How much data Vodacom smartphone users consume

Vodacom recorded a big jump in the average amount of mobile data consumed by smart devices on its network in South Africa during its 2022/2023 financial year.

The mobile network operator’s annual results showed that South African data traffic increased by 36.6% compared to the previous year, with a significant acceleration of 45.4% in the final quarter.

Contributing to the increase were 2 million new data customers added between 31 March 2022 and 31 March 2023, bringing Vodacom’s total data consumers to 25.5 million.

Furthermore, smart devices  — like smartphones and tablets — on Vodacom’s network were up by 11.1% to 29.3 million, while 4G and 5G devices increased by 18.6% to 21.2 million.

The average usage per smart device increased from roughly 2.4GB to 3GB per month, a jump of 29.1%.

The increase is particularly noteworthy compared to five years ago, when the average smart device on Vodacom’s network consumed less than 1GB per month.

The table below shows how the average data consumed per smart device on Vodacom’s network increased between the 2018/2019 and 2022/2023 financial years.

Average data consumption of smart device on Vodacom’s network in South Africa — 2018 to 2023
Financial year Average data consumed per smart device Increase from previous year
2018/2019 966MB 23.2%
2019/2020 1.5GB 56.0%
2020/2021 2.1GB 38.9%
2021/2022 2.4GB 14.0%
2022/2023 3.0GB 29.1%

Vodacom also said that prepaid data revenue increased by 12.9% to R11.4 billion for the year, with growth accelerating to 17.4% in the fourth quarter.

“This improvement reflected our network availability and the success of our data-led propositions focused on the providing affordable offers to the most price-sensitive, lower-income customers,” said Vodacom.

Vodacom explained data traffic increase was possible due to its investment in power resilience as South Africa faced record-high load-shedding.

The network also saw increased demand for data in its divisions in the rest of Africa — with data revenue in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Lesotho, Mozambique, and Tanzania surging by 33.2%.


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How much data Vodacom smartphone users consume