In June 2017, I predicted that 2022 will be the inflection year where mobile internet will begin to seed new business models in Nigeria (and Africa) at scale. It will be the year of new growth vistas in the nation.
In today’s videocast, I make a case that Africa will enter the era of affordable broadband internet in 2022. That will be the year we will begin a new dawn of immersive connectivity where you can eat and surf all you can. Industry players will take off the Internet meter and then focus on service, experience and quality. From satellite broadband vendors to the MNCs with balloons and drones, the sector will become very competitive and service will drive growth. This has happened in the past – every decade, Africa experiences a major industrial transformation. We saw that in banking and voice telephony. 2020s, starting at 2022, will be the decade of immersive connectivity.
This month, we are learning that the cost of 1GB of data in Nigeria has fallen below N500 ($1.30). With this trajectory, Nigeria will hit a new dimension in our application utility era which I have predicted will begin in 2022 at scale. People, there are many reasons to be excited about the future: it has abundance. Yes, data will unlock new business models in our economy. If the price of data drops and new people go online, good things will happen.
The Federal Government of Nigeria announced today that it has succeeded in slashing the cost of internet data by 50%, a development which has seen the cost of 1GB data reduced from N1,000 to less than N500.
The announcement was made by the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Ibrahim Pantami, who said the development was in line with the directive he gave to the regulatory agency (NCC) to put measures in place to reduce the average cost of data in the country.
“The average cost of 1GB of data has reduced from the January 2020 cost of N1,000 to N487.18 in November, 2020.
“This was based on a report by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) submitted to the Honourable Minister following the implementation of the directives,” Dr Pantami’s Technical Assistant, Mr Femi Adeluyi said in a statement issued on Thursday in Abuja.
Yet, this is not a good time to celebrate: we may have affordable data but we do not have reliable data! Simply, the quality of service must improve in Nigeria. The voice era of the 2000s was not smooth. The mobile internet era of the 2010s has patches. We must ensure that this application utility era has robust quality.
Go Data. Go Growth. Go Shared Prosperity.