450 million people do not have access to mobile broadband – Report

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The GSMA said 19% of people living in Nigeria and other countries in sub-Saharan Africa do not have access to mobile broadband coverage.

The industry organization that represents the interests of mobile network operators around the world has stated this in its “The State of Mobile Internet Connectivity Report 2021”.

The report indicates that the total number of people without access to mobile broadband coverage now stands at 450 million people, or about 6% of the world’s population.

The GSMA said, “Those who live in areas without mobile broadband coverage represent 450 million people, or 6% of the world’s population.

“The largest increases in coverage have occurred in sub-Saharan Africa and the Pacific Islands.

“However, there has been a slowdown in the coverage of the remaining population, with the coverage gap only narrowing by one percentage point in 2020.

“Sub-Saharan Africa is still the region with the largest coverage gap, at 19%. ”

The organization said 3.4 billion people (about 43% of the world’s population) do not use mobile internet despite living in areas with mobile broadband coverage.

He added that mobile internet usage was 61% in South Asia.

According to the GSMA, cell phones are now more affordable in Nigeria and other countries in sub-Saharan Africa, and data is now more affordable in South Asia.

The organization added that about 47% (210 million people) in sub-Saharan Africa do not use mobile internet despite the region’s continued efforts to increase mobile broadband access, especially with major 3G deployments. and 4G in West and East Africa, including Nigeria, Mali and Tanzania.

The GSMA said, “As the coverage gap continues to narrow and nearly three-quarters of the unconnected people in the region are covered by mobile broadband, closing the usage gap is the main challenge.

“Accelerating adoption will increase the economic case for extending coverage, which in turn will help reduce the coverage gap. ”

The organization added that smartphone adoption is on the rise, accounting for 68% of total mobile connections in 2020, up from 64% in 2019 and 47% in 2016.

He said: “Growth continues in sub-Saharan Africa, but it still lags behind other regions, with smartphones accounting for less than half of the total number of connections.

“Sub-Saharan Africa has the highest percentage of basic or feature telephone connections, accounting for 45% of all connections.

“In addition, a significant portion of smartphones in sub-Saharan Africa only support 3G, while in other regions the majority of smartphones are 4G or 5G compatible. ”

The report adds that there are now four billion people connected to the Internet via their mobile, 225 million more than in 2019.

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