The Zambia Information and Communications Technology Authority (ZICTA) has concluded the 2015 Information and Communication Technology (ICT) survey. The survey is targeted at updating the ICT baseline indicators (Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa as well as International Telecommunication Union standardised metrics) last collected in 2010.
Based on the 2015 survey on access and usage of ICT, conducted by ZICTA in collaboration with the Central Statistical Office and Ministry of Communications and Transport in August, 65% of locals own mobile phones, while approximately 14% of users have smartphones.
According to ITWebAfrica, the survey also found that 51% of people, aged ten years and older, are active users of mobile phones, and the proportion of active users of mobile phones is relatively higher in urban areas than in rural areas. Also, the reports from ZICTA revealed that there's improvement in the proportion of individuals that know how to use the internet from 4.8% in 2013 to 8.8% in 2015. It said that majority of the households accounting for 71% of the total number of households with access to internet services, access broadband services using mobile phones.
The majority of internet users (63%) spend their time online on social networking sites, according to the survey.
The results are necessary in highlighting progress towards transforming Zambia into an 'information knowledge based society' says Margaret Mudenda, ZICTA's Director General.
Mudenda added that the results will help authorities to determine measures and strategies to ensure that everyone has access to ICT.
"The measurement of ICT access and usage is vital for formulating and revising national ICT policies and strategies. ICT indicators are also necessary to monitor progress in achieving the global sustainable development goals," she added.
The increase in internet usage through mobile phones in some African countries further informs that the market is going mobile. This is a window of opportunity for local entrepreneurs in Africa to provide solutions that leverage on the growth in mobile phone and internet usage.