Kenya sees nearly double amount of internet users

Apr 19, 2012 12:00 AM

The number of internet users in Kenya rose 95.6 % year-on-year to 17.4 mm in the fourth quarter of 2011, thanks to an increase in mobile phone subscriptions, the industry regulator said.
Mobile phones are the main mode of accessing the internet in east Africa's largest economy.

Mobile phone subscriptions grew 12.5 % to 28.1 mm from about 25 mm in the year before period, the Communication Commission of Kenya said in its latest quarterly report.
“The increase in mobile subscriptions is an indication of operators' determination to continue growing their subscriber base through tactful marketing approaches as a strategy towards customer acquisition,” CCK said.

Safaricom, partly owned by Britain's Vodafone, held on to top spot with a 66.6 % market share despite dropping slightly from the previous year's 67.7 %. It was followed by the Kenyan unit of India's Bharti Airtel, which shed off 0.5 percentage points to realise a 15.2 % market share, CCK said.
Telkom Kenya, controlled by France Telecom had 10.3 % while India's Essar Telecom controlled 7.9 % having climbed from 6.2 % the previous year.

CCK said subscriptions to mobile phone-based money transfer services by all operators grew 42.1 % while deposits through the services rose 54.5 % to 176.8 bn.

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