Telecom subscriber base falls to 116.3 crore in May, Jio, BSNL gain
Major loss in subscriber base was recorded in the mobile telephony segment, with Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea losing around 47 lakh mobile customers each in May.
Telecom consumer base in the country dipped to around 116.36 crore in May but service providers were able to narrow the loss of subscriber base to 57.6 lakh as compared to the previous month, according to data released by the sector regulator Trai on Wednesday.
The telecom subscriber base had declined 85.3 lakh in April, when the country was under complete lockdown, to 116.94 crore.
"The number of telephone subscribers in India decreased from 1,169.44 million at the end of April 2020 to 1,163.67 million at the end of May 2020, thereby showing a monthly decline rate of 0.49 per cent," the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India's (Trai) subscription report for May said.
Major loss in subscriber base was recorded in the mobile telephony segment, with Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea losing around 47 lakh mobile customers each in May. The total wireless customer base of Airtel and Vodafone Idea dipped to 31.7 crore and 30.9 crore, respectively.
Reliance Jio continued to grow its subscriber base with a net addition of over 36 lakh new connections and led the market with a total subscriber base of 39.2 crore. State-owned BSNL also added over 2 lakh new mobile subscribers, taking its total wireless customer base to 11.9 crore.
Urban centres recorded a decline of 92.3 lakh mobile subscribers, while the customer base in rural areas increased 36.2 lakh, according to the report.
The overall mobile subscriber base dipped to 114.39 crore during the reported month.
The landline user base in the country declined 1.5 lakh to 1.97 crore at the end of May.
BSNL, which leads the market, continued to record a decline in fixedline customer base, while the new entrant Reliance Jio was the only player to have acquired new subscribers in the segment during May.
BSNL lost 1.34 lakh wireline customers, while Reliance Jio gained 90,000 new subscribers.
The urban teledensity reached 137.81 per cent, while rural teledensity stood at 59.23 per cent in May.
Despite dip in overall subscriber, broadband customer base in the country grew 1.13 per cent to 68.3 crore in May from 67.6 crore in April.
Wireless broadband connections dominated the segment with 66.37 crore connections, while wired connections accounted for 1.93 crore customers.
Out of the total 344 broadband service providers, top-five operators accounted for 98.93 market share.
Reliance Jio led the broadband market share in the country with 39.37 crore connections, Bharti Airtel 14.59 crore, Vodafone Idea 11.3 crore, BSNL 2.2 crore and Atria Convergence 16.4 lakh subscribers.