Reliance Jio added 19.63 million new subscribers during the month of October, which is significantly higher than the additions among the top three telecom operators (Airtel, Idea , Vodafone), according to TRAI’s latest telecom subscription data (pdf). Idea added 6.37 million new subscribers, Airtel added 2.32 million subscribers while Vodafone added 1.17 million subscribers.
Reliance Jio posted a monthly growth rate of 122.86% in terms of wireless subscriber additions, while Airtel, Idea and Vodafone posted monthly growth rate of 0.90%, 3.54% and 0.59% respectively. On the other hand smaller operators like MTS lost 258,555 subscribers, RCOM lost 992,901 subscribers, and Tata Docomo lost 1.35 million users. Note that MTS is in the process of merging operations with RCOM.
TRAI data also revealed that private telecom operators held 90.86% of the overall wireless telecom market share, while the top the three telcos (Airtel, Idea, Vodafone) held a majority share of 60.21% of the wireless telecom market. New entrant Reliance Jio held 3.30% of the market in the end of October. State owned telcos BSNL and MTNL held only 9.14% of the wireless market share during the same period.
Tele-density of wireless subscribers
Overall wireless subscriber base stood at 1.07 billion by the end of October, which increased from 1.04 billion as of September. Out of this, only 970.47 million subscribers were considered as “active subscribers” in October which represented about 89.99% of the overall wireless base.
Wireless tele-density in Urban areas increased to 155.35 at the end of October from 151.10 as of September. Tele-density in the rural also increased from 50.80 to 51.98 during the same period. Tele density is the number of phone connections for every hundred individuals living within an area.
In absolute terms, wireless subscribers in urban areas increased to 621.77 million in October, from 603.80 million subscribers as of September. In the rural areas there were 456.66 million wireless subscribers in October, which increased from 445.94 million as of September. The monthly growth rates of urban and rural wireless subscription were 2.97% and 2.40% respectively.
Service area-wise additions: All 22 licensed service areas posted a monthly increase in terms of wireless subscriber growth during the month of October. Jammu and Kashmir posted the highest monthly growth rate of 8.93%, closely followed by Delhi with a growth rate of 4.7%, and Punjab circle stood third with 3.74% monthly growth rate.