Today, Opera celebrates its long-term ambition to accelerate digital adoption in Africa as it marks its 15th year on the continent. With over 150 million monthly active users in Africa, the company is providing better connectivity through its data-light Opera Mini browser. However, with 800 million Africans still yet to onboard the Internet, and 1 GB of data costing up to 16% of monthly income in some parts of the continent, this mission is still ongoing.
To celebrate their 15th anniversary, Opera is launching a data giveaway. Opera is asking its users to share experiences of how Opera Mini has helped them to reach new levels of connection. Whether setting up a business, speaking with loved ones or embarking on an educational journey, Opera will award the most memorable 150 entries with 150 GB of free data – that’s over 8,000 free hours of browsing, over 200 hours of streaming your favorite videos and over 1,500 free hours of streaming your favorite tunes.
The competition opens on 15th December and closes 15th January. To enter, simply like and comment Opera’s post on Facebook or Instagram,, using #CelebrateWithOpera and explain why Opera is important to you. The terms & conditions for participation are available here.
In fifteen years, Opera has seen significant growth in users across the African continent. Since launching across Africa, Opera has risen to capture the highest brand awareness of all browsers, excluding Google Chrome.
In Kenya alone:
- 93% are familiar with Opera Mini, and 87% say that it is easy to use.
- So far in 2021, Opera Mini has been downloaded 13 million times from Google Play, showing over 30% growth YoY in Kenya.
- In 2021, Opera offered Kenyans over 3 million GB of free data together with leading telecom partners to accelerate Kenya’s digital revolution
- In 2021, Kenyan users saved approximately $3.5 million USD or over 395 million KES through free data campaigns, allowing them to surf their favorite sites: Facebook, FlashScore and Google, and experience moments of connection faster, for longer.
Today, millions across Africa use the Opera Mini browser, citing lower costs, faster connection and ease of use as key drivers of adoption. Opera’s long-term local infrastructural investment enables up to 90% data savings for users. According to the State of the mobile 2019 report by Opera, in 2018, using Opera products equated to savings of up to $100million USD, across the top 20 African countries. Opera has been partnering with leading telecom providers across the continent to offer free Internet access via Opera Mini. As part of Opera’s commitment to help people get online. Opera is sponsoring up to 3 GB of monthly data via Opera Mini for our millions of users. Over 50% of consumers have used free data sponsored by Opera and in 2021, users spent 2.5 billion hours using Opera Mini.
The data giveaway comes as the Covid-19 pandemic has laid bare deep-seated regional inequalities in internet access. According to Statista, currently, only 39% of Africa has internet access, compared with 60% globally. High data costs are a primary constraint. According to Cable.co.uk, the price of mobile data in Sub-Saharan Africa is the most expensive in the world, with an average cost of $6.44 per 1 GB of mobile data. This is in stark contrast to Western Europe, where the same amount of mobile data is a third of the cost ($2.47).
For some African families, data takes up a significant share of household income, with 1 GB costing up to 16% of a monthly salary in some areas. According to the State of the mobile 2019 report by Opera, In Kenya, an individual can expect to be paying 3 US dollars per GB: 50% more than in Nigeria, twice as much as in Ghana, and ten times more than in India.
Jørgen Arnesen, EVP Mobile at Opera said: “At Opera, we know the power that connection can bring. From sharing ideas, art and culture to kick-starting businesses or bringing loved ones closer together, data is essential to connecting people. Our mobile browser Opera Mini uses only one-tenth of the data that others do, and we’re proud to continue helping millions of people overcome connectivity barriers with our solutions.”
The key to unleashing innovation, enterprise and prosperity across the continent is democratizing data. Opera’s data giveaway competition marks the beginning of ambitious plans to accelerate the right to internet access. Building on its commitment to help people get online, Opera will roll-out a series of impact projects in 2022 to continue to address data inequity and connect the unconnected.