Great stats and insights in this note from prof.Sadagopan... with the second largest mobile subscriber base in the planet, and the indian surefootedness in finding a million ways to provide services to customers thro this platform, we are on a fast tracked next dimension growth at the national level... i personally believe that the next "Google" in the mobile world will be from India.
However, a few flies in the ointment... consider
- all the operators now (the last few weeks) are on a bruising price war, which drives down ARPU and directly hits the bottomline- and all are doing it to build subscriber base- can the operators be healthy?
- Voice and SMS account for most of revenue (almost 95%), with VAS being a very small part of the game- how will we encourage GPRS and LBS, services to the 500 mm that will be a huge boost to the economy, with the millions of new business models that will bring
-are the operators mature enough to create a viable ecosystem? any provider of VAS services has to contend with the fact that for every rupee the consumer pays to the operator, a meagre 30 paise winds up with the provider who has to pay off content folks (typically 3rd party- eg bollywood), the aggregators and others, leaving them with a measly 5-10 paise on their TOPLINE.. not very appetising, is it?
i guess hope lies in competition- for instance Vodafone already does a great job of encouraging VAS, and with the entry of DOCOMO, which knows Japan, the most sophisticated market for VAS in the planet, i think there are a few new ways this market will head... eagerly watching this space...
"500 million phone subscribers in India today"
- 500 million phone subscribers in India today « Professor Sadagopan’s Weblog (view on Google Sidewiki)