The year-end figures for Internet users in India showed that the exponentially growing use of mobile internet has ushered in new segment making the total users in India stand at 173 million as of now and to reach 192 million in just three months and 213 million by June 2015.
A report by the Internet & Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) and IMRB International, released today said the rural users of Internet are set to grow by 33% reaching 49 million by March and 53 million by June 2015. Urban users, however, continue to account for a large percentage of the Mobile Internet users across the country and their number will reach 143 million by March 2015 and 160 million by June 2015, said the report.
According to the report, the average monthly mobile bill has shown a rise of 13% to Rs. 439 and a significant proportion of the bill comes from use of mobile Internet, which was 45% in 2013 and increased to 54% in 2014. Compared to 2013, the average monthly spend on mobile Internet has gone up by 36% to reach Rs. 235.
Interestingly, the report finds that 63% of the mobile Internet users spend Rs 101 to Rs. 500 per month on their mobile connection while 26% spend between Rs 501 to Rs 1000 and 7% of the users spend less than Rs 100 every month.
More than half of the Mobile Internet users spend more than Rs 100 but less than Rs 500 for mobile Internet services. About 30% internet users spend more than Rs 500 on the mobile Internet connection alone. The report shows a growing segment on the usage of mobile internet compared to the previous year.
While 33% of the Mobile Internet users avail rental plans with limited options for downloads, 21% subscribe to unlimited rental plans. Limited download rental plans are more common across the demographic segments excluding non-working women or house-hold managing women.
Even among the non-working women, data shows that 26% of them access rental mobile Internet plans which allow unlimited access to Internet, while a similar plan is also availed by one-fifth of college students and working women.
Nearly one-fourth of the School-going kids and one-fifth of the non-working women use mobile Internet on Pay per Site basis. Nearly 40% of the young men, working women as well as older men access mobile Internet plans with limited options for visiting websites or downloads, said the report.
It may be noted that the rural segment is emerging as the potential user of the Internet in the future and the government has been focusing on rural internet access more. The district of Idukki has been given free internet access for the first time on experimental basis this week.