The number of mobile subscribers in India increased by 2.52 per cent for the month of January 2011, taking the total number to 771.18 million.

However, the number of active mobile subscribers according to visitor location register (VLR) data in the first month of January was only in the range of 548.66 million.

VLR numbers provide details on active customers at any given point of time, excluding switched-off and out-of-coverage area customers.

In December 2010, total telecom subscribers base was 752.19 million, according to the data released by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI).

The overall teledensity (telephones per 100 people) in India touched 806.13 million in the period under review as compared to 787.28 million in December last year. The growth in the wireless category was led by Bharti Airtel, which added 3.3 million subscribers, taking its user base to 155.5 million.

RCom has added 3.2 million subscribers followed by Vodafone (3.1 million), BSNL (2.1 million), Idea Cellular (2.5 million), Tata Teleservices (1.8 million) and Uninor (1.79 million), the release said. The active subscriber number also known as VLR showed, Bharti Airtel had the highest ratio of active subscribers compared to its total subscriber base at 92.63 per cent.

This was followed by Idea Cellular that reported a ratio of 90.34 per cent between its total subscriber base and VLR subscribers. Etisalat had least ratio of VLR subscribers at 33.55 per cent.

“We have taken VLR subscriber base available on last working day of January as per telecom operators’ record,” explained a TRAI official.

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