Despite the growing importance of connectivity, there is still a considerable mobile gender gap across several regions in the world, including Sub-Saharan Africa in 2020, according to the latest GSMA annual Mobile Gender Gap report.

The report, published yesterday, finds that there are significant variations within regions in overall mobile ownership, mobile internet use, and the magnitude of the gender gap.

These Techloy charts provide insight into the gender gap in mobile ownership and mobile internet usage in selected countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, based on a 2019 GSMA Intelligence Consumer Survey.

Chart by Loy Okezie /

The mobile phone ownership gender gap in Sub-Saharan Africa remained at 13% between 2017 and 2019, while the mobile internet use gender gap dropped from 38% in 2018 to 37% in 2019. “In general, markets with lower levels of mobile ownership tend to have wider gender gaps in mobile ownership and mobile internet use,” the report stated, as it revealed that Mozambique has the lowest level of ownership of all surveyed countries, with only 46% of women owning a mobile phone compared to 56% of men.

Beyond national variations, there are also differences between urban and rural areas. For example, in Uganda, there is a 4% urban gender gap in mobile ownership while in rural areas it is over five times that, at 22%. The situation is similar for mobile internet. For example, in Senegal, women in urban areas are 11% less likely than men to use mobile internet, compared to 32% in rural areas.

Chart by Loy Okezie /