Opensignal says Malaysians are the champions in mobile data consumption during the pandemic


Over the past year, Opensignal has given us plenty of reports that Malaysians have relied on mobile broadband plans by local telco operators. You would think that by now, it would make more sense to subscribe to an actual WiFi package but that's not the case. In this article, we will be taking a look at the monthly mobile data consumption in the Southeast Asia region from January 2020 until March 2021.

From the graph below, you can see that besides Malaysia, other SEA countries such as Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand and Cambodia are included as well. From March 2020 onwards, you can clearly see that all the countries except Singapore have escalated in mobile data consumption due to the lockdown. Malaysia has the highest mobile consumption especially in April 2020 with 30.7% and has remained consistently high throughout the year.


In fact, Malaysian mobile data users consume so much data that Opensignal recorded an impressive 35.2% YoY growth between January 2020 and January 2021. Opensignal also mentioned that both Malaysia and Thailand's mobile data consumption in January last year were tied at 19.5GB, but Malaysia remained at the top a year later with 26.4GB, compared to Thailand's 22.3GB.

Perhaps it may have something to do with the free daily data packages and unlimited data plans that were introduced last year, but those were and are short-term solutions to improve mobile internet connectivity in Malaysia. Celcom and Maxis may have gained the most subscribers, but Digi and U Mobile are now the most improved in Opensignal's Mobile Network Experience Report April 2021. To embrace the long-term challenge, the government is committing an RM400 million investment in hopes to improve network capacity and coverage.

Our dear Prime Minister Muhyiddin also said 5G should be ready by the end of the year, but looking at the current issue now, one may think if Malaysia infrastructure is actually ready for such change. Oh well, we shall see. If you want to read the full report, you can visit the page here. Stay tuned for more trending tech news at