Mobile Communications in Zambia

Mobile Communications in Zambia: Demand-Side Survey Analysis of Mobile Phone Access and Use

By David Montez, InterMedia

Based on the AudienceScapes nationally representative survey of Zambia, conducted in April and May 2010

This report uses AudienceScapes data from a nationally representative survey of Zambia to focus on how people of various social groups access and use mobile communications. The report also showcases how the AudienceScapes survey data can help members of the development community to design and implement more effective programs in technological access, communications and information empowerment. 

Beyond measuring basic access and use levels, this report works to answer several key research questions regarding the role of mobile phones in economic and social development in Zambia. These include but are not limited to; what is the potential for SMS-based information services as a development tool, is the mobile market beginning to reach disadvantaged parts of the population, what are the continued barriers to mobile phone access and use, who is using mobile money and is their greater market potential for these services?

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Report Summary- Key Points

Report  Methodology

Read Chapters

Chapter 1 A Rapidly Growing Mobile Communications Market
:  Summarizes mobile phone access, use, and activities by socioeconomic groups.

Chapter 2 SMS Use and its Role as an Information Exchange Tool:  Evaluates the prevalence of SMS as a tool for news and information, identifies who are the key groups who are using this tool and what demographic groups are most likely to be reachable via SMS.

Chapter 3 Mobile Use Patterns by Service Provider:  Compares demographic profiles of the user bases of mobile network operators (MNOs) and the prevalence of multi‐SIM card ownership.

Chapter 4 Early Adopters vs. Recent Adopters: Determinants of Mobile Use Patterns: Explores whether mobile phone adoption in Zambia has reached the disadvantaged and whether there are significant use differences between early and recent adopters. 

Chapter 5 Barriers to Phone Ownership and the Dynamics of Phone Sharing: Examines barriers to Zambians owning or using a mobile phone and why some Zambians have never used one. Compares the use patterns of mobile owners compared to mobile borrowers.

Chapter 6 Mobile Banking‐ Who is it Reaching?: Profiles Zambia’s m‐money users and considers whether these services have reached those most in need. Are Zambians using the service for more than just money transfers?

For more information contact

David Montez
Phone: 202-652-2271

Peter Goldstein
Phone: 202.434.9584


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