Tamil Nadu’s growth in the Cellular Phone Subscriptions for out weighed the national average as it grew by 80% compared with the national average of 58%. As per the data published by the Cellular Operations Association of India, during the last year, the subscription stood at 19.23 crores as against 12.14 crores during the previous year. Out of this Tamil Nadu’s share was 1.44 crores as against 80 lakhs a year ago. The four cities in the country grew by 37% i.e. 3 crores in numbers in which the share of Chennai is put at 54% i.e. 56.65 lakhs in numbers.
The reasons attributed to the substantial growth in Tamil Nadu are: (a) lower call rates compared to other centres, (b) Large capital investments by the cellular operators, (c) massive growth in the retail operators base and (d) States fast growth in urbanization.
In terms of urbanization, Tamil Nadu is considered the most urbanized state in India with 45% of the population living in cities and towns. Besides other two tier cities as Coimbatore and Madurai are growing very fast.
Cellular operators have substantially invested in creation of infrastructure. For instance, Bharti Airtel had increased its cell sites from 2100 in 2006 to 6500 by end of March, 008. This meant access of cellular services even in villages.
The retail operators have expanded their bases to cater to the customers even in interior places by opening stores either on an exclusive basis as ‘Univercell’ or add on as ‘Subiksha Super markets’.
As a result of the robust growth, we may see a phone in the hands of every person on the street.