Kenya’s telecoms sector boasts increase in subscribers - CNBC Africa

Kenya’s telecoms sector boasts increase in subscribers

East Africa

by Elayne Wangalwa 0

Kenya recorded a 1.7 per cent increase in mobile telephony to 31.8 million subscriptions.

According to the Communications Authority of Kenya (CAK), the regulatory authority for the communications sector in the East African country, there continues to be a marginal increase in the number of mobile subscriptions.

The ICT Sector Quarterly Statistics Report provides an outline of the performance and development trends in the ICT sector using data scrutiny of indicators from mobile telephony, fixed telephony, internet/data, electronic transactions, broadcasting and postal and courier.

Prepaid subscriptions increased to 31.2 million subscriptions up from 30.7 million during the previous quarter while post-paid subscriptions registered an impressive growth of 8.4 per cent to reach 607,569 subscriptions in the quarter January to March 2014 in comparison to the previous quarter.

(READ MORE: Kenya's flourishing telecoms industry)

With 31,830,003 mobile subscribers in Telkom Kenya, also known as Orange had the highest gain in subscriptions of 8.8 per cent in January to March 2014 compared to the previous quarter.

Safaricom leads the telecommunication sector with a total of 67.9 per cent followed by Airtel with 16.7 per cent. Both mobile telecoms recorded positive gains. Essar Telkom, Kenya’s third-biggest mobile company looking to exit the market after failing to meet the regulator’s quality-of-service criteria in 2012-13 which the company must meet to obtain a new license has 8.2 per cent mobile subscribers. However, the telecoms company recorded a drop during the quarter under review and lost 3.5 per cent of its subscriptions.

Mobile money transfer recorded an increase of 0.p per cent to 26.2 million subscriptions and the number of money transfer agents increased as well by 10.6 per cent to stand at 103,660 agents.

(WATCH VIDEO: Exploring Kenya's active mobile money users)

Nonetheless, regardless of the growth in mobile subscriptions, local mobile voice traffic declined to 7.6 billion minutes down from 7.8 billion minutes during the previous quarter. Also, SMS traffic declined by 1.0 per cent to 6.22 billion.

The number of subscriptions in the internet/data market segment grew by 1.3 per cent to 13.3 million subscriptions up from the last quarter. While mobile subscriptions in this segment rose by 1.3 per cent and according to CAK continues to be the biggest contributor to the service representing 99 per cent of the subscriptions.

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