Mobile broadband user base India to cross 500 million by 2018

India and China mobile broadband subscriptions
Mobile broadband subscriber base in India will touch 500 million by 2018, accounting for just under half of all subscriptions.

Growth in mobile broadband will be driven by declines in 3G and 4G smartphone prices, creative and cheap data plans, and proliferation of apps and data services among consumers.

“Indian mobile operators may have more difficulty extracting profits from customers as they have the added challenges of extreme consumer price sensitivities coupled with a very crowded competitor field,” said Charles Moon, practice leader Asia at Ovum.
China and India mobile broadband by Ovum
India has 1 billion mobile subscriptions in 2015. China reached this milestone almost three years ago.

“Like India today, China was then at 80 percent subscription penetration with 10 percent of its subscriber base on 3G.  Wealthier Chinese consumers have supported around 100 percent growth in overall mobile user base and 50 percent growth in mobile broadband. China has 25 percent higher data ARPUs as compared with India,” the telecom report from Ovum pointed out.

“Comparatively, India’s growth trajectory is farther along than China’s at the time and will remain flatter, meaning India is unlikely to catch up,” Charles Moon said.

Main telecom operators in the 4G space are Bharti Airtel, Vodafone, Idea Cellular and Reliance Jio Infocomm. Main 3G network operators are Bharti Airtel, Idea Cellular, Reliance Communications, Aircel, BSNL, MTNL, Tata Docomo and Vodafone.