- Service designed to give Internet access to 10 million Nigerians
The much-awaited free network Wi-Fi has finally been launched in Lagos Nigeria. On July 26, Google increased its presence in Africa’s most populous nation. The move has been positively accepted, since Internet penetration is relatively low in the country.
Google has partnered with Nigerian cable providers, 21st Century to provide its public Wi-Fi and Google station services. Google will offer a cloud-based platform and devices to manage the hotspot areas. On the other hand, the 21st Century company will offer locations and infrastructure. The six locations are high footfall areas in Lagos such as the airport, schools and malls. The service will supposedly help 10 million Nigerians. Also, it will mean that more people have access to online entertainment services, like a Bet9ja welcome bonus to try out their hands on online gaming.
A Look at Google’s Initiatives till Now
Google has already launched this in four other countries- India, Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand. However, this is not Google’s first initiative to penetrate the internet market of Africa. The company has launched Project Link in Ghana and Uganda. They are aiding developing regions to install high fibre optic networks in areas where internet infrastructure is low or non-existent. Local mobile providers and internet service providers can provide telecommunications services on a faster broadband.
Moreover, Google’s company sister Loon is set to launch a Project Loon in Kenya. This will be the first commercial deal with Telkom Kenya to provide internet services to remote regions. The floating high solar powered balloons will change the way the network is provided in this African country.
The Top Benefits of the Google Initiative
Even though these projects are set to improve internet service, they are plots to increase revenue. Africa is the fastest growing continent in terms of population. However, only 16% of the population can access the internet. An increase in internet connection will lead to more people accessing online. Thus they will use tech company products and services, thus leading to an increase in revenue.
Google station will launch the free public WiFi in major cities. It is not yet clear if the network will be available only for middle-class people who live in these cities. Most of the middle class already have access to Wi-Fi so it will be unlikely they will benefit. However, for new users, they will get to enjoy the service. This does come as a welcome move since the Nigerian economy is seeing a growth in the recent past and it could help more people get access to essential internet services. In turn, it would help build a digital Nigeria, which is more connected together.
Google station service will offer internet connectivity at 30 megabits per second. This is an upgrade for many users in Nigeria who only access the internet at a rate of 1.86 megabits per seconds. The promise of saving data has already got many Nigerians excited. We just have to watch and wait if Google will be able to satisfy the millions of Nigerians with free Internet.