The bandwidth glass in Nigeria seems to be going from half empty to half full. One of the first new licences aimed at cracking open broadband supply barriers went to a local company Bitflux. Russell Southwood spoke to the people behind it, Biodun Omoniyi and Tokunbo Talabi.
Except for new entry operators, the mobile companies have reached the edge of their addressable markets in most countries. If that’s true for voice, the situation is much worse for data where operators are primarily focused on the richer urban markets. But with the rise of Internet use in Africa, a new start-up – Volo Broadband – is determined to help operators address edge-of-network data markets. Russell Southwood spoke to one of the company’s co-founders Mark Summer about how they’re going to do this.
Last month saw the launch of another TV White Spaces Pilot in Ghana, joining the growing list of pilots across the continent. As the number of pilots has grown and their profile increased, they are meeting more opposition, both on and off the continent. Russell Southwood spoke to Professor H.Nwana of the Dynamic Spectrum Alliance and looks at what its opponents argue.
African satellite industry event Satcom 2014 took place this week in Johannesburg. As the satellite sector digests the loss of backhaul traffic to fibre, it is clear that there are new but potentially difficult opportunities. Russell Southwood tries to pick apart what might connect these new satellite opportunities to customers and what’s holding them back.
Wi-Fi hot-spots and 3G coverage are the main ways that Africans get the Internet. Being charitable, quality of service and price are very variable. A new Lithuanian start-up Rotten Wi-Fi has set out to drive improvements in these two areas using consumer testing and feedback. Russell Southwood spoke to its co-founder Arturas Jonkus.
Alongside the growth of social media on the continent, using the Internet for everyday transactions is starting to become as natural as the things it is slowly replacing. Want to sell something? eBay-owned Gumtree in South Africa is now getting 3-5 million uniques a month. Russell Southwood spoke to is newly appointed Head Of Marketing Claire Cobbledick.
Cameroon's approach to increasing mobile data speeds for its citizens is wrong-headed and will lead it into a time-consuming dead-end. Cheap mobile data prices come from competition between operators, not from giving a single operator a monopoly. Russell Southwood looks at what's happening and remembers that Cameroon has previous form of this kind in the regulatory field.
Africa has a unique opportunity to make the transition to IP data more quickly than other continents. Using IP data will help reduce costs and could produce some of the cheapest data delivery in the world. Russell Southwood explores how Governments and regulators could create the right conditions to help bring this about.
South Africa is potentially a large market for home high-speed broadband but a number of factors have held up its implementation. Kenya got there three years ago so Russell Southwood looks at why and talks to Mark Elkins, Posix about what they've got planned.