Airtel’s Vittal says attracting new subscribers to premium broadband services will be a challenge

Bharti Airtel’s Gopal Vittal, Managing Director & CEO, India & South Asia said that it would be a challenge for the company to attract new subscribers to its premium broadband services in a fiercely competitive market. His comments come at a time when Airtel’s data penetration has flattened nationally over the past few months, and it has seen a sequential dip in both average data realisation per MB (ARMB) and data average revenue per user in the January-March quarter.

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The telco’s revenue from data as a proportion to mobile services increased modestly to 23.3% from 23.1% in the previous quarter.The telco earlier reported a 2.8% rise in net profit to Rs 1,290 crore in the fiscal fourth quarter.

According to media reports, Vittal, who wasparticipating in an earnings calls post the announcement of the quarterly results, againreiterated that the recommended base price of 4G airwaves in the coveted 700 Mhz band – Rs11,485 crore a unit of pan-India spectrum – was “very high and unaffordable”.

Airtel is open to boosting 3G spectrum holdings in the next auction, especially in markets like Kerala where it still does not have 3G airwaves, Vittal said.

The country’s largest telco would take steps to boost internet literacy at the consumer level. Vittal said that Airtel would engage more aggressively with content providers to grow data penetration levels nationally.

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[…] c) Suggestions towards a reduction in duties to make WiFi access devices cheaper so as to pave the way for affordable WiFi services in public places, and in turn, boost broadband penetration. […]

Raj
May 2, 2016 7:47 pm 7:47 PM

Airtel, you have looted too much. Now is the time we will teach you lesson. Airtel will go downhill from now on. After jio launch Airtel will get paunch on its face.

Colorado
April 30, 2016 9:15 pm 9:15 PM
What else do you expect Mr. Vittal? You have increased prices to a level where the common man can no longer afford to recharge with internet packs regularly. Those who can afford have upgraded, now revenue will flatten because no one else will go for overpriced services. And have you heard of KARMA? You force people to pay 5x the fair rates & people do so because airtel’s network is okay. But the truth is, 60-70% people use airtel out of compulsion due to their vast network. Now it’s the same for you: 700 MHz has great coverage & is… Read more »
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