The number of people accessing the internet in Kenya is on the rise, according to the latest sector statistics by the Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) show. The figures released by the CA in the last week of December point to an increased uptake of broadband internet in particular, which has gone up by 14.3 per cent in the period ending September 2017.
The latest report indicates that the number of broadband subscriptions in the country has risen to 17.6 million compared to 15.4 million (an increase of 2.2 million subscriptions) posted in the preceding quarter. Consequently, broadband penetration now stands at 38.8 per cent compared to 34.2 per cent recorded during the last quarter.
(TOP: People working using free WiFi at a coffee shop).
According to the report covering July to September 2017, the demand for data/Internet continues to soar, with the number of estimated data/Internet users jumping by 12.5 percent to post 51.1 million users compared to 45.4 million users reported in the previous quarter. Mobile data remains the key contributor to data/Internet subscriptions at 99 per cent.
The other notable gains were recorded in the fibre optic subscriptions (fibre-to-home and fibre-to-business), which went up 65.5 per cent to stand at 90,534 during the period up from 54,700 recorded during the previous period.
The report indicates the number of mobile subscriptions increased by 1.9 per cent to stand at 41.0 million up from 40.2 million reported in the preceding quarter. There were 768,831 net additions in mobile subscriptions in this period compared to 1.1 million additions registered in the previous quarter.
Subsequently mobile penetration rose by 1.7 percentage points to reach 90.4 per cent from 88.7 per cent recorded during the previous quarter.
The number of active mobile money transfer subscriptions and registered agents stood at 28.1 million and 184,537 respectively. In addition, a total of 537.2 million transactions (sending and withdrawals) were made during the period valued at Kshs. 1.65 trillion Kenya Shillings.
There were 352.4 million mobile commerce transactions valued at Kshs. 714.3 while person-to-person transfers amounted to Kshs 544.1 billion.
At the end of the period under review, the number of registered Dot KE (.KE) domain names was registered at 69,567.
In broadcasting, the report shows that an estimated 83.6 per cent of the Kenyan population is covered by the digital broadcasting signal. The number of free-to-air TV channels on the digital terrestrial platform stood at 62 while the number of pay TV service providers on the Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) remained unchanged at two (2): GoTV and StarTimes.
On the other hand, FM radio stations remained unchanged at 178.
During the quarter under review, 16.0 million letters were posted locally up from 15.7 million letters posted during the previous quarter representing a growth of 1.9 per cent over the quarter. Similarly, the courier items sent rose by 16.3 percent to reach 1.7 million up from 1.4 million items recorded during the preceding quarter according to the report.