New Delhi: The shift in the focus of India’s communications services providers from voice to data seems to have finally shown some traction in 2015.

According to the latest data from the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai), the number of broadband subscribers soared 60% to 136.53 million at the end of December, from 85.74 million a year earlier. Within this, the number of wireless broadband subscribers grew more than 70%, to 120.02 million, from 70.42 million reported at the end of December 2014. The number of fixed-line broadband users grew 7.76% over the 12-month period to 16.51 million at the end of December.

“Top five service providers constituted 83.41% market share of total broadband subscribers at the end of December 2015. These service providers were Bharti Airtel Ltd (31.49 million), Vodafone India Ltd (25.91 million), Idea Cellular Ltd (21.21 million), BSNL (19.85 million) and Reliance Communications Ltd (15.41 million)," Trai said.

The overall number of telephone users was up 6.7%, crossing the 1 billion subscriber mark to reach 1.03 billion at the end of December, from 970.97 million a year earlier. This was mainly driven by a 7% rise in the number of wireless phone users to 1.01 billion at the end of December, from 943.97 million at the end of December 2014. The number of fixed-line phone users continued its steady decline, falling 5.5% to 25.52 million from 27 million at the end of December 2014.

Teledensity, or the number of phone subscribers for every 100 people, ended 2015 at 81.83%, up from 77.58 at the end of December 2014. Urban teledensity was 152.45, essentially meaning that there were 15 phone subscriptions for every 10 people in urban areas of the country. Rural teledensity was 49.94, at the end of 2015, or one phone for every two people.

Interestingly, while the number of mobile subscriptions crossed a billion, only 912.06 million, or 90.22% of total wireless subscribers were counted as active wireless users, with the remaining counted as dormant.

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