Indian telecom cos lose 1.7 mn mobile subscribers

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SummaryIn August, carriers had lost a total 5.13 million mobile subscribers.

India's mobile phone subscriber base declined by 1.74 million in September to 906.62 million, the third straight monthly fall, as carriers in the world's second-biggest wireless market disconnected inactive users in a clean-up drive.

The growth in subscriptions slowed last year, after rising at a monthly average of 19 million in 2010 as the market showed signs of saturation and also as companies started disconnecting users who did not use their phones for months.

In August, carriers had lost a total 5.13 million mobile subscribers.

By comparision, China, the world's biggest mobile phone market, had 1.08 billion mobile subscribers as of September.

Below is a table of mobile phone subscriptions as of September, based on data released on Wednesday by India's telecommunications regulator.

NOTE:

* Active mobile subscriptions in September were 698.96 million, or about 77.1 percent of the total connections.

* Mobile connections per 100 people, known as tele-density, was at 74.49 as of September. Mobile tele-density in urban areas was 154.64, compared with 39.52 in rural areas.

* By end-September, 69.78 million mobile subscribers had opted to change their provider, since India allowed mobile number portability in January 2011.

* The number of broadband users rose to 15.08 million in August from 14.82 million in the previous month.

* The number of fixed-phone line subscribers fell to 31.08 million in September from 31.21 million in the previous month.

* Including fixed-phone lines, India had 937.70 million phone users at the end of September, or a total tele-density of 77.04.

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