india mobile 2010

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1. India Mobile 2010 Mobile Phone Users in India and their Mobile Usage Behavior and Preferences

3. Methodology Overview

4. Comparability with TRAI Data

5. Comparability with TRAI Data

8. While the ‘household level’ penetration of mobile phones and connections has reached a vey high (in Indian consumption context) 61% overall, and 88% among the urban households, the fact that only 26% of all Indians are active users of mobile phones still leaves a lot of scope for ‘sensible’ growth and spread of mobile phone usage in India The huge gap between ‘penetration levels’ of mobile phones at household and individual levels is a result of the fact that almost 2/3rd of mobile using households are still ‘single mobile user’ households. There is still a large ‘play area’ available to increase the user base and ‘penetration’ of mobile phones than to play mainly the game of ‘multiple connections’ and increasing mainly the ‘tele-density’. For this to happen, the spotlight must shift and focus on the ‘user’, and not on the ‘connection’ Another big issue the study throws light on is the ‘split’ of mobile phone usage between urban and rural India. While the TRAI data indicates a 75:25 split at the overall mobile connections level, the split at both the subscriber level and the ‘active’ connection level as found in this study comes closer to a 50:50. Anyway, given that Indian population split itself is 70% rural and 30% urban, any split of marketing a ‘mass’ product like mobile phone (which it is with the pivot of its usage centered among the ‘middle’ and ‘lower middle’ class), that is heavily loaded in favor of urban India is bound to drift towards the hinterlands eventually The Big Picture

9. And the Indian hinterland has already lapped up the mobile phone to a decent extent. Seen from an all India perspective, SEC ‘R2’ forms the biggest chunk of active mobile users in the country. Further, ‘B’ circles which accounts for a good proportion of rural population, already contributes the ‘biggest chunk’ of mobile subscribers as well as subscriptions among the various circle types What is even more interesting, and contrary to the poplar perception, more than half of all ‘multiple active connections mobile users’ (MCMU) come from the rural areas. That is, ‘active’ usage of ‘multiple SIMs’ is already as prevalent in the rural areas as in the urban areas. And it appears that the urban and rural mobile users show very similar ‘propensity’ of using multiple mobile connections ‘actively’, the urban areas show only a higher propensity to have more ‘mobile users’ in the household However, what is also important to understand about ‘rural’ usage of mobile phones in India is that the majority of the rural mobile users and connections originate in the ‘larger’ population size villages (>2,000 population ones), which also show a high propensity to have ‘multiple SIMs’. Further, 3/4th of all existing rural mobile subscribers stay ‘within 10 kms ‘distance from the nearest town – indicating a fairly concentrated penetration of mobile users in the rural areas The Big Picture

10. Broadly, the ‘more populous’ states seem to account for more mobile subscribers, clearly establishing the ‘mass’ nature of mobile as a product. The fact that after SEC ‘R2’, it is SEC ‘C’ and ‘B’ that contribute the next biggest chunk of mobile users makes mobiles a truly ‘middle’ class product in the Indian context Reflecting this ‘mass acceptance’ of mobile phones is also the fact that almost half of all active mobile handsets in use are claimed to have been bought in the price range of `1,500 – 3,000. Further, ‘unskilled and skilled workers’ form the largest ‘occupational’ chunk of mobile users in both urban and rural India Even in the urban areas, ‘housewives’ and ‘students’ form the ‘second’ and ‘third’ biggest chunk of mobile users (both segments counting for more mobile users than all the corporate employees, self-employed professionals and business owners put together). With over half of all mobile users coming from `6,250-40,000 MHI groups, the ‘critical mass’ of Indian mobile usage revolves around the ‘middle’ and ‘lower middle’ income groups The ‘typical’ caricature of the Indian mobile users (if there is one at all) is largely of someone who has had education only up to school and has been educated either completely or for a large part in ‘vernacular’ languages (as only 1 in 25 urban and 1 in 100 rural mobile users have had their complete education in ‘English’) The Big Picture

11. In their consumption lifestyle orientation, the Indian mobile users are largely ‘budget’ buyers and ‘need driven’ up-graders at their core. Only about 1 in 5 of them are ‘lifestyle up-graders’ by inclination. Most of them give highest priority to ‘price’ while making buying choices, but followed thereafter by ‘brand image’ (probably indicating a buying logic that if the desired brand comes in the desired price they’ll take it, if not then they may sacrifice the desired brand but not the desired price). Functionality attributes (quality, usage, looks, features, etc) appear as their ‘next’ set of priorities They perceive, and use their mobile handset as much as an ‘entertainment device’ as a ‘communication device’. Accordingly, ‘games’, ‘music’ and ‘camera’ are the most present features on their ‘most used’ handsets. Most interestingly, their mobile handsets have also become their main device for listening to ‘music on the go’ for most of them However, their mobile phone has not become a device for ‘going online’ for most of them. Though a good 16% of them user internet per se, only 4% access internet on their mobile phones directly. Even within this 4%, most of them are ‘dual device’ internet users (accessing internet on both mobile and PC), clearly indicating that mobiles are only ‘complementing’ PC based internet access as of now and not really being seen as a ‘alternative’ mode of accessing internet. The limited presence of ‘bluetooth’, ‘extended memory’, ‘GPRS’ and ‘internet related applications’ on their mobile handsets also reinforces this hypothesis to some extent The Big Picture

14. The Geographics ‘Mumbai’ circle tops among urban areas with 10.4% urban mobile subscribers, Bihar tops among the rural areas with 11.8% rural mobile subscribers ‘B’ circles account for the largest chunk of mobile subscribers as well as subscriptions, more so in the rural areas Active use of ‘multiple SIMs’ is most prominent in ‘A’ circles (and has a ‘mass’ base rather than an ‘elite’ one) Gujarat users, apart from MP, Maharashtra and Karnataka ones, show higher propensity to ‘use’ active multiple SIMs 3/4th of all rural mobile subscribers stay ‘within 10 kms ‘distance from the nearest town – indicating a fairly concentrated penetration of mobile users in the rural areas

15. Mobile Service Usage On an average Indian mobile users claim to talk 23 minutes daily. Rural users are only marginally ‘lighter’ talkers They claim to spend on an ‘average’ `240 monthly on their most used connection. Rural users claim to spend about 20% less than the urban users ‘Outgoing STD’, ‘call waiting’ and ‘domestic roaming’ are the most subscribed services by both urban and rural users 2/3rd mobile users claim they ‘will not switch’ operators even if the number becomes ‘portable’ Only 1 in 25 mobile users (11.6 million) surf internet on their mobile phones currently. 9 out of 10 of them are ‘dual device users’ (accessing internet on both mobile and PC)

16. Mobile Service Brands Airtel is the biggest operator overall with 27.7% share of all ‘active’ subscribers base, and 28.0% share of all ‘active’ subscriptions. Vodafone follows next, with Reliance being a close 3rd Airtel also has the highest ‘subscription-subscriber ratio’ and shows the highest ‘propensity’ to be a user’s next ‘active’ multiple mobile connection. BSNL follows thereafter Among only GSM players Airtel stays at the top with 34.4% and 34.8% share respectively Among only CDMA players Reliance Comm tops with 55.9% and 56.0% share respectively. It is followed by Tata Teleservices and Tata DoCoMo On ‘most used’ connection basis, Airtel tops. Reliance comes up as the joint 2nd with Vodafone. Operators who’s share fall somewhat at ‘most used’ connection level are Idea, Uninor and Spice

17. Service Provider– ‘Active’ Multiple Connections

18. Mobile Handset Usage There are 0.48 million more mobile handsets than the 355 million ‘active’ mobile connections ‘Single’ active mobile handset users predominate in both urban and rural areas at 85% Half of all mobile handsets ‘in use’ are claimed to have been bought in `1,500 – 3,000 price range Compared to rural users, urban users show a lower relative incidence of buying a handset below `1,500 and a higher relative incidence of buying one costing over `3,000 Mobile handsets are as much ‘entertainment device’ as ‘communication device’ for most mobile users. Mobile handsets have also become the main device for listening to ‘music on the go’ for most of them, but a device for ‘going online’ for only a very few of them as yet

19. Almost 2/3rd of all ‘active’ handsets are Nokia (on both ‘multiple usage’ basis as well as ‘most used’ basis). LG follows as a distant second at 10% Samsung, Sony Ericsson and Micromax make up the rest of the top 5 list Nokia appears to be used more in ‘urban’ areas than in rural areas, while Samsung, Micromax and Spice appear to be used relatively more in the rural areas than in the urban areas Maxx Mobile shows the highest ‘propensity’ to be a mobile user’s next ‘multiple handset’. Among bigger players, Samsung shows the highest propensity, followed by LG and then Nokia Mobile Handset Brands

20. Handset Brands – Multiple Handsets

21. Demographic Profile The ‘25-35 years’ forms the ‘single’ largest age group among mobile users, though usage of mobile phone per se cuts across all age groups in both urban and rural areas ‘Housewives’ form the second biggest occupational group of mobile users in the urban areas (more than all the corporate/self employees/business owners put together). Interestingly, usage among ‘children’ in urban areas is almost as high as among ‘teenagers’ 2/3rd of all mobile users are educated only up to school. And 2/3rd are educated completely in ‘vernacular’ languages (only 4% urban and 1% rural mobile users have had their complete education in ‘English’) For all India, SEC ‘R2’ forms the biggest chunk of active mobile users, followed by SEC ‘C’ and ‘B’ (makes mobile phones a truly ‘middle’ class product in India) The ‘critical mass’ of Indian mobile usage revolves around the ‘middle’ and ‘lower middle’ income groups (58% of all mobile users come from the `6,250-40,000 MHI groups)

22. ‘Money’ is the biggest motivation driving lives of 3 out of 4 mobile users, whether urban or rural Yet only a few of them see ‘money’ as a status symbol (probably money is more of a ‘necessity’ for living a good modern day lifestyle for most of them rather than a ‘social status enhancer’) ‘Cinema’ and ‘listening to music’ are their biggest hobbies Interestingly, 5 out of the top 10 ‘most identified celebrities’ among mobile users are politicians ‘Watching TV’ is their biggest indoor entertainment, followed by watching ‘movie CDs’. ‘Chatting on phone’ is only a marginal indoor activity Among popular outdoor activities, ‘watching movies in cinema hall’ is relatively more popular in urban areas, and ‘visiting neighbors’ in the rural areas Psychographic Profile

23. Consumption & Media Orientation Most of them are ‘need driven’ up-graders at their core (only 1 in 5 are ‘lifestyle up-graders’ by inclination) 4 out of 5 mobile users are essentially ‘budget’ buyers. However, while 2 out of 3 give high importance to ‘price’, almost a similar number also gives high importance to ‘brand image’ Over half of them have ‘never responded’ to any ‘response triggering’ marketing stimulus (seems they do not make a very good ‘direct marketing audience’ per se) Only a minuscule 5% ‘urban’ mobile users drive a car, only a little over 1% have a credit card individually, and only 1 in 12 takes holidays/vacations (essentially domestic holidays/vacations) Mobile users watch ‘TV’ the most among all media, though half of them also read ‘newspapers’. However, the mobile users who use ‘internet’ use it the most ‘heavily’ of all mediums

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