9mobile, one of Nigeria’s telecom firms, seems to be on the losing out in the internet brand wars as the data released by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) shows that while other service providers gained internet subscribers, 9mobile lost 694,614 internet subscribers in the period under review.
In the latest industry statistics posted on the NCC website, Nigeria’s internet users increased to 152.71 million in October 2022.
Of the total figure, mobile (GSM) accounted for 152.15 million subscribers — leaving fixed wire and VoIP for the remaining subscribers.
According to the data, the total number of active mobile internet subscribers increased to 152.15 million at the end of October 2022 — from 139 million recorded in October 2021.
A breakdown from the report showed that Mobile (GSM) accounted for 152.15 million of the total, with fixed wire and VoIP accounting for the remainder.
Furthermore the total number of active mobile internet subscribers increased to 152.15 million at the end of October 2022 — from 139 million recorded in October 2021.
By implication, this means that the country’s mobile internet subscribers increased by 12.17 million within the last one year.
The period under review, showed that all mobile networks recorded an increase in internet subscriptions — except 9mobile.
MTN Nigeria’s internet subscribers increased by 6.41 million from 58.10 million in October 2021 to 64.51 million in October 2022.
Subscribers under Globacom and Airtel increased by 3.44 million and 3.23 million, respectively.
9mobile, on the other hand, lost 694,614 internet subscribers, dropping to 5.11 million for the period under review.
Recall that the number of companies providing internet services in Nigeria increased to 225 as of September 2022 from 187 recorded in December 2021.
According to the updated list of licensees just published by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) 38 more companies were licensed since the beginning to bridge the internet access gaps in the country.
The newly licensed companies include Elon Musk’s company, Starlink, whose license was approved by the telecom regulator in May this year.
While other licensees will be leveraging the existing bandwidth capacity in-country to provide last-mile connectivity for Nigerians, Starlink, which is expected to launch its service this month, will be deploying its satellite technology to provide internet service across Nigeria.
The rising number of ISPs is expected to boost the country’s broadband penetration target of 70 per cent by 2025. However, locations of the service providers show that most are still concentrated in the urban areas, as the digital gap between urban and rural Nigeria continues to widen.
NCC’s ISPs data showed that the Internet Service Providers are concentrated in Abuja, Lagos, and Port Harcourt.
The new service providers are coming amidst complaints by the old players over the stiff competition with the Mobile Network Operators.
The ISPs have been blaming the bigger operators, especially the likes of MTN, Globacom, Airtel, and 9mobile for their woes as the operation of the mobile network operators in the retail data market with cheaper prices is said to be the bane of the ISP businesses.