Bad network, low speed afflicts 92% of mobile phone users in India, Telecom News, ET Telecom
About 48% of the 8,210 consumers surveyed by LocalCircles mentioned frequent interruptions to their mobile services due to poor network availability and 44% were unhappy with low data speeds.
In another survey question that drew 11,865 responses from consumers, 66% said they encountered problems in at least one online transaction, causing them to resort to other payment mechanisms such as cash, checks or credit cards, according to a statement from LocalCircles.
The findings highlight the gaping gap in services currently provided by Indian telecom operators despite tariff hikes in recent months. It also underscores the need to act quickly as companies prepare to bid for the airwaves in a government-led auction that will pave the way for the launch of superfast 5G services in India.
Disrupted wireless services also threaten to hamper India’s drive to boost its digital economy – a key policy initiative by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government which received a major boost amid the Covid-19 pandemic. when data usage has increased.
Competition in the telecommunications sector has shrunk from a dozen players a few years ago to just three private sector operators after billionaire Reliance Jio Infocomm Mukesh Ambani disrupted the market in 2016 with free calls and cheap data, forcing rivals to quit or merge.
While Reliance Jio blew other competitors out of the water, Vodafone Idea and Bharti Airtel managed to survive but suffered financially, leaving less room to spend on telecom infrastructure upgrades.
The survey findings also underscore the need for more investment in infrastructure to not only boost telecom services, but also digital payments.
India carried out 35 billion digital transactions in 2021, according to LocalCircles, which said that number could increase significantly if wireless network issues are resolved.