Fewer users sign up for GSM in April
Posted by telcobizpedia on May 16, 2009
14 May 2009, 0350 hrs IST, ET Bureau
NEW DELHI: GSM telecom operators in India recorded a lower number of subscriber additions of 8.9 million in April as against 10.8 million in March, led by a sharp dip in monthly additions by state-owned telcos BSNL and MTNL. BSNL added just over 1 million users in April as against over 2.5 million in March. The total GSM subscriber base now stands at 297.7 million, Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) said on Wednesday. The subscriber base data for Reliance Communication was not reported.
Another state-owned telco MTNL, which operates in Mumbai and Delhi, also saw a dip in monthly additions with about 45,553 users in April compared with 92,097 users in the previous month. Both MTNL and BSNL now have a subscriber base of 4.2 million and 47.7 million, respectively.
Airtel led the number of additions made by the GSM operators in April. Inching closer to the 100 million subscriber-base mark, market leader Bharti Airtel added 2.8 million users in April compared with 2.8 million in March, taking its total subscriber base to 96.7 million.
As a result, Bharti Airtel continues to lead the GSM market with a market share of about 32.5% followed by Vodafone Essar with 24.03%. Vodafone Essar, the second-largest private GSM player, reported a total subscriber base of 71.5 million with about 2.7 million users added during April. It added lesser number of users in April compared to March, when it saw close to 2.8 million new users, as per data compiled by COAI.
Aircel, which recently launched its services in Delhi, added over 1.1 million subscribers all India. The operator now has about 19.5 million subscribers in its portfolio. Idea Cellular also added about 1.1 million subscribers during April, taking its total subscriber base to 44.1 million.
(Excerpt from India adds 8.9 mn GSM mobile users in April, 13 May 2009, 1542 hrs IST, REUTERS, reported on ET)
Reliance Communications, which had 72.67 million subscribers at end-March, expanded its GSM mobile services to all the service areas of the country in January, but the majority of its customers are still on rival CDMA technology. Tata Teleservices, in which Japan’s NTT DoCoMo owns a 26 percent stake, also operates on CDMA and monthly additions are reported separately.