Vodafone-Idea lost nearly 3 Mn subscribers in the month of April 2023
Jio accounted for a market share of 37.9% in the wireless segment, while Airtel took the second spot with a 32.45% market share
Total wireless users declined by 7.96 Lakh at the end of April even as total active wireless subscribers in the country rose/fell to 1038.4 Mn
For the second consecutive month, Reliance Jio added more than 3 Mn (3.04 Mn) wireless subscribers in April 2023 to further extend its lead over nearest competitor Bharti Airtel.
The Sunil Mittal-led company added a mere 76,328 users during the month, as per the monthly subscriber data released by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI).
Meanwhile, all other players continued to lose subscribers. The usual suspect, Vodafone-Idea (Vi), was the worst-hit as it lost nearly 3 Mn subscribers in the month of April 2023. Vi lost 8.6% of its subscriber-base during the month.
State-backed Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) and Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Limited (MTNL) also saw the departure of 7.17 Lakh and 2.02 lakh users, respectively.
While Jio accounted for a 37.9% market share in the wireless segment, Airtel took the second spot with a 32.45% market share.
Total wireless users in the country declined by 7.96 Lakh at the end of April even as rural India somewhat offset the slump registered by urban India. Overall, the total active wireless subscribers in the country rose/fell to 103.84 Cr at the end of April 2023.
Overall wireless tele-density in the country fell to 82.34% in April 2023 from 82.46% at the end of March.
Jio continued to bolster its grip in the combined wireline and wireless broadband market with a market share of 51.93%. It was followed by Airtel with 28.72% share and Vi with 14%. Together, the three players contributed 95% to the total market size.
The total number of broadband users in the country saw a MoM growth rate of 0.52%, settling at 85.09 Cr users at the end of April as against 84.66 Cr Mn in March.
Meanwhile, Indian users submitted 1.1 Cr requests for Mobile Number Portability (MNP) in April. While Zone-I, which includes northern and western India, accounted for 63.1 Lakh requests, the southern and eastern parts of the country raked up 4.64 Mn such requests.
Even as both Jio and Airtel are battling it out for supremacy in the telecom market, it seems the fighting has spilled onto the satellite communications arena as well. In its submissions to TRAI, the Akash Ambani-led telco pitched for a spectrum auction, while Bharti Airtel-backed OneWeb sought an administrative allocation.
Despite the subscriber additions by Jio, brokerage firm Bernstein last month said that some of the telco’s private equity (PE) investors could likely look for an exit soon. It cited the typical PE holding period of nearly four years as the reason for this.