Mobile phone penetration in Kenya increases to 78.2pc

By Nicholas Nduati

Television viewership in the country has grown significantly courtesy of increased number of soccer matches being aired especially the English Premier League as well as soap operas.

This is backed by the latest Communications Authority of Kenya statistics that indicate that between January and March this year, TV broadcast grew by 81.8% to stand at an average weekly viewership of 654,000.

During the period, Radio listenership increased by 19.9% to 4.4 million average weekly audiences.

The Communications Authority of Kenya attributes the increase in radio listenership to the numerous Radio competition shows that ran between January and March this year.

Mobile subscriptions recorded a 1.7 % growth to 31.8 million subscriptions up from 31.3 million during the previous quarter.

On the other hand, mobile penetration grew by 1.3 percentage points to stand at 78.2%, with Mobile money transfers also having an upward trend of 0.9 per cent.

There was however a decline in local mobile voice traffic of 2.7 per cent to post 7.6 billion minutes down from 7.8 billion minutes recorded during the previous quarter.

Safaricom and Airtel gained 1.5 and 1.8 per cent mobile subscriptions respectively.

Telkom Kenya had the highest gain in subscriptions of 8.8 per cent, whereas Essar Telecom lost 3.5 per cent of its subscriptions.

Telkom Kenya recorded an increase in market shares of 0.5 percentage points to stand at 7.7 per cent, while Safaricom and Essar lost 0.1 per cent and 0.5 % to reach 67.8 % and 8% respectively.

Airtel Kenya’ market share remained unchanged at 16.5 percent. Safaricom maintained the lead in market shares of voice traffic with 6.0 billion minutes down from 6.1 billion minutes.

The Internet/data market mobile subscriptions rose by 1.3 per cent and continued to be the biggest contributor to the service representing 99 per cent of the subscriptions.

Consequently, the number of estimated internet users increased by 1.9 per cent to reach 21.6 million compared to 21.2 million estimated during the last quarter.

The volume of letters sent out locally declined by 2.8 per cent to record 16.8 million letters down from 17.3 million letters sent out during the previous quarter.