The ICT sector continues to witness growth, according to the latest sector statics report for the period April to June 2014, the last quarter of the financial year 2013/2014.

During the period, the total number of mobile subscriptions grew by 5.6 per cent to 32.2 million up from 31.8 million subscriptions. This increase was reflected in the mobile penetration in the country which stood at 79.2 per cent.

Mobile money transfer subscriptions declined from 26.7 million posted in the previous quarter to 26.6 million. However, the number of agents grew by 4.8 per cent to reach 109,286 from 104,323 in the previous quarter.

Mobile subscribers preferred to send SMS than make phone calls during the quarter. The number of SMS increased from 6.2 billion posted in the previous quarter to 6.8 billion messages representing a growth of 10.8 per cent while outgoing mobile voice traffic declined by 4 per cent to post 7.3 billion minutes down from 7.6 billion recorded in the last quarter.

Data or Internet subscriptions continued to grow to reach 14.0 million up from 13.3 million posted in the January to March 2014 period. Mobile data/internet subscriptions continued to dominate overall data subscriptions and it recorded 13.9million subscriptions. The number of internet users also grew by 3 per cent to reach 22.3 million up from 21.6 million reported in the last quarter.

The international internet bandwidth available in the country declined by 2.1 per cent to reach 847,464 Mbps down from 865,714 Mbps recorded in the last quarter. This decline could be attributed to the reported decrease in capacity by Sea Submarine Communications Limited (SEACOM). On the other hand, utilization of international internet bandwidth was 436,016 Mbps representing 51.4 per cent consumption.

In the broadcasting sector, news, discussions and drama formed the proportion of local content while majority of the content remained foreign and featured soap operas, movies and music. The Authority is working with local media houses and production houses to increase local content aired to 40 per cent by 2015 and build towards 60 per cent by 2018.

Investments in the postal and courier industry increased by 33.1 per cent in the year 2013 to stand at 519million shillings up from 390million recorded in 2012. Letter traffic, local and international, continued on a downward trend during the quarter. On the other hand, the number of courier items sent increased substantially by 96.3 per cent to reach 937,619 items up from 477,526 sent last in the quarter. An annual review for the financial year 2013/14 indicates that courier traffic stood at 2.6million items, a 72.8 per cent increase compared to the last financial year. This growth could be attributed to the increasing uptake of e-commerce which has seen more Kenyans transact online and have goods delivered through courier services.

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