17 October 2018

Kenya: 97 Out of 100 Kenyans Have Mobile Phones, Transacting Almost Sh2 Trillion Quarterly

The Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) says that mobile service subscriptions in Kenya stand at 45.5 million as at June 30, 2018, up from 44.1 million reported in March 2018.

As of June 30, 2018, the number of mobile service subscriptions in the country stood at 45.5 million up from 44.1 million reported in March 2018. This has resulted in increased mobile penetration of 97.8 per cent during the subject quarter from 95.1 per cent reported in the preceding quarter.

In the authority's Fourth Quarter Sector Statistics Report for the Financial Year 2017/2018 report, the numbers show an increase of 13.2 per cent compared to the 40.2 million subscriptions recorded at a similar period on June 30, 2017.

Mobile penetration in the East African hub now stands at 97.8 per cent during the subject quarter from 95.1 per cent reported in the preceding quarter.

Rise and growth of mobile technology

According to CA, the ICT sector in the country has experienced tremendous developments over the past decade.

This has been accelerated mainly by the increased adoption of ICT products, ICT processing technologies and ICT support services which in return increased the demand for ICT related services.

The rise and growth of mobile technology have been a great contributor to this transformation making the country a mobile-first economy.

"The increasing demand for and uptake of mobile services such as mobile money, mobile internet, mobile Apps, mobile banking, marketing and gaming has resulted to a significant increase in the number of mobile services subscriptions," adds the report.

Market share for Safaricom, Airtel and Telkom Kenya

During the quarter under review, Safaricom lost its market share by 1.6 percentage points while Airtel Ltd and Telkom Kenya gained by 1.7 and 0.2 percentage points respectively.

Finserve Africa lost by 0.1 percentage points whereas the market shares for Sema Mobile and Mobile Pay Ltd remained unchanged.

The total number of mobile subscriptions in the period under review stood at 45.5 million with pre-paid and postpaid subscriptions registering at 44.3 million and 1.19 million respectively.

"The ratio of pre-paid subscriptions remained dominant at 97.4 per cent and this is attributed to the ease and convenience of subscription as compared to the post-paid subscription which has mandatory requirements which may pose a great challenge for most users."

In Kenya, pre-paid services offer more flexibility with a variety of tariffs which are convenient and affordable for low-income subscribers.

Mobile money services

The mobile money services remain king in the country's economy transacting over Sh1.9 trillion between April 1, 2018, and June 30, 2018, in 727 million trades.

Mobile money transfer subscriptions stood at 29.6 million with a total of 206,940 agents. Person to Person transfers amounted to Sh675.5 billion with the value of goods and services transacted over mobile money platform amounting to Sh1.4 trillion.

"The mobile money service in Kenya has transformed from the traditional cash-in and cash-out transactions to a key driver of financial inclusion and facilitator for the digital economy through the emergence and evolution of services such as mobile loans, mobile savings, cross-border remittances and pay bills."

Mobile Money transactions between April 1 and June 30, 2018. 97 out of 100 Kenyans have mobile phones transacting almost Sh2 Trillion in the three months under review.


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