India had 661.9 million wireless and wireline broadband connections at the end of December 2019, an increase of 6% over a three-month period, according to data published by the telecom regulator TRAI. Narrowband connections declined by 9% this quarter from 62.2 million connections as of September 2019. There are still 56.8 million narrowband connections in the country.

TRAI defines internet connections with download speeds less than 512 kbps as narrowband, while connections with download speeds more than 512 kbps are broadband. It’s worth noting that the TRAI had recommended redefining the minimum broadband speed to 2 Mbps.

The total of 718.7 million Internet connections including both wired (broadband: 19.14 million; narrowband: 3.25 million) and wireless connections (broadband: 642.8 million; narrowband: 53.56 million). A majority of these internet connections are on mobile.

Between October and December 2019, total broadband connections increased by 10.9% in rural areas and by 3% in urban areas. Broadband connections form a majority 92% share, while narrowband connections form the remaining 8% of connections.

Some observations

  1. Delhi had the highest number of broadband connections in an urban area with 36.6 million, followed by Tamil Nadu with 34.88 million, and Maharashtra with 34.66 million connections.
  2. Bihar had the highest number of broadband connections in a rural area with 23.55 million, followed by Uttar Pradesh (East) with 23.36 million connections, and Andhra Pradesh with 21.82 million connections.
  3. Maharashtra (excluding Mumbai) had the highest number of broadband connections in the country with 56.36 million connections. Andhra Pradesh is in the second spot with 52.63 million connections, followed by Tamil Nadu with 46.75 million connections.
  4. Broadband connections in hilly states such as Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and the north-east including Assam are still very low with a total of just 29.6 million connections.

5. UP (East) added the highest number of broadband connections in rural areas with 3.22 million connections between October and December 2019. In urban areas, Tamil Nadu topped the list again by adding 2.44 million connections during the same time period.

6. Overall, Maharashtra added the most connections during the three-month period with 3.89 million connections.