Bangladesh, as the twelfth country, entered the elite club of 10 crore mobile users at the end of April, according to the latest data released by the telecom regulator. The regulator—Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) said the total number of active SIM stood at 10.12 crore in April from 9.98 crore in March as the five mobile phone operators, except Citycell, added 13.34 lakh subscribers in one month. China is the leading member of the elite club with active mobile subscribers of 104.60 crore. India is placed second with active subscriber number of 86.16 crore followed by Brazil 26.50 crore, United States 23.75 crore, Indonesia 23.68 crore, Pakistan 12.20 crore, Japan 12.10 crore, Philippine 10.60 crore and Nigeria 10.10 crore subscribers.
Sunil Kanti Bose, chairman of the regulatory body, said the commission is working relentlessly to reach the mobile phone services at every doorstep and the consistent increase of mobile phone users speaks for the socioeconomic development of the country.
“The commission has now put concentration on customers’ interest as well as on ensuring quality services,” he added. Bose hoped that the number of users will increase significantly by the end of the year.
In 2007, the country crossed over 3 crore subscribers base for the first time, witnessed 4 crore subscribers on March 2008, 5 crore on september 2009, 6 crore on July 2007, 7 crore on January 2008 and 8 crore on september in the same year. The subscribers base reached nine crore on April 2012 and it crossed 10 crore magic figure in the same month after one year.
Officials said, the industry started getting back onto the track in last three months after witnessing a decline in subscribers in the fourth quarter of the last year.
They said tight regulation on the SIM registration process was the key reason for the decline which was recovered by the operators through convincing offers to the subscribers.
Among the six operators, Grameenphone continued to be the leader by adding 5.8 lakh subscribers which took its total subscriber base to 4.23 crore. The GP had added 7.89 lakh subscribers in March.
Banglalink added 3.88 lakh subscribers in April, taking the total subscriber base to 2.63 crore. The operator added 73 thousand subscribers in March and 23 thousand in February. Banglalink had lost around 12 lakh subscribers in the previous four months.
The total subscribers of Robi reached to 2.16 crore in April by adding 2.94 lakh new subscribers in the month. Robi had added 1.12 lakh in March, 15 thousand in February and 97 thousand subscribers in January.
Airtel added 85 thousand subscribers in April, taking its total subscribers to 75.57 lakh. It had added 1.7 lakh subscribers in March, 15 thousand in February and 97 thousand subscribers in January. Airtel added 2.81 lakh subscribers in the previous four months.
The subscriber base of state-run mobile operator Teletalk increased by 13 thousand in April taking the total user base to 18.44 lakh. In March, Teletalk had added 1.39 lakh subscribers after adding 4 thousand subscribers in February.
The number of Citycell users declined by 26 thousand in April coming down to 14.25 lakh. Citycell had lost 8 thousand users in March and 1.75 lakh subscribers in the previous five months.
Bangladesh issued its first mobile license in 1993 but the growth had been slow in the first 10 years, with the total number of subscribers reaching just 15 lakh in early 2003.
“Allahumma inni as'aluka 'Ilman naafi'an, wa rizqan tayyiban, wa 'amalan mutaqabbalan”
O Allah! I ask You for knowledge that is of benefit, a good provision and deeds that will be accepted. [Ibne Majah & Others]
Dept. of ETE, FE