TRAI Regulation on Net Neutrality – Most of Our Recommendations Accepted

TRAI Accepts DSLIndia Recommendations on Net NeutralityTime for some self pat as TRAI accepts most of our Out of the Box Recommendations on Net Neutrality in India and structuring their final Regulations based on the core points we have highlighted in our compilation which is available here [PDF].

TRAI Recommendations released just a while ago on Net neutrality is available here [13MB PDF File].

Everybody have opposed Differential Pricing of Data Tariffs, so we will not take credit for the same, but here are some of the Unique Points which were addressed only by DSLIndia’s Telecom Analysts and acknowledged by the TRAI in its Regulations which are notified for Gazette Publication.

1. If you have read through (more…)

700Mhz Spectrum Auction Pricing Ir-Rational – Will Find No Takers

700 MHZ Spectrum AuctionThe TRAI’s recommended price – 20% premium to an overpriced 900MHz band – has made it a hard band to sell. The 900MHz band spectrum pricing (based on 2015 auction, where operators were fighting for business continuity) was result of overbidding. The amount of spectrum in the band is also limited, which further pushed up prices. However, with the availability of seven blocks, the 700MHz band will find limited takers at the recommended price.

Industry leader Airtel has a pan‐India 3G spectrum (except Kerala) and 4G spectrum is 14 circles. It has multiple options to add capacity spectrum (more…)

Airtel to Increase ARPU amidst Reliance Jio Launch

Airtel Vs Reliance JioBharti Airtel expects modest annual increases in blended ARPU in coming years led by data (assuming rationality on the part of Reliance Jio). Airtel admits voice ARPUs will continue to dip but does not think cannibalization of voice by high-speed data is a risk, likely underestimating this voice ARPU reduction risk. Airtel thinks that higher ARPU subs (post-paid or high-end pre-paid who would be early 4G adopters) hardly churn and that pricing per se is not a factor in churn at the high-end. Additionally, it is rapidly rolling out 4G on a large scale not giving its high-end 3G/4G subs reason to shift to competition. Data traffic will continue to grow at a robust pace driven by increases in penetration and per sub consumption growth. Better data network and newer technologies (such as 4G) itself allows higher consumption on a like-for-like basis.

Plain Vanilla 2G Voice
On the contrary, incrementally new subs are coming from low-ARPU rural areas, total voice ARPU will likely continue to trend down. Urban wireless penetration (more…)

Is Idea Cellular Challenged with 3G /4G-LTE Data Spectrum ?

Idea Spectrum forMobile DataThe just in time execution telecom specialist in India Idea Cellular owns 3G spectrum (900 or 2100 or both) in all of its top-5 circles and nine of its top-10 circles (except Karnataka, where it owns LTE spectrum). Idea owns LTE spectrum (1800 band) in four of its top-5 and six of its top-10 circles. It owns either 3G or LTE spectrum in all of its top-10 circles and owns 3G and LTE spectrum in five of the top-10 circles. Idea’s 3G spectrum footprint covers nearly 80% of its revenues, LTE footprint covers 61%, 3G or LTE footprint covers 87% and 3G and LTE footprint covers 53% of its revenues.

Having spectrum is important of course (more…)

Mobile Network Quality & 3G Data Helping Incumbents

Airtel 3G NetworkAirtel’s overall voice market share is a better way to analyze the impact of smaller players’ lower tariff strategy on incumbents’ market share (given it is an incumbents across all the circles). The data shows that Airtel has managed to hold on to its share (~30%) despite smaller players’ pricing minutes at a discount (for example, Telenor’s voice RPM is 20% lower v/s Bharti/Idea, adjusting for their ILD/NLD/roaming revenue). Telenor has a 6.5% revenue share in its six circles and managed to gain ~170bps in the last nine quarters. Even Idea has gained ~220bps in 14 of its newer circles despite overall good execution. These 14 circles contribute 60% of the industry revenues and Idea currently has ~10% revenue share in them.

3G volume pick-up has helped incumbents’ (more…)

What are Telecom Operators Strategies for “Mobile Data” ?

Airtel Vodafone Data StrategyWe believe the incumbents lobby led by Airtel, Vodafone and Idea are banking on 3G to lead data growth in India over the next five years. They have 2100MHz (3G spectrum) spectrum in their market leadership service areas, enabling them to participate in data growth in their dominant service areas. Over the next 12-18 months, we believe Airtel, Vodafone and Idea are likely to have pan-Indian 3G spectrum, as they are likely to acquire additional 2100MHz spectrum when the government auctions it later in the year.

Also, we think market leaders are likely to deploy their recently renewed 900MHz (liberalised spectrum) for 3G services over the next 3-5 years (more…)

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