Internet News - In Brief


- According to MTN Nigeria’s CEO, the company had started work on the next phase of its fibre-optic network. Since 2006, more than 3,800km of the fibre have been deployed, with a further 1,393km planned for 2008. The work is being funded by a USD2 billion loan arranged by IBTC Standard Bank last year. ‘We will build metropolitan fibre rings around important commercial cities. To date, we have completed Lagos, while Abuja, Ibadan, Port Harcourt, Kano, Aba and Warri are nearing completion,’ said Farroukh.

- The Zambia Telecommunications company (Zamtel) has completed the construction of a fibre-optic network that will allow the country to become connected to the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC). Zamtel Managing Director Simon Tembo said construction of the USD48 million Lusaka Metropolitan Fibre Optic Cable is complete, and is expected to go into service next month.

- MWEB will be forced to end its WiMAX trial on 29 April as its application for a trial licence extension was turned down by the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA). The company’s WiMAX network in Cape Town and Gauteng and has been serving around 1,000 trial users since early 2007.

- Uganda’s Government and stakeholders in information and communications technology (ICT) are to set up a team of experts to develop a position paper on the building of the African submarine cable. The Cabinet had not yet endorsed the East African Submarine Cable System (EASSy) protocol because it needs clarification on various issues.

- A Forrester Research survey has shown that Firefox is continuing to increase its share of the web browser market, which increased from 9.8% to 18% in 2007. Internet Explorer’s market share dropped 10% in the same period.

- In Nigeria, men of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) stormed in Cyber Cafés in Akure, Ondo State capital and arrested some suspects and the operator, for allegedly engaging in cyber-related crimes. The EFCC men also took with them some of the equipment of the operator. The arrest scared many users of cyber cafes, as many places were virtually empty, leaving only those with serious business.