Mobile subscription in Africa to touch one billion mark by 2015

mobile DATEV eGAfrica has the world’s second-biggest mobile market region by subscription count, says report. (Image source: DATEV eG/Flickr)Mobile subscriptions in Africa will cross the 750mn mark during the fourth quarter of 2012 and reach one billion before the end of 2015, according to forecasts by Informa Telecoms & Media

The forecast report also showed that Africa had the highest rate of growth in mobile subscriptions compared to major regions around the world, with the number of mobile subscriptions in the continent forecasted to grow by 17.5 per cent by end 2012.

It revealed that the continent has the world’s second-biggest mobile market region by subscription count, behind Asia-Pacific but ahead of Latin America, western Europe, eastern Europe, North America and the Middle East.

Africa and Middle East Informa Telecoms & Media principal analyst, Matthew Reed, said, “Africa’s mobile market continues to grow robustly, driven by competition among mobile operators, the availability of new data services and strong economic growth on the continent.

“Substantial opportunities for further growth remain, because the rate of mobile penetration in Africa is the lowest among major world regions and fixed networks are underdeveloped or absent across much of the continent.”

The number of mobile subscriptions in Africa will reach 761mn at 2012 end and will rise to 1.13bn at 2017 end, according to Informa forecasts.

The forecast stated, “Nigeria, which crossed the 100mn mobile subscriptions threshold in the second quarter of 2012, will continue to be Africa’s biggest mobile market and is forecasted to have 168.99mn subscriptions at end-2017, followed by Egypt with 129.4mn subscriptions at end-2017.

“The rate of mobile penetration in Africa at September end was 67.55 per cent, which was the lowest rate among major world regions and some way below the world average of 91 per cent.

“The take-up of mobile data services is growing strongly in Africa, as a result of the roll-out of 3G networks, the increasing affordability of data-enabled devices and huge improvements in international connectivity following the deployment of new submarine cables connecting the continent to the rest of the world,” he added. 

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