Smartphone Users Statistics and Characteristics in West Africa 2019

smartphone user statistics in west africa 2019 image

Smartphone users in Nigeria and across Africa has grown quite rapidly over the last few years. In 2019, it is estimated to have reached over 123 million users in East Africa and over 170 million smartphone users in West Africa which is undoubtedly a staggering figure.

To help mobile phone manufacturers better understand smartphone user behaviors and few characteristics of smartphone users in West Africa, Naija Android Arena, with the help of some survey specialists conducted a survey among it users and several other smartphone users in West Africa.

This took into consideration several factors like how people in West Africa buy smartphones, how they see smartphone brands and among others. Over 31,000 users from 14 different West African countries (including Nigeria, Ghana, Liberia, Benin, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Mali, the Niger, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Togo and more) participated in the survey.

Which Operating System is more widely used in West Africa?

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We first tried to know the percentage of iOS and Android smartphone users across West Africa, it happens that Android still leads the smartphone market in the continent with over 87% percent of the users.

11% of the survey respondents agreed to using a iOS while Windows and others got barely 1% of the smartphone users.

Do they care about brand name?

percentage of people who care about smartphone brand name in west africa image

Interestingly, 22% of the users reckoned that they don’t care about brand name when buying a new smartphone while 78% said yes to caring about brand name when choosing a new smartphone.

Smartphone users in West Africa based on brand

smartphone users in west africa based on brand

Samsung still holds the major share in the smartphone market in West Africa with 23% of the users but unsurprisingly, Tecno and Infinix are quickly closing up with 19% and 14% users respectively.

Apple is still very much in the picture with 11% users while Huawei and Nokia follows suit with 7% and 6% respectively.

It is interesting to see Xiaomi up in the list with 4% share of the smartphone users in West Africa.

What they consider first

What do people consider first before buying a smartphone in west africa image

Approximately 37% of the respondents said they first consider price before buying a smartphone, this could possibly be why Tecno and Infinix are quickly capturing the smartphone market with lot’s of entry-level Android devices with low price tags.

Only 21% of the users responded with Design and Build quality as the top most thing they consider before going for a smartphone while 16% said they first consider the battery capacity and only 2% consider the brand first.

How many people buys smartphone online?

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When it comes to buying smartphone online, 58% said they don’t ever buy smartphones online, 38% said they do buy but not often, probably few times. 11% agreed that they frequently buy smartphones online.

How long before they switch to a new phone?

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Another interesting finding from our survey is how long people use their smartphone before switching to a new one, only 6% of the users change their smartphone when their is a newer version. 25% said they only switch when their current smartphone gets faulty and 69% said they will use their smartphone until a particular period of time.

Number of people using broken smartphones

Wrapping up the survey, we asked our respondents if their smartphones were broken or faulty in any, majority said theirs is not broken. However, 21% claimed to have a broken screen and 13% said they have faulty touchpad. See the full responses below;

  • Broken screen/touch sensor: 21%
  • Faulty touchpad: 13%
  • Swollen battery: 9%
  • Broken back cover: 5%
  • Faulty camera: 2%
  • Bad control buttons: 2%
  • Faulty speakers: 1%
  • Faulty charging port: 3%
  • Mine is not broken: 43%
  • Others: 1%


From around the mid of February 2019 till October 2019, over 31,000 users from 14 different West African countries (including Nigeria, Ghana, Liberia, Benin, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Mali, the Niger, Senegal, Kenya, Togo and more) were surveyed where they were urged to respond with their most honest opinion.

Public use

Would you like to share our data on smartphone user statistics and characteristics? You can freely use the data and graphics presented in this article for both commercial and non-commercial purposes. We only request that you indicate the original author of this study ( next to a link to this page.

About the author

Naija Android Arena is a Technology blog based on Android operating system, dedicated in offering first-hand Android news, tips, unbiased reviews of Android gadget and every other thing relating to Android operating system in Nigeria and across Africa.


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