10 Things you Need to Know Before Applying for an Internet Service Provider License

  • February 19, 2024
  • Dushyant Sharma
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This article explains everything you need to know before applying for an Internet Service Provider License or ISP License. We hope that after going through the entire article, all your doubts regarding the ISP application process will be cleared. 

1. What is an Internet Service Provider?

Internet Service Provider, commonly abbreviated as ISP, refers to a company that offers internet access to its subscribers. In order to access ISP internet services, customers have to pay a nominal fee which can vary according to the internet packages they choose to pay for. ISPs charge higher fees for data plans providing faster speed, more data, etc. The Internet Service Providers are also referred to as Internet Access Providers or Online Service Providers. For those who want to enjoy the facility of the internet, it is necessary to have an Internet Service Provider.


The following table shows the 5 most famous ISPs in India as of 30 June 2023.



Broadband Subscribers














Atria Convergence technologies 


2. Is Internet Service Provider a profitable business?

Internet Service Provider business can certainly be profitable. The profit will depend on the areas you want to provide your internet services. If you provide the internet services across multiple states, there will be more subscribers as opposed to when your services are only limited to a small town.


If you provide internet service to 100 customers for 1 year, and you get INR 600 from each customer every month, you will earn a profit of INR 7200 annually from each customer. For 100 customers, you will make INR 7200 x 100 = INR 7,20,000.  


If you do enough marketing and provide internet services at competitive rates, your business will surely thrive.

3. How to become an Internet Service Provider?

There are two ways to do this: You can apply for a franchise OR you can apply for a license. If you open up a franchise, you cannot bill directly to the customer i.e., bill would be made in the name of your parent company that owns the Internet Service Provider License. If you choose to own an internet business of your own, you have to apply for the ISP license provided by DoT.

4. What is an Internet Service Provider License?

ISP License is a legal permit that allows Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to offer internet services to customers. This license is commonly known as Unified License. Companies can apply for ISP License for different areas. The ISP License is given by DoT. 


You can obtain ISP License for the following categories:


Category A ISP (National Level): The entire nation is covered under this category.


Category B ISP (Telecom Circle/Metropolitan circle): This category covers one of the 20 major states or any of the following Metropolitan Cities – Mumbai, New Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai, Bangalore, Pune, Hyderabad and Ahmedabad. The Government of India keeps issuing notifications regarding the territories which are declared as telecom circles and metro areas from time to time. 


Category C ISP: This category covers a particular secondary switching area, which is a government defined territory with small communities. The Cost of Category C License is relatively cheaper compared to Category A ISP and Category B ISP Licenses and is ideal for small companies.

5. Am I eligible for ISP license?

If a company is registered under the Company Act, 2013, then it is eligible to obtain an ISP license. If the process of obtaining this license seems complicated to you, our ISP license consultants at Registrationwala can lend you a helping hand. 

6. What are the rights and limitations of the ISP License?

ISP License is granted by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI). The license comes with certain rights and limitations including:

  • It permits the licensee to provide internet services to customers with the help of wired and wireless technologies.
  • ISPs can allocate bandwidth to their customers on the basis of different plans and packages with different data limits and speeds. They can also provide additional services i.e., Virtual Private Networks (VPNs), browser and email services. 
  • Licensees must adhere to the rules and regulations stated by TRAI and ensure data privacy and network security to the customers. 
  • Licensees can only provide the internet services in permitted areas. 

7. What documents are required for ISP License?

To obtain the ISP License, you need to have the following documents:

  • Copy of registration certified by Company Secretary/Statutory Auditor and countersigned by Director duly authorized by the company
  • Articles of Association certified by Company Secretary/Statutory Auditor and countersigned by Director duly authorized by the company
  • Memorandum of Association certified by Company Secretary/Statutory Auditor and countersigned by Director duly authorized by the company
  • Equity Details certificate from Company Secretary/Statutory Auditor countersigned by Director duly authorized by the company
  • Certificate from Company Secretary/Statutory Auditor countersigned by Director duly authorized by the company to disclose the status of foreign holdings
  • Networth of the company certificate from the Company Secretary/Statutory Auditor countersigned by the Director duly authorized by the company
  • Paid up the capital certificate from Company Secretary/Statutory Auditor countersigned by Director duly authorized by the company
  • MHA clearance (In case of foreign nationality CEO/CTO/CFO/Director)
  • Power of Attorney by Resolution of the board of Directors
  • Other Documents if any.

8. What is the process of applying ISP license?

  • To Apply for ISP (Internet Service Provider) License, you need to log onto the www.saralsanchar.gov.in/ portal and create an account unless you are an existing user.
  • Once you’ve logged in, click on “Apply Now” option available on the Unified License tab. 
  • Afterwards, you must fill in your company details and click on the “next” button for the next step. 
  • Payment will be auto-calculated as per the selection of service authorisations selected. 
  • Now, you need to upload all the necessary documents which are required in pdf format. You can check the documents you need in the “Required Documents” section of the page.
  • Thereafter, follow the instructions and finish the rest of the application by entering the owners and partners details.
  • Accept all the terms and conditions. In case you entered any wrong details, you can edit the application. Once you’ve cross checked everything, click on the “submit” option.
  • If there is no discrepancy, then “validation successful” will be displayed on the page and then you will be redirected to Bharatkosh Payment Gateway to make the payment. Once the payment is done, you can download a PDF of the completed application and upload a digitally signed PDF application before clicking on the final submission option.
  • Once DoT receives your application, an officer will be assigned to look into it. After accepting the application, he will issue LOI. 
  • After receiving the LOI, you have to pay a one-time entry fee (non-refundable) along with Bank Guarantee details. Also, you are required to submit a signed license agreement with the DoT and provide documents mentioned in LOI.
  • If the entire process goes seamlessly and no errors are found, you will receive the ISP License. The DoT will notify you through the registered mobile number or email once the ISP License is issued.

9. What is the validity period of ISP License?

The ISP license is provided by DoT and the validity for this license is 20 years. Once it expires, you have to get it renewed to continue providing your ISP services.

10. How to get an ISP license as fast as possible?

The process of applying for ISP can be a bit complicated and time-taking. One has to make sure all the details are clearly and correctly filled during ISP registration to avoid application rejection. This can be a pain in the neck unless you have an ISP License Consultant to help you out. An ISP License Consultant can guide you about the entire process and also do it on your end while you sit back and relax. Our ISP License Ninjas at Registrationwala come with years of experience on their hands and can make the entire process look like a cake walk!

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Dushyant Sharma
Author: Dushyant Sharma

Hey there, I'm Dushyant Sharma. With the extensive knowledge I've gained in past 8 years, I have been creating content on various subjects such as banking, insurance, telecom, and all the important registration and licensing processes for various companies. I'm here to help everyone with my expertise in these areas through my articles.

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