India has become the fifth country in the world to have more than 100 million mobile subscribers. While China has the highest number of mobile users with 404 million subscribers, India crossed the 100-million milestone at the end of May when operators added close to 4.2 million new mobile users.
The US with 185 million subscribers, Japan with 150 million and Russia with 140 million mobile users are the other countries ahead of India. Germany, Italy, the UK and Brazil are the countries behind India in the top-10 list. In terms of percentage growth rate, India is the fastest growing market, and in terms of absolute numbers, India is the second fastest with 4 million new users being added every month on an average.
The Government has now set a target of reaching 500 million telephone subscribers by 2010. Announcing the achievement, Mr Dayanidhi Maran, Union Minister for Communication and IT, said that Government policies have resulted in declining tariffs and improving affordability of service and handsets.