Decline in Number of Telecom Subscribers … NCC Statistics Report

The advent of telecommunications services in Nigeria has not only improved everyday communication lifestyle, but also, the number of hours spent on the road just to meet clients or customers, as the case may be, or even to visit families and friends.  Thanks to telecoms. Despite this applause, there are many demerits of telecom services that makes subscribers frown at various network providers resulting in over 8million loss of data subscribers across the nation.


Although the Nigerian market is believed by some analysts to be one of the largest telecommunication market in the Africa, with a yearly growth in the rate of subscribers and a strong return on investments, but this is not so in recent times because there is a sharp decline in number of subscribers occasioned by some factors such as the NIN-SIM registration, high cost in calls/data tariff among other reasons.


According to industry experts, pricing, service quality, and the presence of alternative Internet Service Providers (ISP) are also among the major drawbacks.

A compilation of statistics obtained from the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) stated that: MTN, Airtel, Glo, and 9mobile lost millions of data subscribers between March 2021 and May 2021.


These four major internet providers in Nigeria, according to NCC reports, had reduced data subscribers to 1.27 million in May 2021, compared to the 3.17 million in April 2021 and 3.55 million subscribers in March 2021.


The total number of subscribers for these major telecommunication companies, have therefore dropped significantly from what it used to be; from 141.41 million as of April to 140.13 million by the end of May 2021. Ever since then, data subscriber base in Nigeria has been on a persistent downturn especially with the introduction of the NIN-SIM registration.


Reports say: as of February 2021, Airtel had a total number of mobile subscribers of 51.43 million but had dropped to 50.03 million as at the end of May 2021.


Airtel lost a total of 2.84 million data subscribers within the period under review, as its data subscribers dropped from 38,956,026 recorded as of the beginning of March to 36,120,443 by the end of May 2021.


Between March 2021 and May 2021, MTN Nigeria lost a total of 2.64 million data subscribers. At the end of May 2021, the telecom giant had 60,202,402 data subscribers, down from 61,575,323 and 62,843,182 recorded as at the end of March and February respectively.


The sad news for MTN therefore is, between March 2021 and May 2021, the telecom giant lost a total of 3.3 million mobile subscribers. This represents a 4.27% reduction in data subscribers.


The good news however for MTN is that, as at the end of May 2021, MTN had 74,044,687 mobile subscribers, accounting for 39.7% of the total subscriber base in the country.


The others, Globacom and 9mobile, also witnessed the decline, as they lost a total of 2.112 million and 415,905 data subscribers respectively within the same period under review.

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