Kenya’s mobile phone users hit 29.7mn

October 9, 2012
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Compared to the same period last year, the annual mobile subscriptions registered a significant growth of 17.5 percent from 25.2 million recorded in the 2010/2011 financial year/FILE
NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 9 – The number of mobile subscribers in Kenya grew by 1.7 percent between March 30 and June 30 this year to stand at 29.7 million, increasing the penetration of mobile telephony services to 75.4 percent.

Compared to the same period last year, the annual mobile subscriptions registered a significant growth of 17.5 percent from 25.2 million recorded in the 2010/2011 financial year.

According to the quarterly sector statistics report for the fourth quarter of last year, prepaid subscriptions continued to dominate the total mobile subscriptions with 29.4 million pre-paid subscriptions, representing 99.1 percent of the total subscriptions.

Annual post-paid subscriptions grew by 18.3 percent to stand at 273,367 as of June 30, 2012.

In respect to the Internet, the number of subscriptions rose by 19.2 percent from 6.4 million in the previous quarter to 7.7 million during the quarter under review.

The number of estimated Internet users rose by 18.5 percent to stand at 14.032 million during the quarter under review.

The annual growth in the estimated number of Internet users was recorded at 11.9 percent from 12.5 million recorded in the previous year.

Of the total number of subscriptions, broadband subscriptions only represented 9.4 percent.

The annual growth in the Internet/data market segment can be attributed to the increase in international connectivity bandwidth by 58.0 percent to 264,584 Mbps during the quarter under review.

The total available bandwidth in the country was recorded as 574,704 Mbps during the quarter under review, and the used bandwidth represented 46.0 percent of the total available bandwidth capacity.

Mobile data/Internet subscriptions continued to dominate the Internet market contributing 98.9 percent of the total Internet/data subscriptions.

Mobile money transfer services experienced 2.73 percent growth to record 19.50 million registered subscribers.

The total deposits handled during the period were recorded at 192.73 billion representing a 4.0 percent growth from 185.36 billion recorded in the previous period.

Mobile money transfer services also continued to create employment opportunities across the country with 49,079 active agents recorded during the quarter.

The ICT sector also continued to create employment, as a total of 17,596 people were employed in the mobile, data and postal segments, with women making up 38.9 percent.

These numbers are expected to continue growing with the expansion of ICT services across the economy.

Fixed line network and the postal and courier industry continued to face stiff competition from the telecommunications sector.

Total fixed lines (fixed terrestrial lines and fixed wireless) recorded an annual subscription decline of 29.9 percent from 374,942 main fixed lines in 2010/11 to 262,711 in the quarter under review.

The number of local letters sent annually also dropped to 73.9 million in 2011/12 from 109.1 million recorded the year before, a 32.2 percent decrease.

International incoming letters declined by 4.2 percent to record 439,986 in 2011/12 from 459,342 in the previous financial year.

However, international outgoing letters recorded a positive annual growth of 29.3 percent from 6.4 million in 2010/11 to 8.3 million in 2011/12.

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