Social Media

Election results drive data usage for telecom firms

Our Bureaus New Delhi/Mumbai | Updated on May 19, 2014

The increased use of social media and information search during the just-concluded general election have resulted in a surge of data revenue for telecom companies.

According to telecom operators, the increase in data usage was seen across geographies. For example, MTS India saw more than 10 per cent surge in data traffic on the election result day, May 16. This was across all its 9 circles. Specifically, in the Gujarat Circle, data traffic increased by as much as 16 per cent for the operator.

Another interesting trend was a double-digit increase in the number of simultaneously connected data users on MTS’ 3G Plus network

Ashwani Khillan, Chief Technical Officer, MTS India said, “The last few days have been good for telecom operators, especially when it came to data traffic. After the election results, data traffic continues to be higher than the norm, given the customer excitement on news relating to the new government formation.”

Services offering live TV streaming, in particular, have been a huge hit. For instance, downloads for Airtel Pocket TV application on the Android Play Store and Apple Store jumped over 15 times.

“Mobile news consumption witnessed a significant increase all-day as customers used their mobile phones to stay tuned to the election updates,” said an Airtel official.

. “There are over 120 million users with Internet access on their mobile phones. For them, accessing social media sites like Twitter and Facebook to post their views was as important as getting the latest results by the minute,” said a social media expert.

To cash in on the election fever, some of the operators had even launched free packs to hooks users. Airtel, for example, offered the first 50MB of free internet usage for its prepaid customers in order to make it easy for voters to go online and read about candidate’s history before casting their votes. Needless to say, the voters ended up using more than the 50 MB.

Published on May 19, 2014

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