Once upon a time, the term mobile internet in Nigeria meant taking up a subscription with one of the CDMA networks only. In addition, the internet service was restricted to just using a phone as a modem – mostly desktop phones in the early stages, and later also mobile phones. Browsing on-phone on Nigerian CDMA networks was unheard of back then.
Thankfully, things have changed. The coming of GSM technology has introduced a new level of awareness, competitionand services in the Nigerian mobile landscape – much like what the superb user interface of the iPhone did to the global mobile phone industry.
Pay as you browse internet services tend to be popular among casual internet users – those who do not want to shell out a huge payment every month but need access to the internet for light browsing and basic email. Usually, GSM networks charge for data transferred, regardless of how long a user stays connected. CDMA networks, however charge per minute.
On CDMA networks, this used to be very expensive business, with some networks charging as much as N7.50 per minute back then, though some are still close now. Translated, a subscriber would be burning N450 for staying connected continously for one hour. Xpensive!
The tariffs for pay as you browse services have since dropped and become more pocket-friendly. Here are the options that you have on three of the most vibrant CDMA networks available now:
- Starcomms: N3.00 per minute
- Visafone: N2.50 per minute
- ZOOMmobile: N6.00 per minute peak; N4.80 per minute off-peak; N3.90 per minute midnight
We have no information on Multilinks’ tariff at the moment, as we could find no such information on this operator’s website.
The Visafone tariff of N2.50 per minute is the most pocket-friendly at the moment, closely followed by Starcomms at N3.00 per minute. Of course, you also have to pay attention to coverage and other factors in choosing a service provider, so do your research.
Do you use any of these pay as you browse services from CDMA operators? Would you like to share your experiences?