Will BlackBerry Power A Mobile Internet Revolution In Africa?

Mobile Internet In Africa

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:

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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.

Mister Mobility

I started blogging about mobile in 2004 as a fun way to share my passion for gadgets and mobile services. My other interests include digital media, speaking and teaching, photography, travelling, and dancing.

0 thoughts on “Will BlackBerry Power A Mobile Internet Revolution In Africa?

  • November 12, 2013 at 2:04 pm
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    Even if blackberry controls the whole of africa it cant make profit cause?
    1.Per income capital is low in africa aka low profits(if at all any)
    2. Most africans buy used phones more than new ones aka no profit.
    Lets face it only companies that can tolerate low profits and are limited liability companies e.g tecno, can survive in africa. The board members in blackberry will forever put profit first hence the huge cost of blackberry phones.

  • November 13, 2013 at 5:24 pm
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    I would say the mobile revolution has already started, heck its has been here for sometime. We just didn’t notice.

    I agree with the #2 point posted by Mark. Most Nigerians (and may I add Africans) are more likely to buy used phones than plunk out the cash to get a new Blackberry phone leaving BB aka RIM with high number of users but with little to show in terms of revenue.

    Hopefully, our naija networks will cash in on the steady rise of mobile internet users on android and iOS and put out AFFORDABLE data plans. Only then will the mobile revolution kick into overdrive.

    Just my 2 kobos

  • November 14, 2013 at 1:55 pm
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    Well people I don’t thing Mr MO is asking bb to sell phones , I think he his asking BB to make BIS available for all mobile phone in Africa since its cheap. mind you I stream YouTube videos quite well with my Aitel BIS on android.

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