RCom lost 23% of its active subscribers in five months, going by VLR data

rcom

TRAI data has finally confirmed what we had first reported two months ago — RCom lost the vast majority of its CDMA subscribers when it forced them to migrate to 4G five months ago.

Out of around 101 mln RCom subscribers at the time, about 24 mln are estimated to have been on CDMA technology.

Though RCom claimed that the ‘upgrade’ from CDMA to 4G was proceeding smoothly, the ‘VLR’ numbers — which show the proportion of ‘switched on’ users in a network — painted a different picture.

On a ‘switched on’ (VLR) basis, RCom had 92.2 mln subscribers at the end of March, while it had only 70.9 mln at the end of August — a fall of 21.3 mln or 23%.

This indicates a worsening of the situation from June end, when it had 71.6 mln switched-on users.

This may be explained by the fact that it had completed the switch-over from CDMA to 4G by end of June and had offered some limited-time free data benefits to the new migrants, which may have kept some of them on the network in the immediate aftermath.

MORE PAIN?

Before writing off inactive users, RCom has been trying to see if users who upgrade to 4G by swapping their SIM cards would switch on the new connection or not. This has led to a steep decline in the percentage of active or switched on users on the company’s network.

For example, from May-end to June-end, there was a drop of around 19 mln users in RCom’s VLR subscribers, while the official subscriber number decreased only by 2.7 mln.

This suggests that Reliance Communications was not willing to write off the ‘upgraders’ even if they were not using their new 4G connection.

Instead, it was hoping that they would eventually buy a 4G handset or at least a GSM handset, and start using the new SIM.

However, going by the ‘write offs’ taking place since then, not many are coming back.

The Anil Ambani reported a net decline of 3.2 mln subscribers in July and another 8.5 mln reduction in August.

Since it has 87.1 mln subscribers on its books and only 70.9 mln on its network VLR, it will have to strike off another 8.5 mln users from its books to reach the pre-upgrade VLR level of 90%.



Idea Cellular increases free data in unlimited scheme by 4 times Idea Cellular today increased the free data allocation on its existing unlimited calling packs.Compared to 1 GB of 4G data that customers were getting with the Rs 348 pack, they will now get 4 GB.Similarly, the free data allocation for those who do not have 4G handsets has been increased from 50 MB to 3 GB per month -- an increase of 60 times. ...
Reliance Communications sells its towers to Brookfield for $1.6 bln Reliance Communications Ltd announced the signing of binding agreements with Brookfield Infrastructure for the sale of nationwide tower assets to Brookfield Infrastructure Partners LP and its institutional partners.RCOM will receive an upfront cash payment of Rs. 11,000 crore (US$ 1.6 billion).RCOM will also receive Class B non-voting shares in t...
TRAI wants FREE DATA for everyone, without ‘gatekeeping’ by telcos India's telecom regulator has suggested that every rural citizen should be given 100 MB or so per month on a free basis to help the spread of digital revolution in the country. It has also suggested allowing 'third party aggregators' like Facebook to offer free data, but only if they can keep telecom companies totally out of such efforts.Both suggestions...
Fitch downgrades Anil Ambani’s Reliance Communications over Aircel merger Fitch Ratings has downgraded India-based Reliance Communications Limited's long-term rating to 'B+' from 'BB-'."It is our view that Rcom's plans to demerge its wireless business into a 50:50 joint-venture and sell 51% of its tower business, Reliance Infratel Ltd (Infratel), will be negative for Rcom's creditors, even if receipts from the tower transactio...
BSNL matches Airtel, Idea with 339 unlimited voice + 1GB offer Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd has unveiled a new unlimited call plan, matching bigger rivals such as Idea Cellular and Bharti Airtel.While Airtel and Idea offer unlimited calls to any network in India plus 1 GB of 4G data for Rs 345, BSNL is doing so with a new recharge of Rs 339. In addition, BSNL's offer is valid for all customers whether they use 2G, 3...
UPA-era procurement delays kept us back – BSNL CMD BSNL Chairman and Managing Director Anupam Shrivastava blamed delays in procuring key equipment for the present backward condition of the state-owned telecom operator.The company, which was once profitable and dominated India's telecom sector, has run up huge losses in the last several years, while private telecom companies have reaped tens of thousands ...
Aircel makes CALLS, DATA FREE at Rs 249 per month Aircel today started offering unlimited calls to any number in the country under two special recharge plans -- Rs 12 for one day and Rs 249 for 28 days.RC12 offers customers with Unlimited Local and STD calling across all networks with a validity of one day.Unlike earlier packs, the calls are not restricted to other Aircel users.However, it remai...
Airtel halves 4G data price to Rs 495/10GB; offers freebies to take on Reliance Jio Bharti Airtel cuts 4G data prices by halfOver the last two days, Bharti Airtel has quietly slashed its 4G pack prices to unprecedented levels in reaction to upcoming plans from Reliance Jio.According to the new data plans available to anyone who recharges using Airtel's online or app facility, the price of 10 GB of 4G data pack has been brought down...
Bharti Airtel offers unlimited calls at around Rs 200 per month to counter Jio Airtel 4G offers unlimited voice calls at 345/monthDays after Reliance Communications unveiled a plan that offers unlimited calls at Rs 150 per month, India's biggest telecom operator has come up with something very similar to take on both RCom, Reliance Jio and an upcoming plan from BSNL.Bharti Airtel has announced two new plans -- one that offers ...
10GB @ Rs 495 – Tata DoCoMo’s new 3G plan costs half that of Reliance Jio Reliance Jio 4G was supposed to be the biggest thing that ever happened to data in India, and it probably is too. But that doesn't mean that it owns the market for affordable high-speed data.Tata DoCoMo, which operates 3G services in nine circles, has started rolling out India's cheapest limited 3G plan.The new plan, which is being offered only v...
No Income Tax on FCCB proceeds, SC rules on RCom The Supreme Court on Monday dismissed the petition filed by the Income-Tax Department against Reliance Communications on taxing of the proceeds of Foreign Currency Convertible Bonds (FCCBs), said the telecom operator.The Supreme Court order has quashed contingent tax liability of RCOM for about Rs 4,800 crore.During Financial Year 2006-07, Reliance ...
MEGA DISRUPTION: RCom makes all VOICE calls FREE at 149 per month In what can only be called a highly disruptive move, Anil Ambani's Reliance Communications has made all voice calls in India free for those who recharge with a coupon of Rs 149 per month.The impact of the move will be greater than that of Reliance Jio's similar tariff, as this tariff is valid on 2G, 3G and 4G calls."RCOM’s revolutionary Unlimited Pla...
Reliance Jio WELCOME OFFER will NOT be EXTENDED to March Reliance Jio's free Welcome Offer will not be extended beyond Dec 31, despite widespread media reports saying that it will be."There is practically zero chance of it getting extended," said a marketing official working for the company in Kerala. "If there were to be any such thing, we would have got to know by now."In addition, there are reports of&n...
Ahead of merger, RCom releases low-cost ISD app in India Reliance Communications, which will merge its wireless operations with Aircel in the coming months, has released its international calling app Reliance Global Call in India.Somewhat similar to the Jio4G Voice app, the app helps you make international calls using RCom's network using your data connection.Call rates are as low as Rs 1.4 per minute to t...
Aircel offers calls at 10-25 paise per minute via coupon in Mumbai Aircel, which will merge with Reliance Communications in about six months, announced new recharge coupons that will cut outoing call rates for its Mumbai customers.The Rs 78 coupon will cut call rates to other Aircel users to 10 paise, including STD calls. Calls to non-Aircel users will cost 25 paise per minute.However, the validity of the coupon is ...