Mobile Demand at the Bottom of the Pyramid in Africa - A Case Study of Low-Income Mobile Users in South Africa and Nigeria
5th Communication Policy Research South Conference (CPRsouth5), Xi'an, China, 2010
18 Pages Posted: 14 Dec 2010
Date Written: August 2010
Despite the explosive growth of mobile telephony in Africa, large portions of the market still do not have access to basic voice services and thus are unable to participate in the local and global economy. This paper will cover a series of focus groups that were done over a period of three years in South Africa and Nigeria examining current usage of telecoms services in order to understand the value that poor consumers place on communications and the place of communications in their lives. It will explore the implications of the unserved market through an in-depth analysis of their daily communications patterns and needs. This paper attempts to explore the business models of the two largest mobile operators in developing markets, namely, Bharti Airtel and MTN Group, as well as Grameen Telephone Company as an alternative provider in order to determine their key success factors and the potential for these models to expand access to the bottom of the pyramid markets.
Keywords: Access, Business models, Competition, Demand, Bottom of the pyramid, Poverty
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