Safaricom’s bundles push industry’s SMS volumes to 11.6 billion

The SMS bundles or offers from Safaricom contributed in pushing the telcom industry’s total SMS volumes to 11.6 billion from 6.5 billion recorded in the last quarter according to latest industry stats from regulator Communications Commission Of Kenya (CA).

The latest CA stats report, which covers the period between April to June 2016, states that total number of Short Messaging Service (SMS) sent during the quarter increased significantly to 11.6 billion messages from 6.5 billion registered last quarter.

“This growth was as a result of the Create Your Plan Bundles SMS tariff that was introduced by Safaricom during the period under review. This tariff allows the operator’s customers to send as many as 50 messages per day for only Ksh. 10. Similarly, the volume of SMS sent throughout the quarter year significantly to 31.3 billion up 26.1 billion messages sent during the previous year,” stats the report.

Safaricom alone recorded 10.9 billion outgoing SMSes up from 5.8 billion sent during the preceding quarter while its SMS market share also increased to 93.9 per cent during the quarter under review up from 89.7 per cent recorded in the previous quarter. Similarly the volume of SMS sent from its network during the financial year under review increased to 30.4 billion messages up from 25.4 billion messages sent in the previous year.


Airtel Kenya’s market share in SMS traffic volume reduced to 5.4 percent during the quarter under review down from  8.8 percent posted during the previous period representing 629.6 million sent messages. During the financial year under review, 2.4 billion messages were sent from the network, which represented a market share of 8.8 per cent as compared to the previous financial year where 1.5 billion messages were sent representing a market share of 5.7 per cent.

Telkom Kenya recorded 68.1 million messages sent from its network, which was a drop from 72.5 million messages posted in the previous quarter, leading the firm’s market share for SMS traffic volume to drop to 0.6 per cent during the quarter under review down from 1.1 per cent posted last quarter. The total number of SMS sent during the financial year under review was 335.1 million compared to 343.2 million messages registered in the previous financial year, translating to a drop of 0.3 per cent over the year.

Equitel recorded an increase in SMS volume during the quarter under review to post 9.0 million from 7.2 million messages recorded during the previous period. Despite this increase, its market share for SMS remained at 0.1 per cent. Over the financial year there was also an increase in the number of messages sent to stand at 28.9 million up from 15.8 million messages recorded during the previous financial year.

Sema Mobile Services recorded an increase in SMS volume to post 7,568 messages during the quarter under review up from 4,616 messages posted in the last quarter. However, the market share for the country’s newest MNO entrant remained below 0.0 percent during the period under review according to the report.

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