India's total telephone users down by 0.12% in May
Total number of telephone users in India has declined by 0.12% in May this year on the back of fall in the number of subscriptions from urban areas, showed the recent data released by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) on July 29.
The number of telephone subscribers in the country declined from 1,059.29 million at the end of April-16 to 1,058.03 million at the end of May-16.
The total comprised of wireless subscribers at 1033.16 million and wireline (fixed-line) subscribers at 24.87 million.
The subscription from the urban areas decreased from 607.21 million at the end of April to 604.98 million at the end of May, while the rural subscription increased from 452.08 million to 453.05 million during the same period.
The monthly growth rate of urban subscription was down by 0.37% in May whereas it was up by 0.22% in rural area in the same period.
According to Trai release, the overall tele-density in the country fell from 83.32 at the end of April to 83.14 at the end of May.
India's total wireless subscriber base fell by 0.11% to 1,033.16 million in May as against 1,034.25 million in April this year.
"The wireless subscription in urban areas declined from 586.41 million at the end of April-16 to 584.25 million at the end of May-16, whereas wireless subscription in rural areas increased from 447.84 million to 448.90 million during the same period," cited Trai in a statement.
The wireless tele-density in the country slightly declined from 81.35 at the end of April-16 to 81.18 at the end of May-16.
Out of the total wireless subscriber base (1,033.16 million), 932.51 million wireless subscribers were active on the date of peak visitor location register (VLR) in the month of May-16.
The total wireline (fixed-line) subscriber base in the country declined from 25.04 million at the end of April-16 to 24.87 million at the end of May-16.
The net decrease in the wireline subscriber base was 0.16 million with a monthly decline rate of 0.64%. Two public sector telecom companies namely BSNL and MTNL held a share of 71.72% in the fixed-line telephone market. The share of urban and rural subscribers in total wireline market was 83.32% and 16.68% respectively, in May-16.
However, India's broadband subscriber base witnessed a growth of nearly 6% during the month. The country's broadband subscriber base increased from 151.09 million at the end of April-16 to 159.76 million at the end of May-16 with a monthly growth rate of 5.74%.
The total internet users comprised of wired subscribers, mobile devices users (phones and dongles) and fixed wireless subscribers (Wi-Fi, Wi-Max, Point-to-Point Radio & VSAT), which contributed 17.16 million, 142.06 million and 0.54 million, respectively.
Top five internet service providers based on the market share (based on subscriber base) for May month are Bharti Airtel (40.80 million), Vodafone (31.55 million), Idea Cellular (25.70 million), BSNL (20.76 million) and Reliance Communications Group (15.91 million). These five companies together constituted 84.32% market share in the total broadband subscriber base.
India's mobile number portability (MNP) grew by 2.44% in the month of May. As per figures from Trai, a total of 5.23 million subscribers submitted requests for mobile number portablity (MNP) in May.
"With this, the cumulative MNP requests increased from 214.04 million at the end of April-16 to 219.27 million at the end of May-16," Trai noted.
The regulator had implemented the MNP on July 3, 2015, which allows wireless users to retain their mobile numbers when they relocate from one service area to another.