'Telecom subscriber base to cross 1 bn by March'

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MUMBAI: Despite the sharp 20.7 million fall in telecom subscriber base last month, the first time since the mobile revolution in 1997, the industry is expected to touch 1,042 million users by the fiscal-end, Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE) has said in its monthly report.

The telecom subscriber base fell to 944.81 million in August from 965.52 million in August, according to Trai data.

The new wireless subscribers for the fiscal are also likely to decline by nearly 14%, CMIE said. The agency attributes mobile number portability as one of the reasons for declining new subscriber additions.

Market leader Bharti lost a net 1.9 million customers in August, Vodafone 1.56 million and Idea Cellular lost 1.65 million. "Most of the loss was due to the disconnection of unused numbers," industry body COAI said.

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