By now, you’ve probably heard a lot about Reliance Jio and want to know if getting on the network is worth it. There are plenty of different ways to get a free Jio SIM with the Jio preview offer that gives you access to three months of unlimited usage of the network, and unlimited use of Jio’s different services, which include news, music, and video on demand. But the one device that could help bring your whole house online cheaply is the Reliance Jio JioFi.
Given how cheap calling is in India, the reason most people are interested in Jio right now is to access free, fast, and unlimited data. As of now, mobile data in India is still pretty expensive – for example, a 1GB pack in Karnataka from Vodafone will set you back by Rs. 265. Since Jio’s commercial launch is yet to take place (with some sources now suggesting that the launch will only happen in December) we don’t know what the prices will be.
For now, if you have a Jio connection, you’re promised three months of free, unlimited usage, or until the commercial launch takes place, whichever is later. The speeds are great – though that’s also likely in part because of how few people are on the network right now – and there are no FUPs. Consuming 10GB of mobile data on another network would be inconceivable, but many people are consuming that much in a single day with Jio.
Many people are just getting a Jio SIM and then switching on the Wi-Fi hotspot on their phones. The problem with this is that it drains the phone’s battery, and thus limits the usefulness. That’s where the JioFi comes into the picture.
What is Reliance Jio JioFi
The JioFi is a personal hotspot – the kind of thing you’ve seen some all mobile carriers. The Reliance JioFi is a small device that will fit into your pocket, and acts as a bridge between the 4G network and a local Wi-Fi network that it creates, which your phone, laptop, and other devices can connect to. It’s a very simple way of getting your home online, and it comes with a rechargable battery – that means that you can plug it in at home, or put it in your pocket and take your connection with you when you head out.
Interestingly, you can use the Jio Join app on your phone to place calls or send messages through the JioFi. This means that even if your phone does not support 4G, you can make full use of Reliance Jio’s network thanks to the JioFi.
The Reliance JioFi comes with a Reliance Jio SIM that, once activated, can be used in other devices (like your phone) as well. You can of course use SIM cards of other operators in the JioFi if needed, though obviously you will need to pay for usage on that network.
How to buy a Reliance JioFi?
Just walk into the nearest Reliance Digital/ Reliance Digital Xpress Mini store and purchase a JioFi. You’ll need to carry a passport photo, one photo ID, and an address proof. Once you fill out the forms the number will be activated, and you’ll have to call 180089011977 for televerification – the exact steps are given on the package and it’s pretty straightforward.
The store executives say that the process should happen within four hours, though in our experience with getting two Reliance Jio connections activated, it took more than a day each time.
Reliance JioFi Price and tariff plans
The JioFi is priced at Rs. 2,899. As of now, the company has made no statement about what the actual pricing and plans will be. The preview offer will be for 90 days or until the commercial launch takes place, whichever is later – so you’re getting a completely free connection for at least three months. Without speculating about the eventual pricing, that works out to under Rs. 1,000 per month – far less than you’d pay for comparable speeds on a broadband connection, and that too without any FUP limit.
That’s all you need to know in order to get a Reliance Jio JioFi. Stay tuned for more on the JioFi and Reliance Jio network.