By Express News Service

NEW DELHI: State-run telecom operator BSNL on Wednesday unveiled the country’s first Internet telephony service app, called Wings, which will allow users to make calls to any telephone number, including landline and mobile numbers, in India.

At present, phone calls can be made through most mobile apps (mainly WhatsApp) only to users of that particular app, and not to telephone numbers. The service can be accessed using a Wi-Fi network. 

BSNL said that there were some areas where mobile coverage was not good, thus there was poor speech quality, but the Internet can be accessed by many means, including Wi-Fi.

“With Wings, users can use the Internet service of any operator and make or receive phone calls,” it said.

Last month, the government amended norms to allow full-fledged Internet telephone services, which will enable calls from app to app as well as app to telephone number.Registration for the Wings service will start this week and the service will be activated from July 25 onwards.

BSNL is offering unlimited audio and video calling for one year. Customers can activate the service at a one-time charge of Rs 1,099. International calls will be charged in line with the landline tariff, with an additional ISD deposit of Rs 2,000.

“In the present competitive environment, increase in market share by BSNL is laudable. I congratulate BSNL management for Internet telephony, which will enable consumers to make accall without SIM,” Telecom Minister Manoj Sinha said.

BSNL has a wireless subscriber base of 110 million and the latest plans are a part of its strategy to beat the competition.On allocating 4G spectrum to the national carrier, Sinha said that the government was seriously considering the matter and looking for a way to allocate 4G spectrum to the operator.

“We will support BSNL so that it can lead the market,” Sinha said.


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