Nigeria’s Data Usage Increase By 202.08%

 Nigeria’s Data Usage Increase By 202.08%

According to data from the Nigerian Communications Commission, data usage in Nigeria surged by 202.08 percent in three years.

This is following the subscriber/network report of 2018, 2019, and 2020.

Data usage rose from 68,154.12 terabytes in 2018 to 125,149.86TB in 2019 and 205,880.4TB in 2020.

The total national and local outgoing voice calls were 121,935,927,123.15 in 2018. The calls grew to 149,584,465,210 in 2019 to 150,825,830,687.40.

According to the NCC, in 2018, broadband penetration figures stood at 31.48 percent. 

The total active 3G connections were 47,325,726 while 4G connections were 12,761,473 subscriptions.

In 2019, broadband penetration grew to 37.80 percent, with the total active 3G connections growing to 50,441,608 while 4G grew to 21,712,216.

In 2020, broadband penetration stood at 45.02 percent, with the total active 3G connection falling to 49,402,994, while 4G grew to 36,538,228.

In the period under review, GSM internet subscribers grew by 53,639,503 from 100,234,283 in January 2018 to 153,873,786 in December 2020.

Breakdown Analysis

MTN had the largest market share. In 2018, it had an internet subscriber base of 37,201,086, which grew to 59,594,891 in December 2020.

In 2018, MTN made N164.79bn from data, and N674.78bn from voice. Its data revenue rose from N218.69bn in 2019 to N332.37bn in 2020 while voice revenue increased from N723.92bn to N766.39bn.

However, the NCC attributed the increase in data usage in 2020 to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, saying the pandemic disrupted normal activities and most functions had to pivot to virtual forms.

The uptake in data usage is being driven by mobile devices, with GSM having the large portion of the market. The mobile device market is dominated by smartphones. According to GSMA, Nigeria had 53 million smartphone connections in 2018. GSMA estimates that smartphone connections will rise to 154 million by 2025.

Kehinde Ogunyale

Freelance Investigative and Data Journalist

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