Huge rise in number of African Opera Mini users

MTN_Group_HQ_-_JoburgMTN Group's South African head office. Multinational telecommunications company MTN Group has increased its Opera Mini user subscription figures by 1,665 per cent in just 12 months

A special version of the Opera Mini mobile web browser was launched by MTN and Opera Software last year for MTN’s subscribers and is currently available in 15 national markets, including South Africa, Ghana, Uganda, Congo, Sudan, Rwanda and Nigeria.

Opera Software chief executive officer Lars Boilesen described the growth as “awesome” and cited the Nigeria market as “particularly exciting” for the company.

“[Nigeria] now ranks fourth in the world among Opera Mini users,” said Boilesen.

“In January, our Nigerian MTN Opera Mini users alone accessed more than 766 million pages equalling 11.4 terabytes of data, which is compressed by up to 90 per cent through our Opera servers.

“That’s a whole lot of love for the mobile web and, given the websites Nigerians visit most frequently, participation on a global level is something they value,” he added.

Opera Mini, which has more than 160 million monthly global users, saves consumers time and money by substantially compressing web pages before they reach phones.

According to MTN, as of January 2012, its Zambian customers accessed more than 770 web pages per month through Opera Mini — more than any other MTN market in Africa.

MTN Group chief commercial officer Christian de Faria said, “By using Opera Mini, MTN subscribers can reach the content they want, with less frustration and less expense.”

Rwandan entrepreneur Variety Marewa remarked, “Opera Mini has made my life much easier because it is fast and works across the country.

“I can check web mail, keep in touch and informed at less than 85 per cent of what it used to cost me.”

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