Telcos’ Consumer Service Revenue Dips 10.5% In December Quarter: TRAI

New Delhi: The revenue of telecom sector from consumer services like mobile telephony and data dipped 10.5 per cent to Rs. 37,284 crore in the October-December period over the previous three months, according to regulator Trai.

The revenue of the sector from the same set of services stood at Rs. 41,681 crore in July-September last year.

The sector had reported Rs. 44,754 crore adjusted gross revenue (amount earned from sale of telecom services only) from access service in April-June 2016, showed the data released by the regulator.

Incumbent telecom operators have blamed free services of new entrant Reliance Jio for the decline in their quarterly numbers.

It was in July when Reliance Jio started expansion of its free 4G services bundled with LYF handsets in trial phase. The company in mid-July claimed to have 1.5 million subscribers during the trial phase. Jio launched its service commercially on September 5 and became first company to clock 100 million subscribers in just 170 days of its launch.

While Jio provided free 4G service during the period, other telecom operators struggled to compete with it.

Telecom operators pay government licence fee and other charges based on their adjusted gross revenue (AGR).

“The license fee declined to Rs. 3,698 crore for the December quarter from Rs. 4,091 crore in the July-September period of 2016,” the report said.

The AGR from all telecom services fell by 9.17 per cent on quarterly basis to Rs. 45,905 crore in October-December from Rs. 50,539 crore in the July-September period.

“Access services contributed 81.22 per cent of the total adjusted gross revenue of telecom services. In access services, gross revenue, adjusted gross revenue(AGR), license fee and spectrum usage charges (SUC) declined by 8.09 per cent, 10.55 per cent, 10.92 per cent and 12.29 per cent respectively,” the report said.

The gross revenue of telecom service provider too declined by 6.79 per cent to Rs. 66,532 in October-December 2016 from Rs. 71,378.69 at the end of July-September period. It was Rs. 73,344.66 crore at the end of April-June 2016 quarter.