MarketWatch: Mobile broadband drives Internet use in South Africa - Mobile World Live

MarketWatch: Mobile broadband drives Internet use in South Africa

20 JUL 2011

EXCLUSIVE VIDEO: The introduction of mobile broadband technology in South Africa has led to millions of citizens now accessing the Internet via smartphones. That is one insight shared by the country’s deputy minister of communications, Obed Bapela, in a new MarketWatch video feature published by Mobile World Live this week. “At one point, just to give a classic example, we stagnated as far as access to the Internet, at 3.2 million people only, between 2002 and 2007. But with the introduction of smartphones people quickly were able then to use the smartphone as an alternative means to access the Internet, and the number has now phenomenally increased to 6 million South Africans active in the Internet and it’s growing in a big way, and I think we have now reached 10 percent of people who are active in the Internet.” Chris Ross, from South Africa’s largest operator Vodacom, added: “Ultimately you now have a computer in your hands. And the only computer experience that many South Africans will have is in that mobile device. So having data access has been absolutely critical.”

The feature video provides a snapshot of the South African mobile market and was filmed on location at last month’s GSMA Mobile Health Summit in Cape Town. Other topics covered in the feature include the competitiveness of the country’s mobile industry and the future auction of LTE spectrum. View the full video here.


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