Reliance Jio Infocomm’s (Jio) subscriber base touched 108.9 million as on March 31, 2017, of which over 72 million are paying customers, the company said on Monday. The country’s total telecom subscriber base is around 1.12 billion. The fledgling firm, which hosts more than 110 crore GB of data traffic per month and 220 crore voice and video minutes a day, now accounts for nearly 85% of the data traffic in the country.
The RIL subsidiary’s net loss widened to Rs 22.5 crore for the six months under review from Rs 7.46 crore in the year-ago period as it made virtually no revenue in the period that saw two back-to-back promotional offers. Jio started charging its subscribers from April 1, 2017.
The firm said, “Since commencement of services on September 5, 2016, Jio has become the fastest growing technology company in the world. It crossed 50 million subscribers in just 83 days, and 100 million in 170 days, adding at an average rate of 6 lakh subscribers per day.”
To further increase its subscriber base, Jio has started home delivery of SIM and has seen a “massive uptake”. Jio said that it is working on further strengthening its network.
“Jio has the world’s largest greenfield 4G LTE wireless broadband network, with over 100,000 mobile towers. And it will add another 100,000 towers to the network in the coming months,” the company added.
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On the issue of network congestion, the company said, “There has been noteworthy improvement in local access in recent weeks. While NLD interconnection remains an issue in some service areas, Jio is committed to solving this at the earliest and hopes for co-operation from the other operators”.
The company is in the process of rolling out its Fibre to the Home (FTTH) business and is offering beta trials in a few locations. It will further expand the scope of the beta trials over the next few months.
Forced to roll back its Rs 303 Summer Surprise offer on account of regulatory hurdles, Jio on April 11 announced the Dhan Dhana Dhan offer, which offers its Prime members 1GB data for 84 days on a recharge of Rs 309. The other variant of the offer is 2GB data for the same duration for Rs 509.
For the full 2016-17, net loss doubled to Rs 31.37 crore as against Rs 15.71 crore in the same period of the previous year. The company, which had a net worth of Rs 70,864 crore, had a debt-equity ratio of 0.67 in the second half of 2016-17 compared to 0.89 a year earlier.
Its debt jumped to Rs 47,463 crore, from Rs 32,963 crore as on March 31, 2016.