The wholesale data rates that telecommunications companies pay to FINTEL will drop today from $40,000 to $640 per 10 GB line.
This is a drastic reduction in wholesale rates and people are eagerly awaiting the announcement from the telecommunications companies on when the huge reduction will be passed down to consumers.
The two mobile phone companies have not revealed as yet on whether data rates will significantly go down.
The Fijian Competition and Consumer Commission says the changes should see prices for consumers eventually reduce.
When questioned on any planned reduction in data rates, Vodafone Fiji’s Head of eCommerce and Corporate Affairs, Shailendra Prasad says any changes need to be seen in totality and not in isolation. Prasad says where such changes result in an overall and sustained cost reduction and operational efficiencies, the benefits have been passed onto consumers.
Prasad says the recent imposition of 10 cents per GB data levy was absorbed by Vodafone and not passed onto the consumers.
When questioned on whether data rates will be significantly reduced, Digicel Fiji CEO, Mike Greig says they are pleased to see Fiji aligned to international benchmarks for these types of costs, which have not been amended since 2013.
Greig says data is the new precious commodity and digital lifeblood of Fijians, as seen in the past six years through the enormous growth in data volumes with the introduction of 4G LTE and the increased penetration of smartphones.
He says Digicel continues to listen to their customers, drive value, and do what is right for the people of Fiji, which has been in their DNA since bringing competition and choice to Fiji since 2008.
We have also sent questions to Telecom Fiji Limited.
They are yet to respond.