The Number of Mobile Broadband Users in India Crosses 400 Million

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The exploded adoption of smartphone, falling average selling price (ASP) of 4G smartphones and the drastic decline in the price of high-speed data connectivity; all of this have resulted in the massive growth in the number of mobile broadband users in India. According to the latest data from TRAI, the number of mobile broadband users in India crossed the milestone of 400 million users.

Registering 1.8% month over month growth in April 2018, the number of mobile broadband subscribers in India reached 401.41 million. The number includes mobile devices as well as dongles which support 3G and 4G mobile connectivity.

Mobile Broadband Users In India

The share of mobile devices of overall broadband subscribers in India has gone up to 95.62% in April 2018 from 93.38% in April 2017.

Overall, the number of broadband subscribers, including wired, in India reached 419.79 million by the end of April 2018. However, the number of wired broadband users in India are recorded just 17.97 million by TRAI.

The telecom industry in India is going through a consolidation stage after the debut of Reliance Jio in mid-2016. Airtel and Vodafone are the two major players in the industry that are giving a tough fight to Reliance Jio despite it offering the jaw-dropping data tariffs. The growing user base of Reliance Jio with each passing month is a clear sign that the other telecom providers in India are finding it tough to stop the Jio wave in the country.

Considering the fact that the share of the fixed broadband subscriber base is even less than 5%, the growth of overall broadband subscriber industry in India is largely driven by mobile users. Therefore it’s safe to assume that the impact fixed broadband subscribers base on the market share of telecom provider is almost negligible.

Top Four Mobile Broadband Providers Continue To Grow

Top five telecom providers in India accounted for 99.02% of the total mobile broadband user base. Interestingly, Reliance Jio emerged as the top telecom player enjoying the lion’s share of the total mobile broadband user base in India. By the end of April 2018, Reliance Jio alone constituted 48.87% of the total mobile broadband subscriber base as per the latest data released by TRAI. This is a massive growth as the share of Reliance Jio has gone up significantly from 42.40% in April a year ago.


Bharti (Airtel) and Vodafone secured 21.80% and 14.92% of the total mobile broadband subscriber base in India. Despite the cut-throat competition in the market, Bharti managed to increase its market share from 18.9% a year ago, while Vodafone gained 2.92% point in the last twelve months from 14.98% market share.

Idea, which is awaiting the final approval to get merged with Vodafone, has also increased its market share from 9.07% in April 2017 to 10.56% in the last one year.

BSNL and Other telecom providers have emerged as the biggest losers. The mobile broadband subscriber share in India of BSNL tanked to 2.87% in April 2018 from 3.15% a year ago. Similarly, the market share of other providers declined drastically from 13% to just 1% between May 2017 and April 2018.


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