Sub-Saharan African mobile penetration predicted to reach 79 per cent by 2020

mobile-AfricaThe younger generation and youth in sub-Saharan Africa are expected to drive the demand for mobile devices and services in the future. (Image source: Abuja/Flickr)Mobile penetration in sub-Saharan Africa is expected to increase from 52 per cent in 2012 to 79 per cent in 2020, revealed a new report

According to the report by Frost & Sullivan, the mobile broadband connections in the region are anticipated to quadruple from its 2012 figure to reach 160mn in 2016.

Joanita Roos, information and communication technologies industry analyst at Frost & Sullivan, said, “The introduction of affordable smartphones, specifically designed for the African market, has improved the market scenario. This uptrend reflects the gradual change in consumer habits, as they gain their first Internet experience through a mobile device.”

The report stated that sub-Saharan African mobile market presents significant opportunities for telecommunication companies, device and module vendors and application providers.

“With telecommunications market maturing and mobile phones taking on the role of service delivery platforms, the region is proving to be extremely lucrative for players in the mobile ecosystem,” added Roos.

The key drivers that would increase the uptake of mobile broadband Internet in the region include the increased coverage of 3G networks, the rise of local content and the development of a range of new apps.

Roos noted that the large unbanked population and rural environment in the region is fuelling the use of mobile financial services. As a result, manufacturers are creating sustainable business models to leverage broadband in the mobile financial services market.

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