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DTH sector lost 0.37 mn subs in the quarter ended 31 Dec’21: Trai

DTH operator Tata Play increased market share to 33.48 per cent.

Mumbai: The total active subscriber base of the pay direct-to-home (DTH) sector declined from 68.89 million at the end of September 2021 to 68.52 million at the end of December 2021, as per data provided by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai). This is in addition to the subscribers of DD Free Dish, the free DTH service offered by Doordarshan.

Tata Play maintained its position as the leading DTH player increasing its market share from 33.34 per cent to 33.48 per cent. It was followed by Bharti Telemedia that also increased its market share from 26.11 per cent to 26.37 per cent. Dish TV India ceded market share from 22.65 per cent to 22.04 per cent. Sun TV Direct gained market share from 17.91 per cent to 18.11 per cent.

Trai reported the subscriber base of 12 major multi-system operators (MSO) and one headend-in-the-sky (HITS) operator who have a subscriber base of more than one million. GTPL Hathway continued to be the leading MSO followed by Siti Networks, Hathway Digital, Den Networks and Thamizhaga Cable TV Communication. While most MSOs lost subscribers during the quarter, Thamizhaga, Kerala Communicators Cable, Nxt Digital (HITS), V K Digital Network and Nxt Digital (Cable TV) gained subscribers. Notably, Nxt Digital (HITS and Cable TV) gained the highest number of subscribers at 436,990.

There were 909 private satellite TV channels at the end of December 2021 compared to 906 channels at the end of September 2021. Additionally, there were 350 pay channels out of which 253 were SD channels and 97 were HD channels.

The number of internet subscribers decreased from 834.29 million to 829.30 million during the quarter. There were 792.08 million broadband subscribers and 37.21 million narrowband subscribers. The number of wired internet subscribers increased from 24.47 million to 26.58 million with a quarterly growth rate of 8.62 per cent. The number of wireless internet subscribers decreased from 809.82 million to 802.72 million.

In the wired internet segment, Reliance Jio Infocomm held 17.18 per cent market share with 4.57 million subscribers, followed by Bharti Airtel at 4.20 million subscribers. In the wireless internet segment, Reliance Jio held 51.79 per cent market share with 415.72 million subscribers followed by Bharti Airtel with 28.21 per cent with 226.45 million subscribers at the end of the quarter.

The total number of VSAT subscribers decreased from 289,557 to 288,848 during the quarter. Hughes Communications is the market leader with 135,374 subscribers and market share of 46.87 per cent, followed by Nelco at 76,166 subscribers and market share of 26.37 per cent at the end of the quarter.

The average revenue per user (ARPU) per month of wireless services customers increased from Rs 108.16 to Rs 114.16 over the quarter. The average data usage per month for a wireless subscriber was 14.97 Gb.

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