Jio has been a thorn in the flesh of India’s incumbent telecom companies in real life, and it isn’t about to let up on social media either.
Vodafone and Idea today took to Twitter to announce their much-awaited merger. Vodafone and Idea had finalized the merger in March 2017, but were awaiting the nod of India’s government authorities. As soon as the merger became official today, Idea sent out the following tweet.
Hey, @VodafoneIN you know they're all talking about us.
— Idea (@Idea) August 31, 2018
Vodafone, not to be outdone, responded with a tweet of its own.
— Vodafone (@VodafoneIN) August 31, 2018
It’s hardly a new way to announce a merger — not too long ago, CommonFloor and Quikr had sent out a similar series of tweets to announce CommonFloor’s acquisition, and Ola and Mobikwik had taken it a notch higher, announcing a partnership with a series of rhymes. But while Idea’s and Vodafone’s Twitter bonhomie was well received, Jio was watching from the sidelines, and had an ace up its sleeve.
— Reliance Jio (@reliancejio) August 31, 2018
“Bringing people together since 2016,” tweeted Jio, while quoting the Vodafone-Idea tweet thread. It was a joke that landed — Jio, through its dirt cheap plans, has not only brought its millions of users together, but its entry has meant that competitors like Idea and Vodafone have also had to join hands to compete.
This isn’t the first time Jio has taken on other telecom companies on Twitter — last year, it had cheekily wished Airtel, Idea and Vodafone on Valentine’s day, leaving much of Twitter in splits. But the Idea Vodafone merger has perhaps been the biggest visible sign of Jio’s entry into the telecom space in 2016. Idea and Vodafone have come together to form a new entity called Vodafone Idea, and it is now the biggest telecom company in India. While Vodafone Idea now has 408 million subscribers, Airtel is second with 308 million subscribers, and Jio is in third spot with 225 million subscribers.
But it’s unlikely Jio will be particularly worried about the movements in the space — Jio still seems be continuing with its cheap plans, which will likely put further pressure on the competition. More impressively, Jio is managing to do so while being profitable, while all other players in the space seem to be seeing dramatically reduced profits or outright losses. Jio’s growing the fastest too — in June, it added more subscribers than Airtel, Idea and Vodafone combined. And with its social media game clearly being on point as well, it’s showing that it isn’t too fussed with the creation of India’s largest telecom company.