Indian Telecom giant, Bharti Telecom (Airtel) has announced its plans to offer 8Mbps broadband internet for business as well as home users in selected Indian cities. The high speed broadband will be rolled-out within the next three weeks in Bangalore, Chennai, Pune, Kolkata, and Delhi. Subsequently, it will be launched in Mumbai and Hyderabad. Tariff plans and offerings are yet to be worked out, but roughly it should cost you around Rs. 2000 – 10000 depending upon your bandwidth requirement.
As most users won’t be needing 8Mbps speed constantly, Airtel has introduced a new "on-demand" feature which will lets you vary your broadband speed. This means that the end-user will be able to switch on 8Mbps whenever they need it, say when watching a long online video or downloading something over P2P? With 8Mbps speed, Airtel’s Broadband Service is also going IPTV (Internet Protocol Television) ready.
Last year, it was BSNL who took the initiative of taking broadband internet access to a new level by going 2Mbps. Now, it’s Airtel with 8Mbps. I’m pretty much positive that other ISPs in India will follow Airtel’s initiative.
I’m not certain, if Airtel will impose any bandwidth caps on their 8Mbps broadband plan, just like how BSNL did when they rolled-out 2Mbps broadband last year. I don’t think 8Mbps is going do any transformation to the end-user, unless ISPs here in India decide to lift bandwidth caps and provide unlimited access. For instance, BSNL still doesn’t have a 2Mbps broadband tariff with unlimited bandwidth. What’s the point in having such broadband connection, if you don’t get to enjoy what you pay for?