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Airtel Sees Growth in Wireless Subscribers in March 2024

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In Short:

BSNL and Vodafone Idea lost wireless subscribers in March 2024, while Reliance Jio and Airtel gained subscribers, leading to an overall increase in the total number of wireless subscribers in India. Airtel gained subscribers in all circles, while Jio lost in three. Market shares showed Jio at 40.30%, Airtel at 33.10%, and Vi at 18.86%. Airtel also had the highest VLR percentage.


<b>Airtel</b> Gained Wireless Subscribers Across All Circles in March” width=”1200″ height=”800″>
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<p>
        BSNL and <b>Vodafone Idea (Vi)</b> have experienced a decline in wireless subscribers, while <b>Reliance Jio</b> and <b>Bharti Airtel</b> have observed an increase in wireless subscribers in March 2024, according to the Telecom Subscription Data released by the <b>Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI)</b> on Friday. The report highlighted that <b>Airtel</b> had successfully gained wireless subscribers across all circles in the month. As a result, the total number of wireless subscribers across all operators in India saw an increment at the end of March 2024, with a monthly growth rate of 0.07 percent.
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<h2>Mobile Operators Performance</h2>
<p>
    Specifically looking at individual mobile operators, <b>Bharti Airtel</b> added approximately 1.75 million wireless subscribers in March 2024, elevating its subscriber base to 385.76 million. On the contrary, <b>Vodafone Idea (Vi)</b> lost 0.68 million wireless subscribers, reducing its total base to 219.82 million. Similarly, <b>BSNL</b>/<b>MTNL</b> experienced a loss of 2.36 million subscribers, reducing its total to 89.99 million. Meanwhile, <b>Reliance Jio</b> gained 2.14 million subscribers, reaching a total wireless subscriber base of 469.73 million. The ranking of telcos in respective circles remained unchanged from the previous month.
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<h2>Telecom Circles</h2>
<p>
    <b>Airtel</b> stood out as the sole telecom company that saw an increase in wireless subscribers across all circles, without experiencing any declines. On the other hand, <b>Reliance Jio</b> lost subscribers in three circles, namely Jammu and Kashmir, Maharashtra and Goa, and North East. <b>Vodafone Idea</b> observed a decrease in subscribers across all circles except Bihar, Delhi, Jammu and Kashmir, Kerala, and Uttar Pradesh East. <b>BSNL</b>/<b>MTNL</b> faced a decline in wireless subscribers across all circles except in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, Bihar, and West Bengal.
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<h2>Market Share Analysis</h2>
<p>
    Based on the subscriber gains and losses by March 31, 2024, the market share of wireless subscribers for the top companies can be summarized as follows: <b>Reliance Jio</b> with 40.30 percent, <b>Bharti Airtel</b> with 33.10 percent, <b>Vodafone Idea</b> with 18.86 percent, <b>BSNL</b> with 7.57 percent, and <b>MTNL</b> with 0.17 percent market share.
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<h2>Wireless Broadband Services</h2>
<p>
    Shifting focus to wireless broadband services, according to TRAI, <b>Jio</b> reported 469.73 million wireless broadband users, <b>Bharti Airtel</b> with 265.50 million, <b>Vodafone Idea</b> with 127.69 million, and <b>BSNL</b> with 20.65 million wireless broadband users.
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<h2>Urban vs. Rural Subscriptions</h2>
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    The cumulative additions by all telecom service providers led to an increase in total wireless subscribers in India from 1,164.64 million at the end of February 2024, to 1,165.49 million by the end of March 2024. While urban wireless subscriptions declined from 636.11 million to 634.47 million, rural wireless subscriptions rose from 528.53 million to 531.02 million during the same period.
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<h2>VLR Data</h2>
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    Regarding the Visitor Location Register (VLR), <b>Airtel</b> maintained the highest industry percentage with a VLR of 99.91 on the date of Peak VLR in March 2024, followed by <b>Reliance Jio</b> with 91.62 percent, <b>Vodafone Idea</b> with 87.92 percent, <b>BSNL</b> with 54.58 percent, and <b>MTNL</b> with 25.67 percent. This signifies that out of the total 1,165.49 million wireless subscribers, 1,057.71 million were active on the date of peak VLR in March 2024. It is important to note that VLR is a temporary database of subscribers who have entered a specific area it serves.
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