Skip to content

Opera halts free data offers in Kenya

Opera just ended a free data campaign that millions of Kenyans benefitted from due to regulatory reasons

Millions of Kenyans using Opera Mini have been hit hard after Opera stopped its free data campaign, which allowed its consumers of limited means to enjoy free data bundles to access the internet. Opera had suspended its free data campaigns in Kenya, which provided users with 50 megabytes daily, due to a new regulatory stance against advertisements in browser speed dials.

At least 13.5 million local users have benefited daily from its 50MB free data plan.

The halt follows the Betting Control and Licensing Board's directive prohibiting betting firms from advertising in this manner without authorisation, a move backed by consumer protection advocacy.

Opera's Free data offer
"Unfortunately, for now, we have had to stop our much-loved Free Data Campaigns in Kenya for our 13.5 million local Opera users. We had to put a hold on investments and free internet access in Kenya, but we are hoping for a solution so that we can once again provide free data to you, our valued customers in Kenya," Opera said in an update.

Opera has been prominent in Africa with its free internet plan. There are over 100 million Opera users across the continent, with Kenya and Nigeria accounting for a big part.

The suspension comes despite Opera's significant investment in the region. It could affect Opera's plans to invest billions to enhance data-saving features and boost internet accessibility in Africa, recognising high costs and slow speeds as barriers to online engagement.