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Airtel India CEO Gopal Vittal on the two battles being fought in Telecom in India

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Airtel India CEO and MD Gopal Vittal expects a completely revised industry structure in telecom in India by, "say March 2019", with three mobile operators. "The two battles that are currently being fought, one, on the 2G-3G side," which is about feature phones and a traditional (voice) game, and of upgradation from 2G to 4G. "We getting a disproportionate share of those upgrades," Vittal said on the Airtel Q3-FY18 earnings conference call, saying that the customers are switching from a 2G to a 4G phone on their network. Airtel, he added, is getting a fair share of 4G devices on its network. The second real battle, he said, is that because "most devices are configured such that you have a primary slot, which is a 4G or a 3G SIM slot," and a second slot which is 2G, Airtel is battling to ensure that they get a disproportionate share of the 4G SIM slot."That is a function of where you put your CAPEX, which towns are you there, which villages are you there, which districts are you there because once you have got your network in with the brand being strong and being aspirational with our go to market and sales and marketing efforts being competitive and well run, we have no reason to believe that we will not get our fair share of 4G and in fact disproportionate share of 4G, so that is really the battle." Notes from the conference call: - On market consolidation: "dramatic value erosion…

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Founder @ MediaNama. TED Fellow. Asia21 Fellow @ Asia Society. Co-founder SaveTheInternet.in and Internet Freedom Foundation. Advisory board @ CyberBRICS

MediaNama’s mission is to help build a digital ecosystem which is open, fair, global and competitive.

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