Mobile data prices about to go up in Nigeria due to new regulations

by | Nov 29, 2016

UPDATEThe NCC has halted the proposed data hike and the Nigerian Senate is trying to take all the glory.

————

When the Nigerian Communications Commission(NCC) removed the data floor thereby giving telcos the liberty to competitively lower their data prices, we knew it meant dirt cheap data for all.

The ongoing Data Wars have been a source of joy to data consumers in Nigeria as it meant huge slashes to data prices from telcos and competitive offers to woo them (the consumers).

Advertisement

Suggested Read; Data Wars: A race to the bottom

The era of the data wars is fast coming to an end as the NCC has mandated telecommunication providers to increase their data tariffs to new official rates set by the commission.

screenshot_20161129-110753_1_1

The text message from MTN said,

Dear customer, please be informed that from 1st Dec, some MTN data tariffs will be increased to reflect the new rates set by the NCC to operators. Thank you.

The new tariffs have not been officially put out by the NCC, but there is speculation that  500MB may cost as much as ₦1000; that is nearly double the present cost.

One issue that bothered a lot of subscribers was that a reduction in price of data will translate to a reduction in the quality of internet services, but nobody envisioned there would be a rude jolt from the pleasant reverie that cheap internet has become.

Implications

The current harsh economic climate in Nigeria has seen to it that the price of everything has doubled while sizes are reduced to the bargain. It started with petrol a while back, now even Gala — the most popular sausage roll in Nigeria that has been ₦50 for more than a decade now sells for ₦70.

This intended hike in data prices will also adversely affect the penetration of broadband internet access in Nigeria.

Advertisement

Suggested Read; The Communication Tax Bill will hinder broadband penetration in Nigeria

In September, the Nigerian Communications Commission(NCC) confirmed that internet penetration in Nigeria has gone up from 10% to 14% in 2 years and were optimistic that it will reach 30% by 2018. But there is no way that is looking feasible with an increase in the cost of data.

On the other hand, the increase violates the first point in the 8-point agenda provided by Professor Umar Danbatta for the moving forward of the communication industry. The agenda which is to;

“Facilitate Broadband Penetration
Vision: Provide and optimize access to and use of affordable fixed and mobile broadband everywhere in Nigeria.
Strategy: Facilitate and support availability of broadband services by promoting deployment of universally available, fast and reliable network infrastructure that will stimulate seamless broadband penetration to drive technology innovations and overall productivity of the economy.”

It is still unclear what the monies gotten from taxing subscribers would be used for that is far more important than increasing the flailing broadband penetration in Nigeria, but until the prices are announced, we can only wait.

Victor Ekwealor
Victor Ekwealor

tech. media. startups. africa. vc | Twitter: @victor_ekwealor

On January 22, 2022, be part of the largest gathering of innovators, startup founders, thinkers, programmers, policymakers, and investors in West Africa. Register free.

Subscribe
Notify of
guest
0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Recent News

Subscribe to Techpoint Digest!

A daily 5-minute roundup of happenings in African and global tech, sent directly to your email inbox, between 5 a.m. and 7 a.m (WAT) every week day!

Please check your email to confirm your subscription.

Subscribe to Crypto Explorer

A monthly series featuring in-depth analysis on the cryptocurrency sector in Africa

Please check your email to confirm your subscription.

Subscribe to The Experts

A bi-weekly where tech career specialists take us on their journey from newbie to expert, and how they became successful in the industry.

Please check your email to confirm your subscription.

Subscribe to Founder's Table

A monthly series, where we catch up with founders in the startup ecosystem, learn about their failures, successes and a few tricks of the trade

Please check your email to confirm your subscription.

Copy link
Powered by Social Snap