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Kenya’s internet capacity up 20pc on heavy data use

According CA, the total number of mobile SIM card subscriptions increased 0.5pc to 66.1 million from 65.7 million between January and March 2023.

Digital Economy CS Eliud Owalo during launch of a Digital Lab. PHOTO | File

Kenya’s total data consumption rose 20.4pc in three months to March this year in what the Communications Authority attributes to increased internet use among consumers.

This comes as the government targets to increase internet connectivity in the country with additional 100,000km of fibre optic cable through the digital superhighway master plan.

Latest data by the authority indicates that between January and March this year, the total international internet bandwidth available in the country grew from 11,970.53Gbps to 14,413.053Gbps supported by capacity upgrade of the TEAM fibre optic cable.

“There has been a tremendous shift from voice to data, new projects have been initiated including rural tower expansion, 4G, 5G and fibre infrastructure rollout. As seen during the referenced period, TEAMS upgraded their cable of the available bandwidth to meet the consumers’ needs as the demand for data/Internet services steadily increases,” said CA in its Third Quarter Sector Statistics Report.

CA says total utilized undersea bandwidth capacity during the three months period increased by 25.5pc, with 5,161.918Gbps being used in the country and 2,953.820Gbps sold outside the country.

Majority of consumers however continue to access the internet using 62.96 million available mobile devices in the country out of which 33.5 million are feature phones and 29.5 are smartphones.

“The total mobile data/Internet subscriptions stood at 47.96 million out of which 67.1 percent were on mobile broadband. The uptake of mobile broadband has continued to increase as the consumers desire faster Internet speeds,” said the authority.

Kenya now has 15.8 million 2G subscriptions, 10.6 million 3G subscriptions, 21.2 million for 4G and 373.573 for 5G.

Safaricom leads mobile network operators in the number of broadband subscriptions having 64.3pc of subscribers, followed by Airtel with 29.6pc. Telkom Kenya, Jamii Telkom and Equitel have 3.9pc, 1.1pc and 1pc respectively.

Safaricom also leads in the number of fixed data subscriptions with 399,333 subscribers representing 35.9pc of the market share. Jamii Telecom is second with 23.2pc market share followed by Zuku owner, Wananchi Group with 22.7pc of the market share.

On the other hand, total number of users for .KE domains stood at 104,725 with .CO.KE sub-domain recording the highest market share of users at 89.9pc.

The number of cyber threats detected in the quarter under review declined 24.9pc to 187.7 million from 249.9 million recorded during the second quarter.

According to the report, total number of mobile SIM card subscriptions increased 0.5pc to 66.1 million from 65.7 million.