You may not know it, but most ISPs in Nigeria are struggling to stay afloat. We already know that Nigeria is a difficult business terrain, and it is especially harsh on ISP operations.
As at April 2018, Nigeria does not have one ISP that offers reliable internet connection at a price point that gives it mass appeal. Not one.
We have seen marketing promises made and experienced painful encounters. Let me be clear: not one ISP in Nigeria has hit that sweet spot that will guarantee massive growth.
Glo tried it with very affordable data plans, but the quality ofoservice went to the dogs. Eventually, Glo cut back on those generous plans in recent times. Sadly, quality of service is yet to improve.
Smile offers unlimited data plans, but they are throttled. Badly throttled. Ntel showed up with a similar promise, but in recent times, the quality of service has gone downhill too, making the N17,500 unlimited plan difficult to embrace. Plus, even that plan is throttled as well.
The story isilargely the same everywhere you turn: Swift and Spectranet pretty much follow the pattern.
I ran into EkoVolt and wanted to give them a try, but they have limited coverage that does not extend to where I am now. The service offers unlimited internet for N12,500 monthly. I am yet to verify whether or not that is throttled too.
ISPs in Nigeria: New Players
Recently, we have seen new players promising fast internet service that costs N1,500 per GB. No; that won’t do. Bad idea. Such services are not likely to thrive.
How much will a video blogger, for example, have to spend on internet monthly at that price? Even a regular blogger or influencer will cringe at that price.
Nigeria has a vast army of young people who are turning to digital media as a means of livelihood. Why? Low entry cost of internet business.
Online businesses hold the key to saving Nigeria’s economy. Without well-priced, reliable internet services, that key will not work though.
The Internet Package That Nigerians Need
What Nigerians need is an ISP that will match both price and QoS. A reliable, unthrottled, unlimited broadband internet plan with nationwide coverage and that costs between N10,000 and N15,000 monthly is perfect, and there will be a boom!
That army of young digital entrepreneurs – bloggers, vloggers, developers, social media managers, social media influencers, online marketers and much more – will flock to it so fast and keep paying for it. Such an ISP will reap huge returns.
Small and medium scale businesses everywhere in the country will jump on it too. As a matter of fact, if someone ever executes this, most other ISPs will go out of business. It will be a violent takeover.
No Easy Task
Of course, this is not a simple task to pull off. I am not naive about the realities on ground that internet service providers have to deal with.
But this is what holds the key. This is what is needed. The question now is, Who will attempt it and how will they pull it off?
But mark my words: the ISP that cracks this egg will have a booming internet business in Nigeria. Again note the criteria:
1. Fast/broadband internet (deliver minimum 10Mbps download speed)
2. Reliable connection. No intermittent downtimes.
4. Unthrottled, unlimited data.
5. Nationwide coverage.
6. Tariff no higher than N15,000 monthly.
Yes; this is hard to pull off. But this is exactly what the market wants and is ready to pay for. This is free information for any investor who has the guts, the smarts, and the deep pockets to give it a go.
Founder of MobilityArena. Yomi’s journey in mobile started in 2001. Besides obsessing over mobile phones, he also started creating WAP sites (early mobile-friendly websites created with WML). He began writing about phones in 2004 and has been at it since then. He has owned over 200 devices, from Symbian, Palm, PocketPC/Windows Mobile, BlackBerry/BB10, webOS, Windows Phone, Firefox, Ubuntu Touch, to Android, iOS, and KaiOS operating systems.