The search giant gave us Project link which is still in the works and it came as a surprise but I anticipate it to be a game changer. Project Link, a fiber project being rolled out within the boundaries of Kampala is to enable ISP’s (Internet Service Providers) and broadband providers reach out to their customers with fast and reliable internet, its long story cut short. You can read more HERE concerning the Project Link.
Over 300 hotspots
Now words reaching our desks is that Google with its goal of connecting the next billion and thousands to faster internet is said to partner with the ISP’s to roll out over 300 Wi-Fi hotspots around our hot city. This too supplements on the already ongoing Project Link that seeks to transform the lives of people left out in this connected world to faster and reliable internet. I anticipate this personally to be a success going by the hustle people have to go through to get access to reliable wireless internet. If it’s not eateries like we showed you in our Wi-Fi hunt article, its either educational institutions or shopping malls where you can find wireless internet which is often unreliable. So Google coming up with such ambitions will be a problem solver to the already itching problem of lack of a resource so much needed by the people.
Is it the death of MTN Hotspots?
According to speculators and internet users in Uganda, this project is expected to “lower” the cost of data we incur while connecting to the internet just like the benefits that are set to be ushered to us with project link. We already have MTN Hotspots rolled out around different parts of the city but they are less functional than you would imagine, sorry MTN but that’s true as I personally tried them out but couldn’t get reliable results yet they seemed potential contenders . So Google coming up with this will receive a warm welcome especially coming from us at the receiving side. And with the advent of smartphone and tablet penetration, this comes as a savior from data service charges we endure to reach out to the connected world. With mobile being the next big thing and going hand in hand with the internet, all we need and the rest out there is reliable, fast yet cheap way to connect to the world.
So how will it work?
Apparently just as project link, Google will lease access to these wifi hotspots to ISPs who will in turn charge their respective customers. Basically you will for example buy your hotspot access time from ISP X and not Google directly. We are not pleased with this arrangement since we shall still be stuck with some ISPs we are not keen about, we only hope the pricing will be favourable for us. We consulted some tech minded people and these were their comments
Its a great initiative that needs great execution from one, Mwesigwa Daniel from Dignited while others were only concerned about the privacy issues regarding public Wi-Fi.
When we tried to reach out to our dear friends at Google, we didn’t not get any comment from them instead they redirected us to the ongoing project Link. If these rumors turn out to be true, unreliable costly internet will be a thing of the past. Let’s keep our eyes wide open and ears on the ground.