The mobile subscriber growth remains unabated – Infact, if anything it is growing at even higher pace. We have been covering the monthly TRAI Mobile subscriber reports for over 3 years and experiencing this growth month on month has been phenomenal !
Just to give you an idea of growth, in August of 2007 (according to TRAI report), Indian Mobile subscriber base crossed 200 million subscribers. In 42 months since that report, India has added close to 600 Million new Mobile subscribers. That is a whooping 14.3 Million subscribers on average month on month consistently for past 3.5 years.
Telecom Subscriber Growth
Coming back to the TRAI report – India now has total of 826.25 Million Telecom subscribers (791.38 Wireless & 34.87 wireline), witnessing a monthly growth of 2.62% for mobile and negative 0.23 growth for wireline subscribers. This amounts to a total tele-density of 69.29 percent (66.36 for mobile & 2.92% for wireline)
Urban & Rural Subscriber Growth
Urban Mobile subscriber base has reached 525 million, compared to 266 Million in rural areas. With 146.72 percent tele-density in urban areas, it may appear as if growth saturation has taken place – however, urban areas still add more subscribers month on month compared to rural. In percent terms, Rural subscriber growth is marginally higher (2.82%), the tele-density remains quite low with 31.90 percent.
Operator Wise Telecom Subscriber Addition
Vodafone added over 3.5 million subscribers (17.61%) in Feb, followed by Reliance (16.36%) and Bharti (15.85%). Contrary to popular belief, MNP seems to have benefitted the bigger players more compared to smaller ones. None of the newer entrants could add significant numbers to their tally, except Uninor (6.30%)
Bharti remains the leader of the pack with more than 158 million mobile subscriber & 20.09 percent market share. Vodafone (16.54%) seems to be reducing the gap between itself and Reliance (16.70%). I am sure IPL will see a lot of ZooZoo ads this time as well, and should surely help to reach that number 2 spot!
Active Mobile Subscribers
Although, the total connections currently stand at 791.38 million, about 71.14 percent (563 million) are active currently. Circle-wise, Jammu & Kashmir has the highest proportion of VLR subscribers with 80.56% followed by Assam (77.74%) and Maharashtra (77.45%); Mumbai has the lowest proportion with 59.04%. Service Provider wise, Idea leads the tally with 92.65% closely followed by Bharti with 92.52%.
Broadband Subscriber Growth
The growth of Broadband Subscribers has been quite slow comparatively – Total Broadband subscriber base has increased from 11.21 million in Jan 2011 to 11.47 million in Feb 2011, there by showing a growth of 2.34 %.
So, what do you think when will India reach the magic figure of 1 Billion subscribers ? I think by end of the year we should get there…what say ?