Africa Broadband Revolution 2010. Tanzania Case Study.

From the most switched on countries such as Sweden to the poorest nations in Africa, there is a gap between those with access to technology and those without.The gap between countries on the African continent is getting Smaller. Developments in broadband connectivity, triggered by various submarine systems due to go live in 2010, will heavily impact the wider market, although last-mile access and affordability will be key challenges that need to be addressed.

The African continent have or is expecting to have the Following Submarine Systems: 1. EASSy (The Eastern Africa Submarine Cable System) 2. SAFE (South Africa Far East) 3. SAT-2 – in service since 1993 linking South Africa with Tenerife 4. SAT-3/WASC (South Atlantic/West Africa Submarine Cable) 5. SEACOM 6. TEAMS (The East African Marine System) 7. Alcatel-Lucent was awarded the contract to lay the cable linking Mombasa with Fujairah in the United Arab Emirates 8. West Africa Cable System 9. MainOne Submarine Cable project from Portugal to Ghana and Nigeria.

Africa telecoms market will be characterised by regulatory developments and continued investment in broadband infrastructure by various submarine and terrestrial cable operators. Research for 2009 showed that Africa’s telecoms channel accounted for 3-4% of all mobile/portable units shipped. Governments will continue efforts toward higher penetration among citizens, particularly in rural areas, and are likely to see mobile phones as a way of saving money and communicating with citizens. Currently, African mobile penetration rates average 25-45% of the entire population, but the rate for the adult population, with which governments would be interacting, is roughly 70-80%.

In addition, operators and vendors will be looking more closely at social networking, news portals, and other content to grow data revenue, which will entail providing relevant content in local languages. As the availability of low-cost devices is an important factor in the adoption of these offerings, Broadband Services will become an increasingly important channel for notebook, netbook, and smartphone vendors in Africa.

However, Africa will still experience broadband access gaps in 2010, as operators are likely to go after the low-hanging fruit in the business market, before addressing smaller market segments.Thus, satellite connectivity will remain relevant in 2010, particularly in outlying and African rural areas.

Tanzania’s Case.

In 2000, Tanzania have Recorded 284,109 Voice Subscription users.In 2009 Voice Subscription users rise to 17,642,408. Note: Tanzania Population is Approximately 35,300,000.Tanzania and other African Operators are now concentrate on shifting this Voice Subscription users to New Data Services and it works!.

The successful deployment of SEACOM’s FOC and other similar projects (TEAM’s and EASSy) promises to enhance cheap International calls and fast Internet access in Tanzania. Complimenting project deployed in parallel with SEACOM’s submarine cable is the National Fiber Optic cable network (National backbone) by Private sector and Government (Tanesco, TTCL, Songas, Tazara and TRL) that will facilitate connectivity to the district level and to neighbouring countries.

Africa Broadband Revolution 2010, The Second Reason to celebrate after South Africa FIFA World Cup 2010.
Africa, GOD Bless You and United we Stand for Africa.
Guest post written by Sahim Juma +255757044123

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