Internet guru Mary Meeker’s report this year focuses a lot on India and China. The highly anticipated yearly report, which summarises the state of the internet and internet-related businesses around the world, this year calls out the fact that India’s internet is becoming more affordable due to intense competition. For those who don’t have time to go through the 355-page presentation the venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers partner released Wednesday, here are the key extracts about India.
There are over 355 million monthly active internet users in India, where nearly 109 million smartphones were shipped in 2016. Nearly 46% of internet users in India consume content in local languages. In the first quarter of 2017, 27 million smartphones were shipped. As FactorDaily had written earlier, Chinese smartphone makers have taken over the market from Indian players. (See: Inside Xiaomi’s gameplan to get the next billion in India)
The average selling price of a smartphone in India is a little under $150. The price hasn’t dropped much since 2013, when the price was closer to $180. Cost of 1GB data per month for a year is still high but is falling fast — it went down to $23 in the first quarter of 2017 as compared to $33 in the previous quarter. There’s been a 9x increase in data consumption since mid 2016. The entry of Reliance Jio with cheap data plans has triggered a price war between telecom operators.
Most Indians used the internet on their mobile phones (80% usage was on mobile as compared to the global average of 50%). The most used browser in India was UC Browser (no surprises there), followed by Chrome and Opera. WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Shareit, Truecaller and Facebook are the most used apps in India.
This year’s Mary Meeker report also called out India’s digital friendly policies. The government’s Jan Dhan Yojna, Aadhaar, demonetisation, Digital India and Startup India programmes are some of the key initiatives pointed out in the report.
There’s been a slowdown in venture capital funding in India. From its peak of $7.6 billion in 2015, it came down to $4.7 billion in 2016. It’s showing signs of picking up with a strong first quarter in 2017.
While India’s consumption class (annual income levels above $7,000) grew from 14 million in 2005 to 66 million in 2015, its per capita GDP is still hovering around $2,000 (Listen: When will India’s internet boom happen). Cost to register a business in India was the highest compared to China, US and OECD countries. Ease of doing business at a ranking of 155 is the worst in the category and procedures to register a business is also the highest. India’s infrastructure competitiveness is also below the world average. Female labour force participation rate at 27% is lower than the world average of 50%.
Here’s the full report.