Monday, 20 February 2017

Nigerian Telecoms to block Internet Calls to boost revenue

Nigerian Telecommunications companies are planning to curb losses from international calls and meet a revenue target of N20 trillion by blocking subscribers from using Skype and other internet call services, called Over-the-Top.

According to a report by PUNCH, subscribers may be prevented from voice and video calls on Facebook and Whatsapp, among other OTT services in future.

A manager at one of the major telecommunication companies in the country, who spoke on anonymity said, “It is an aggressive approach to stop further revenue loss to OTT players on international calls, having already lost about N100tn between 2012 and 2017.”

The manager added that “If we fail to be pro-active by taking cogent steps now, then there are indications that we may lose between N20tn and N30tn, or so, by the end of 2018.”

This further support Ovum report, a United Kingdom-based research and analytics company that about $386 billion would be lost over a period of six years, between 2012 and 2018, from Nigerian customers using the OTT voice applications.

“Generally, the main fear of the telecoms operators here will be that customers will increasingly use Skype as a substitute for conventional international calls,” said Mattew Reed, the Principal Analyst at Informa Telecoms and Media.

Although telecoms operators in the country claim international calls make up the most of their revenue due to Nigeria’s large diaspora population, the Nigerian Communications Commission, according to them is not doing enough to regulate the sector and keep them in business.

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