Both MTN and GloMobile offer 3.5G-based mobile internet services in Nigeria. They both regularly claim to offer the fastest 3.5G service in the country. Members

Comparative Review of MTN and Glo 3.5G Internet

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mtnBoth MTN and GloMobile offer 3.5G-based mobile internet services in Nigeria. They both regularly claim to offer the fastest 3.5G service in the country.

Members of our team use both services extensively and here we present a few observations from our use of both of them.

MTN 3.5G delivers a significantly faster browsing experience than Glo 3.5G
With MTN, we observe speeds of over 250 Kb/s regularly, though it can slowdown to almost unusable speeds at certain hours of the day – especially between 9 and 11pm.

gloOn Glo 3.5G, we get between 70 and 150 Kb/s, plus we also observe that there are times it gets unusable too. However, there does not seem to be a fixed period that these downtimes occur. As a result of the slower speeds on Glo, downloads and video streaming are not quite as pleasurable as obtains via MTN.

MTN 3.5G often has issues with secure browsing
By secure browsing, we mean accessing encrypted websites and webpages with the https prefix. Every now and then, such sites simply are inaccessible on MTN internet.

MTN’s error 3180 issues
A problem has cropped up recently while using MTN 3.5G. When attempting an action that requires either a login or a form submission on a WordPress installation, “:3180” is inserted in the URL string and results in the page not loading.

We are certain that the above are not indicative of all that there is to the two 3.5G mobile services, so if you have experienced any other issues or noticed other merits of either services, do feel free to post them in the comments section below.


  1. mtn rules my world. Its not exactlly good but passable. 10 – 12 pm are the worst times to browse though. Sometimes it doesnt connect. I wonder when Glo 1 will kick in. Inspite of increased data allowance, many guys i know have ditched Glo due to worsening general data service. For me I cant even use wap on my phone as it reports absense of packet data. On the whole MTN is back in front of a rather slow cross country like data race.

  2. Unfortunately for me, MTN’s 3.5G service is having one of those “no-connectivity” days. I have been unable to connect, much less browse, since mid afternoon today.

    But when it works, it beats Glo 3.5G hands down in terms of speed.

  3. Is there any truth in the new mtn tv advert?
    I used glo Gwork recently and I am not impressed @all. Etisalat edge is better than gto and mtn 3.5 G.

  4. pls guys when quoting internet download speeds, lets endeavor to get the units right. kB/s is not the same as kb/s. thanks.

  5. meanwhile glo is delivering 2G speeds on their 3G network. are they aware of it or they just don’t care?

  6. Can’t really compare between the two but I have a Starcomms 3G and my Glo 3G doesn’t come close in terms of speed or stability so I can say Glo is NOT delivering 3G quality service. Highly disappointing with all d hype about Glo1. I wonder if it will make any difference. Can’t speak for MTN since I haven’t tried it.

  7. Alireta.
    no, there is nothing wrong with the speeds published, just that you mean 250kB/s and not 250kb/s. similarly, 70kB and not 70kb/s. check the unit.
    1 kB/s = 8kb/s.

  8. Glo sucs,mtn is it.after much hype about glo 1 submarine cable glo is not there yet i wonder if it will take them all eternity to get there.i subscribed to glo’s g work for #6000 in Abuja where the network is supposed to be hsdpa what i get is burst of speed that grinds to a halt.if this is how their so called glo 1 submarine fiber optic cable is going to be running i better stick with mtn night data plan which rocks at least from midnight to 5am.

  9. Nothing comes close to MTN when it comes to speed..i peak 1.8Mb/s (180-190KB/s) download rate regularly though my highest has been 2.7Mb/s(270KB/s) download rate and i think those two speed are so spoiling cos they make you settle for nothing less..I tried Glo at a time and was ultimately dissapointed..i had to drop it silently after previously making so much noise about their anticipated service..Though periods between 9:30pm – 12am) are usually frustrating times on MTN. but so far My MTN still blazes with amazing speed….MTN all the way fellaz…Their advert is a true picture of what they nourish me with..God-like speeds..

  10. @ Jmaine
    Is that speed you got in Lagos? Here in Abuja I have never experienced MTN that fast.

  11. i think in addition to stating the speed we record, we should also add not just the state where we are but also the little community where we are browsing from.

    MTN is damn sluggish at New Oko-Oba, so also is zoom from my experience. I am presently managing starcomms with average speed of 30 – 60kbps. The highest i got then with both mtn and zoom was like 7kbps. Though mtn delievers like 70-80kbps in Apapa.

    I am presently shopping for any better network to use at New Oko-Oba, cos like i mentioned earlier, just managing the starcomms….. once i can get a network with durable 60kbps delivery on average, i’ll move fast fast!!

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