Business and Markets

Press Release

Up to 100M mobile subscriptions up for scrubbing;
another 80M likely coming up by January 2013

180M deactivations would help ARPUs to inch up but tele-density would be faced with decline
BANGALORE, 16 OCTOBER, 2012: According to a release from telecom market analysis provider, the mobile subscriptions base in India will steadily shrink over the coming months and is expected to be around 880 million by December 2012 and 800 million by December 2014.
“There is no reason to expect that the worst would be over after the India mobile services industry reported net negative additions in the months of July and August 2012. On the contrary, it would be developing into a trend that would last for the coming 18-24 months,” said Deepak Kumar, Founder Analyst,
“There already is a 10 percent to 12 percent redundancy in the form of inactive subscribers, which would be further increased by another six to eight percent when the free-roaming regime sets in, expectedly around January 2013. Consequently, between 160 and 180 million subscription could become eligible for de-activation,” Deepak added.
BusinessandMarket believes that these many subscriptions would be hard to scrub for operators in very short periods and operators would run the risk of sending negative or disruptive signals to investors, partners and other stakeholders. Therefore the deactivations are expected to be spread out over longer time frames. Operators are likely to prefer scrubbing 6-7 million inactive subscriptions per month, and would not like to delete more than 9-10 million subscriptions a month.
However, given that there also would be new subscriber additions, the net negative additions would get somewhat moderated. Exceptions apart, the average net negative additions are likely to be in the range of four to five million subscriptions a month for the forecast period of 2012 to 2014.
“This is expected to have positive fallout for the industry in terms of increased average revenue per subscription (ARPU), among other benefits but would negatively impact the tele-density of the country for the forecast period under consideration,” Deepak added.

BusinessandMarket is an insights service provider focused on IT and telecom, and addresses analysis-based information needs of technology users and business decision makers and planners across IT and telecom vendor organizations and investment communities. It also caters to assumptions-and-forecasting needs of analysts at market research, advisory and consulting organizations.

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About the Analyst:
Deepak Kumar is Founder Analyst at His focus areas are strategic business and market advisory, encompassing analysis and forecasting. He carries more than 21 years of experience, of which 12 years have been in the fields of market research, advisory and consulting in the ICT domain.
He was earlier Research Director at IDC, India and spearheaded research and advisory across segments such as telecom, mobile devices, and LAN and WLAN networking, among various other responsibilities.
Over the past years, he has published several research reports and presented on a wide variety of topics including telecom, mobility, data center, cloud, social media and green IT.
He has been a regular speaker at various industry events, is widely quoted in the ICT business media and also blogs regularly. He has also been a columnist for leading publications. 

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