Mobile phone is perhaps the most popular device in Pakistan. When introduced in early 1991, it was available to a rich few who were able to afford both a handset and the high service charges.
The sector saw explosive growth in the early 2000s with a number of players entering the market. The new services providers had to compete with the market leaders and this rivalry led to some interesting offers and packages.
As of 2014, Pakistan has a mobile phone density of over 73%. This is an amazing number for a country that is facing an internal civil war of sorts, an energy crisis and a runaway economy. Indeed, if the expenditure on cell phone usage is to be taken as an indicator, Pakistan would be amongst the top rated economies in the world.
The number that is the key to all the statistics about cell phone usages ad services in Pakistan is the number of subscribers. This number now stands above 132 million. In a country with a sinking ratio of USD to PKR, this number should not be, but there it is.
One reason of this disproportionate number is the fact that people see mobile phone and mobile phone services as an essential part of their lives. For many people, mobile phones are the most cost efficient way of keeping in touch with home. The migration of skilled and unskilled workers from the ends of the country to its major industrial centers has contributed a great deal to the growth of the cell phone usage.
Pakistanis have caught the SMS fever and are now amongst the most avid SMSers in the world. The availability of cheap SMS packages and the rise of Roman Urdu mean that now everyone regardless of their mother tongue could share a vulgar joke with ease.
With the news of the auction of 4G spectrum, the mobile phone users will be able to get a whole new level of services and convenience. However, now that the cellular services providers have given their consumers a taste of cheap and prompt services, time has come for these companies to reap their profits in the form of higher costs of services.
Latest posts by Zafar Iqbal (see all)
- Clash In Pakistani Capital – Business Insider - September 3, 2014
- Four Fun Ways of Spending August 14 - August 13, 2014
- Abandoning peace bid, Pakistan opens offensive against insurgents in north waziristan - July 10, 2014