Internet users rise slightly by 1.2pc

TANZANIA: THE number of internet users has increased by 1.2 per cent in three months to September credited to the expansion of Swahili content online.

The number of internet users, according to Tanzania Communication Regulatory Authority (TCRA) latest report, rose from 34.04 million in quarter two ending June to 34.46 million in quarter three at the end of September.

TCRA Director General Dr Jabiri Bakari said from Arusha on Wednesday that the increase was attributed to the expansion of Swahili content online that pulled more users to the internet.

“One of the contributing factors to the increased internet usage and users may be the growth of Swahili content online,” Dr Bakari said.

Swahili is the national language and media of instruction. Thus more Swahili content makes it easier for the users to follow up on online threads.

“The availability of Swahili content online has played a significant role in making the internet more accessible to a wider user base,” the TCRA head said.

The number of internet users also pushed up subscriptions for the mobile phone in quarter three by almost 5.0 per cent.

The subscription level rose from 64.01million to 67.12million in three months to September.

“These numbers encompass activities from six major telecom providers in Tanzania—Airtel, Vodacom, Tigo, Halotel, TTCL, Smile, and Zantel,” Dr Bakari said.

The report also showed that mobile money subscriptions, active SIM cards with mobile money service accounts, increased from 47.3 million accounts in June to 51.4 million accounts in September.

M-Pesa, according to the report, has a larger share of 37 per cent of mobile money accounts in the market, followed by Tigo Pesa at 30 per cent, Airtel Money at 22 per cent, Halopesa at 8.0 per cent, while T-Pesa 3.0 per cent. Smile does not offer mobile money services.

Furthermore, Dr Bakari said there was a substantial increase in the number of mobile accounts, which grew by 8.7 per cent from 44.72m/- to 51.36m/-.

While for the past three years, the number of transactions has gone up from 3.4bn/- in 2020 to 4.2bn/- last year.

And, mobile money transactions increased from 420,675,884 in June to 422,390,546 in September, recording a 0.4 per cent growth.

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