According to the Communications Regulatory Authority of Namibia (Cran), the broadcasting industry saw a 6% increase in income in the final quarter of 2022.
Cran published its fourth-quarter 2022 Telecommunications, Broadcasting and Postal Sector statistics on Thursday.
The report gave an overview of mobile broadband, fixed line and other subscribers, including fixed internet subscriptions forQ4 2022.
In addition, the report analyses developments in mobile traffic, telecommunications revenue, investments, broadcasting licences, postal mailbox rentals, and the outcome of a survey on broadcasting and media for 2022.
The report also highlights mobile traffic trends, telecommunication revenue, investment, broadcasting licences, rental of postal letterboxes, and the result of the broadcasting and media survey for 2022.
“The broadcasting sector experienced a 6% growth in revenue during the fourth quarter of 2022 in comparison to the same quarter the previous year,” Emilia Nghikembua, Chief Executive Officer, said.
During the period under review, the regulatory authority recorded 37 active broadcasting licences issued.
While total advertising revenue rose sharply at 35%, it only made up 6% of broadcasters’ overall revenue, Cran said.
Nghikembua pointed out that there was a significant decline in digital mobile and terrestrial subscriptions of 22% and 33%, respectively.
However, she said DSTV subscriptions observed a minimal decline of only 1%.
“Broadcasting and media play a crucial role in shaping public opinion and informing people about current events. With the rise of digital media and mobile technology, people have access to a vast array of news and messaging apps at their fingertips,” she said.
Cran also reported that the number of active SIM cards for mobile users increased marginally by 3% over the same time period, compared to the same period in 2021.
Nghikembua said fixed internet subscriptions showed considerable growth ranging from 22% to 89% compared to the same period in 2021.
This, she said, shows a rising preference for faster internet speeds, which may be brought on by an increased reliance on digital devices for both work and play.
According to Cran’s report, fewer people are signing up for slower internet connections.
“The traffic data for Q4 2022 reveals a slight overall increase in mobile minutes, with a growth rate ranging from 4% to 29% compared to the same period in the previous year,” Nghikembua noted.
However, she said, there has been a decline in international mobile minutes, which may be related to the use of over-the-top (OTT) voice communication services.
The Cran CEO further noted that while the quantity of SMS messages delivered during the evaluation period remained unchanged, mobile data consumption increased by 8%.
“Fixed-line outgoing minutes experienced a decline of 8%, consistent with the trend of decreased demand for fixed-line subscriptions for voice communication and a preference for data-driven services.”
Nghikembua added that revenue generated from data in the telecommunications sector remains the most profitable segment, while SMS revenue is typically the least profitable.
She said total investment in the telecoms sector dropped during the year under review, which in the long run will result in poorer service quality due to congestion in some areas.
Cran noted that only 38% of letterboxes are currently rented, a significant decrease of 29% from the third quarter of 2022. The postal industry saw a noticeable dip in the leasing of letterboxes in the last quarter of 2022, it added.
“This is due to more customers changing to digital mail,” she said.
In addition, Cran reported that during the period the number of occupied private bags decreased by 8%.
Cran’s prediction is that there will be increased investment in the ICT sector over the balance of 2023.
“We are positive that the sector shall experience growth and development in terms of new technologies,” Nghikembua noted.