India’s leading telco, Reliance Jio Infocomm saw a drop of nearly 12.9 million wireless subscribers in December 2021, according to the subscription data shared by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) on Thursday. Jio now has a gross user base of 415.71 million after this sharper than expected fall.

During the same period, Bharti Airtel saw a net addition of nearly 0.47 million subscribers. and Vodafone Idea by 0.16 million.

However, Jio’s massive drop created a major dent in India’s wireless subscriber base, registering degrowth in December by 12.88 million to 1.15 billion. 

Wireless subscription in urban areas decreased from 638.46 million in November to 633.34 million at the end of December, and rural subscription decreased from 529.04 million to 521.28 million during the same period. Monthly decline rates of urban and rural wireless subscription were 0.80 per cent and 1.47 per cent respectively.

Market share

As a result of Jio’s decline in subscribers, both Vodafone Idea and Bharti Airtel were able to widen their market share to 23 per cent (22.88) and 30.8 per cent (30.43) respectively. Jio saw its market share decline marginally to 36 per cent (36.71). 

Jio lost nearly 6 million users in rural India in December. Bharti Airtel and Voda Idea in comparison, suffered fewer rural user losses at 1.18 million and 0.97 million respectively.

Jio’s rural mobile user base fell to 179.93 million while Airtel and Voda Idea dropped to 170.14 million and 134.32 million respectively. 

About 98.01 per cent of the users were active for Bharti Airtel, 86.42 per cent for Voda Idea and 87.64 per cent for Jio according to TRAI data.