Updated 20 Jun, 2013, 9:13 am IST
A third of purchased mobile numbers are unused in India
| by Padmini Harchandrai |
The Indian government says that officially there are approximately 900 million mobile subscribers in India, of which as many as 300 million are inactive. According to the Hindustan Times, what this data means is that while the government data reflects that three out of four people in India are mobile subscribers, the reality is that only one of two people in the country are mobile subscribers. This drops the sensational percentage of mobile users in the country from 75 percent to 50 percent.
For every two active phone numbers, one is inactive
Since there are so many unutilized numbers, the Department of Telecom may refer to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) to decide what to do with these numbers in terms of being deleted and being utilised as fresh numbers. However, operators have informed the DoT that there is a large number of "lifetime" subscribers, which means users who have bought their numbers indefinitely regardless of use or no use. Those numbers will prove a problem to delete.
Another reason for the inflation is that telecom operators increase their subscriber number for spectrum allocation. Operators are alloted mobile spectrum based on the number of subscribers they have and more subscribers means greater spectrum. Increased subscriber numbers are also 'beneficial' for companies' stock profiles.
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