Active Mobile Telephone Lines Hits 105.2 Million
Mobile Telephone subscriber base has continued to record strong growth with the number of Active Mobile Telephone Lines hitting 105.2 Million in August, the latest subscriber data released by the Nigerian Communications Commission has revealed.
The data, which was released on Thursday, revealed that Mobile network operators in the country added over 1.8 Million new Lines in August alone thereby, increasing the subscriber base from 103.4 Million Active Telephone Lines in July to over 105.2 Million at the end of August 2012.
Industry analysts said the promotions currently being run by Global System of Mobile telecommunications operators in the country might have been responsible for the huge subscriber growth in August.
While the total connected Lines increase to 141.2 Million in the month, the NCC data showed that GSM companies such as MTN, Globacom, Airtel and Etisalat attracted most of the new subscriptions between January and August, while the Code Division Multiple Access operators such as Visafone, Multi-Links, Starcomms and ZoomMobile continued to witness month-on-month decline in combined subscriber base.
According to the NCC data, while Active Mobile subscriptions on the GSM networks increased from 91 Million in January to 101.4 Million at the end of August; the CDMA operators’ subscriber base shrank from 4.4 Million to 3.3 Million during the eight-month period.
The GSM Active subscriptions, which stood at 91 Million in January, 2012, increased to 92 Million in February and 94.5 Million at the end of March. The subscriptions continued the upward growth trend, reaching 96.6 Million in April and 97.5 Million in May.
In June, July and August, the combined Active GSM subscriber base increased to 98.3 million; 99.4 Million and 101.4 Million respectively.
However, the Active subscriber base on CDMA networks continued to decline from 4,031,820 Lines in February to 3,904,846 in April. It further plunged to 3,718,153 in May; 3,541,355 in June; and fell in July to 3,452,368 and finally to 3,347,716 at the end of August 2012.
The number of fixed lines, which stood at 688,333 as at January, declined to 488,088 at the end of August 2012.
While the Nigerian telecoms industry continues to experience huge growth year-in-year, it has once again defied industry forecast, with the giant leap it recorded in growth in August.
The former Executive Vice-Chairman, Nigerian Communications Commission, Mr. Ernest Ndukwe, had recently predicted that the country’s Mobile subscriber base would hit 105 Million in December 2012.
However, the latest NCC data revealed that the target was achieved much earlier, as Active subscriptions had crossed the 105 Million projections, reaching over 105.2 Million at end of August, 2012.
Experts said though it was good that the country’s Mobile subscriber base had crossed the 105 Million mark, the implication was that it would put pressure on the Mobile networks if the operators did not increase their network capacities.
It will be recalled that the NCC had recently fined the four GSM companies in the country to the tune of N1.17bn for poor quality of service on their networks.
With increased subscriber base, analysts, urged the operators to match this with more investments in network expansion.
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