Vodafone Idea, Bharti Airtel continue to lose users; Jio adds 8.26 million

The two older telecom majors, Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea, continued to lose subscribers — 4.17 million combined — during June, while rival Reliance Jio added 8.26 million users at a steady pace, according to data issued by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai). 

Vodafone Idea still led in total subscriber tally at 383.4 million, even as its broadband market share and active subscriber base stayed stagnant, followed by Jio with 331.2 million and Airtel with 320.3 million. 

As on end-June, the top five wired broadband service providers were Bharat Sanchar Nigam (9.05 million), Airtel (2.4 million), Atria Convergence Technologies (1.45 million), Hathway Cable & Datacom (0.84 million) and Mahanagar Telephone Nigam (0.74 million). This picture is expected to change with the official launch of Jio’s fibre-to-home service in September. 

June numbers

  • Vodafone Idea leads in total subscriber tally at 383.4 million, followed by Jio with 331.2 million and Airtel with 320.3 million 
  • The top five wired broadband service providers were BSNL (9.05 million), Airtel (2.4 million), Atria Convergence Technologies (1.45 million), Hathway (0.84 million) and MTNL (0.74 million)
  • The number of telephone subscribers in India increased from 1,183.15 million at the end of May to 1,186.63 million at the end of June, a rise of close to 0.3 per cent

Airtel and Jio have continued to gradually raise their market share in the wireless broadband space. The total mobile broadband device user base also grew by 2.3 per cent in June, with 575.63 million devices reported in the system. Bharti Airtel has the highest proportion (98.5 per cent) of active wireless subscribers. Vodafone Idea and Jio are on par with 84 per cent.

Jio's addition of 8.26 million customers in June was higher than the 8.18 million it reported in May. Vodafone Idea had subscriber market share of 32.9 per cent, Jio of 28.4 per cent and Airtel of 27.5 per cent. 

The number of telephone subscribers in India increased from 1,183.15 million at the end of May to 1,186.63 million at the end of June. Urban subscription increased from 674.66 million to 675.58 million; rural subscription from 508.49 million to 511.05 million. 

Overall teledensity rose from 89.92 at the end of May to 90.11 at the end of June. Urban teledensity fell from 160.79 to 160.78; rural teledensity rose from 56.74 to 56.99, picking up from a few months of slowdown since January. 

The rural wireless subscriber base added 2.6 million users in the month after constant subscriber loss since January. The share of rural and urban subscribers in the total number of telephone users at end-June was around 57 per cent and 43 per cent, respectively.