The Indian Opportunity

Hemant Kumar, Asst Manager Online Marketing and Advertising Sales at Mkhoj, offers an overview of the Indian mobile market

Hemant mkhoj Early in 2008, India overtook the US as the second largest mobile
population in the world. The number of mobile users in India recently
passed 362 million, more than five times that of the UK. Adding roughly
10 million new subscribers a month, it does seem that the Indian mobile
market has become one of the worlds most lucrative, both in terms of
its growth rate and overall size.
There are some key reasons why the mobile Internet phenomenon is likely
to be more sustainable than the Internet revolution in India. Firstly,
mobile presents a lower barrier to entry. A wired web connection is far
more onerous, with the cost of the PC, as well as high monthly usage
charges. In addition, the mobile Internet, as the name suggests,
provides true mobility. Finally, 70% of Indias 1 billion people are
below the age of 30. So while mobile Internet connectivity speeds may
be nothing to write home about, for most consumers, their first
Internet experience is through the mobile
A report from Indias telecom authority, TRAI, seems to confirm this
hypothesis. It reported an increase of over 100% in a 12 month period.
We at mKhoj, as the leading mobile ad network for Asia and Africa have
seen growth of more than 90% in our India traffic just over the past
quarter. As our CEO, Naveen Tewari, put it recently:
It is only natural that mobile be a preferred advertising medium in
economies like India. The reach is tremendous, targeting cuts down
spillage and you have an instant call to action. We have delivered very
successful campaigns to some of the biggest Indian and International
brands. The key is education and nurturing our advertiser partners. For
a lot of clients this is their first mobile campaign or the first
attempt in this geography.
Demand for wireless Internet access is likely to continue to skyrocket.
The Indian Cellular Association expects 200 million people to log on to
the Internet with their mobile phones by 2010. Even a couple of minutes
a day multiplied by that many people spells swelling coffers for
handset makers and mobile carriers targeting the Indian market, and
greater opportunities for market innovators.