The subscriber base of state-run cellphone operator Teletalk is set to see a sharp fall if it fails to improve its service standard, says a recent report.
The findings came from the impact evaluation survey report conducted by the Implementation, Monitoring and Evaluation Division (IMED) of the Planning Commission on a project titled 'Introduction of 3G technology and extension of 2.5G network'.
The report says Teletalk subscribers are now switching over to other mobile phone operators to get better services because of disruption in its network.
During the survey, Teletalk subscribers said the standard of its service is not up to the mark as its network coverage does not work well, particularly after midnight.
Besides, the subscribers who took part in the survey alleged that Teletalk customer centers are very few in number while it is hard to find out its recharging outlets.
"The 3G network coverage doesn't exist in all areas as the network coverage functions well only inside the city, but outside the cities and towns, there is no 3G coverage," the report reveals.
Some 720 Teletalk users at 27 places under 32 upazilas took part in the survey which highlighted the merits and weaknesses of the state-run operator since its inception.
The report incorporated various allegations brought by the Teletalk users in addition to making some recommendations for addressing those. The report also says all the contractors of this project did not accomplish their task properly.
It also identified that Teletalk is lagging behind when it comes to rendering speedy services to its subscribers as only one out of three Teletalk users get response from this operator in case of any problem.The other mobile operators stand much ahead of Teletalk in case of quick response.
The report says the internet speed of Teletalk outside cities and towns is not satisfactory either, while the number of its towers is less. Its net package facilities are also much less than others.
According to officials concerned, the 3G services are provided only to divisional cities and district towns on small scale due to poor allocation.
The report, however, says the trend of call-drops has come down due to the introduction of 3G technology and extension of 2.5G network.
Various offers of Teletalk alongside their other client services have also created an environment of competition in mobile phone services in the country, the report mentions. As a result, the call rates of other mobile phone operators have come down significantly.
It shows the number of Teletalk users rose to 41 lakh with a rise of 237 percent from 2012 to 2016.
The survey recommendations include: Extension of Teletalk network across the country with the extension of 3G network up to union and village levels, enhancing the number of Teletalk recharge points, spreading customer care services in all the upazilas, ensuring round-the-clock network coverage, further raising the number of towers and subscribers alongside introducing special packages and offers with a low rate.