Reports suggest a fall in the number of mobile sim subscribers in 2020 after continuous rise in the past eight years. Following the hike in prices by the telecom companies, customers have started thinking about letting go of their multiple sim cards owing to the higher expenditure to be incurred to retain them. To be precise, number active users had started declining in 2019 itself. 2019 October showed a 4% decline in the number of active users with the total number of active users in the beginning of the year, a whooping figure of 1.02 billion dropping to 981 million active users in the last weeks of October as per the data released by TRAI. This trend is believed to be followed in 2020.
Apart from the hike in charges, the call-data-SMS combos offered by various companies are also one of the major factors in the fall of active sim cards. The major reason for using multiple sims where to divide the calls and data among them, but as almost all the companies have started their 4g services with identical speeds, customers find the use of multiple sims quite unnecessary. As this trend progresses almost 25-30% of new connections are believed to meet stagnation. This trend may also lead to the thought of the use of a single sim in 2020. This would push a sharp decline in sles of sim cards in contrary to yesteryears. The decline in sim cards is believed to affect Vodafone and idea more and the time lag in their network upgradation in many cities may also adversely affect them.
The Chinese business giant Alibaba had declared a reduced investment in Indian companies last year itself. Many also raise the doubt of a decline in growth rate of the Indian internet economy. RBI data also shows a decline in the use of online payments. From a time in 2014 when a GB of data cost rupees 269 it fell down to a mere 8 rupees in 2019. It is believed that retaining these rates is impossible and the prices may rise. This may lead to a further decline in total data usage. Though chances of a miracle are very low many see a silver lining in the increased use of smartphones in rural areas.