Last October, Reliance Jio started charging its customers 6 paise per minute as Interconnect Usage Charge (IUC) for all outgoing voice calls made to non-Jio mobile numbers.
And now, with TRAI deciding to retain IUC for another year, Jio users will have to continue paying this amount in 2020 as well.
There are some ways that can help you avoid paying IUC:
How to avoid IUC? Well, use Wi-Fi Calling:-
Now, Jio has rolled out Wi-Fi calling in India, and it works on any Wi-Fi network across the country. Hence, to avoid paying IUC, you can use this free-of-cost service to make audio or video calls from your home, office, or any other public Wi-Fi hotspot.
At present, Jio’s Wi-Fi Calling is supported by more than 150 smartphones.
No Wi-Fi network? Try a data call via WhatsApp:
In case you don’t have access to a Wi-Fi network, you can use third-party apps like WhatsApp, Telegram, and Google Duo to make audio/video calls, using cellular data. This way, you can again avoid paying the charges for off-net calls.
Those using an iPhone can also use FaceTime to connect with their friends and family if they also have a compatible device.
Pick a plan that offers off-net calling minutes
Finally, Jio has updated all its prepaid plans to pack data and off-net talk time in a single plan. Depending on your needs, you can pick one of these packs, so that you don’t have to pay any amount for making calls to other networks.
Trai Postpones Shift to Zero IUC
The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) which oversees all the regulations in the telecom industry had told the telecom companies that India is heading towards a zero-IUC regime meaning that the IUC would come down to zero and the telecom companies will not have to pay anything to each other. The shift to this zero IUC regime was supposed to happen by the end of the previous year. But, sadly, it did not happen.
Trai came out with a decision of deferring the shift to zero IUC regime. This meant that until next year the telecom companies would continue to pay 6 paise per minute to each other for IUC. Since in the case of Reliance Jio this charge is coming from the pockets of the consumers, the Jio subscribers would also continue to spend 6 paise per minute on outgoing calls until the year-end.