The Mobile Economy Sub-Saharan Africa 2022


unique mobile subscribers by 2025 covering 50% of the population


5G connections by 2025


in economic value will be generated by mobile technologies and services by 2025

As countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, and the rest of the world, transition into a post-pandemic economic recovery phase, mobile connectivity is set to play a crucial role in defining the ‘new normal’. Authorities see an opportunity to leverage digital technology and services to build economies that are more resilient to future shocks, enhance productivity and efficiency in service delivery, and ensure more inclusive socioeconomic development.

Although 3G will remain the dominant connectivity technology in Sub-Saharan Africa, accounting for over half of total connections by 2025, this year marks a turning point as 3G adoption begins to decline for the first time. By 2025, 4G will account for a third of mobile connections in the region, compared to under a fifth of connections in 2021.

5G-related activities are also beginning to pick up across the region. These include 5G spectrum auctions, 5G pilots and commercial trials, and efforts to develop locally relevant 5G use cases.

Mobile connectivity has the potential to accelerate Sub-Saharan Africa’s digital transformation and drive socioeconomic advancement, but realising this potential requires policy measures to support network investments and improve the affordability of digital services for consumers.