When mobile phones were first introduced, a lot of various companies popped up to keep up with the public’s demand for communication services. Day by day, satellites and telecommunication towers are built and it didn’t take long before these telecommunication companies to be some of the most valuable companies in the world. Today, China dominates the world of mobile telecommunications with the largest subscriber base. China Mobile is the world’s largest mobile operator. By the number of connections, Asian-based operators took three of the top five places globally and four of the top ten – not including Norway’s Telenor Group (tenth), with operations in six Asia countries that account for about half of its revenue.

Now without further adieu, here’s the list of the largest mobile network operators in the world in terms of active subscribers.

1. China Mobile

China Mobile which was previously China Telecom is a state-owned mobile communication company.  It was founded 20 years ago in 1997 in the month of September and now has over 870 million subscribers.  It provides numerous services such as mobile voice and multimedia. Though it has the largest number of subscribers it only serves in Mainland China and Hong Kong regions. It is the largest mobile telecommunications company according to market capitalization.

2. Vodafone

Vodafone is a multinational company based in London with its registered office standing in Newbury, Berkshire.  It was founded in 1991 and has products in fixed-line telephone, internet television, mobile phone, and broadband. It operates in more than 25 countries and has partnered with 50 other companies. The British company serves in various areas of the world but has the biggest number of subscribers in Asia, Africa, Oceania, and Europe. It was ranked as the 5th biggest company in mobile operators according to revenue. It also has the 2nd most number of connections. Its subscriber base is more than any other company in the world except for China Mobile by having over 500 million active customers worldwide.

3. Bharti Airtel

Vodafone is a multinational company based in London with its registered office standing in Newbury, Berkshire.  It was founded in 1991 and has products in fixed-line telephone, internet television, mobile phone, and broadband. It operates in more than 25 countries and has partnered with 50 other companies. The British company serves in various areas of the world but has the biggest number of subscribers in Asia, Africa, Oceania, and Europe. It was ranked as the 5th biggest company in mobile operators according to revenue. It also has the 2nd most number of connections. Its subscriber base is more than any other company in the world except for China Mobile by having over 500 million active customers worldwide.

4. Idea Cellular

Idea Cellular, also known as just Idea, was founded over 2 decades ago. The company is a pan-India unified GSM operator. Its services include 2G, 3G, and 4G network services. It merged with Vodafone to become the largest mobile operator in India and is also a subsidiary of Aditya Birla Group with a subscriber base of 301 million.

5. America Movil

America Movil serves in America and Europe but has products in several  digital markets like fixed-line, mobile phone, broadband, digital television, IPTV, and internet. It has been ranked as the 4th largest  mobile network in terms of equity subscribers and is also one of the biggest companies in the world with a subscriber base of 280 million.

6. Telefonica

Telefonica is a multinational company with enterprises in Europe, Central America, South America, North America, and Asia. The Spanish broadband and telecom is among the biggest  telephone operators and mobile network providers in the whole world with over 270 million subscribers.

7. China Unicom

China United Network Communications Group is also a state-owned enterprise. Its target is on telecommunications that serve in Mainland China, similar to China Unicom, and the rest of the world as MVNO with a subscription base of 270 million.

8. Jio

Jio or Reliance Jio Infocomm Limited is an Indian-based mobile network operator. The company has 255 million subscribers and only supports 4G service and is the sole VoLTE-only network operator in India which doesn’t have the tradition of support for 2G and 3G networks.

 

9. Veon
Veon, formerly called VimpelCom, was established in 2009. It has more than 230 million active customers.  Although most of the company’s revenue comes from Italy and Russia, it is also the owner of several  international brands like Beeline in Russia, Wind Tre in Italy and Greece, and Banglalink in Bangladesh

10. Telenor

Telenor is a multinational company that focuses in telecommunications. This Norwegian company is among the largest mobile telecommunication companies with over 170 million subscribers. They currently have active operations in a total of 19 countries It serves in m that includes Scandinavia, Eastern Europe, and Asia. Furthermore, they own many networks in 13 other companies with the addition of their 14.6% ownership over Veon.