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Authors: MICAH, D. J.
Keywords: Telecommunications
Quality of service
GSM operators
GSM subscribers
Issue Date: 2014
Abstract: The deregulation of the telecommunications sector in 2000 led to increased use of the Global System for Mobile Telecommunications (GSM) and Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA). Despite the perceived benefits associated with the utilisation of these services, problems of quality of services, infrastructural constraints and other challenges in the sector have remained largely uninvestigated. The study was conducted to examine access and the quality of services offered by the GSM providers in Ibadan, Southwestern Nigeria. A synthesis of neoliberal and rational choice theories provided the analytical framework. The research design was a cross-sectional survey. Multistage sampling consisting purposive, simple random, and cluster sampling techniques were used to select locations and respondents. A sample of 1600 respondents were selected consisting 800 GSM subscribers from Ibadan Main City (MC) and the Less City (LC) respectively using Cochran's sample size determination. A semi-structured questionnaire was used to elicit information on socio-demographic characteristics, perceptions on quality of services, and levels of access and utilisation. Quality of service was classified as poor, moderate and good. Access and utilisation were classified as high, moderate and low. Also, 34 In-depth interviews (IDIs) were conducted with service providers and subscribers to elicit information on business operations and challenges in the sector. In addition, four Key Informant Interviews (KIIs) were conducted with regulators in the sector comprising Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) and Consumer Protection Council (CPC). Quantitative data were analysed at univariate and bivariate levels using descriptive and inferential statistics (Chi-square test at p? 0.05 and Correlation). Qualitative data were content analysed. Respondents' age was 29.6±9.3 years, 54.4% were females, 80.4% earned less than N50,000 monthly and 72.9% had secondary education and above. Respondents from MC (62.0%) and LC (71.8%) perceived quality of GSM services as poor due to incessant call drops (82.4%), network disruption (78.9%), and poor call set-up (79.5%). Conversely, 55.4% from MC and 60.0% from LC perceived deregulation as beneficial. Access to GSM services in MC as perceived was rated high (38.6%), moderate (54.6%) and low (6.8%) and also in LC rated high (29.6%), moderate (57.4%) and low (13.0%). Respondents from MC (69.0%) and from LC (66.6%) perceived utilisation of GSM as high. GSM was utilised for multi-purposes which included connecting families and friends (94.0%), source of income (84.6%) and internet services (82.8%). High tariffs (89.0%) and indiscriminate erection of masts (65.7%) were mentioned as major challenges by the subscribers. There was positive association between location and perception of quality of services (r= 0.69); between age and perception on quality of GSM services (r=0.46); between income and level of utilisation of GSM (r= 0.56); location and level of utilisation of GSM (r= 0.95); level of utilisation of GSM and building of social networks (r= 0.89); perception of deregulation and level of access (r= 0.21); perception of deregulation and utilisation of GSM (r= 0.92). Respondents from MC (66.4%) and LC (69.6%) rated NCC as efficient, notwithstanding that the regulatory agency was fraught with inactions. Findings from IDIs indicated that infrastructure inadequacies, government�s inconsistent policies, vandalisation of base stations, heavy import duties and multiple taxations limited the capacity of GSM providers to offer quality services and lower tariffs. Findings from KIIs identified unauthorised product promotions, arbitrary charges and problem of infrastructure as challenges affecting quality of services offered by GSM operators in the sector. There was substantial access and utilisation of Global System for Mobile Telecommunications, but the quality of services was considered poor in the study areas. There is need for improvement of infrastructure, security of base station and strict enforcement of laws by the regulatory bodies in order to improve the quality of services rendered by the operators.
URI: http://localhost:8080/handle/123456789/136
Appears in Collections:Theses & Dissertations

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