Mobile Internet

Indian telecom sector up for a setback


The telecom players are always desirous of new subscribers. The more subscribers they have the more revenue they generate. However, this scenario is rapidly changing as new players are emerging and complications are rising in the industry. According to Industry experts, the Indian telecom sector could lose around 60 million customers by the next year’s first quarter.

Until 2 years ago, people used to carry two sim cards depending upon the offers the companies were giving. One sim card was used for calling and text purposes and the other sim card was generally used for data needs. People kept one of the major players such as Airtel or Vodafone for their calling needs as the network was stable and one of the minor players that offered cheap data rates for the internet requirements. This resulted in a large number of subscribers but it did not generate any revenue. The subscribers could remain connected by a network without spending a penny. Currently there are around 1.2 billion subscribers in India but only around 750 million are unique as the remaining are duplicate by having a second or even a third sim card.

There are three major players in the Indian telecom sector namely, Vodafone Idea, Airtel and Jio. These companies have made their offers so homogenous that it hardly matters to the consumer if they choose one over another. This is why nowadays subscribers are using just one sim card for their data and calling needs. It was all started by Jio as they offered a combo pack that took care of the consumers’ data as well as calling needs. They kept a single recharge pack in each category so that there is less option for the consumers and the lock-in period is longer. For example, Jio offers a minimum of 149 rupees pack for 28 days with unlimited calling and 1.5GB/day. Similar offers have been made by Vodafone and Airtel too.

This has resulted in the consumers being sticking to just one sim card instead of two. As of now, more and more customers are abandoning their secondary sim cards and by the end of the second quarter in 2019, an estimated 60 million subscribers would be out of the Indian telecom sector.

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