately has its own proprietary hardware, software and networking and the same helps the company to save on vendor margins.

 

While WiFi Dabba is yet to launch its services in India, the company plans to roll-out first in Bengaluru and then across cities in the country depending on the demand.


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