Telephone users base rises over 4% to 939.57 million

Telephone users base rises over 4% to 939.57 million New Delhi: Total telephone subscriber base in the country grew by 4.42 percent to 939.57 million while the teledensity has increased to 77.28 percent at the end of August 2012.

The user base stood at 899.78 million and teledensity at 74.96 percent the end of August 2011.

However, wireline users base declined to 31.2 million by August end this year, from 34.1 million in August 2011, according to the data compiled by Department of Telecommunications (DoT).

The wireless phones have increased to 908.3 million in august 2012, from 865.7 million in the same period last year.

State-run telecom firms BSNL and MTNL continue to have the majority share in wireline segment while private operators dominate the wireless space.

BSNL and MTNL enjoy 79.93 percent market share in wireline phones and 11.51 percent share in wireless segment.

BSNL is also taking a number of initiatives to retain the landline customers by launching consumer loyalty programmes and providing various plans for landline broadband connections, BSNL CMD RK Upadhyay said.

He added that the shift from wireline to wireless phones has now stablised.

Among operators, Bharti Airtel retains its leadership position with market share of 20.24 percent followed by Vodafone Essar with 16.32 percent, Reliance Group with 14.46 percent, state-run BSNL and MTNL with 13.78 percent and Idea with 12.34 percent during the period.

The share of urban areas in the number of telephones has decreased to 63.77 percent at the end of August 2012 while the share of rural areas has increased to 36.23 percent.

Urban areas have 599.18 million phones while rural areas have 340.38 million phones at the end of August 2012.

PTI