Sandvine, a provider of intelligent broadband network solutions for fixed and mobile operators, has released its internet traffic trends report, and it has interesting statistics for mobile internet in Africa.
Video Low. No; Don’t “Go Down Low”
According to Sandvine, video accounts for less than 6% of traffic on mobile networks in Africa, but is expected to grow faster than any other region before it. The small video usage margin is no surprise, considering the cost of mobile Internet on the continent. I cannot imagine that many Nigerians download or watch a lot of video on the exorbitant data plans that are currently available.
Powered By BlackBerry?
The Sandvine report also states that Blackberry email and BBM messaging accounts for over 13% of traffic across the continent. That is significant, and again is unsurprising, considering that BlackBerry offers The most pocket-friendly mobile Internet subscriptions available on the continent.
I have consistently recommended that BlackBerry leverage on this as a niche player – providing devices and affordable mobile internet in emerging markets. The market is there – and very huge. Already, some mobile users who dumped BlackBerry for Android and iOS devices are already feeling the heat of the more expensive data plans that they are now exposed to:
— ‘Tayo (@TayoAdefarasin) November 11, 2013
A Mobile Internet revolution In Africa?
BlackBerry can power an internet revolution in Africa. Their extensive internet services infrastructure is still in place and active. The new BlackBerry 10 devices are pretty expensive though, but legacy BlackBerry devices are still being manufactured and sold in the market. The really affordable BlackBerry Internet Service plans have a place that no-one else has come close to taking. Whether the Canadian brand will rise up to the occasion is another question. Blackberry may have failed to woo the world, but they don’t have to fade away. They can succeed by meeting a niche need. A number of technology companies are riding to glory on the wave of meeting Africa’s specific needs. Why not BlackBerry too? BlackBerry rose to fame on the wings of affordable mobile internet. In my opinion, that is what they should leverage on in these rough times.
Anyway, there you have it: on mobile internet, Africa isn’t doing video a lot yet, and BlackBerry is still very much relevant on the continent. On both counts, the killer factor is cost.
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.