Data traffic in India grew approximately 60 times over the last five years — this is among the highest globally. Last year, the data traffic grew by 36% YoY primarily due to rise in 4G data consumption as 4G subscribers surpassed 700 million with 100 million new additions during the year.
These numbers were thrown up in Nokia’s Mobile Broadband India Traffic Index (MBiT) 2021
The report said 4G alone constituted nearly 99% of the total data traffic consumed across the country.
On an average, Indians spent 5 hrs on smartphones daily
The average monthly data usage per user reached 13.5 GB in December 2020, growing over 20% annually owing to an increase in data subscribers and mobile video consumption.
Mobile emerged as primary source of entertainment and productivity as an average Indian spent approximately 5 hours daily on a smartphone which is one of the highest averages globally. Short video format was the fastest-growing content category. The total time spent monthly on short content is expected to grow four times by 2025, the report said.
2 million 5G devices in India
On devices, the report said the 4G device base surpassed 607 million units reaching a 77% penetration level. VoLTE devices constituted 93% of the total LTE handsets.
4G capable device penetration reached 77% at a pan-India level in 2020 as the number of Voice over LTE (VoLTE) smartphones grew to 563 million.
As it happens, even if there is no 5G in the country at the consumer level, there are already 2 million active 5G devices in use.
The report predicted a double-digit growth for the smartphone industry this year for various obvious reasons.
Despite no 5G, India’s mobile broadband penetration stands at approximately 63%. However, the fixed broadband penetration stands only at 7.5% of households.
With there being 22 million fixed broadband subscribers, the report said there is a significant growth opportunity for this.
Nokia MBiT Index is a report on mobile broadband performance in India.