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Airtel adds 5.2M mobile Internet users in Q1FY18, Data usage up 109% QoQ; Charts

Airtel’s mobile Internet user base increased by around 5.2 million, up 4.5% QoQ to 62.6 million from 57.4 million during the quarter ended June 31st, 2017 (Q1 FY18). The telco seems to be slowly recovering from the intense competition after losing around 7 million users in Q3 FY17, which was the quarter after Jio’s launch. The company however recovered in Q4 FY17 by adding 2.45 million customers.

Airtel also added 6.2 million mobile broadband (3G+4G) users during the quarter, taking the total base to 48.9 million from 42.7 million in Q4 FY17. Note that data customers accounted for 22.3% of Airtel’s overall mobile customer base in Q1 FY18, which is up from a 21% share that mobile customers held in the previous quarter. The telco’s total customer base stood at 280.6 million during the current quarter, up marginally by 2.6% QoQ.

Data usage and metrics

Mobile data consumption also increased significantly: up by 247.29 billion MBs (around 109.8% QoQ growth) to a total of 472.3 billion MB during the quarter, from just 225.1 billion MB in the previous quarter. Airtel seems to have picked up some traction in data usage after Jio launched paid packs. The telco’s mobile consumption rates had dropped drastically in the quarter after Jio’s launch.

Although Airtel was able to add new customers and increase data usage on its network, its Data ARPU (average revenue per user) declined 4% QoQ to Rs 156 from Rs 162 in the preceding quarter. The last time that Airtel’s Data ARPU dipped to such low levels was in December 2014. In the same quarter last year, Data ARPU was at Rs 202. Average data usage per customer increased significantly to 2,611 MB per customer, up 96.2% QoQ from 1,331 MB last quarter. Data realisation per MB, however, declined to 5.97 paisa down 51.1% QoQ from 12.2 paisa last quarter.

Voice usage and metrics

On the voice segment, minutes on the network increased to 421.9 billion minutes, from 381 million minutes in the previous quarter.  Voice usage per user also increased by 7.7% QoQ to 507 minutes from 419 minutes. However, Airtel appears to be losing revenue earned from voice due to unlimited calls packs: Voice Revenue Per Minute declined to 21.9 paise, down from 24.2 paise per minute in the previous quarter. Voice revenue per minute also declined by 34.4% YoY from 33.49 paise per minute in Q1 FY17. Voice ARPU also (an irrelevant figure in a multi-SIM environment), declined to Rs 111 from Rs 114. Voice ARPU stood at Rs 139 in the same quarter last year.

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Mobile Services revenues declined marginally to Rs 12.8 crore from Rs 12.7 crore the previous quarter, and down 13.6% year on year. Other financials below:


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