Main One upbeat on broadband improvements

INTERNET

|
Image: Funke Opeke. By Main One Cable
Funke Opeke

Main One CEO Funke Opeke says her company is investing heavily in expending its infrastructure to cover under-served areas; building its own distribution infrastructure if necessary.

She says the investment has become imperative amid growing demand for better, more affordable internet across Nigeria.

"People know they want better access to the internet. They want it faster, cheaper, and they want to be able to drive new kinds of applications, access different types of content," she said.

Main One Cable Company  is the first privately owned sub marine fibre optic cable company in West Africa to connect the sub-region with the rest of the world. It has laid a submarine cable over a distance of 7,000 kilometers along the West African coastline, with a capacity of 1.92 terabits a second and providing a high-speed, low-priced, reliable broadband.

However, Opeke noted recently that despite the big decrease in wholesale cost, consumers have not seen a difference in the price they pay.

"The people who own the distribution networks are not passing on the saving, there's no open-access distribution or common carriers like you would have in a developed market," she said.

She said that Main One Cable, which does not sell its capacity directly to homes or small and medium-size businesses, has also started investing in distribution infrastructure, building its own networks when it can't find "commercially reasonable rates.  "The biggest challenge that we see is getting the capacity we have in this big pipe that we brought into Nigeria and Ghana across the region to reach the people and businesses where they need the service," she says.

Opeke further added that as part of Main One’s effort to ensure that Nigerians have increased access to broadband at even cheaper prices, the company has started a campaign for the development of national broadband policy. According to her, such a policy document will accelerate the ambitious push by the ITU as well to achieve its four-point agenda.

“At Main One, we have taken time to study the multifarious challenges facing the sector and which impedes efforts to enhance increased broadband access and penetration in the country. What we came up with was a document which has crystallised into a campaign for the enactment of a national broadband policy by the Federal Government. Such a policy must also accommodate input from industry players to ensure that the objectives are achieved. We think that a national broadband policy will set up the framework to remove the bottlenecks around last mile, collocation of facilities and right of way for the good of Nigerians”.

Main One says its push for enhanced national broadband access is already attracting support from other players in the sector as well as key stakeholders. The Association of Telecoms Companies of Nigeria (ATCON), during its last annual convention in 2011, called on the Federal to among other things, set in motion a machinery for the development of a national broadband policy.

In addition to championing calls for a national broadband policy, Main One has also commenced efforts to land another sub-marine cable in the Niger Delta region to extend access to the hinterlands of Southern Nigeria. Opeke says the project is capital intensive but it underscores Main One’s effort to break new grounds.

“We are already working round the clock to ensure that another fibre optic cable is landed in the Niger Delta any time soon. The project, when completed, will further drive down cost of broadband access and spur economic development in the region and the Southern part of the country. We believe that there is no better way of demonstrating our commitment to driving broadband penetration in Nigeria other than this,” Opeke added.



Share the News

Get Daily Newsletter

comments powered by Disqus

MORE INTERNET NEWS

Yahsat takes “Yahclick” promotion to Uganda

YahClick is offering a free modem, free YahClick dish and reduced installation charges via Simbanet and TrulT in a promotion in Uganda. Read More

Mziiki takes free streaming music from Africa across the globe

The Mziiki African music streaming service offers an extraordinary and diverse array of African musical talent alongside international content, and all for free.  Read More

Half the world will be online by 2017

A new report on broadband access worldwide says 50% of people will have internet access by 2017, but the lowest levels of access are still in sub-Saharan Africa.  Read More

PWC: Internet to generate most media spend across Africa

Increased Internet access will generate more consumer spend than any other media product or service in the next five years in the South African entertainment and media industry, according to a report issued by PwC. Read More

Telecom Namibia launches 120Mbps FTTP high-speed broadband

Telecom Namibia has launched new unlimited high speed broadband service with speeds up to 120Mbps in certain parts of the country. Read More

DRC: 80 million people, few ISPs

With only around 20 ISPs operating in DRC, users report a lack of competition and high prices. Read More

Schoolboy named SA’s Social Media Star of 2014.

Arthur Goldstuck, Nadav Ossendryver and Mike Wronski of Fuseware Schoolboy Nadav Ossendryver, who founded the Kruger Sightings website when he was just 15, has been awarded for building his wildlife sightings service into the most viewed YouTube channel based in South Africa.   Read More

Pamoja, Symantec unite on African cloud ecosystem

Albie Bester Pamoja, a leading cloud services company and aggregator for Symantec’s cloud range of security services, will, together with Symantec, host a partner information session in Nairobi, Kenya to launch their cloud services. Read More

1bn minutes through Nigerian interconnect exchange carriers

World Telecom Labs (WTL) today announced that more than 1 billion minutes have passed through its specialist 2nd generation VoIP switches deployed by five of Nigeria’s interconnect exchange carriers. Read More

SEACOM introduces NAPAfrica Remote Peering service

SEACOM has launched a NAPAfrica Remote Peering service that enables NAPAfrica members connected to at least one NAPAfrica exchange point to easily peer with all NAPAfrica exchange point members, across SEACOM’s South African IP/MPLS backbone. Read More

PRESS OFFICES

Sage ERP AfricaSAP AfricaSage Pastel AccountingTrust PayVMWareSamsung ElectronicsMitsumi DistributionPhoenix DistributionSage HR AfricaMTN BusinessSchneider ElectricMultichoice

FEATURED STORY

MFarmer SMS redefines market access for Ugandan farmersMFarmer SMS redefines market access for Ugandan farmers

Ugandan smallholder farmers are benefitting from an ambitious innovative ICT mobile phone initiative that offers weather reports and up-to-date market information about changes in prices for agricultural commodities, thus granting them lucrative returns from their farming ventures. 

IN DEPTH

iProcure delivers inputs to farmers’ doorsteps using ICTsiProcure delivers inputs to farmers’ doorsteps using ICTs

An innovation dubbed iProcure is already being used by several agro input firms which are now relying on it to distribute their products to farmers. 

COMPANY NEWS

VMware announces VMware Workstation 11 and VMware Player 7 Pro

VMware Workstation 11 marks 15 years of innovation with Windows 10 Tech Preview readiness, state of the art performance and cloud connectivity.

Schneider Electric signs exclusive off-grid solar distribution agreement with Zimbabwean firm

Schneider Electric has announced the signing of an exclusive agreement with Samansco, a Zimbabwean renewable energy, back-up power and appropriate technology company.