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Bharti Airtel has reported total 19.44 million 3G Mobile Internet connections for the quarter ended March 31, 2015, registering a 14.7% increase from 16.94 million 3G connections in the previous quarter and almost doubling from 10.25 million 3G Mobile Internet connections in the same quarter last year.

The total mobile Internet base however saw a 9.8% increase quarter-on-quarter (QoQ) to 46.39 million connections, from 42.25 million connections in the previous quarter, while it increased 30.3% year-on-year (YoY) from 35.6 million in the same quarter last year. Note that Airtel started weeding out incidental users a few quarters ago. Incidental data users are users who have consumed less than 1 MB/month. This followed a similar move from Idea Cellular in Q3-FY14 and following Airtel, even Reliance Communications started culling incidental mobile Internet users.

The company’s Mobile Internet base accounted for 20.52% of the Airtel’s total India connection base for the quarter, up slightly from 19.45% in the previous quarter. The 3G Mobile Internet base accounts for 8.6% of total for Airtel.

Mobile Internet revenues for Airtel in India, grew by 69.4% YoY to Rs 2320.98 crore for the quarter. Sequentially, the revenues grew 9.8% from Rs 2114 crore. The segment accounted for 17.6% of Airtel’s total India mobile services revenues for the quarter, as compared to 16.2% in the previous quarter and 11.5% in the same quarter last year.

No 4G data: The company hasn’t disclosed any updated data on how its 4G service is performing. Few quarters ago, Airtel had claimed that its 4G connection base had crossed the 100,000 mark in the country. Airtel had also mentioned earlier that it is looking to use the 1800MHz spectrum it acquired in the February 2014 2G auctions to roll out high speed 4G networks using FD-LTE technology in the 1800 MHz band for a pan-India 4G rollout.

Last month, Airtel had tied-up with China Mobile for procuring 4G LTE devices, including Mifi, smartphones, data cards, LTE CPEs and USIM, apart from the companies “sharing relevant network and product knowledge and technical learnings”. This will include interoperability testing and testing and validation practices related to network equipment.

Mobile Internet related numbers

The growth in Mobile Internet users, consumption and revenues from Airtel means that it is difficult for Airtel to explain the violation of Net Neutrality, especially its Airtel Zero platform that is expected to allow companies to buy data to offer their apps to consumers for free.

– Total Mobile Internet connections increased by 9.8% QoQ to 46.39 million and increased by 30.3% YoY from 35.6 million.

– Airtel’s Mobile Internet user base accounted for 20.52% of the company’s total India connection base for the quarter, up slightly from 19.45% in the previous quarter. The 3G Mobile Internet user base accounts for 8.6% of total for Airtel.

– Mobile Internet revenues accounted for 17.6% of Airtel’s total India mobile services revenues for the quarter, as compared to 16.2% in the previous quarter and 11.5% in the same quarter last year.

– Total Mobile Internet volume increased by 12% QoQ to 86.62 billion MB and increased by 82% YoY from 47.65 billion MB.

– Average data revenue per user increased 3.5% to Rs 176, from Rs 170 in the previous quarter and it increased 32.3% from Rs 133 in the same quarter last year.

– Data usage per customer increased 5.5% to 656 MB, from 622 MB in the previous quarter and it increased 41.4% from 464 MB in the same quarter last year.

– Data Realization per MB decreased by 2% QoQ to Rs 0.26 and decreased by 6.3% YoY from Rs 0.28.

Other highlights

– Total connection base increased by 4% QoQ to 226 million and increased by 10% YoY from 205.5 million.

– Net additions increased by 61.1% QoQ to 8.8 million and increased 25.6% YoY from 7 million.

– Total revenues increased by 1.9% QoQ to Rs 13,413.5 crore and increased 11% YoY from 12,083.5 crore.

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