The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has released internet subscription data for the period June 2012 to February 2013. The data says that as at February 2013, there were 32 million mobile internet subscriptions in the country, making up about 70% of total internet subscriptions in Nigeria.
The overall trend of mobile internet subscriptions forming the bulk of internet connections in Nigeria today does not come as a surprise. I was an advocate of the idea many years ago. My article, Mobile Data: Bridging The Internet Divide In Africa, where I wrote to say that this was the quick way forward for Nigeria and for Africa as a whole, was first published in 2005 on Mobile Africa (now TechBaron). What is surprising is the spread of these 32 million subscriptions. Have a look:
I find it shocking that Glo has only 800,000 of those 32 million mobile internet subscribers. How did that happen? And how did Airtel clinch 2nd place? These are surprising for sure.
What of internet subscriptions via CDMA networks? Here are the figures:
Very poor showings from CDMA operators. As I have said before, CDMA is largely a lost cause in Nigeria.
For the foreseeable future, GSM rules the telecoms terrain in Nigeria. It is good to see the NCC providing more detailed data on what goes on in the industry. With a little more push, we can have very accurate figures to work with.
I have also updated our Nigeria Facts page with these figures. You should bookmark that page for statistics, configuration settings, glossary and tips on mobile use.