Mobile data users abandoning Ncell for NT


Mobile data users in the country are increasingly abandoning Ncell and subscribing state-owned Nepal Telecom. At least that is what the data compiled by Nepal Telecommunications Authority reveals.

According to the Management Information System of NTA, 60 per cent of the total mobile data users, or 11.93 million, were NT subscribers as of November. The number of mobile data users of Ncell was 6.76 million.

While the number of mobile data users has soared in recent days following the coronavirus pandemic that forced people to work remotely and students to take online classes, the MIS report of February-March reveals that NT data users back then was significantly lower at 10.65 million, the number of Ncell data users was similar to that in November — 6.75 million.

However, looking at the data of NTA, 3G users of NT is increasing while 3G users of Ncell is declining. Last year, around 8.20 million subscribers were using NT’s 3G services while 3.2 million were using Ncell’s 3G services. According to NTA, if a SIM is not utilised for over six months the authority disables it.

Most of the Ncell SIM cards might have been disabled for not being used, which could have led to decline in the number of users, said NTA Spokesperson Min Prasad Aryal.

“Moreover, NT has been rapidly expanding its mobile data services,” he said, adding, “Being a state-owned company, the government has also implemented a special policy on expanding its services and the company itself is also implementing several market strategies.”

Aryal added that even though NT’s 4G expansion has been slow, the number of users is increasing rapidly. He said some of the reasons behind the rapid progress of NT’s mobile data service are the different service options that the firm is providing and the priority that the government has given to its projects.

“Nepal Telecom has witnessed considerable growth also because it is working under the government’s Digital Nepal Framework,” he stated.

Rajesh Joshi, spokesperson for NT, said NT had embraced a policy of offering situation based services. Along with 4G expansion project, NT has also introduced different packages targeting online classes for students and employees working online during the pandemic. As a result, the number of NT users has increased of late, Joshi added.

“Our 4G expansion is going on smoothly, while people who cannot afford expensive mobiles to use 4G are using normal mobile sets and taking advantage of NT’s 3G services,” he said, adding, “We are providing services that are affordable for everyone.

Moreover, our recent internet packages and situation-friendly offers are attracting more users.”

Aryal said the number of NT mobile data users was likely to increase further as it was offering affordable data packages to its users.

As many as 199,761 users are using 4G service of Smart Telecom.