Mobile broadband boosts India GDP: study

Michael Carroll
22 Dec 2010

India’s GDP will grow by 162 billion rupees ($3.6 billion) for every percentage point increase in mobile broadband penetration through 2015, research firm Analysys Mason claims.

The firm predicts that allocating 5MHz of additional 3G spectrum to current licensees will fuel a 35% increase in subscribers, taking the total number of 3G users to 160 million by 2015, and raising GDP by 538 billion rupees.

That same percentage increase would also boost India’s overall broadband penetration rate by 3.3% and help it meet a target of connecting 100 million users to broadband by 2014, the firm said in a study for the GSM Association.

Wireless broadband is predicted to boost m-commerce revenues 82% to 187 billion rupees; mobile banking revenues by 67% to 205 billion; and a 101% increase in social services to 63 billion.

It will also be cheaper for consumers, and can be deployed faster than fixed-line, notes Kunal Bajaj, Analysys Mason’s India director.

However, the only way to achieve the figures is by making more 3G spectrum available, Jaikishan Rajaraman, the GSMA’s senior director of Asia Pacific said.

“The current lack of sufficient spectrum remains a formidable obstacle to India benefiting from these services and meeting its broadband connectivity targets.”

BSNL, MTNL, RCom and Tata Teleservices have already begun deploying 3G services in India, with Bharti Airtel, Vodafone, Idea Cellular, and Aircel due to launch soon.

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