Zimbabwe’s active mobile subscriptions declined by 6% to record 12,134,455 from 12,908,992 recorded in the fourth quarter of 2018. Using a population of 14,572,011 for 2019 as per ZIMSTAT projections, the mobile penetration rate declined by 9.8% to reach 83.3% from 93.1% recorded in the previous quarter.
The ailing Zimbabwean economy seems to be affecting every sector of the economy as all the mobile network service providers recorded a decline in the number of active subscriptions. This was revealed in the Q1 2019 Sector performance report by the Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (POTRAZ).
The effects of the ailing economy have also been felt as many bundles and promotions were either revoked or were improved. Most bundles or packages were improved upwards which saw subscribers either migrating to a different network or simply stopping their subscription.
NetOne had the widest loss margin as it’s active subscribers declined from 3 256 592 to 2 593 444. Econet and Telecel did lose subscribers but not on a large margin. Econet lost 1% of its network subscribers while Telecel lost 1.8%.
With a continuing increase in inflation, it’s clear that some Zimbabweans can not afford to subscribe to the mobile network service providers in the country.