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South Africa’s mobile penetration is 133%


With mobile data becoming cheaper and more readily available every year, more users are relying on internet access on their smartphones to get things done – especially in Africa.

According to On Device Research, 63% of Kenyans, Nigerians and South Africans state that mobile internet has “greatly improved” their lives. This is in stark contrast to only 40% of those in the UK who have the same sentiment.

“Better access to education, entertainment, ease of paying bills and staying in touch with friends and family rank the highest of aspects that have improved lives,” the report said, which took a look at the impact of mobile internet on Kenyans, Nigerians and South Africans.

The report noted that a third of mobile internet users only came about in the last 12 months and don’t have access to the internet through any other means. “For many Africans, mobile is the only way to connect with the world and internet is having a huge impact on people’s lives. It’s helping them save time, money, it gives them access to education, medical information.”

It is also rather interesting to note that Brits do not value education or the paying of bills as a big benefit of to being connected, rather saying that “only maps or navigation apps, and entertainment services have really improved their lives.”

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“The story is clear – mobile internet is a step change in Africa but just an incremental improvement in the UK (or any developed market) as most Brits have alternative ways to access the internet,” commented Alistair Hill, CEO of On Device Research.

On Device Research also had a look at the different level of mobile penetration between the three African countries, and South Africa is well in the lead with 133%. That means that the majority of people have more than one mobile phone. Smartphone penetration, on the other hand, is only at 47%.

Of the three counties, South Africa has the highest rate of smartphone and mobile penetration – Kenya has 31% smartphone and 70% mobile penetration, and Nigeria has 29% and 72%, respectively.

To see the complete report, click here.

[Source – On Device Research, Image – Shutterstock]

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