This report provides a comprehensive overview of the developments and trends in telecommunications, Internet and digital media markets in India. Subjects covered include:
-Major Players (fixed and mobile);
-Infrastructure development – national and international;
-Mobile Voice and Data Markets;
-Internet, including VoIP;
-Convergence and Digital Media;
Without a doubt India continues to be one of the most dynamic and fastest growing major telecom markets in the world. The mobile sector has grown from around 10 million subscribers in 2002 to reach 240 million by early 2007, the rate of market expansion being boosted by low tariffs, falling handset prices and the highly competitive market that has been created by the government and the regulator. While GSM technology has continued to be dominant in the country’s mobile market, CDMA was managing to hang on to a 25% market share by early 2008. The total mobile market was expanding at an annual rate of just below 60% coming in to 2008. All things considered the mobile industry should continue its present strong growth for the time being.
Regulatory reform has been central to the development of India’s telecoms market. Sweeping reforms by successive governments over the last decade have dramatically changed the nature of telecommunications in the country. The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India has predicted that the rate of market expansion would increase with further regulatory and structural reforms. The adoption of Unified Licensing, a change in the Access Deficit Charge regime, increased sharing of infrastructure and coverage of new areas by operators were all contributing to ongoing growth. For more information, see chapter 3, page 11.
By early 2008, the total telephone subscriber base (mobile and fixed) had passed the 280 million subscriber milestone. The number of phone subscribers was rising by an average of 8 million each month coming into 2008. With fixed-line subscribers at around 40 million, growth in that segment of the market had stalled in 2006 and was not likely to pick up again for some time. (It should be noted that in 2005 India’s telecom regulator began counting fixed WLL services as ‘wireless’ services and not as ‘wireline’ meaning that they were absorbed into the mobile statistics and were not able to be separated out any longer as fixed services. This caused confusion in the reporting data.)
Regulatory change in the industry has not been easy with many observers initially being sceptical of the strategies adopted by the government for the Indian market. There has been a continuing evolution through a series of mergers and takeovers among the mobile operators that has seen welcome and productive consolidation. In the final analysis the so-called ‘licensing by circles’ policy has been credited with establishing a highly competitive and healthy telecoms market. Initially the circles policy had been considered complex and unwieldy. But, with the assistance of a comparatively well regulated commercial environment, with plenty of growth potential and an increasingly open market, India is proving to be an attractive telecoms destination for foreign investment with a clear way forward to further growth.
- 1. Key Statistics
- 2. Telecommunications Market
- 3. Regulatory Environment
- 4. Fixed Network Operators in India
- 5. Telecommunications Infrastructure
- 6. Broadband and Internet Market
- 7. Convergence
- 8. Mobile Communcations
- 9. Glossary of Abbreviations
For more information visit http://www.researchandmarkets.com/reports/c91168.
Research and Markets
Laura Wood, Senior Manager
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