Mobile coverage

The cell phone is currently one of the main means of communication throughout the DRC. The public fixed telephone service does not cover the whole country, which, in principle, is entirely covered by cellular telephony. But the territory is so vast that in each of the 26 provinces there are "black holes" where there is no cellular coverage. These uncovered parts are generally considered unprofitable spaces.

All telecommunication companies offer technology based on 3G. Since the end of 2018, Vodacom, Airtel and Orange started progressively to offer 4G services, yet at slower rates compared to 4G in other countries. The signal is well received in Kinshasa and in the major cities of the other provinces. The areas that are not covered are in very remote rural areas and far from the city centers.

In theory there are no age groups or gender or social and ethnic groups excluded from ICT access. However, we cannot overlook the fact that in order to be part of the users of this technology, one is required to have the means to buy a phone and to buy a traffic plan. It should be also remembered that all cell phone companies are commercial enterprises that seek to maximise profits. The abovementioned "black holes" are either areas inhabited by very poor populations or areas isolated by water or forest. The poor are thus effectively excluded. There is no sectoral policy to promote access to ICTs for all the Congolese. The poor governance of the country, does not allow an optimal deployment of these companies throughout the country and does not allow an economic recovery of these poor and destitute populations.