Nigeria has 17M Internet Users, More or Less

Some people have been throwing some fantastical numbers about Nigeria having 43 million internet users.

I really don’t know who cooked up this ultra-sloppy data but no wonder the over-creamed salad of consultancy advices smell like rancid skimmed milk.

If Nigeria has 43 million internet users then I probably have a pink elephant, with wings, prancing around my backyard.

So how many do we have? Judging from MTN’s latest financials (2012), they have 3.8 million smart devices (those that can consume internet without choking up – actually MTN is so parsimonious that not even a 12K US Robotics modem can choke on it) and 201,000 dongles. That comes to 4M internet devices (many being fondle-slabs). Since MTN has 47.5% market ownership, we can extrapolate 8.42M internet devices. If we are optimistic, can we argue that 2 people use a device (Nobody shares my phone with me though). Maybe 17M users. Far cry from 43M.

Why this 43M magical number is apparently not wrong to smart pant consultants baffles me.

Comments 2

  1. Ade Atobatele wrote:

    I think the number actualy refers to the number of people who have ACCESS to the Internet rather than the number of people who OWN A DEVICE CAPABLE OF ACCESSING the Internet.

    Posted 16 Mar 2013 at 3:48 pm
  2. Jide Shitta-Bey wrote:

    The MTN statistics points to mobile devices.Should we include other internet access sources (other non mobile telcom providers) I would think internet users are more than 17M?

    Posted 07 May 2013 at 7:02 pm

Trackbacks & Pingbacks 1

  1. From Adédèjì Olówè - 50,412,559 on the Internet on 13 Nov 2013 at 7:39 am

    […] I’m not much better than the armchair consultants I ranted about. Some months ago I wrote that Nigeria doesn’t have more than 17M internet users. I did my calculation based on MTN’s year end result and extrapolated that for the whole […]

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