Mobile internet users in Nigeria will reach 59.7% by 2026


5G technology is expected to further expand broadband penetration in Nigeria

Mobile internet users in Nigeria are expected to reach 54.29% in 2023, 56.44% in 2024, 58.21% in 2025 and 59.7% in 2026, as projected in data published by Statista.

Data shows that mobile phone users of all ages access the Internet through mobile phones (browser or app) at least once a month. In the first quarter of 2022, the number of mobile Internet users was set at 51.59% of the national population.

Telecom companies have promoted broadband penetration through their 4G service across the country, pending the rollout of 5G. It is believed that the rollout of 5G would further expand broadband penetration to nooks and crannies of the country.

The performance of Nigerian telecom operators has become so impressive, which is evident in their operations and service delivery, according to statistics released by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) as the regulator. It was reported that industry performance statistics for the period of April 2021 to March 2022 showed impressive results in key areas of their operations used to measure industry performance.

For example, broadband subscription increased from 78,082,273 in February 2022 to 80,678,301 in March 2022, while penetration saw an improvement from 40.91% to 42.24% over the period. It has been gathered that Nigeria added over four million active phone subscriptions in the first quarter of 2022 as NCC records indicate that phone subscriptions increased from 195,463,898 in December 2021 to 199,558,540 in March 2022.

Nigeria’s active telephone subscriptions increased to 199,558,540 in March 2022 from 198,123,431 recorded in February 2022, according to updated industry statistics released by the Nigerian Communications Commission on May 19, 2022. This shows that telephone operators telecommunications received 1,435,109 additional subscriptions in March.

Active telephony subscribers and teledensity, which is calculated on a monthly and annual basis, showed improved performance, with teledensity increasing from 103.79% in February 2022 to 104.54% in March 2022, while subscribers telephony assets went from 198,123,431 in the same period to 199,558,540.

Active telephony subscribers and the teledensity curve had seen an upward and downward movement during the COVID-19 and post-COVID-19 period as well as during National Identity Number (NIN) registration. Meanwhile, Internet penetration in Nigeria is expected to reach 70% by 2025 with services from other Internet Service Providers (ISPs).

Currently, Nigeria has around 109 million internet users – the highest number reported in all of Africa to date. The number of companies providing internet services in Nigeria has risen to 190 from 151 at the start of last year. This came as the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) allowed more companies to fill the gaps in internet access in the country.

The growing number of ISPs is expected to boost the country’s broadband penetration target of 70% by 2025. However, service provider locations show that most are still concentrated in urban areas as the digital divide between urban and rural areas of Nigeria continues to widen. to broaden.

Data from NCC’s ISPs showed that they are concentrated in Abuja, Lagos and Port Harcourt. The internet penetration rate in Nigeria stood at 51.0% of the total population at the start of 2022. Kepios analysis indicates that internet users in Nigeria increased by 4.8 million between 2021 and February 2022.

A World Bank report had established that every 10% increase in broadband penetration would improve GDP by 4.6%, therefore, Nigeria should boost its broadband penetration by licensing more service providers and accelerating the deployment of 5G by creating an enabling environment for the technology to flourish.

The federal government had pledged to ensure that 5G service was available in Nigeria. NCC should license ISPs that will operate in rural areas, especially where Nigerian economic sources are domiciled, to complement the services of mobile network operators in those areas.

Initially, the government policy on the SIM-NIN link affected the implementation of the national broadband plan, which started in 2020, with subscriptions declining steadily for a few months. For example, broadband penetration in Nigeria fell to 39.79% in July 2021 from 45.93% initially in October.


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