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Private basic subscriber base crosses 8.5 lakh

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Private basic subscriber base crosses 8.5 lakh

The subscriber base of private basic telephone operators crossed 850,000 in October. The figure stood at around 500,000 in April.

Around 35 per cent of the subscribers are using the Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA)-based wireless-in-local-loop (WLL) services.

According to the Association of Basic Telephone Operators, with the entry of Reliance and Tata Teleservices, the number of basic telephone subscribers using services of private operators will cross the 1 million mark by January 2003.

Despite the uncertainty with regard to WLL limited mobility services, more than 430,000 users are availing the services.

Of them, 225,000 use the Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) network and around 140,000 users are on private networks.

The number of subscribers is expected to surge with Tata launching Indicom in Delhi, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka and with Reliance launching its countrywide CDMA network on December 28. BSNL is adding another 200,000 subscribers next year. By then, the Supreme Court is likely to give its verdict on the policy decision to allow the use of WLL limited mobility services by basic operators. At present, Bharti, which has operations in Delhi, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh and Haryana, has the largest number of basic telephone subscribers among the private players despite the fact that it does not have WLL limited mobility subscribers.

Bharti, however, has the largest share of the mobile market through its global system for mobile-based cellular services in 16 circles.

Source: Business Standard


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