Net mobile subscribers decline in May: TRAI

Overall the Indian market shed 6.2 million users in May.


Mumbai: India’s telecom market saw a 6.2 million net decline in mobile subscribers at the end of May, according to the latest monthly subscription data released by Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI).

Reliance Jio was the only wireless access service provider that added 3.5 million mobile subscribers. Previous data shows that the telecom company added 4.7 million mobile subscribers in April.

Bharti Airtel saw its mobile subscribers reduce by 4.6 million (including the subscribers of Tata Teleservices), the highest loss, followed closely by Vodafone Idea which lost 4.2 million customers. This is several multiples higher than the subscriber decline reported in April which stood at 0.51 million and 1.8 million for Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea, respectively.

Similarly, the number of telephone subscribers came down from 1,203.47 million at the end of April to 1,198.50 million at the end of May, at a monthly decline rate of 0.41 per cent. TRAI had reported a monthly growth rate of 0.19 per cent and 1.12 per cent for telephone subscribers in the preceding months of April and March, respectively. Also, Urban and rural telephone monthly subscription decline rates for May stood at 0.47 per cent and 0.34 per cent, respectively.

The overall tele-density in India decreased from 88.27 per cent at the end of April to 87.84 per cent at the end of May. The share of urban and rural subscribers out of total number of subscribers stood at 55.17 per cent and 44.83 per cent, respectively.

As per reports received from 438 operators in May, the number of broadband subscribers decreased from 782.86 million at the end of April to 780.27 million at the end of May with a monthly decline rate of 0.33 per cent, according to TRAI data. While mobile subscribers and fixed wireless subscribers.

(Wi-Fi, Wi-Max, Point to Point Radio & VSAT) saw monthly decline rates of 0.38 per cent and 2.45 per cent respectively, wired subscribers grew to 22.74 million from 22.42 million at a 1.43 per cent monthly growth rate.

The top five service providers made up 98.80 per cent of the market share of the total broadband subscribers including wired and wireless at the end of May. These included Reliance Jio Infocomm (434.23 million), Bharti Airtel (192. 73 million), Vodafone Idea (119.64 million), BSNL (22.4 million) and Atria Convergence (1.87 million).

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