Indian Cell Phone Industry
A lot of water has
flowed under the bridge from the time that mobiles were unheard
of in India to the present where they have become almost ubiquitous.
Beginning from those days, Indian subscribers paid around Rs. 16.40
for a mobile to mobile call and around Rs 32.80 for a mobile to
a land-line call. Today, as per recent statistics, customers pay
far lesser for calls and occasional text messages that add up to
around Rs 300 a month and upwards.
Now that mobiles have moved into the affordable bracket, there is
a great demand for additional mobile services such as mobiles, email,
stock market quotes, and astrology services, just to name a few.
A recent survey
pointed to the fact that for most customers, mobile phones
have become an extension of their personality. Many go a step
ahead to say that mobile phones define their individuality
as well. In such a scenario, it is worthwhile to compare the
growth of the mobile phone industry vis-a-vis the computer
industry in India. According to recent statistics, there are
nearly 300 million mobile phone subscribers as compared to
just around 30 million PC's in the country. Additionally,
around 8 million subscribers are signing up every month for
mobile services alone.
For most individuals,
mobile phones are becoming a single point of contact for the world
surrounding them covering a wide range of utilities like emailing,
entertainment, and banking. More and more people are looking out
for more than just talk time on their mobiles. All this is generating
a lot of enthusiasm for mobile companies. A number of serious players
in this industry are looking at a range of such value added services,
which have the capability to boost their bottom line.
Not only are Indians enthralled, but they started spending a considerable
amount on these services too. This figure amounted to around $250
million last year. This figure is expected to reach $1.7 billion
by the year 2010. This is a boon in disguise for Indian cellular
operators who are seriously looking forward to enhance their revenues.
Currently, nearly 80% of the revenues come from services like ring
tones and SMS. This makes India the second largest mobile market
The young mobile savvy generation currently feels less privileged
in nearly every sector. And that's precisely what is fuelling the
growth in mobile services across the country. As the market expands
but fulfilling the needs of mobile users by providing them attractive
services, mobile phones are becoming a new vehicle for reaching
out to the mobile generation.
Mobile content providers also visualize a big jump in their services.
These include many global companies such as Google, Yahoo and MSN,
which have signed up with many Indian operators like Airtel, Bharti,
Vodafone, Tata, and Reliance Communications. Together, they offer
a host of services based on the local and regional markets in their
area of operation. The Indian mobile scenario seems to be all set
for the next stage - expansion and consolidation, but there are
a few complications as well. Not all users can afford costlier services
beyond messaging and talk time. What is expected is increase in
the already growing user base so such services can become affordable
to one and all in the long run.
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