Despite Alarming Data Costs, Nigeria’s Internet Users Grow By 108.39%

Despite Alarming Data Costs, Nigeria's Internet Users Grow By 108.39%

In spite of the alarming data costs and fast-consumption rates, the number of Nigerians with access to fast internet facilities has grown by 108.39% in four years.

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), in its recent data, stated that broadband penetration increased from 38.72 million (20.28%) in March 2018 to 80.68 million (42.27%) in March 2022.

According to the ‘Nigerian National Broadband Plan (2020 – 2025),’ broadband commonly refers to a high-speed Internet connection. It added that broadband penetration is measured by the number of broadband subscribers per 100 inhabitants.

“I am told that every 10% increase in broadband penetration results in about 2.6% to 3.8% growth in GDP,” President Muhammadu Buhari was quoted as saying in the broadband document.

According to data from the NCC’s portal, the contribution of the telecoms industry to GDP increased from 9.19% in Q1 2018 to 12.61% in Q4 2021.

The broadband plan intends to effectively cover 90% of the population and deliver 25 Mbps in urban areas, and 10 Mbps in rural areas.

“Rapid rollout of broadband services will address various socio-economic challenges faced by the country, including the need to grow its economy, create jobs, rapidly expand the tax base, and improve digital literacy and educational standards.

“This will also address identity management and security challenges through the effective use of technology, increase financial inclusion and deliver a broad range of services to its people to improve the quality of life and work towards the attainment of Social Development Goals set by the UN for 2030,” it added.

4G LTE, as read in the document, is needed to achieve the kind of download speeds Nigerians need.

“Internet services in the country are currently provided on 2G, 3G, and increasingly 4G mobile networks.

“However, though 4G coverage is available to 37% of the population, download speeds in the country are noted to be generally uncompetitive with other countries in the same income bracket,” it added.

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