Saturday, 23 June 2012

History of Global System for Mobile Communication in Nigeria(GSM)

June 23,2012
The History of Global System for Mobile Communication(GSM) in Nigeria is tracable to the deregulation of the Telecommunication industry which gave birth to the GSM Revolution from the year 2001 till the present (11 years now) under the civilian administration of President Olusegun Obasanjo, GCFR. Since then the Global System for Mobile Communication(GSM) has witnessed a phenomenal growth in the number of subscribers from barely less than a million to over 100 million subscribers.

Before the advent of Global System for Mobile Communication (GSM), the Nigeria Telecomunication Limited was saddled with the responsibility of providing means of communication basically the Landline which was bedevilled by gross inefficiency and corruption.The first GSM network provider that came on board was ECONET(now Airtel), formally launched on the 6/08/2001 and MTN Nigeria follow suit almost immediately. They were launched under the 900 and 1800 MHZ spectrum. Making a call cost N50 per minute, there was no per second billing.It was when Globacom Nigeria Limited came on board that for the first time introduced per second billing and other packages that brought healthy competition.

I remember buying my first MTN Sim for N13000(about $100), this was much more cheaper than those purchased earlier. The industry was then highly monopolised by MTN who had a number of factors to their advantage. One of such factors which still holds till the present was a wider coverage early enough with a high consistency in service delivery before others came in. The irony is though MTN seems to be more expensive in tariff many still steak to them one for the sake of nomenclature and identification(most people prefer to maintain their old number). Secondly, they appear more consistent in terms of coverage and availability of network signals in most areas in the country.

It is pertinent to mention that the introduction of other Global System for Mobile Communication Network providers such as Etisalat, Reformed ECONET ( Airtel Nigeria) and Globacom Nigeria Limited brought about huge transformation in the Telecom industry. Each of these Network providers has its own peculiarity in terms of packages. Competition is very rife sometimes one could not help but tag it ‘’tariff war’’. This has really given a lot of value for subscribers’ spending in the sector.

The Nigerian Telecom industry is said to be the fastest growing Telecom industry in the world. It represent the largest provider of job opportunities for Nigeria teeming population directly and indirectly.

It is worthy of note to state that the Global System for Mobile Communication is bisected with a number of challenges which is affecting optimum efficiency and performance. The Network providers complained of poor infrastructural base as a key factor inhibiting their ability to meet Key factors indicators as prescribed by the Nigeria Communication Commission ( NCC ) the regulatory authority. The four major GSM Network providers were therefore sanctioned recently to the tune of N1.17 billion naira as a fine for poor service delivery.

In the month of June,2012 The Network providers agreed to pay the fine but the condition that the government will imrove on the current infrastructure which has hitherto inhibit smooth operation of the sector.

Feel free to give your comment with respect to the History for Global System for Mobile Communication in terms of antecedent, performance and prospects in any country of your choice or from the Global perspective.

1 comment:

  1. Rydal Communications LTD currently sell there Business Landlines and Business Mobile Phone from the Peterborough office. Having always concentrated on the local Peterborough Telecom market They are very keen to stretch our horizons and start attracting national business.