BSNL prepaid broadband data plans in India - a review

The following article gives you detailed information on prepaid broadband data plans that are available at Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) in India. The prepaid option is one of the best options for those who don't need the internet access at all times. But whenever they need it, it must be at lightening speed and only BSNL can serve this kind of service.

Prepaid broadband data service of BSNL:

The internet access has become a basic necessity for students, job seekers and probably for every individual who knows how to use computer or laptop. The GPRS internet connectivity is affordable for every such user but its connectivity speed is not that fast when it is connected to a computer or Laptop. So the one who really needs a fast data access should look up and try this prepaid broadband internet access. In this service the user will pay for only the data charges and not for the basic telephone services. Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) has started this prepaid broadband data service where the users can select data plans according to their download requirements.

Right now this prepaid broadband service is available only for the BSNL fixed line subscribers and there are several limited and unlimited download plans available. The important thing in this prepaid service is that the subscriber can top up any voucher of their choice and they can even switch over various data plans. The only condition in this switching of data plans is that the previous data plan amount will not be carried forward. All the prepaid data plans have a validity period and if any the customer runs out of validity then it can top-up the validity period. The facility of data usage top-up is also provided so that the user can increase their download limit.

All the data plans have a certain validity period and there is a grace period of 15 days in which the subscriber can top up their validity or data usage. Now if a customer has not completed the download limit within the validity period then that remaining balance will be carried forward only if they recharge it with the validity voucher of same type. This validity and data usage top up facility is not available for the users who have subscribed to unlimited prepaid broadband data plan of BSNL. If a customer wishes to change plan type then the remaining data usage and validity of previous plan will not be carried forward.

Every prepaid broadband user account is being created at the BSNL portal website and they can keep track of all their activities like top-up of data usage, validity voucher, downloaded data, etc. The top up, prepaid plans and validity vouchers have to be purchased from any retailer or from the BSNL retail outlet center. In this way if the user does not recharge their account with any validity or data usage in the next 15 days after the grace period or they remain inactive after the grace period then their account will be automatically deleted from the system. Hence, it is better to recharge within the grace period because if the account is deleted, the user has to rush towards BSNL customer care office for regaining the prepaid broadband service.

Installation charges:

As of now only BSNL landline subscribers can apply for this prepaid broadband service and the minimum installation charges are Rs. 250 excluding Sales Tax/VAT. To avail this type of internet connectivity there is a need of ADSL modem and the customer can purchase from any retail shop or request for one towards customer care centre. The ADSL basic and ADSL Wi-Fi modem devices are provided by BSNL at the cost of Rs. 1400/- and Rs. 2100/- respectively and they are inclusive of sales tax/VAT. It is better to purchase a device like modem on our own since there are many online stores which can deliver the device to our doorstep and that too at a reasonable price.

Now the account activation charges are Rs. 100 which is mandatory for every new customer. In this account activation the user profile is created on BSNL portal website which offers 400 MB of free data usage with a bandwidth of about 2 Mbps and its validity of 30 days. In this way, if the customer has a modem device of their own, total installation charges are Rs. 350/-. The validity of all prepaid limited broadband plans can be increased up to 15 days with a validity voucher of Rs. 100. The data usage can be increased up to 2 GB and 5 GB using top up vouchers Rs. 200/- and Rs. 375/- respectively.

Data plans – Limited and Unlimited:

The prepaid broadband service has 13 different recharge vouchers of which 3 are of unlimited and remaining 10 are of limited data download specifications. All the limited broadband data plans will have a data access speed from 2 Mbps to about 8 Mbps and unlimited download plans have varying bandwidth from 256 Kbps to about 1 Mbps. The image shown below displays every plan in detail and in GP means Grace Period.

BSNL prepaid broadband data plans in India

Now suppose that the customer has subscribed to Rs. 200/- plan where he gets a limited data access of 700 MB. If in case, the user runs out of that limit before 30 days then the top up option comes into play. In this case the customer can top up with Rs. 200 or Rs. 375 recharge vouchers to increase their data download limit. It is important to note that these vouchers are not available online and the customer has to visit any retail outlets or BSNL retail outlets to get these top up vouchers. In similar way the validity of the plan can be extended except unlimited plans. As these vouchers have a validity period of 1 year, the customers can purchase vouchers at once and use them only when they run out of data usage or validity period.

The prepaid customers can access their broadband service from any BSNL landline telephone in India provided they have all the requisite devices like PC/Laptop and modem. In this way the users can maneuver from one place to another and use their broadband connection as and when needed. This type of service is very important for students and the people who need data access at high speed with limitations of download. Best thing about this service is that the customer pays only for data charges and not for landline charges. Also the data connectivity is at higher pace as compared to that of postpaid broadband service.

Read this article to know more about: The reliable BSNL postpaid broadband data plans in India

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Guest Author: james15 Feb 2014

Pravin sir, the GRACE period 1 is 15 days which will carry forward the remaining balance and GP2 is 30 days, cannot carry forward. So, does that mean I do not have to recharge for another 45 days after main validity expiration?

And is it right that BSNL WiFi modems are quite cheaper than the one on markets (d link, tp link etc)/ Which one do you recommend??

Please reply. I am going for PREPAID BB.

Author: Pravin S Chavre17 Feb 2014 Member Level: Gold   Points : 7

Hello James,

The important thing to note here is that on the 31st day you will not be able to access internet because the validity period is of only 30 days.

The Wi-Fi modem charges are quite higher if purchase it directly from BSNL office which are Rs.2100/- plus the VAT charges.

I would recommend you to purchase a Wi-Fi modem via the online shopping websites like Flipkart, Snapdeal, etc. Before that register on CashKaro website so that you get something in return for your online purchase. To know more read the following resource:

Top 6 cashback websites in India

Here are the details of GP1 and GP2 as follows:

For example: If you subscribe for Broadband Voucher of Rs. 450/- then its validity is for 30 days and it offers free data access of 3 GB.

After 30 days if you have 1 GB unused data then it will be carried forward only if you recharge with same type of voucher which is of Rs. 450/-. So this is the benefit of GP1 (Grace Period 1).

Now if you don't recharge your account for next 30 days after GP1 (i.e. 45 Days) then your account will be forfeited (deleted). The disadvantage of this GP2 is that you will not be able to carry forward your remaining unused data from previous voucher.

Guest Author: Madhav22 Mar 2014

I asked for prepaid broadband in machilipatnam and they refused to provide it saying they do not have such plans and they have even not heard about it. Could you please let me know how to get this activated? I have opted for postpaid plan as prepaid is not available in my place.

Guest Author: Boobalachander S01 Sep 2014

Hi Pravin,

I have a doubt regarding your statement , "Best thing about this service is that the customer pays only for data charges and not for landline charges"

It means , there is no rental charges for the landline?
Do we need to pay only for the actual usage of the landline?

Author: Tony John01 Sep 2014 Member Level: Gold   Points : 0


There is no landline required for BSNL WiMax. If you need landline, you have to get it separate and it has no connection to WiMax.

Author: Pravin S Chavre01 Sep 2014 Member Level: Gold   Points : 5


Yes. The prepaid broadband service is available only for a few select cities in India.

Just check the broadband section on the following website of Andhra Pradesh, BSNL:

If the prepaid service gets activated in your region, then it will be updated in this website as well. So keep checking it and when it will get activated, you can subscribe for it.

@Boobalachander S:

Yes as I have read it on the following link:

In above link, read the "Advantages of Prepaid Broadband", where they have said that the prepaid broadband customers will not have to pay for the landline rental charges.

You can call on this BSNL customer care number and get further details about this service: 1800-345-1504.

Guest Author: Ratan Poddar03 Sep 2014

I am not able to make 3d password. How to create 3D password?

Guest Author: Rohan Harish11 Nov 2014

What about the speed, is it good enough for normal usage and is it wired or something like does it work on sim?

Guest Author: Boobalachander S24 Nov 2014

Hi Pravin,

In the link which you have given , the statement says "No Fixed monthly charges : There are NO fixed monthly charges associated with Prepaid Broadband services."

I think here , they are mentioning about the fixed monthly charges for the broadband and not the landline rental

Guest Author: Kunal15 Feb 2015

How to use the Prepaid broadband connection anywhere in India? I mean I live away from my home and I am thinking of getting a new landline phone connection. I have already bought a modem and have a telephone connection in my home. So if I choose a Prepaid connection, will I be able to use it at my home if I go there for a month or two? And how?

Author: Timmappa Kamat23 Feb 2015 Member Level: Gold   Points : 1

BSNL offers great and economical plans. But they do not have stability. Their network speed is quite excellent, but service is not stable at all. However, you have provided a good analytical review of the plans available with them.

Guest Author: hemant27 May 2015

BSNL guys say there no such service in Chattisgarh. How to get this username and password ?

Author: Pravin S Chavre27 May 2015 Member Level: Gold   Points : 4

@Timmappa Kamat: Sir, I have been using the BSNL Landline post paid landline service for more than 9 years and I have never faced any service issues in my circle. According to me, BSNL is the best Internet service provider.

@Hemant: Visit the following website of BSNL Chhatisgarh, when the page loads, scroll down a little bit and click on "BSNL Customer Care Portal"

If BSNL service is available in your area, then you will find the name of Customer Service Center within your area along with the contact number of the person in charge of that center. So if your area is not listed, then contact the nearest service center with respect to your location.

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