According to a study conducted by Orange Business Intelligence Technology (ORBIT), which is the research and technology section of Orange Group Nigeria, the vast majority of people in Nigeria who use smartphones do so with an Android device. This study results from a Smartphone and Application Penetration Research that was carried out during the 4th quarter of 2022 in 12 cities throughout Nigeria. In contrast, the report indicated that 86% of Nigeria’s smartphone users are on Android, 13% are on IOS, and only 1% are on smartphones with Windows Operating Systems developed by Microsoft.
Based on the findings of the study that set out to examine the current state of the smartphone industry and determine which applications are being used in conjunction with mobile devices in that country, Tecno was found to be the most popular smartphone manufacturer in Nigeria, and this was then seconded by Inifinix, which is yet another brand produced by the Chinese Transsion Group, while iPhone came in third place in proportion to the number of users.
WhatsApp and Facebook were the most installed “Global” apps.
Regarding the usage of Apps, the report found that 8,578 respondents, or 64% of all respondents, owned smartphones, with many of them having dozens of apps installed. In order to simplify the research process, 51 of the most popular apps were selected for inclusion. From this group of apps, investigators further divided them into 32 Regional apps and 19 Global apps, with Regional apps being those with a leading market in Africa, as stated by ORBIT in their report.
The survey found that WhatsApp, as well as Facebook, were the most widely installed “Global” apps by Nigerians, and both have over 90% coverage in the country. The third most popular app is Xender, which is a file-sharing software that allows users to exchange large files and synchronize their smartphone applications with those of other users even when they are not connected to the internet. In this way, the app saves its users money by allowing them to exchange media without using any of their data.
Chinese own mobile products dominate the Regional apps.
In the category of regional apps, Boomplay, a music streaming and downloading app which is owned by Chinese mobile phone producer Transsion Holdings, came first. Jumia is in second place, with Opay and Palmpay, e-payment platforms, in third and fourth place. Boomplay comes pre-installed on most Techno, Infinix, and Itel phones manufactured by Transsion. Consequently, it is not surprising that Boomplay is so popular, given the dominance of Transsion phones in Nigeria, with a 62% market share.
Both OPay and PalmPay are owned and operated by Chinese fintech companies. OPay, also known as Operapay, gained traction in 2018 when it began providing significant discounts on its ride-hailing platform. Like Boomplay is preloaded on most Transsion cellphones, PalmPay is a collaborative effort between Transsion and Netease, the report said. On Banking apps, Access Bank, UBA, as well as GTBank are the most popular banking apps among the sample population. With $17.7 billion in assets and about 50 million customer base, Access Bank is the largest financial institution in Nigeria.
By 2025, there will be more than 140 million smartphone users in Nigeria.
Following the Statista projection, by 2025, there will be more than 140 million smartphone users in Nigeria, Africa’s most populated nation and greatest economy, representing a penetration rate of 66%. This would be a huge step up from the 19.7% penetration rate in 2021 and would make Nigeria the ninth nation that has the largest number of smartphones in the world. Nigeria’s digital sector has been thriving due to the country’s huge and growing youth population and the projected extensive adoption of smartphones there in the near future.