India to Reach 1 Billion Mobile Users by 2020: Report

India is expected to have a mobile subscriber base of 1 billion unique users by 2020, as per a study by GSMA. The falling prices of smartphone devices, network coverage improvement, and affordable tariff plans has already marked India as the World’s second largest smartphone market in the first half of 2016.

According to the Groupe Speciale Mobile Association (GSMA), India has overtaken the US market with 275 million devices at the installed base in the first half of 2016. While at the end of June 2016, the unique user base subscribed to mobile services reached to 616 million in India.

India is currently witnessing a constant technology shift to mobile broadband services and it is predicted to reach more than 670 million 3G/4G mobile broadband connections by 2020 which is 48 percent of the total connection base. The number of 4G connections is expected to grow rapidly from merely three million at the end of 2015 to 280 million by 2020. With Reliance Jio’s arrival, the 4G VoLTE mobile is becoming the preference for many of Indian smartphone buyers. This has accelerated the 4G smartphone segment of Indian market.

In 2015, the mobile industry of India has generated the economic value which is corresponding to 6.5 percent of the country’s GDP. This contribution accounts more than $140 billion (roughly Rs 9 lakh crores). The amount indicates both the economic activity and the ecosystem of mobile industries. This contribution is forecasted to grow to $210 million (roughly Rs 14 lakh crores) by 2020 in India, as per the report added.

Around 430 million people are having access to the mobile internet services from the mid-2016. The users will raise to roughly 670 million by 2020, or about half the total population.

At present, the biggest barrier to internet usage in India is the deficiency of awareness and locally relevant content. The average lag of regional penetration is at 63 percent which is a big concern.

Furthermore, the GSMA report also showed that the gender gap in South Asian countries is highest as compared to other regions. This gender gap results in less number of women mobile ownership. In India, it is estimated that about 36 percent women are less probably to possess a mobile phone than men.


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