We Are Social’s Digital Report on Zimbabwe is pretty telling of just how impactful the floundering Zim economy on Zimbos usage
Even before statistics started coming in from the likes of POTRAZ – data usage is on the decline, I think the assumption for most was that we’re using the internet less because of two reasons. Cost of data (both mobile and home internet) rose exponentially over the last 12-18 months.
The disaster has been compounded by the fact that for the significant portion of the last 12 months Zimbabweans didn’t have power for 14-18 hours on a daily basis.
We are Social’s digital report also aligns with assumptions that Zimbos are using the internet less than they were before.
One of the most striking statistics is the number of social media users who can be reached by advertisers is falling. At the start of 2020, that number is 0.98 million – a 12% drop and 135 thousand less users than there were at the beginning of 2019.
|Platform||# of users in Q3 2019||# of users at the start of 2020||% difference|
|920 000||860 000||- 6.5%|
|221 100||220 000||-0.5%|
|161 086||168 500||+4.4%|
|549 920||560 000||+1.8%|
Troubling times ahead
Some may believe that social media numbers are an insignificant trend to follow but they are a good indicator of how much people are adopting internet use in a country.
The most telling number for me is the consumer readiness score which dropped from 65.37% to 57.48%. At this point, it’s well established that the internet is the future and when we have less people ready to make use of the internet than we did last year that’s a disheartening trend.
Any positives to take from all this?
On the positive side is the fact that the number of mobile connections as a percentage of total population rose by 7% from 76% to 83% which suggests more people have smartphones or mobile phones than before.