9mobile Loses More Subscribers To MTN, Glo In Number Porting

The 4th mobile network operator in Nigeria, 9mobile, lost more customers to the bigger operators in the first quarter of this year as 6, 443 subscribers ported out of its network.

This is revealed in the latest number porting data released by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC). According to the NCC data, a total of 9,000 subscribers moved from one network to another between January and March.

The data shows that 72% of subscribers that ported out of their networks did so from 9mobile. Other operators also recorded outgoing porting, but insignificant numbers compared with 9mobile. MTN, for instance, lost 473 customers in the quarter, Airtel recorded 950 outgoing porting in the three months, while Globacom recorded 1,143 outgoing porting.

Outgoing porting January to March 2024

Incoming porting

In terms of incoming porting, MTN, which is the largest operator by subscriber number gained more customers from other operators. Out of the 9,000 incomings reported in the quarter, MTN received 6,555 customers from other networks, representing 73% of the total incoming porting.

  • The data shows that Airtel also received 1,566 customers from other networks, while Globacom gained 595 customers from other operators.
  • 9mobile, which lost many customers to other networks also recorded the least incoming porting as only 293 subscribers moved to the network in the quarter under review.
  • The operators’ subscription database also reflects the porting pattern at the end of March. According to the NCC data MTN Nigeria maintained its leadership position with 81.8 million total active subscriptions, while Airtel recorded 63.4 million subscriptions.
  • Globacom as the third largest operator had 62.2 million subscriptions, while 9mobile maintained a distant 4th position with 11.7 million subscriptions.
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Why subscribers port

From a peak of 22,539 in July 2015, the number of ports by mobile subscribers in Nigeria had declined steadily over the years to an average of 3,000 in a month.

While the Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) had attributed the decline to improvement in service quality, the telecoms regulator believes it is a combination of factors.

According to NCC, aside from the quality of service, most subscribers equally ported to other networks because they wanted to enjoy cheaper call and data rates on various promos offered by network operators.

However, the increasing rate of outgoing porting being recorded by 9mobile may not be unconnected with the poor experience subscribers have been having on the network lately.

The company’s social media pages are replete with complaints from customers lamenting how they have been unable to make calls or use data for days.

When Nairametrics reached out to 9mobile’s spokesperson, Chineze Amanfo, to inquire about the service quality complaints, she said the experience might be due to downtime in some areas, which is normal for all telecom networks.

  • “People may have a poor experience when there is downtime in certain areas, which is not peculiar to 9mobile. However, whenever such happens, we always strive to make sure the issues are resolved as quickly as possible,” she said.


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