Pandemic Increases Internet Reach in Nigeria by 33% – Report

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Internet reach in Nigeria has increased by 33.05% since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to data from the Nigerian Communications Commission.

In June 2019 (before the pandemic), broadband penetration was 33.31% and the number of broadband subscriptions was 63.59 million. In June 2022, broadband penetration reached 44.32% and the number of broadband subscriptions was 84.61 million, an increase of 33% over the three-year period.

The COVID 19 pandemic has led to increased growth in internet consumption, with data consumption soaring as businesses moved online.

In its 2020 Industry Report, the NCC said: “The global pandemic has altered the way business has been conducted globally until now. The year 2020 has witnessed a significant increase in data usage.

Data consumption increased by 66.5%, from 125,149.86 terabytes in 2019 to 205,880.4 TB in 2020. The commission added: “The increase in data usage is directly related to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic which disrupted normal business and most functions had to be held virtually, including schools, corporate meetings, etc.

“The number of Internet subscribers increased from 135,743,324 subscriptions in March 2020 to 154,437,623 subscriptions in November 2020, which represents an increase of 13.77%. Data usage also increased from 147,537.52 TB to 196,163.42 TB over the same period.

“Broadband penetration continued to increase throughout 2020, peaking at 45.93%.”

This growth continued in 2021, with data consumption increasing by 70.8%, from 205,880.4 TB in 2020 to 350,165.39 TB in 2021.

In the space of three years, broadband penetration in Nigeria, a measure of the number of people with access to fast internet, increased from 33.31% to 44.32%.

According to the commission, it has long exceeded its 2018 broadband penetration target of 30% and is on track to achieve its target of 70% broadband penetration by 2025.

In one of its Nigerian update reports, the World Bank had revealed that Nigeria had the largest mobile market in sub-Saharan Africa and its broadband was driven by mobile.

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