COAI, the apex industry association representing the country’s major Telecom, Internet, Technology & Digital Services companies, released the latest telecom subscriber numbers, for the month ending January 2018. As per the data, India’s private telecom service providers have a total of 999.33 million subscribers. This includes subscribers of RJio & MTNL Figures as of December 2017 (Source: TRAI).
Amongst the individual companies, Bharti Airtel Ltd continues to hold the top position, with 29.50% market share, adding another 41,73,908 subscribers during January, to take its total subscriber base to 295.79 million subscribers. Airtel is closely followed by Vodafone India Ltd, which ended January with 217.06 million subscribers. This past month, Idea Cellular had the maximum number of subscriber additions, adding 4.42 million to bring its total subscribers to 202.06 million.
The report, which also provides mobile subscriber numbers for individual circles, showed that the UP (East) circle remained at the top with a total of 86.74million subscribers, while Maharashtra remained at second position with a total of 81.56 million mobile subscribers.
Talking about the increase in the subscriber base, Rajan S Mathews, Director General, COAI, said, “We are pleased to see growth yet again. For a sector currently burdened with poor financial health and hyper competition, this is a positive development. Operators are adopting new communication technologies into their product and offering diversified services even beyond voice and data. The industry is constantly working and delivering progress as its contribution to the Government’s Digital India programme. Consistent growth as seen this month is encouraging, and the industry will continue to ensure that connectivity reaches the farthest corners of the country.”
Mobile connectivity and data services are imperative in the goal to bridge the digital divide in India. With these tools, we can move towards a truly equitable and democratic nation. The telecom industry, therefore, deserves an urgent and immediate intervention to encourage policy and regulatory stability, and facilitate growth, innovation and investment in the sector in view of the mounting financial debt and debilitating financial health of the industry.
The industry remains committed towards working for a fully connected and digitally empowered India and, furthering the Hon Prime Minister’s vision of Digital India.