Revenues, he said, would have been even higher if telcos
had not given Rs 600 crore worth of freebies, in terms of more data and minutes of usage, to customers at the same price after the Covid-19 outbreak.
estimate that they will end the current financial year with revenue growth of 10-12 per cent as data usage continues to grow, with online e-classes in schools being kicked off. They also do not see any decline in the number of subscribers due to the economic crisis as mobiles have become the only essential source of communication. And once the lockdown
is lifted, net addition per month is expected to become normal.
According to COAI projections, telcos
will hit an ARPU of around Rs 180 by the year end, close to their pre-Covid estimates of Rs 200, which assumed there would be another price hike.
Telecom service providers could be close to that target despite the fact that a tariff hike looks difficult and can only happen if the economy stabilises after the spread of Covid-19 is contained.
Capital investment in FY20 is expected to be $ 3-4 billion, or half of what it was last year at $6-8 billion. Matthew said it was because most of them had completed their 4G investments, and that fresh investments would only be required for auctions and 5G. “If the auction happens at all, it will not be before the fourth quarter of this financial year,” he added.