Data revenues to outpace voice in India

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IndiaOn top of a projected cellular market worth 25$ billion by 2011, Gartner predicts that data’s chunk of the Indian pie will have increased from 9.6% last year to 22%. Obviously voice still takes the lion’s share of the market, but the demand for data services is accelerating very quickly, which is good news for RIM. Prepaid customers will be more likely to get a data plan than post-paid users, and keeping prices down will be vital for success in India.

Madhusudan Gupta, senior research analyst, Gartner elaborated, “With more marginal users forming the bulk of the addressable market, low service costs and inexpensive handsets will help to unlock the inertia and facilitate adoption of mobile services. Call rates have reduced significantly to about 2.6 cents per minute. However, this remains high compared with fixed-line rates at 0.9 cents per minute. Gartner expects prices to drop in order to become more competitive with fixed-line rates, further lowering the barrier to entry. This trend, coupled with the emerging-market handset initiative by vendors and operators, will boost adoption of mobile services in India’s semi urban and rural provinces.”