The research firm has tipped the number of fixed broadband connections to also “increase significantly over the coming years”, albeit from a very low base of 13.78 million at the end of 2016 to 19.97 million at the end of 2021.
The number of fibre and fixed LTE connections will “increase sharply” over the next five years, but DSL will remain dominant, accounting for 70.7% of African fixed broadband connections in 2021, said Ovum.
It added that Africa is expected to cross 1 billion mobile subscriptions in the fourth quarter of 2016, reaching 1.02 billion by year-end.
“As Africa nears the landmark of 1 billion mobile subscriptions, it is clear that the next phase of growth will be in broadband connections and in revenue from data access as well as from new ‘digital services’ such as digital media and mobile financial services,” said Matthew Reed, Ovum practice leader, Middle East and Africa.
Ovum is part of Informa, which owns and publishes Digital TV Europe.