TRAI – Call Drop issue


  • The issue of frequent call drops has become severe in the recent months and concern has been raised by Prime Minister Narendra Modi as well in this regard.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi had expressed serious concern over the issue of call drops and had asked officials to explain the steps being taken to address the problem, which directly affects the common man.
  • An audit done by an independent agency in Delhi and Mumbai in the month of June and July, on behalf of TRAI, had found that operators such as Vodafone, Idea, Reliance and Airtel failed to meet quality of service norms, especially on the parameter of mobile call drops. The survey found that Tata (CDMA) in Delhi and Bharti Airtel in Mumbai are the only service providers meeting the benchmark of less than 2% call drops.
What is a Call Drop?
There is no standard definition of a dropped call. In telecommunications, it refers to the telephone calls which, due to technical reasons, were cut off before the speaking parties had finished their conversation and before one of them had hung up (dropped calls).
Why a call drops? – telecom services providers’ arguments:
There are many reasons why a call drops, including network infrastructure, spectrum allocation, traffic, as well as the handsets that consumers use. However, telecom service providers give the following reasons:
  • Inadequate number of cell sites directly impact quality of services.
  • Limited number of towers is leading to inferior customer experience and growing customer inconvenience.
  • Several challenges are being faced by the industry during installation of sites, including State bodies’ actions against towers without prior notices, restrictions by municipalities, sealing orders, power supply issues and difficulties in getting clearances for installing sites.
  • The service providers have also said that over 10,000 cell sites have been made non-operational due to some trivial reasons across major cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Chandigarh, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Patna and Jaipur
Various demands by the telecom companies to improve the quality of services:
  • need of additional spectrum.
  • harmonisation of airwaves to improve capacity.
  • they be allowed to install towers on government buildings.
  • alignment of State policies with the Telecom Department’s advisory of mobile tower installation
What do you understand by “Call Drop”? Why is it caused? Examine and also discuss its impact on consumers. (200 Words)



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