The past 4 years have seen VLR penetration grow from a nominal 42.8% in September 2010 to 63.8% in March 2014 – a creditable growth in spite of the hurdles faced. Of the 791 MN active VLR subscribers (TRAI March 2014 report), over 570 Mn are with COAI members, demonstrating the commitment of each of our members to grow the sector.

In spite of being the 2nd largest mobile country globally by subscribers, this 63.8% penetration [India’s Population is 1240 Mn] compares poorly within the world average @ 95.4%. Clearly, there is plenty of headroom for growth in the next 4-5 years. The challenge being, most of the new users will be from the rural heartland and the industry needs active Government & DoT support to connect these millions of rural unconnected Indians.