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Broadband internet subs growth better in Jun-18 than May-18

Broadband internet subs growth better in Jun-18 than May-18

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BENGALURU: India witnessed 3.50 per cent growth in broadband internet customers in the month of June 2018 (Jun-18, month under review) according Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) data for the month ended 30 June 2018. Hence, 151.18 lakh (15.118 million, 1.5118 crore) broadband subscribers were added in Jun-18. Comparatively, in May 2018, broadband internet customers grew 2.91 per cent (122.1 lakh, 12.21 million, 1.221 crore) vis-a-vis the previous month (April 18).

The smallest segment among broadband internet services providers – the Fixed wireless- WiFi, Wi Max, Point to Point, Radio, Vsat segment, lost about 1,000 subscribers – the segment’s subscriber base fell from 4.09 lakh (0.409 million or 0.0409 crore) to 4.08 lakh (0.408 million or 0.0408 crore) during the month of Jun-18. The wired broadband internet subscriber base dropped by 40,000 to 179 lakh (17.90 million, 1.790 crore) in Jun-18 from 179.40 lakh (17.94 million, 1.794 crore) in the previous month.

A major portion-100.28 per cent (151.60 lakh or 15.160 million or 1.5160 crore) of the new users opted for wireless broadband internet through mobile devices and dongles in Jun-18. The mobile devices and dongles segment grew 3.66 per cent in the month. It may be noted that TRAI considers download speeds equal to or in excess of 512 kbps as broadband internet. Also, TRAI subscriber numbers data is published in millions with 2 decimal places, hence the accuracy of this report is limited to the nearest 10,000 (Ten Thousand).

As on 30 Jun 2018, the top five broadband internet service providers were Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd or Jio with 2152.6 lakh (215.26 million, 21.526 crore), Bharti Airtel or Airtel with 953.1 lakh (95.31 million, 9.531 crore), Vodafone with 628.6 lakh (62.86 million, 6.286 crore), Idea Cellular with 429.5 lakh (42.95 million, 4.295 crore) and BSNL with 203.4 lakh (20.34 million, 2.034 crore) subscribers respectively. The top five service providers constituted 97.67 per cent market share of the total broadband subscribers at the end of Jun-18, as compared to 97.54 per cent at the end of May-18.

Wireless Internet

As on 30 June, 2018, the top five Wireless Broadband Service providers were Jio with 2152.6 lakh (215.26 million, 21.526 crore), Bharti Airtel with 931.1 lakh (93.11 million, 9.311 crore), Vodafone with 628.5 (62.85 million, 6.285 crore), Idea Cellular with 429.4 lakh (42.94 million, 4.294 crore) and BSNL with 111.9 lakh (11.19 million, 1.119 crore) subscribers each.

Jio showed the largest growth in terms of absolute numbers across all segments. Jio’s subscribers have grown by 34.46 per cent in calendar year 2018 (CY 2018) since 31 December 2017 (or 1 January 2018, Dec-17). Its subscriber base has grown from 1,600.9 lakh (160.09 million, 16.009 crore) as on 1 January 2017 to 2,152.6 lakh (215.26 million or 21.526 crore) on 30 June 2018. Jio subscribers grew by 97.20 lakh (9.72 million, 0.972 crore) or 4.52 per cent in June 2018, hence led the subscriber growth in Jun-18 At present, Jio provides only wireless broadband internet services through mobile devices including phones and dongles. BSNL has being losing subscribers on a regular basis – it has lost 49.02 per cent or 107.60 lakh (10.76 million or 1.076 crore) subscribers in CY 2018. Please refer to the figure below

Wired Internet

The wired internet subscriber base has been bleeding – the segment lost 40,000 subscribers during the month of June 2018. Among the top 5 service providers, only Bharti Airtel (10,000) and Atra Convergence Technologies or ACT (20,000) have added subscribers. The other three players among the top 5 have lost subscribers.

Though growth of the wired internet subscribers until May-18 was led by Hathway Cable & Datacom Limited (Hathway), TRAI data shows that the company did not add any significant numbers in May-18 while it lost 40,000 subscribers in Jun-18. Its subscriber base for Apr-18 and May-18 was the same as per TRAI data. The company had added about 60,000 (grew by 8.22 per cent) subscribers in CY 2018 until May-18 and its subscriber base grew to 7.9 lakh (0.79 million, 0.079 crore) from 7.3 lakh (0.73 million, 0.073 crore) at the beginning of CY 2018. 

In CY 2018, ACT has exhibited the highest growth at 4.69 per cent. Both AIrtel and ACT subscriber base has grown by 60,000 in CY 2018. In Jun-18, ACT had the highest subscriber growth – its base grew by 20,000 or 1.52 per cent.

In Jun-18, the top five Wired Broadband Service providers were BSNL with 91.5 lakh (9.15 million, 0.915 crore), Bharti Airtel with 22.1 lakh (2.21 million, 0.221 crore), ACT with 13.4 lakh (1.34 million, 0.134 crore), MTNL 8.3 lakh (0.83 million, 0.083 crore and Hathway with 7.5 lakh (0.75 million, 0.075 crore) subscribers respectively. The government’s BSNL and MTNL have in general being losing subscribers. Please refer to the figure below. 

Other broadband internet service providers

MSOs and (LCOs) or cable video service providers also provide wired broadband internet services in the country. These cable service providers have a number of subsidiaries and alliances, hence broadband numbers are split as applicable. The consolidated subscription numbers of these entities could be larger than the numbers of some of the wired internet services providers mentioned above. However, in general, quarterly results of the major MSOs until the quarter ended 30 June 2018 (Q1 2019) indicate that their wired broadband subscription addition efforts have been far below par, some have even had a drop in subscriber numbers as well as reduction in ARPUs.

 

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