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Mobile internet rates drop by 93% in three years

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MUMBAI: Mobile internet rates witnessed a phenomenal drop of 93 per cent while data usage per user surged by more than 25 times in the three years ended 30 September 2017, the Department of Telecom (DoT) said in a tweet today.

The mobile data consumption in India is now the highest in the world at 1.3 million GB per month–more than the combined data usage in the US and China. This trend has also been fueled by the penetration of smartphones—which has shot up from 190 million to 390 million—in the country.  Internet users have increased by about 66 per cent from 251 million to 429 million (in June 2017) between 2014 and 2017.

“Cheapest tariff globally—Rs 33 per GB in 2014 to Rs 21 per GB as on September 2017, tariff reduction of 93 per cent,” the DoT tweeted. The data war started following the entry of Reliance Jio in 2016. The company this year slashed the prices to as low as Rs 4 per GB per day. With declining mobile internet rates, data usage also grew multi fold. “Average data usage per subscriber grew 25 times from 62 MB per month in 2014 to 1.6 GB per month in 2017,” the DoT said .

The broadband access in the country increased from 61 million subscribers in March 2014 to 325 million subscribers in September 2017, the DoT said. According to latest performance indicator of the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, there were 445.9 million internet subscribers at the end of December 2017.

The DoT data showed that during the three-year period, the mobile base stations in the country more than doubled from 7.9 lakh in May 2014 to 16.8 lakh by 2017-end.

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