July 22, 2024

Mobile phones from the Chinese Transsion Group comprising Tecno, Infinix, and iTel currently have the largest number of approved phones in the Nigerian market.

This is according to the latest data released by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), which revealed that the number of approved phones in the market increased to 2,257 as of June 6, 2024.

The devices, which are of different brands and models are those that have been tested by the telecoms regulator and found to meet the applicable type approval standards required to allow them to be sold to consumers in Nigeria.

As of December last year, the number of approved phones by the telecom regulator stood at 2,155. This shows that the mobile manufacturers have secured approval for 102 new models of phones so far this year.

The NCC data shows that phone brands under Transsion Group comprising Tecno, Infinix, and iTel currently have a total of 598 models of their phones approved for sale in Nigeria. This represents 26% of the total approved phones in the market.

The Nokia brand being marketed in Nigeria by HMD Global came second in the market with 310 of its devices currently approved. This is followed by Samsung, which has a total of 231 approved mobile devices in the market.

Other leading brands in the market with more than 40 models approved include Huawei, Xiaomi, Oppo, and Vivo.

According to the immediate past the Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, Prof Umar Danbatta, the approval of mobile devices for the market became necessary to tackle the menace of counterfeit phones being sold in the market.

He noted that the list of approved phones published by the Commission allowed Nigerians to check if the phone they want to buy has been tested and approved for the market.

“The menace of counterfeit and substandard handsets has assumed a global dimension and requires a lot of education on the part of the consumers and collaboration with other government agencies to address it.

“Cases of influx and patronage of counterfeit handsets are more rampant in developing countries, such as Nigeria, where importers bring in substandard phones without recourse to the regulatory type-approval process aimed at certifying such devices as fit for the market,” he noted.

With over 219 million active mobile subscriptions as of March 2024, the country remains a veritable market for mobile manufacturers across the world. This has led to the influx of mobile manufacturers into the country.

The NCC is empowered by the Nigerian Communications Act 2003 to establish and enforce standards for all telecommunications equipment in operation in Nigeria to ensure that they operate seamlessly and safely within the Nigerian telecommunications environment. However, despite the regulatory efforts, thousands of unapproved phone brands are still being sold across the country.

While the unapproved phones are in most cases sub-standard or fake, they sell faster than the approved ones as they are sold at cheaper prices.


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