Smartphone subscriptions soaring in Tanzania



from ALLOYCE KIMBUNGA in Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania
DAR-ES-SALAAM, (CAJ News) SMARTPHONES are projected to surpass feature phone subscriptions in Tanzania by 2024 following increasing third generation (3G) and 4G network deployments by mobile operators.

The smartphone subscriptions will grow at a relatively fast compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 19 percent and will account for more than 30 million subscriptions by the end of that year, surpassing feature phones.

This is according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

Lorenzo Solazzo, Technology Analyst at GlobalData, said mobile operators such as Vodacom and Tigo were leading the deployment of networks for smartphones in the East African country.

Vodacom, he singled out, added more than 300 4G sites, covering 23 percent of the population, and added more than 190 3G sites, reaching 52 percent of the population in 2018. Tanzania’s population is estimated at 58,8 million.

Moreover, Solazzo added, the Tanzania Communications Regulatory Authority mandated the country’s mobile operators’ mobile broadband coverage to breach 90 percent of the population by 2024, providing opportunities for further 3G and 4G deployments in more rural areas and thus more mobile data usage.

Tanzania’s operators are increasingly offering affordable 3G and 4G smartphones to stimulate mobile data usage and thus future revenue.

For instance, Tigo offers the Tecno S3 3G smartphone for TZS67 500 (US$29). Additionally, the mobile operators are offering data-centric plans including free access to over-the-top (OTT) applications such as WhatsApp, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube.

Tigo offers daily, weekly and monthly plans only for social networks, called Social Packs which are priced from TSZ1 000 (US$0,43).

However, feature phone subscriptions in Tanzania will account for 70 percent of total handset subscriptions in 2019, according to GlobalData.

– CAJ News

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