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The Communications Authority of Kenya has revealed impressive data about Kenya’s internet access. According to them the number of internet users in the country has grown to reach 26.1-million. This translates to 64.3 per 100 inhabitants with access to internet. Data/internet subscriptions grew by 10.8% to reach 16.4-million during the second quarter of the 2014/15 financial year, October to December 2014.
Coming as no surprise, the report reveals that the majority of users continue to access the internet through their mobile phones. The increased uptake has been attributed to the number of promotions carried out by various service providers and investment by mobile operators and service providers.
However things have not been smooth sailing in all fronts. The mobile telephony sub-sector saw major changes with the exit of Essar Telkom (yu) when the firm was bought out by Safaricom Limited Airtel Networks Limited. Communications Authority of Kenya says that the sale resulted in shifts in the market share for the remaining operators.
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Despite this change of ownership, mobile subscriptions continued to grow by 863,803 new subscriptions to reach 33.6-million subscribers in the country. Mobile penetration now stands at 82.6 percent.
The surprising data which reports a drop in numbers comes in the form of mobile money. Though there are many reports on mobile money in Africa growing, and one of them saying that mobile in sub-Saharan could produce an estimated US$1.5-billion in fees for mobile-money providers by 2019, mobile money transfer subscriptions dropped. Mobile money subscriptions stood at 26.0 million down from 27.4 million recorded during the last quarter, representing a decline of 5.3 percent.
SMS, Voice and MMS traffic
SMSes sent during the quarter reached 7.3-billion, up from 6.9-billion messages sent during the last quarter, an increase of 9.1%.
“The growth in SMS traffic could have been as a result of the high festive season which saw relatives and friends exchange appreciation and well wish messages.” Reads the report.
Voice traffic dropped from 8. 0 billion minutes recorded in the previous quarter to 7.4-billion minutes. The cause of this could be the growth in SMS, people are now sending text images more than they would make phonecalls.
MMS demonstrated growth of 44.9 per cent to post 3.9 million messages, up from 2.6-million messages posted during the previous quarter. MMS, with the growth in popularity and capabilities of Whatsapp, Messenger, WeChat, Snapchat, Instagram, platforms which allow users to send pictures, remains the most in danger of dying out. The reports notes that in previous quarters, MMS had recorded a drop in popularity but has now picked up in popularity.