Unexpectedly, PTCL faces a decline in EvDO subscriptions. According to the sales and subscriptions data released by the telecommunication regulator, the subscriptions of EvDO’s (wireless service) provided only by PTCL across the country declines from a high subscription point of 2.15 million as of November 2014 to a low point of 1.5 million in Feburary 2015.
EvDO subscriptions which has been introduced and advertised by PTCL, in the form of EVO dongles and Wi-Fi routers has been considered to be the backbone for the future of PTCL. The company’s core products and services such as PTCL landline services which includes local and international telephone, have been under a constant pressure by the increase in the use of cell phone and an increase in the cheap calling rates (local and international) offered by the cellular companies. Furthermore most commonly used cellphone applications like Whatsapp, Viber, Skype and some other applications used for communication which are free of cost also have an adverse effect of the sales of PTCL.
In a time period of few months, PTCL have lost about 30 percent of its profitable and rapidly growing EVO subscriptions. This may give PTCL a red sign and a tough time to fight. PTCL experienced a growth of only 6 percent in February 2015, but the downfall in the previous months has affected the subscription growth of EVO by about a year.
According to some officials of Pakistan Telecommunication Limited, the reason behind the sudden decline in the subscriptions of PTCL EVO is the down time issues of PTCL network and some other maintenance problems in different regions across the country. But this doesn’t seem to be the exact reason for the downfall as technology related companies may not have a down-time and maintenance problem for so long.
Other factor which may have a vital part in the decline of EVO’s subscriptions is the increase in the use of 3G & 4G since the start of 3G in June 2014. The response of users to 3G and 4G services was a stunner since its launch and is increasing in a rapid manner. The total users of 3G reached about 12 million with an addition of about 0.1 million 4G users. 3G and 4G services offered by different cellular companies are the direct alternatives of the PTCL EVO devices. From the rapid increase in the subscriptions of 3G/4G services, we can clearly see a transferal from wireless broadband to cellular broadband. PTCL must introduce something new, fast, and reliable in order to stay in the industry.