Billions of Dollars Up for Grabs in Indian Mobile Market

In the next few years, the number of smartphone users in India is expected to grow to over 20% of the population--that means nearly 300 million people in India who will be using smartphones. That’s almost the entire population of the US . . . using smartphones. Or, put another way, it’s the combined populations of Australia, England, Canada, Japan, Hong Kong and France. All liking, tweeting, buying, streaming, and posting from their smartphones.

In addition, individual data consumption in India is slated to rise by 75% by the end of this year. For app developers, that’s big news because India is one seriously big market. Think, China big.

However, there is one pretty significant barrier standing between developers and these millions of potential customers.

Data in India is expensive. Really expensive.

Imagine if the cost of downloading an app was a full day’s wages. Or watching a clip on YouTube meant you had to work two extra shifts. In India, this is reality. 95% of consumers use prepaid mobile plans on which data is prohibitively expensive. As a result, users don’t download apps when they’re on-the-go, which is when smartphones are used the most, and many will deactivate data altogether.

Because high data costs influence app download and purchase decisions, developers attempting to achieve growth in this potentially lucrative market are up against consumers who are neither willing nor able to experiment with different apps. Consumers will only buy the data they can afford. As a result, 20% of people buy premium-priced data packages daily, and nearly a fifth of all consumers buy top-up data for use only on familiar and specific apps, like Facebook and Whatsapp. For developers, this equates to literally millions of missed opportunities for engaging with potential customers because they can’t access your product.

One of our products, Gigato, removes this roadblock by offering sponsored data. With our sponsored data app, consumers no longer need to worry about how much of their wage will go to downloading an app, and developers can attract and retain many more users. It’s a true win-win, and a democratization of a system that has, until now, been controlled by mobile operators.

We want smartphone users not to be afraid of turning their data back on and downloading your apps. Because, after all, what’s the point of having a smartphone if it can’t be smart?