COAI (Cellular Operators Association of India), the apex industry association representing the country’s major Telecom, Internet, Technology and Digital Services companies, released the latest telecom subscriber numbers, for the month ending November 2017. As per the data, India’s private telecom service providers have a total of 975.40 million subscribers. The data also includes the figures of Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd and Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Ltd (MTNL) by the end of October 2017 (Source: TRAI).
Amongst the individual companies, Bharti Airtel Ltd continues to hold the top position, with 29.68% market share, adding another 4.04 million subscribers during November, to take its total subscriber base to 289.54 million subscribers. Airtel is closely followed by Vodafone India Ltd, which ended November with 211.03 million subscribers, while Idea Cellular Ltd stood at 194.07 million subscribers at the end of the eleventh month of the year.
The report, which also provides mobile subscriber numbers for individual circles, showed that UP (East) circle remained at the top with total 84.99 million subscribers, while Maharashtra remained at second position with a total of 81.50 million mobile subscribers.
Talking about the increase in the subscriber base, Rajan S Mathews, Director General, COAI, said, “The telecom industry is an enabler of comprehensive growth and an empowered society, where every individual gets a chance to partake in the economic growth of the country. The industry has ensured that Government’s Digital India programme reaches the farthest corners of the country and everyone reaps the benefit of new communication technologies. All the operators have significantly expanded their services across the country, and have begun heavily diversifying their services beyond voice & data for the consumer.”
Mobile connectivity and data services have played a pivotal role in bridging the digital divide and moving India 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.