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Vodafone's plight continues, loses 4 crore subscribers in 2 months

Vodafone which is tangled in the AGR mess and dues worth 53,000 crore continues to lose subscribers

Mudit Kapoor        Last Updated: February 26, 2020  | 16:00 IST
Vodafone's plight continues, loses 4 crore subscribers in 2 months
Vodafone Idea lost 0.23% market share in Dec 2019

Vodafone Idea has lost total 4 crore subscribers in the last two months of 2019, as per the latest report of Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) released on Tuesday.

Vodafone Idea lost 3.64 crore and 36.4 lakh subscribers in November and December, respectively. Overall in the past 11 months, the second-biggest telecom operator by market share has lost 75 lakh subscribers on average. The subscriber base of Vodafone Idea stood at 33.26 crore in December.

"VIL's subscriber loss can be largely attributed to its subpar network. Customers are discarding non-functional SIM cards post tariff hikes," says Motilal Oswal's research analyst Aliasgar Shaikh. He also added that "subscribers are moving from VIL to Bharti, as active subscriber loss of VIL is approximately equal to gain in Bharti's active subscriber base since the past two months (post deterioration of VIL's network)." Airtel, which had gained 16.59 lakh subscribers in November, lost 11,050 subscribers in December.

MTNL lost 5,155 subscribers in December. BSNL gained the highest number of subscribers (4.27 lakh) followed by Reliance Jio (82,308) and Reliance Communication (444).

Meanwhile, there is a decrease in the total number of telecom subscribers in India for second consecutive month. At the end of December 2019, there were 117.24 crore telecom subscribers in India, a decline from 117.59 crore at the end of November 2019. This means 34.4 lakh subscribers in the month of December are no longer active. In the month of November 2019, 2.8 crore subscribers opted out of telecom services.

BSNL and MTNL have increased their market share in the wireless services in the last two months. From a market share of 10.49% in November 19, their market share has increased to 10.55%. The share of private operators has declined from 89.51% to 89.45%.

Reliance Jio is leading the pack of mobile subscribers with 32.14% market share followed by Vodafone Idea with 28.89% and Bharti Aritel at 28.43%. As compared to the last month (November 2019) Reliance Jio has gained 0.1%, Bharti Airtel has gained 0.08% while Vodafone Idea has lost 0.23% market share.

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