Why low-income earners with cheap, basic mobiles may be the most promising long-term prospects in India

Jo Bowman

The most promising consumer market in India may not be the lucrative middle class after all. A huge segmentation study by mobile phone provider Reliance has come up with three broad types of phone user, and while the rich city-dwellers are the biggest spenders now, it's those in small towns, university students and kids aged 11-15 who still use feature phones that hold the most long-term potential for providers of products and services.

Kushal Sanghvi, Business Head at Reliance Entertainment and Digital, told the I-COM 2014 conference in Seville that there was, justifiably, huge excitement about the take-up of mobile phone services, with thousands of new mobile subscribers signing up for the first time every day, spurred on by the falling cost of handsets and air-time tariffs.

Mobile take-up