Indian telecom subs passed 600m in January

Dylan Bushell-Embling
08 Apr 2010

The number of telephony subscribers in India surpassed 600 million in January, with overall teledensity increasing to 51.05%, according to TelecomIndiaOnline.

Wireless access continued to account for the vast majority of telecom subscribers, the site said, with the subscriber base growing 3.4% to 563.7 million. Wireless teledensity reached 47.9%.

Vodafone, Bharti Airtel, Reliance and Tata Teleservices shared the lion's share of new wireless subscribers fairly evenly amongst themselves, with each operator capturing between 15% and 16.5% of the adds.

Idea signed up 12% of the new subscribers, Aircel 9.7% and state-owned BSNL 8.8%. MTNL, HFCL and Loop each captured less than 1%, while Sistema was the only operator to have recorded a net subscriber loss during the month.

In a sharp contrast to the wireless growth spree, wireline subscription declined to 36.96 million from 36.99 million, and teledensity was just 3.14%.

BSNL owns a mammoth 75.5% share by wireline subscribers, while fellow state-owned company MTNL holds the next-largest share at 9.4%. But Bharti Airtel is nipping at MTNL's heels with an 8.2% share.

Bucking the wireline trend, broadband subscribers increased 6.9% to 8.59 million.

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