In a report released by Cable UK on Worldwide broadband speed league 2021, the most populous black nation in the world, Nigeria has emerged in the 142nd position out of possible 224 countries ranked for internet speed broadband. In the report, with results obtained from testing 107,473 unique internet Protocol (IP) addresses, the mean download speed for Nigeria was rated at 8.68 megabits per second (mbps). The implication of this is that it will approximately take 1 hour, 18 minutes and 39 seconds to successfully download a 5 Gig HD movie in Nigeria.
Nigeria though still trails other African countries like Ghana (9.23mbps), Ivory Coast (9.54mbps), Burkina Faso (10.73mbps), Kenya (11.27mbps), Madagascar (16.28mbps), South Africa (19.94mbps) and Reunion, the African country with the highest speed of 43.62mbps.
But we can safely infer that the 8.68mbps broadband speed is a notable improvement from the 3.34mbps recorded in September 20 when the country was ranked 186. The improved 4G network across the country can be sited as one of the important reasons for the spike in network. An Airtel report, while explaining the 4G effect, attributed it to a rise in data traffic, increase in smartphone penetration, increase in data consumers, and large data volumes consumed by users.
There was also impressive hikes in the total number of 4G connections in the country as it rose from the 21,712,218 it recorded in 2019 to 36, 538,228 in 2021.
Despite these noticeable improvements, Nigeria still fall short of the global average speed which is currently at 29.78Mbps, a 20 percent rise from the 24.83Mbps recorded in 2020. According to UK telecoms regulator, Ofcom, Nigeria also falls short of the 10Mbps global minimum speed required to align with the cravings and needs of a typical family or small business.
Nigeria’s move to achieve a respectable broadband penetration rate may be far from being in sight but there is remarkeable progress. One of the challenges standing is the way of having a decent broadband system in the country is the ‘Right of Way’ (RoW) exorbitant charges by some states in the country, with 29 out of 36 states yet to implement the Federal Government proposed RoW of 145 naira per meter, in an espouse by Nigeria’s Minister of Information and Digital Economy, Isa Patanmi.
But there is a seeming positivity with the Nigerian government recent approval for 5G network deployments across the country, a move that is hoped to guarantee faster and more stable broadband speeds.
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