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India is one of the biggest consumer of data worldwide. As per TRAI, average wireless data usage per wireless data subscriber was 11 GB per month in FY20. It is expected to reach to 18 GB by 2024.

Indian Telecom Industry Analysis

    Last updated on May, 25 2021

India is the world's second-largest telecommunications market. The telecom market can be split into three segments - wireless, wireline and internet services. The total subscriber base in the country stood at 1,183.49 million, as of January 2021. The teledensity of rural subscribers increased to 59.50% in January 2021, from 59.05% in December 2020, showcasing significant growth potential in demand from the rural sector.

The total wireless or mobile telephone subscriber base increased to 1,163.41 million in January 2021, from 1,153.77 million in December 2020.

India is also the second largest country in terms of internet subscribers. India is one of the biggest consumer of data worldwide. As per TRAI, average wireless data usage per wireless data subscriber was 11 GB per month in FY20. App downloads in the country increased from 12.07 billion in 2017 to 19 billion in 2019 and is expected to reach 37.21 billion by 2022F. The total wireless data usage in India grew 1.82% quarterly to reach 25,227 PB in the third quarter of FY21. The contribution of 3G and 4G data usage to the total volume of wireless data usage was 2.81% and 96.48%, respectively, in the third quarter of FY21. Share of 2G data usage stood at 0.71% in the same quarter.

Gross revenue of the telecom sector stood at Rs. 68,228 crore (US$ 9.35 billion) in the third quarter of FY21. Strong policy support from the Government has been crucial to the sector’s development. Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) cap in the telecom sector has been increased to 100% from 74%. FDI inflows in the telecom sector stood at US$ 37.62 billion from April 2000 to December 2020.  

According to a Zenith Media survey, India is expected to become the fastest-growing telecom advertisement market, with an annual growth rate of 11% between 2020 and 2023.

The Government of India, through its National Digital Communications Policy, foresee investment worth US$ 100 billion in the telecommunications sector by 2022. The government is encouraging global telecom network manufacturers such as Ericsson, Nokia, Samsung and Huawei to manufacture all their equipment in India with 100% local products.

In March 2021, TEPC (Telecom Equipment Export Promotion Council) organised India Telecom 2021—a platform for convergence of technologies and business exchange.

The Union Cabinet approved Rs. 12,195 crore (US$ 1.65 billion) production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme for telecom & networking products under the Department of Telecom.

F- Forecast, PB - Petabytes

Indian Telecommunications Industry Report (March, 2021)
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Click to access the Telecommunications Industry Archived Report


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