Kenya’s mobile telephone subscribers grew by 4.7 per cent to stand at 37.8 million up from 36.1 million registered during the previous quarter according to latest industry stats released by regulator Communications Authority of Kenya (CA).
The latest figures, released last week, cover the period between July to September 2015. They are contained in the ICT Sector Quarterly Statistics Report for the first quarter of the Financial Year 2015/16 (Q1 FY 2015/16) provides an overview on performance and development trends in the ICT sector in Mobile and Fixed Telephony Service; Internet/Data Service; Registered Internet Domains and Postal and Courier Service.
“In mobile telephony, the number of subscriptions grew by 4.7 percent to reach 37.8 million up from 36.1 million registered during the previous quarter. Subsequently the growth in mobile penetration grew by 4.2 percentage points from 83.9 percent during the previous quarter to 88.1 percent during the quarter under review,” states the report.
Pre-paid subscriptions continued to dominate the mobile telephony sector with the quarter in review recording 36.8 million representing 97.3 percent of the total subscriptions. Post-paid subscriptions on the other hand grew to 989,889 up from 963,684 subscriptions registered during the previous quarter.
Local mobile traffic stood at 10.8 billion minutes up from 9.2 billion minutes posted during the previous quarter, representing growth of 18.2 percent. This was as a result of special offers and promotions carried out by the operators during the quarter under review. On net traffic contributed 88.9 percent of the total traffic to post 9.6 billion up from 7.9 billion minutes posted during the previous quarter. Similarly, each subscriber talked for an average of 95.8 minutes per month during the quarter up from 84.9 minutes recorded during the previous quarter.
The volume of SMS sent during the quarter stood at 7.0 billion up from 6.5 billion recorded during the previous quarter representing growth of 7.7 percent during the quarter. Each subscriber sent an average of 61 messages per month.
Mobile money transfer service continued to record steady growth due to its increasing popularity and convenience in usage. During the quarter under review, the number of mobile money transfer subscriptions rose by 3.0 percent to 28.7 million up from 27.7 million recorded during the previous period. The number of mobile money agents on the other hand grew to 135,724 up from 129,357 agents posted during the previous quarter.
The fixed network service has continued to record a downward trend to post 87,111 lines down from 87,774 lines recorded during the previous period, representing a decline of 0.7 percent during the period under review. This number comprised of fixed line subscriptions only since Telkom Kenya decommissioned its CDMA network.
The Internet/data market has maintained an upward trend with the quarter under review registering 21.6 million up from 19.9 million subscriptions recorded last quarter. Similarly, the estimated number of Internet users stood at 31.9 million up from 29.6 million users estimated during the previous quarter. Subsequently, the population that had access to Internet services reached 74.2 per 100 inhabitants up from 69.0 per 100 inhabitants recorded during the previous quarter.
The number of broadband subscriptions increased by 19.3 percent to reach 6.3 million up from 5.3 million subscriptions recorded during the previous quarter marking a penetration level of 14.7 per cent.
During the quarter under review, international bandwidth available in the country dropped by 7.2 percent to stand at 1.5 million Mbps down from 1.6 million Mbps recorded during the last quarter.
Thus bandwidth utilisation represented 51.1 percent of the total capacity up from 47.2 percent recorded during the previous quarter.
By the end of the quarter in review, the number of registered domain names rose to 46,411 up from 39,386 domain names registered in the previous quarter representing growth of 17.8 percent.
In the postal and courier sector, the number of letters sent locally declined significantly by 17.2 percent to register 12.9 million down from 15.6 million letters sent during the previous quarter.
International incoming letters increased by 10.8 percent to post 2.4 million letters up from 2.2 million letters received during the previous quarter. Similarly, international outgoing letters increased to 1.37 million up from 1.35 million letters sent during the previous quarter.