Mobile communications is a marketing success story in all parts of the world. But nowhere is the impact felt more dramatically than in the Africa Mid-East region.
Growth of the technology in the region has been striking. A February 17, 2006 story in the International Herald Tribune (Neuilly) said that in 1998 there were 2-million cell phone users in Africa. By 2006 subscribers totalled 120-million.
In market penetration terms, growth grew from 0.2 percent in 1998 to 13.2 percent in 2006.
The Tribune cited the CEO of one of Africa's major cell phone providers for this information.
In the Middle East North Africa (MENA) region cell phone usage is even more striking. A fascinating, February 2006 study titled, "The Socio-economic Impact of Mobile Phones in the Arab World," was published by the Mobile Telecommunications Company (MTC) (Kuwait), which provides wireless services to six Middle Eastern and 13 sub-Saharan countries.
"Early on, Arab countries in the Middle East and Gulf regions adopted mobile telephone technology as a provider of an individualistic form of communication, and transformed it into an inescapable element of daily life."
In Africa, the impact of mobile communications cuts across all age categories and income segments. The Tribune story begins with an anecdote about a woman in a remote village in Sierra Leone-the International Monetary...