BusinessDay

Challenges for Nigeria’s Online Space

Nigeria holds perhaps the fastest growing tech market in the world and has unofficially been crowned as Africa’s tech capital, many experts are considering the fact that with the huge number of start ups becoming involved in the country and  the investment opportunities that continue to present themselves it could quickly overtake places such as Silicon Valley to be crowned as the tech capital of the world, but there are some challenges particularly in the online space that need to be measured.

One of the most glaring concerns the latest tech pandemic – online gaming, particularly in gambling. Online gaming as a whole has become one of the fastest growing markets in the world as mobile gaming is capturing record numbers of new users, but with online gambling being in the middle of this there have been suggested risks where regulation is involved – other countries have implemented measures to try and curb the growth as initiatives such as Gamstop exist to prevent problem players from accessing the sites, but as a growing number of operators register outside of this space where you can find them at casinos not on gamstop, the problem continues to persist.

(Image from inventiva.co.in)

Read also: Three Nigerian startups qualify for AfriTech 2020 online final 

With Africa being such a young continent, and the median age of Nigeria being just 18.1 years old, much of the demographic for these types of games are those considered most at risk. Nigeria has quickly adopted many western cultural movements and has become quite cosmopolitan, but because of this more and more users are gaining access to modern mobile devices and a faster, more reliable internet connection opening them up to the risks of online gambling.

The current regulation in Nigeria around the market is quite open, there’s plenty of room for less than legitimate sites to slip through the cracks and get setup before being noticed and this poses a serious problem, in order to deliver the best possible experience for the younger audience, a closer look needs to be taken at methods utilised throughout other parts of the world and adjust those measures at home.

The good news is that the exploding tech industry in Nigeria is still young, this means there are plenty of opportunities to come with change relatively quickly as the infrastructure still develops. We’re seeing this with different tech such as 5G networking as test had started to roll out as early as July 2018 – without the need to remove or adjust existing infrastructure that is heavily present in other parts of the world, change can happen extremely quickly and without much disruption to the existing systems in place, and this is true across all of the tech networks in the country and is in large part to why the tech revolution is starting so quickly and gathering so much steam. Expect to see big changes in the coming few years as more focus is set to be put on these rapidly changing markets and discover how they can impact the growing number of users that are now utilising them.

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