These MEA countries have cheap mobile phones, expensive data

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Data is not cheap in Nigeria. You don’t need a soothsayer to tell you that. The trend got better in recent years, mostly because of the competitive pricing by telecom networks. According to a report by McKinsey Global Institute, Nigeria has cheap mobile phones and expensive data plans. Kenya, Philippines, and China suffer the same fate, though to varying degrees.

ireport - cheap mobile phones

It will interest you to learn that the reverse is the case in places like Vietnam, Ethiopia and Tanzania. Even more interesting is the fact that the report also revealed further details of how digital payments can improve Nigeria. Here are some key snippets for you to snack on:

  • Out of about 177 million people in Nigeria, 87% have network coverage, 44% have mobile phones, and only 7% have smartphones.
  • Only 2% of adults have mobile money accounts
  • Focusing of digital finance/payments in Nigeria can reduce government leakage by $2 billion.
  • Digital finance can create 3 million jobs.
  • By 2025, digital payments can boost Nigeria’s GDP by 12.4%

The report states that provides lots of interesting figures and provides useful information that investors, tech and financial startups, and government can put to use. It is amazing how many opportunities remain untapped in a vibrant smartphone market like Nigeria. We have a country sitting on a mobile gold mine. You can download and view the full report HERE.


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