By Kester Omu
The 2018 Africa Telecoms Maturity Index report launched by BuddeComm, has indicated that Gabon, Botswana, South Africa and Mauritius have the highest mobile teledensity ahead of Nigeria, the continent’s biggest telecom market in terms of subscribers.
Teledensity are mostly measured based on a country’s population and the popularity of consumers having multiple SIM cards is expected to impact the teledensity of any country.
While Nigeria’s teledensity of 115 percent is calculated based on a national population of 140 million, according to the 2006 last census population figures, Gabon with the highest teledensity of 163 percent in Africa was calculated based on its estimated population of 2 million.
Teledensity of Botswana is 159 percent, South Africa, 147 percent, while Mauritius 146 percent.
Meanwhile, in terms of the Telecoms Maturity Index score, Mauritius is the African market leader with 43 percent, followed by Ghana and Tunisia which have 34 and 31 percent respectively.
Mauritius stands out among the rest. This is largely explained by the thriving tourism market, which has stimulated the broadband sector. There is an extensive DSL infrastructure and operators have deployed fibre-based services in a number of localities. Mauritius Telecom invested Rs5.1 billion to roll out fibre across the island, with the project completed the end of 2017 ahead of the original 2020 timescale.
Mobile telephony remains by far the dominant telecom service across Africa, accounting for more than 90 percent of all telephone lines on the continent. Given the very poor condition of fixed-line infrastructure in most markets, mobile internet access as a consequence also accounts for between 95 percent and 99 percent of all internet connections.