Smartphone demand surges in Nigeria
- Parent Category: Mobile
- Published on 15 October 2012
Nigeria’s smartphone market is booming as the number of subscriptions for these devices have trebled over a year to exceed 4 million in the second quarter of 2012.
This is according to an Informa Telecoms & Media report that has highlighted how a constant decline in smartphone prices and the introduction of cheaper data bundles have pushed up demand levels.
Informa Telecoms & Media research says the likes of BlackBerry service plans have been altered to allow operators to provide subset packages. This means that subscribers only pay for what they need, making smartphone packages more affordable.
Canada’s Research in Motion has also opened a BlackBerry store in the country in partnership with Slot Nigeria. And Apple has appointed four distributors in the country in a bid to increase sales of its iPhone smartphones in that West African nation.
Subsequently, four mobile operators in the country have seen a spike in smartphone subscriptions.
Market leader MTN Nigeria’s smartphone subscriber numbers jumped from being just under 3% of its user base in the second quarter of 2011 to about 6% of its user base in the second quarter of 2012.
The country’s second and third biggest operators,Glo Mobile and Airtel, saw their number of smartphone subscribers jump from about 0.5% of their user base in the second quarter of 2011 to about 3% in the second quarter of 2012.
Smartphone usage has also pushed up overall data demand in Nigeria.
“The number of active data users more than doubled in a year to pass the 20 million mark in 2Q12,” said Thecla Mbongue, the report’s author.
“The trend has been driven by an increased usage of smartphones and feature phones,” adds Mbongue.
Greater involvement by operators in marketing and selling handsets has further led to the increased data takeup, says the report.
But overall revenues in the Nigerian mobile market, though, have fallen. According to Informa Telecom & Media, the country’s overall monthly ARPU declined slightly from $8 billion in 2Q11 to $7 billion in 2Q12.
Promotions among operators and falling voice revenues could be reasons for the fall in revenue, says the report.
The report adds that Nigeria’s mobile market is forecast to grow by 55% to exceed 169 million in 2017.
Currently, Nigeria has 100-million mobile subscriptions market in a country that has a population of 162 million, according to the World Bank.