Only 10% of Idea Cellular Users Consume More than a Gig of 3G/4G Data

Idea 4G CustomersThe management of Idea Cellular stated that only ~10% of consumers are on packs of >1GB on 3G / 4G LTE networks in a month / 30 day cycle. Hence the higher allowance for high usage packs will not by itself result in sharp ARMB decline.

Idea carries the second highest data traffic in the industry by garnering 20.5% data RMS [Revenue Market Share] in FY16, which is higher than its overall RMS. Its incremental data RMS was 27%. Idea deployed close to 40,000 3G/4G sites in the past year in addition to deploying close to 12,000 2G sites. Idea will cross 100,000 3G+4G BTS by end-FY17 from the current 71,000.

20115 saw 80m+ smartphones being shipped and 2016 is likely to see this reach ~120m. The demand for data is still strong. While this shows in the volumes, it has not translated into proportionate revenue growth as people are yet to get into the habit of paying more for data. It has been a challenge to create awareness on the utility of the Internet as well. These will happen over time. Data ARPU may remain under pressure as the company tries to get more customers to use data. Competition is also likely to intensity in the data space with the number of players increasing from the current three to 4-5.

EcoSystem for the Mobile Broadband User
Idea will expand its offerings in music, games, rich messaging, audio chat, movies, live and recorded TV by the end of 2016. Content tie-ups will also be increased. Largest potential for data growth is from smaller towns where mobile is the only way to access the Internet. Mobile Money Payment bank services are likely to be rolled out in early next year.

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