My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica: Why OUR Telecommunications Market Information Report indicate Jamaicans love Snapchat and High-Speed Internet

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Monday, June 27, 2016

Why OUR Telecommunications Market Information Report indicate Jamaicans love Snapchat and High-Speed Internet

“We are finding that people want more data per purchase. They are doing more with data and engaging more with social media. We are finding that people are keeping up from the $100 to $150, fairly straightforwardly”

FLOW Jamaica General Manager Garfield Sinclair commenting on the Telecommunications Market Information Report released by the OUR for the Q2 of 2015 

Folks, Jamaica's love for Social Media is driving Mobile Internet Growth in Jamaica for our Telecom Providers.


So says a recently released Telecommunications Market Information Report released by the OUR (Office of the Utilise Regulation) on Monday June 6th 2016 for the Q2 of 2015 ending June 2015 as reported in the article “Data packages bring in billions for telecoms ­ Snapchat, Instagram drive subscriptions among”, published Wednesday June 8, 2016 by Steven Jackson, The Jamaica Gleaner.

So why is Social Media increasing internet usage in Jamaica?

OUR Telecommunications Market Information Report - Mobile Broadband user are Growing Strong

According to their Telecommunications Market Information Report for Q2 of 2015 ending June 2015:

1.      JA$19.9 billion in total revenues from Voice Mobile, Fixed Line and Internet
2.      JA$13.3 billion for Voice Mobile revenue
3.      JA$2.4 billion for Fixed Line revenue
4.      JA$4.2 billion for Internet revenue

These figures presented in the Telecommunications Market Information Report for Q2 of 2015 ending June 2015 are YOY (Year on Year) increases over the corresponding periods in Q2 of 2014 as follows:

1.      JA$19.9 billion in total revenues from Voice Mobile, Fixed Line and Internet
2.      14% increase for Voice Mobile revenue
3.      12% increase for Fixed Line revenue
4.      153% increase for Internet revenue

These growth figures are incredible, especially when the latest Economic and Social Survey Jamaica 2014 and 2015 figures are compared:

1.      1.46 million Jamaicans with Internet Access
2.      1.3 million mobile internet users
3.      161,000 broadband subscribers
4.      966 narrowband subscribers

The shift in the Broadband is also part of the increased usage of Internet:

1.      920,000 High­speed Internet users in 2013/14
2.      120,000 High­speed Internet users in 2012/13
3.      786,000 Mobile Broadband users in 2013/14

Albeit this is the first time that data is being collected in the Mobile Broadband category, it's clearly the driver behind the 641% increase in the High­speed Internet users in the Economic and Social Survey Jamaica report.

Mobile Broadband users who love Mobile Social Media are Growing Strong, Game of Thrones Style!


So what's driving this explosion in Internet, which covers FLOW Broadband Services, Digicel Play and Mobile 3G Internet provided by both Telecom Providers FLOW Jamaica and Digicel?

Snapchat becoming popular with Jamaicans - Jamaicans willing to pay for High-Speed Data for Photos and Video 

Well, it comes as no surprise to me personally as it relates to the growth of Mobile Broadband; it's the latest Mobile Social Network App, Snapchat!

Jamaican Millennials (ages 18 to 28) and Teenagers aka Generation Z, are getting hip to Snapchat, which has now surpassed Twitter in terms of Average Daily users as reported in my blog article entitled “How Snapchat 150 million Daily users surpasses Twitter and threatens Instagram”.

Albeit the Millennials still cling to WhatsApp, the trend is definately headed in the Snapchat and their direction of sharing disappearing pictures and videos, Mission Impossible style, to quote FLOW Jamaica General Manager Garfield Sinclair: “We are looking for the explosion of Snapchat now because that is a data driver. But even without Snapchat, the growth of mobile data adoption by the average Jamaican is phenomenal”.

In fact, any social Media that involves the sharing of images and videos is fuelling this phenomenal growth, to quote Garfield Sinclair: “Instagram is the most popular app and it's getting caught up by Snapchat. Millennials are all into Snapchat, which is another data driver. All of these data drivers are good for business. Snapchat is where they are all going. It's no longer a picture anymore or a little video. Now you can create running vignettes now to showcase a week of activity”.

This is all music to the ears of the Telecom Providers, as the slow growth of Voice Mobile and Fixed Line (Landline) is being supplemented by the rapid explosive growth of Internet usage, be it Mobile or Broadband Internet, such as Digicel Play, which has now surpassed 35,000 customers as reported in the article “Summer Cable Market Heats Up”, published Friday June 17, 2016 by Neville Graham, The Jamaica Gleaner.

FLOW Jamaica has some of the lowest cost 3G Data bundles as listed in my Geezam blog article entitled “FLOW Jamaica’s 30-Day Prepaid Mobile Internet gives you 99 cents Plan”. Take a look at their offering below:



To activate a Prepaid Mobile Internet plan, use the following USSD (Unstructured Supplementary Service Data) Codes:

1.      50 MB (1 Day) Plan – *146*3*1#
2.      250 MB (3 Day) Plan – *146*3*2#
3.      2 GB (7 Days) Plan – *146*7#
4.      300 MB (30 Days) Plan – *146*30*1#
5.      500 MB (30 Days) Plan – *146*30*2#
6.      1 GB (30 Days) Plan – *146*30*3#
7.      2 GB (30 Days) Plan – *146*30*4#

Still, using a MiFi or Digicel 4G Broadband DX-250 Modem will make your Data Plan last longer in my Geezam blog article entitled “FLOW Jamaica MiFi helps you use Prepaid Mobile Internet Plan wisely”.

But with such a huge appetite for Broadband, it should come as no surprise that Digicel LTE, which was launched on Friday June 10th 2016 as detailed in my Geezam blog article entitled “How to Activate a Digicel LTE Smart Plan on your Smartphone” is doing so well, with some 7000 subscriber in the first week.

This despite the high cost of the Data plans which max out at speeds of up to 60MBps as pointed out in my blog article entitled “US$50 million 60Mbps Digicel LTE Network as Caricel and FLOW prep for August 2016 Launch”.





With FLOW Jamaica and Caricel expected to launch their 4G LTE Networks sometime in August 2016 as predicted in my blog article entitled “Caricel’s and FLOW Jamaica’s LTE and VDSL Double Launch on Emancipation or Independence Day”, Jamaicans are already calling relatives abroad to ship down compatible smartphones as listed below.

1.      Apple iPhone 5s 64GB
2.      Apple iPhone 6 64GB
3.      Apple iPhone 6+ 128GB
4.      Apple iPhone 6+ 16GB
5.      Apple iPhone 6+ 64GB
6.      Apple iPhone 6s 64GB
7.      Apple iPhone 6s+ 64GB
8.      BlackBerry Classic Q20
9.      BlackBerry Leap
10.  BlackBerry Passport
11.  BlackBerry Priv
12.  BLU Dash L
13.  BLU Dash M
14.  BLU Life XL
15.  BLU Studio C 5+5
16.  BLU Studio Energy 2
17.  Google Nexus 5x
18.  Motorola G 3rd Gen.
19.  PLUM Gator Plus 2
20.  Plum Might LTE
21.  Samsung Galaxy Note 4
22.  Samsung Galaxy Note 5
23.  Samsung Galaxy S5 neo
24.  Samsung Galaxy S6 32GB
25.  Samsung Galaxy S6 64GB
26.  Samsung Galaxy S6 edge + 32GB
27.  Samsung Galaxy S6 edge 32GB
28.  Samsung Galaxy S6 edge 64gb
29.  Samsung Galaxy S7 32GB
30.  Samsung Galaxy S7 edge 32GB


If the OUR Telecommunications Market Information Report is anything to go by, Jamaicans clearly are willing to pay for High-Speed Data for Photos and Video, no matter the cost!
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