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Data traffic in India increased 60 times in 5 years, says Nokia report

The research showed that 4G alone constituted nearly 99 per cent of the total data traffic consumed across the country in 2020.

Mobile data traffic | mobile data

Megha Manchanda  |  New Delhi 

telecom, trai, mobile, data, internet, smarphone, tech, 4g, 5g, tower

India witnessed a massive jump in its data traffic. A report by Nokia revealed it grew nearly 60x in the past five years — the highest globally.

In 2020, data traffic grew 36 per cent year-on-year, primarily due to rise in 4G data consumption. 4G subscribers surpassed 700 million, with 100 million new additions during the year, said the Mobile Broadband India Traffic Index (MBiT) 2021 report on mobile broadband performance in India.

The research showed that 4G alone constituted nearly 99 per cent of the total data traffic consumed across the country in 2020.

"The phenomenal growth in data consumption in India will drive demand for enhanced broadband and fixed capacity," Sanjay Malik, senior vice-president and head of India market, Nokia, said in a statement.

"Industry 4.0, with Internet of Things and enterprise use-cases, immersive applications experience (augmented reality/virtual reality), smart home, factory and public safety use cases, will spur long-term evolution (LTE), 5G growth, and data usage further,” added Malik.


According to the study, the average monthly data usage per user reached 13.5 gigabytes (GB) in December 2020, growing over 20 per cent annually, owing to an increase in data subscribers and mobile video consumption.

New users from rural areas also contributed to the rising monthly data usage.

Mobile emerged the primary source of entertainment and productivity, as an average Indian spent approximately five hours daily on a smartphone - one of the highest averages globally.

Short video format was the fastest-growing content category, said the report, adding that the total time spent monthly on short content is expected to grow 4x by 2025.

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First Published: Thu, February 11 2021. 23:37 IST