Keeping up the momentum in customer acquisition, Reliance Jio has added 7.34 million subscribers in October to take its base to 145.96 million, with a market share of 12.39 per cent. The numbers for October, released by sector regulator the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai), also indicate stability in the sector. The top three players — Bharti Airtel, Vodafone, and Idea Cellular — as well as government-owned BSNL have all added subscribers. Other players such as Aircel, Reliance Communications, Tata Teleservices, and Telenor continue to lose users. According to the Trai, market leader Airtel added 3.14 million subscribers and its overall base reached 285.19 million, with a market share of 24.21 per cent. Vodafone was second with a share of 17.68 per cent and 208.32 million subscribers. Idea Cellular has 190.86 million subscribers, with a market share of 16.20 per cent.
BSNL, which has been adding subscribers continuously despite the entry of Reliance Jio last year, has a user base of 106.41 million at the end of October, with a 9.03 per cent market share. Telenor and Tata Teleservices will be merged with Airtel. Reliance Communications will be closing its 2G and 3G services. Things will become tougher for Aircel, as it has been losing users every month. With consolidation in the telecom industry accelerating over the past two years, the sector is now headed towards a three-player oligopoly, with Bharti Airtel, Vodafone-Idea Cellular, and Reliance Jio controlling 95 per cent of the revenues.