Kenyan mobile phone subscriptions rise 3% to 57 mln in Q4 to June, penetration reaches 120%

The number of mobile subscriptions in Kenya increased to 57.0 million in the fourth quarter ended 30 June, an increase of 3.3 percent from 55.2 million subscriptions in the previous quarter, according to the Communication Authority of Kenya (CA). Mobile SIM penetration stood at 119.9 percent. There were 1.8 million net additions in mobile SIM subscriptions during the quarter as consumers took advantage of products such as SMS and data promotion/tariffs.

The directive by the government to use cashless payment systems to contain Covid-19, and the attendant fee waiver for transactions of KES 1,000 or less, played a key role. Total net additions for the fiscal year stood at 4.8 million.

Safaricom lost 0.3 percentage points in market share and reached 64.2 percent of mobile subscriptions. Airtel and Telkom Kenya gained by an equal margin of 0.2 percentage points to record 26.8 percent and 6.0 percent shares respectively. Equitel had the smallest market share at 3.0 percent, after losing 0.1 percentage points.

In Q4, 254 numbers were ported amongst the three mobile operators with Safaricom recording the highest in-ports at 215. Airtel and Telkom registered 23 and sixteen in-ports respectively.

Local mobile voice traffic originating from mobile networks stood at 15.2 billion minutes, which was a decline of 0.9 percent from 15.3 billion minutes in the previous quarter. This is attributed to reduced business activity during the lockdown and the curfew, which have affected normal calling patterns.

Overall, there was an increase in local mobile voice traffic during the 2019/20 financial year despite the pandemic. Compared with the 2018/19 financial year, total intra-network voice traffic increased by 2.5 percent during the fiscal year to 56.2 billion minutes. Off-net mobile voice traffic recorded a growth of 8.8 percent in the full year to 7.0 billion minutes.

In the fourth quarter, the volume of local on-net mobile voice traffic declined by 1.6 percent to 13.3 billion minutes. The volume of off-net mobile voice traffic rose by 4.6 percent to 1.8 billion minutes from 1.7 billion in Q3.

Mobile-to-fixed network voice traffic dropped by 4.5 percent to 15.1 million minutes from 15.8 million minutes in the last quarter. Total SMS sent from local mobile networks during the quarter rose by 19.5 percent to 20.0 billion messages.

In the full year, the number of messages sent grew by 5.4 percent to 69.6 billion. The growth is as a result of attractive SMS bundles promotion/tariffs offered by operators during the period under […]

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