• Saturday, March 02, 2024
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Why Nigerians’ data plans are vanishing quickly

Why Nigerians’ data plans are vanishing quickly

Ayomide Oyetola a mother of two starred at the SMS alert on her phone for the third time and could not believe the message she was reading. The 2 Gigabyte (GB) data plan she bought three days ago from her bank’s mobile application for N2000 ($5.53) was now remaining 200 megabyte (MB). She had upgraded her plan after repeatedly seeing her 1.5GB vanish in two days.

“I don’t know what is eating my data?” Oyetola who earns a monthly salary of N80, 000 as an executive secretary complained to her colleague at work the next day.

For two days, 7 to 8 July, 2019, thousands of Nigerians took to twitter to express their anger at the rate their data were vanishing. A hashtag #ReviewYourDataRates that started with a tweet from Henry Shield, head of Mission, Leadership and Accountability Initiative calling Twitter influencers to a “national agitation” gained momentum and became a trending topic.

As it turns out, many more Nigerians are in Oyetola’s shoes.

“I spend no less than N5000 f or data with @MTNNG for less than 2 weeks at times.” said Ijeoma Odimegwu from her handle @ijeoma_odimegwu, “@Gloworld network is absolutely terrible in my area. @AirtelNigeria rates are as high as MTN.”

Another user identified as Omotore tweeting the handle @mamakun said “I am almost spending N2500 per week for data on @AirtelNigeria. I am not a heavy browser. @MTNNG is even worse; IGB in less than 24 hours and my phone was not in use.”

Hundreds of others had similar complaints. Usually, when a subscriber buys a monthly subscription it is in hopes that it would last for the duration of the month. But this is never the case for various reasons that have more to do with the user than the quality of service the internet provider is giving.

One of the easiest ways to monitor your data is to set limit and alerts for your data consumption every month. This is often easier said than done, because there is always the temptation you face while on social media platform like Facebook or Instagram for instance.

You can also turn off auto-updates which eats hundreds of megabytes in seconds. For Android, simply go to settings in the Google Play Store, tap the menu, settings and auto-update apps features.

The mobile version of a websites not only offers a better readability and smoother scrolling, you also read content at far less data than you would on desktop version of the website. Finally, don’t download files as they are. Find time to compress them first before downloading.