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Internet penetration in India grows over 300 pc and data consumption up 1300 pc in five years



Five years ago, on this day Reliance Jio commercially launched its pan India telecom service. This marked the beginning of a new era of 4G mobile network and data revolution.

The affordable high-speed data pushed internet penetration in the country by 312 percent from 192.30 million broadband subscribers in September 2016 to 792.78 million broadband subscribers in June, 2021, as per the latest telecom subscriber data published by TRAI. This led to exponential increase in data consumption with monthly data consumption per user witnessing over 1303 percent jump from 878.63 MB to a whooping 12.33 GB between December 2016 and March 2021, reveals the latest quarterly telecom performance indicator report published by TRAI last week. Similarly, the free voice call trend led to over 164 percent increase in voice call per user per month from 310 minutes to 818 minutes.

Since the beginning of the commercial operation of Jio in September, 2016, affordable internet became a reality with internet data cost coming down by over 93 percent from around Rs160/per GB to Rs.10.77/per GB as per performance indicators reports of TRAI.

Apart from these, the digital revolution fuelled by Jio immensely helped the growth of social media as well as OTT platforms far and wide across the country. As a boost to the start-up ecosystem, the total number of unicorns in the country increased by 430 percent from 10 in 2016 to 53 as of June 2021; and also created new employment opportunities for millions of youths in all sectors.

Coming to the impact of these five years of digital revolution in Odisha, it propelled internet penetration, especially in rural hinterlands across the state. As per TRAI’s performance indicators reports, rural broadband internet user base in Odisha increased from just 8.7 lakh in September 2016 to over 1.3 crore in March 2021. The total broadband internet user base in the state increased from 41.4 lakh in September 2016 to over 2.05 crore in March 2021.

Presently, Jio is the No. 1 digital service provider both in Odisha as well as in the country with highest number of subscribers and highest revenue market share of the sector. As per the latest telecom subscriber data released by TRAI, Reliance Jio leads the sector in Odisha with nearly 1.5 crore subscribers followed by Bharti Airtel with 1.1 crore subscribers, BSNL with 64.2 lakh subscribers and Vodafone Idea with 24.89 lakh subscribers in the state as on June 30, 2021. Along with 52.3 percent market share in gross revenue of the sector, Jio also has the highest 4G network footprint in Odisha with highest number of 4G towers in the state.

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