Kathmandu, April 4:

In a bid to make the telecommunication service more competitive and provide customers with more amenities, Nepal Telecom (NT) today announced various services that would come into effect from April 14, the Nepali New Year.

Post-paid subscribers of NT would now be entitled for free calls worth Rs 500, which is equivalent to the minimum monthly payment. Earlier NT was providing free calls worth Rs 250 only. Likewise, NT would also be beginning ‘E-Mail Alert’ service for its post-paid subscribers from the new year day. However, the service has been restricted to the NT’s Internet and e-mail subscribers only.

“These service have been introduced in test phase and is free of cost. Once we get charge clearance from Nepal Telecom Authority, the service would be charged,” said Surendra Thike, spokesperson at NT. “Long awaited GPRS system could also be expected from the second week of May,” added Madan Kaji Shakya, director at the NT.

Other services that NT would be launching from April 14 would be recharge card worth Rs 200 with ownership tax of four rupees, Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD) service and balance transfer service for pre-paid subscribers.

USSD that NT has introduced as an substitute for existing voice announcement for balance query and recharging procedure would help in decreasing traffic density making connection quicker, said Shakya. “The balance query and recharging calls cover about 12 per cent of call traffic and the USSD service would help reduce it providing quick connection to the subscribers,” he added.

Now instead of dialing 1414 customers can dial *400# for balance query and the system would automatically send an SMS with balance details and due date. Likewise for recharging pre-paid mobile users can dial *411* and then can dial the number encrypted in the recharge card.

Another service that NT has introduced is balance transfer through which NT pre-paid subscribers can exchange their balance amount of maximum Rs 50.

It was also informed at the press meet that NT is working to launch its limited mobility service soon. In the run of six years of NT’s service, it has distributed 110,000 post-paid mobile phones and 398,000 pre-paid mobile phones so far. NT has 118 base stations with capacity of 433,000 in Kathmandu alone.