Jio Sees Sharp Decline in New Subscribers in December Due to Tariff Hike: TRAI

Reliance Jio added only 82,308 subscribers in the month ending December 2019, a drastic reduction from the 56,08,668 subscriber additions listed for the month of November.

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Jio Sees Sharp Decline in New Subscribers in December Due to Tariff Hike: TRAI

Reliance Jio still has the biggest slice in wireless subscriber market share at 32.14 percent

Highlights
  • Vodafone Idea lost 3,644,453 subscribers in the month of December
  • BSNL added 4,26,958 subscribers, way more than Jio
  • Total wireless subscribers saw a monthly decline of 0.27 percent

Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has released subscription data of Indian telcos for the month ending December 31, 2019. BSNL added more subscribers than Reliance Jio during this period. Reliance Jio introduced its tariff hike in December last year, and it could be the main cause of downfall in wireless subscriber additions for the telco. The company's market share increased, albeit marginally, to 32.14 percent compared to 32.04 percent in November 2019 end. Vodafone-Idea continues its trend of losing subscribers, and its market share reduced from 29.12 percent in November to 28.89 percent in December.

Reliance Jio added only 82,308 subscribers in the month of December, a drastic reduction from the 56,08,668 subscriber additions listed for the month of November — in other words, in December Jio's growth slowed to 0.01 percent when compared to November.

Its total subscriber base increased from 36,99,33,852 in November to 37,00,16,160 subscribers by the end of December. This slowdown in subscriber additions is largely due to the tariff hike introduced in the last month of 2019. It is reported to have raised the prices of its plans by up to 40 percent. Even with this slight setback, Reliance Jio still owns the biggest slice in market share at 32.14 percent, with Vodafone Idea at second position with 28.89 percent market share. Airtel is not far behind with 28.43 percent market share.

Vodafone-Idea lost 36,44,453 subscribers in the month ending December 31, considerably less than the 3,64,19,365 subscribers it lost in the month of November. While the loss in subscriber numbers is significantly less, the market share is seeing a steady fall in the past months. Airtel also lost subscribers in the month of December; however the number is far more modest at 11,050. State-owned BSNL added about 4,26,958 subscribers in the month, way more than Jio as well. This is also more than the 3,38,480 subscriber additions BSNL had in the month of November 2019. Its market share increased from 10.19 percent to 10.26 percent in one month.

The total number of wireless subscribers, according to the latest TRAI report, declined from 1,154.59 million at the end of November 2019 to 1,151.44 million at the end of December 2019, thereby registering a monthly decline rate of 0.27 percent. Reliance Jio continues to rank on top in the wireless broadband market with 370.02 million subscribers. Airtel comes in second with 137.98 million subscribers, Vodafone Idea has 118.43 million subscribers, and BSNL enjoys 15.56 million subscribers.

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Further reading: Reliance Jio, TRAI, Vodafone Idea, Airtel, BSNL
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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