Market Trend

Africa benefits from increased international broadband access

Wholesale prices for internet bandwidth have reduced by almost 90% in Africa as the region benefits from increased access to international fibre bandwidth via submarine cables, according to research firm Buddecomm.

Broadband is replacing dial-up as the most used access method for connection, resulting in increased investment into terrestrial fibre backbone infrastructure to ensure further development of bandwidth access in landlocked countries. With more cables set to go live in 2011, additional fibre systems have promoted competition in a once monopolised market.

Buddecomm notes that improvements in internet access have been confined mainly to capital cities, but this is set to change because of the rapid spread of mobile data and 3G broadband services. Mobile networks are bringing access to many less developed regions for the first time.

Nigeria has the highest number of internet users with 44 million and Tunisia has the highest market penetration, at 34%. The study was based on 38 countries in Africa.