The subscriber addition spree of Reliance Jio Infocomm (Jio), which trail blazed through the domestic telecom market amassing over 112 million subscribers in just 8 months since September 2016, seems to be losing steam.
According to the latest data from Trai, Jio added only around 3.9 million subscribers during April, which although is the highest among the telcos is its lowest since September, when the RIL subsidiary launched commercial operations. While, Jio’s subscriber additions gained massive traction during the September-December 2016 period, barring November, the additions started losing steam since January 2017. In March, Jio’s subscriber addition stood at around 6 million, which is almost the double of what the firm has added in April.
It is the third consecutive month-on-month drop in subscriber additions for Jio. In the first month of its operations, September 2016, Jio added 16 million subscribers, which was followed by 19.6 million in October, 16.3 million in November and its highest subscriber addition so far of 20.3 million in December. The firm had added 18.5 million subscribers in January 2017 and 12.21 million in February. Its subscriber market share, however rose to 9.58% in April compared to 9.29% in March 2017.
Compared to Jio, the country’s largest telecom operator, Bharti Airtel added 2.9 million subscribers in March, followed by Vodafone India’s 0.76 million and Idea Cellular’s 0.68 million. However, on the brighter side for the Mukesh Ambani firm, Jio has emerged as the country’s largest mobile broadband service provider with a subscriber base of 112.55 million. Jio is followed by Bharti at 52.25 million, Vodafone (39.76 million) and Idea (24.09 million).
As of April 2017, Bharti’s total subscriber base stood at 276.50 million followed by that of Vodafone at 209.82 million and Idea Cellular’s subscriber count stood at 196.05 million. Jio’s total subscribers stood at 112.55 million.
By Rishi Ranjan Kala