Africa to see one billion mobile subscriptions by 2016

mobile subscriptions africaMobile penetration in Africa was 79 per cent at the end of June 2016. (Photo: Authentic travel/shutterstock)Global data, market research, and advisory firm Ovum predicts that Africa is expected to see one billion mobile subscriptions in the fourth quarter of 2016, and 1.02bn by year-end

Ovum also predicts that the continent will experience growth in the total number of mobile subscriptions to 1.33bn at the end of 2021.

According to the firm, the average rate of mobile penetration in Africa was 79 per cent at the end of June 2016. Ovum noted that data capabilities, as well as data and digital service revenue, is set to drive growth in Africa’s telecoms market. Mobile broadband will rise dramatically, as operators continue to launch 3G and 4G LTE networks. 

“As Africa nears the landmark of one billion mobile subscriptions, it is clear that the next phase of growth will be in broadband connections and in revenue from data access as well as from new ‘digital services’ such as digital media and mobile financial services,” said Matthew Reed, practice leader, Middle East and Africa, at Ovum.

“However, Africa remains less advanced than most other world regions in its broadband development, and there is both an opportunity and a need to further improve connectivity on the continent, and to take advantage of the benefits that connectivity can bring,” added Reed.

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