Regulator blames SIM card listing for marginal drop in Internet use [Business Daily (Kenya)]
(Business Daily (Kenya) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Mobile Internet subscription has suffered a blow from the SIM card registration exercise, with the latest regulator's quarterly sector report indicating a decline in users by 6.1 per cent to 11.6 million.
According to the Communications Commission of Kenya (CCK) data for the first quarter of the 2013/14 financial year (July-September), the number of local Internet subscribers dropped to 11.6 million in the quarter ending September 2013 from 12.4 million in June 2013, a decline of 6.1 per cent.
This is the first-ever negative growth recorded in the local Internet market. The CCK report attributed the decline to subscribers who did not list their data or Internet SIM cards for modems.
"This decline could have been as a result of the SIM card registration audit carried out by the commission that saw rationalisation in mobile/data subscriptions," noted the CCK quarterly report.
"Moreover, the increase in mobile subscriptions during the period indicates that the new subscriptions did not subscribe to mobile data/Internet usage or did not have Internet enabled devices."
The decrease in the mobile Internet users is expected to affect Internet penetration in the country.
READ: Internet subscriptions take hit from SIM card listing exercise
At the end of the quarter under review, the population that had access to Internet stood at 47.1 per cent down from 49.7 per cent registered during the previous quarter representing a decline of 2.6 percentage points during the period.
Safaricom was the most affected with its mobile Internet market share declining by 2.4 per cent to reach 73.2 per cent from 75.6 per cent recorded during the previous period.
Airtel Kenya on the other hand gained 1.4 percentage points to attain a market share of 14.3 per cent while Telkom Kenya (Orange) gained 0.9 percentage points to post 7.3 per cent during the period.
Essar too gained 0.2 percentage points to register 5.2 per cent of the market share from 5.0 per cent recorded during the previous period.
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