Total telephone subscriber base in the country rose marginally to reach 100.93 crore at the end of June with mobile services continuing to dominate growth in the sector, telecom regulator TRAI said today.
“The number of telephone subscribers in India increased from 100.69 crore at the end of June 2015 to 100.93 crore at the end of July 2015, thereby showing a monthly growth rate of 0.23 percent,” Telecom Regulatory Authority of India said. The subscriber growth rate, however, almost halved in July on monthly basis to 23.6 lakh from 49.1 lakh net addition reported in June.
The total wireless or mobile subscriber base increased to 98.32 crore at the end of July from 98.08 crore at the end of June. The growth in the segment was led by Bharti Airtel whose net subscriber addition in July increased by over 10 lakh. Idea Cellular and Reliance Communications followed with net addition of 6.79 lakh and 5.34 lakh subscribers, respectively.
After a long time state-run BSNL figured among top five telecom operators in net addition of subscribers. Its addition stood at 4.79 lakh compared with loss of 2.69 lakh subscribers in June. Aircel reported net wireless subscriber addition of 3.14 lakh, Tata Teleservices 1.42 lakh, Videocon Telecommunications (with Quadrant) 2.01 lakh and MTNL stood at 22,212. Vodafone, which has been among top five players since past many years, slipped to ninth position in terms of additions. It added 65,104 subscribers in July.
New telecom operators Telenor and Sistema Shyam Teleservices jointly lost over 10 lakh mobile customers. Telenor lost 9.68 lakh and Sistema base fell by 77,892 subscribers. Moreover, there seems to be no respite to state-run BSNL and MTNL in fixed line services as they continue to lose customers despite unlimited night calling offer. BSNL lost 73,076 landline customers, total wireline base dipping to 1.58 crore in July from 1.59 crore in June. MTNL, which operates in Delhi and Mumbai, lost 2,342 customers in July with its fixed line customer base reaching 35 lakh.
Airtel, which has started scheme of free calls throughout the day, was biggest gainer of fixed line subscribers in July. It added 25,441 new customers. In the month of July, 39.8 lakh subscribers submitted their requests for Mobile Number Portability (MNP) which enables customer to retain their number even if they change their mobile service provider. With this, the cumulative MNP requests increased to 16.79 crore at the end of July.
As per the reports received from the service providers, the number of broadband subscribers increased by 4.1 percent on monthly basis to 11.33 crore at the end of July from 10.88 crore at the end of June. The number of subscribers using broadband through mobile devices stood at 9.7 crore and fixed line at 1.58 crore, as per TAIRdata.