Hindustan Times (Lucknow)
Telcos raise red flag over Nanu’s free calls to cellphones, landlines
Nanu, a new mobile app, which offers free calling services, including on mobile numbers and landline connections, has drawn the ire of private telecom operators, who have raised objection before the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) and the government.
“If you read the Indian Telegraph Act, you can interpret that every form of data transmission over the internet, which is a form of communication, is legal because it is not regulated by telecom licences. If you read in that context, it’s a grey area,” said Martin Nygate, CEO, Nanu.
The Nanu support gives free limited credits every day for making free call anywhere in the world on its application, and even to those who have not installed its application. The call can be made to cellphones and landlines.
The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India has started the pre-consultation process on net neutrality, in which it has sought views on calling from mobile applications as well.
In a letter to telecom secretary JS Deepak, the The Cellular Operators’ Association of India (COAI) has said that connecting internet calls with networks using numbers assigned for mobile or landline phones violates current interconnection rules, and also causes loss to the operator and the exchequer.
“We are waiting for Trai to come out with the guidelines,” said. Nygate.
Nanu pays around $200,000 every month as interconnection charges to mobile service providers for connecting calls, he added.