Airtel Adds 35.9 Million Subscribers in May Due to Telenor Merger Completion: TRAI

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Airtel Adds 35.9 Million Subscribers in May Due to Telenor Merger Completion: TRAI
Highlights
  • Airtel-Telenor merger boosts Airtel subscriber base by 30.46 percent
  • Airtel has added 35.9 million subscribers in May
  • Reliance Jio adds 9.3 million subscribers

The TRAI data for the month of May is out, and overall telephone subscribers have seen a monthly growth rate of 0.51 percent. The number was at 1,147.71 million at the end of April, and by the end of May, the number increased to 1,153.51 million. The most interesting bit from the May data is that Airtel has seen a massive increase in its wireless subscriber base. The company saw a net addition of 35.9 million subscribers in the month of May, compared to Reliance Jio which added 9.3 million subscribers.

This sudden increase in subscriber numbers is due to the company's merger completion with Telenor. The company announced this merger last year, and now that all government approvals are in place, all of Telenor's subscribers have been added into Airtel's kitty. Telenor notes on its website that all subscribers can now recharge and see all the plans on the Airtel website or the My Airtel app. With this merger, Airtel now enjoys the largest wireless subscriber market share of 30.46 percent. To recall, Airtel had 27.44 percent market share in April.

Vodafone comes in second with 19.64 percent market share, and over 4.2 million subscriber additions in the month of May. Idea still manages to keep 18.94 percent market share even after losing about 2.5 million subscribers. Reliance Jio remains in the third position with 18.17 percent market share, just slightly shy of Idea's market share, but it has added the most number of subscribers at 9.3 million. After a long time, Airtel takes the lead spot from Jio in monthly subscriber additions, all thanks to its merger completion.

Because of the merger, Airtel now is nearing a total wireless subscriber base of 350 million, and is currently at 344.553 million subscribers by the end of May. Vodafone enjoys 222.457 million subscribers, Idea has 214.228 million subscribers, Reliance Jio enjoys 205.542 million subscribers, and BSNL has 112.871 million followers.

Another interesting bit revealed in the May report is that BSNL has managed to add 4.8 million wireless subscribers, a huge leap from April data, and the credit for this goes to its massive overhaul of most of its prepaid and postpaid plans to combat competition. BSNL manages to rake in more subscribers than Vodafone also.

Coming to broadband, the number of subscribers increased from 419.79 million at the end of April to 432 million at the end of May 2018 with a monthly growth rate of 2.91 percent. Reliance Jio enjoys the most number of broadband subscribers at 205.54 million with 47.58 percent market share. Bharti Airtel comes in second with 91.59 million subscriber and 21.20 percent market share. Vodafone, Idea, and BSNL follow suit with 61.42 million, 42.07 million, and 20.75 million subscribers and 14.22 percent, 9.74 percent, and 4.80 percent market share respectively. BSNL leads the wired broadband segment, whereas all of Reliance Jio's broadband subscribers constitute into the wireless broadband segment.

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Further reading: TRAI, Airtel, Reliance Jio, BSNL, Telenor
Tasneem Akolawala Tasneem Akolawala is a Senior Reporter for Gadgets 360. Her reporting expertise encompasses smartphones, wearables, apps, social media, and the overall tech industry. She reports out of Mumbai, and also writes about the ups and downs in the Indian telecom sector. Tasneem can be reached on Twitter at @MuteRiot, and leads, tips, and releases can be sent to tasneema@ndtv.com. More
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