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India had 997.97 million active mobile connections in March 2018: TRAI

India added 16.71 million active mobile connections in March 2018, with Airtel, Idea, Reliance Jio and Vodafone accounting for 90% of total active mobile connections in India, according to data released by TRAI.

The active connections data represents peak VLR (Visitor Location Register) data for the month. Some stats:
– There were 997.97 billion active connections in the month of March 2018.
– Now, Airtel has 106.82% of connections active on its network – the highest among all telcos.
– Idea has the second highest active connection base of 98.36%, followed by Vodafone at 94.13%.

IMPORTANT: There’s likely to be a high amount of double or triple-counting here, given acquisition of Telenor and Tata Tele customers by Airtel.  TRAI says the percentage of active connections is more than 100% due to in-roamers i.e. subscribers from other operators roaming in Airtel’s network. It’s possible that as per the current format of notifications, Airtel, Tata Tele and Telenor customers are roaming on each others network. That should explain why Airtel has over 20 million more active connections than registered connections.

The TRAI really ought to get this data cleaned up.

In terms of the number of active connections, Airtel leads with 324.94 million connections, followed by Vodafone at 209.62 million connections.

Mobile Operator Leaderboard For March 2018 (Total Connections):

– Reliance Jio added 9.4 million connections, taking its connection base to 186.56 million.
– Idea added 9.1 million connections, taking its connection base to 211.21 million.
– Airtel added 8.4 million connections, taking its connection base to 304.19 million.

Statewise data

– In terms of active connections, Maharashtra leads with 93% active connections, followed by Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, and Andhra Pradesh. J&K has just 66.91% active connections, the lowest among all circles.
– UP (East) has the most number of connections, with 103.8 million connections (103,842,174 connections). Maharashtra is second with 94.6 million connections (94,603,071 connections) and Tamil Nadu is third with 94 million connections (94,074,624 connections).
– Bharti Airtel holds the maximum percentage market share of wireless connections at 26%, followed by Vodafone at 19%, Idea at 18%, Reliance Jio at 16% and BSNL at 9%.

The top 4 telcos now have 90% of total active connections:

The top three telecom operators in India – Vodafone, Airtel and Idea Cellular – added 11.43 million active connections in March 2018, accounting for 74% of active connections. Along with Jio, the top four now account for 90% of active connections.

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