With the growing adoption rate of mobile devices, especially smartphones, among Nigerians, there are a few habits that are quite peculiar to mobile users in

6 funny things about Nigerian mobile users

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With the growing adoption rate of mobile devices, especially smartphones, among Nigerians, there are a few habits that are quite peculiar to mobile users in the world’s largest black population. Jovago sheds more light on some of these quirks.

phones concentric circles

One person, three different phones
Call it show off or whatever you like, Nigerians use more than one phone. This is no a fault of theirs. To a very large extent, the reason for this is because of the inadequacies of the telecom providers. So, to prevent yourself from being stuck especially when the mobile services are erratic, you can easily switch to your second or third line. However, there are a few people who use more than one phone to create a spectacle.

Disclosing your life history over the phone
In public spaces, many Nigerians discuss private and sensitive matters over the phone. They discuss family brawls, business transactions and their destination over the phone among complete strangers. This has led them to been trailed and attacked by unscrupulous persons. It is advisable to tell the person to call back or simply send them a text. Even with that, there are some who cannot just get their eyes off your phone screen.

Overly respectful
Respecting seniors is a culture embedded in Nigerians. However, what will you say about someone that is so courteous over the phone that they could genuflect or kneel down? As far as the person is not physically present, it is not necessary to curtsy. Some people can use ‘’sir or ma’ more than 5 or 6 times in their phone conversations.

Ignoring unknown numbers
This is a habit that quite a number of Nigerians have cultivated over the years due to unfounded rumours about unknown numbers. Hence, if you use an anonymous number to call a friend or a business partner, they may not pick. Meanwhile, others will just stare at the calling number contemplating whether to pick it or not. The phone is meant for picking calls whether you are familiar with the number or not.

‘I am close to you’
In Lagos, if you do not leave home early, you cannot escape the notorious traffic of the burly city. If you have an appoint for 10 am, you must leave home 6:30 am or 7 am. If you do not, you will either miss your appointment or arrive late. Consequently, To stop your client from leaving, you tell them you are close to Ozumba Mbadiwe when you are actually in one ‘bad’ traffic on Third Mainland Bridge.

Flashing/Please call me I do not have credit
Some Nigerians should be given an award in flashing. Flashing is when a person calls your number and abruptly ends the call immediately it rings. Some individuals can flash you more than five times just because they want you to call them. This can be annoying at times. In other cases, they will call you and the next thing you hear is ‘Please call me, I do not have credit’ and when you eventually send them credit, they will most likely not call you in return.


  1. Nice write up. Very spot on! Some Nigerians use more than a phone because of the epileptic power supply too. They’d have a big phone or two for surfing and IMing and then a small phone for the basic phony stuffs like text and calling

  2. In my neighbourhood most people have two phones; a dumb phone/feature phone and a smartphone

    The overly respectful thing I find hilarious, as I have often seen women suddenly stop and curtsey whilst on the phone!

  3. These habits are all a reflection of the general society we live in,funny when you come to think of it..

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