The fourth annual edition of the Digital Quality of Life Index (DQL) has reported that Nigeria ranks 86th in the world regarding digital wellbeing. That is out of 117 countries, or 92 per cent of the global population.
Out of the five fundamental digital life pillars, Nigeria’s worst score is for internet affordability (ranking 114th globally), and the best is for e-security (66th). Nigeria’s e-infrastructure services come 86th, while e-government and internet quality rank 95th and 99th, respectively. In the face of waging inflation, fixed broadband internet has become less affordable worldwide for the second year in a row, prying the global digital divide even further.
The DQL study is conducted by the cybersecurity company Surfshark. It evaluates countries based on five fundamental digital wellbeing pillars: internet quality, e-government, e-infrastructure, internet affordability, and e-security. This year, Nigeria comes at the lower end of the index, ranking 86th and only making it into the top 90 in the final index. Country ranks 7th in Africa. The country has dropped by four positions since last year’s edition, falling from 82nd to 86th. Out of all index pillars, Nigeria’s weakest spot is internet affordability, which needs to improve by 13970% to match the best-ranking country’s result (Israel).
Nigeria’s internet quality, considering internet speed, stability, and growth, ranks 99th in the world and is 26 per cent worse than the global average. Regarding internet speed alone, Nigeria’s mobile internet ranks higher than fixed broadband in the global ranking, operating at 25.2 Mbps/s (92nd globally). Meanwhile, the fixed broadband internet comes 102nd (18.9 Mbps/s).
Compared to Kenya, Nigeria’s mobile internet is 5% faster, while broadband is of around the same speed. Since last year, mobile internet speed in Nigeria has improved by 10.8% (2.5 Mbps), and fixed broadband speed has grown by 15.9% (2.6 Mbps). In comparison, Singapore’s residents enjoyed mobile speeds up to 104 Mbps/s and fixed to as much as 261 Mbps/s – that’s the fastest internet in the world this year.
Nigeria’s internet affordability ranks 114th in the world. Residents can buy 1GB of mobile internet in Nigeria for 15 minutes of work per month, 2 times more than in Kenya. However, compared to Israel, which has the most affordable mobile internet on the planet (5s per 1GB), Nigerians work 183 times more. Its affordability decreased since the previous year, making people work 13 minutes 16 seconds more to afford the same mobile internet service.
Fixed broadband costs Nigeria’s citizens around 36 hours 13 minutes of their precious working time each month. To afford it, Nigerians have to work 112 times more than Israeli citizens, for whom the most affordable package costs only 19 min of work monthly. Since last year, broadband internet has become less affordable in Nigeria, making people work 40 minutes more to afford fixed broadband internet service.
Globally, broadband is getting less affordable each year. Looking at countries included in last year’s index, people have to work six minutes more to afford broadband internet in 2022. In some countries, such as Ivory Coast and Uganda, people work an average of 2 weeks to earn the cheapest fixed broadband internet package. The same trend was observed last year. With the current inflation, the pressure on low-income households that need the internet has become even heavier. Surfshark’s study also found that countries with the poorest internet connection have to work for it the longest.
“While countries with a strong digital quality of life tend to be those of advanced economies, our global study found that money doesn’t always buy digital happiness,” – explains Gabriele Racaityte-Krasauske, Head of PR at Surfshark. “That is why, for the fourth year in a row, we continue analyzing the Digital Quality of Life to see how different nations keep up with providing the basic digital necessities for their citizens. Most importantly, our research seeks to show the full picture of the global digital divide that millions of people are suffering from.”