Nepal had 8.78 million internet subscribers by mid-July 16, up from 8.68 million a month, while the internet penetration rate in the country grew to 33.15 per cent in July from 32.78 per cent in June, according to the latest figures.

Nepal Telecom had a total of 8.34 million mobile internet (GPRS, Edge, WCDMA) users at mid-July, Nepal Telecommunications Authority (NTA) said, adding that Ncell’s total internet base stood at 3.91 million, down from four million in mid-June. “Other ISPs served 106,154 internet customers through dial-up (10,147), wireless and fibre (64,280) and cable modem (31,727).”

However, the number of new customers buying telephone services has come down in the last fiscal year. The data revealed that the service subscription growth rate declined by 8.34 percentage points in the last fiscal year 2013-14.

The total number of users of telecom services based on SIMs subscribed or fixed-lines extended has reached 24.55 million, it said, adding ‘with the latest number, the penetration rate of telephone service touched 92.68 per cent by the end of last fiscal year.

Likewise, the telecom companies added 3.22 million customers in the last fiscal year, down from 4.05 million customers a fiscal year ago in 2012-13. Nepal Telecom (NT) has added 1.73 million customers in its service network, while Ncell has added 1.4 million subscribers. However, United Telecom Ltd (UTL)’s customer base declined by 210,500, according to the NTA data.

There has been an addition of 3.12 million customers in the cellular mobile service, the major voice service and with this the penetration rate reached 83.23 per cent.

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