Gilat Satcom said that it is providing voice and high-speed data to ten villages in the states of Adamawa, Borno, Kano, Katsina, Oyo and Yobe in the North East of Nigeria.
Gilat Satcom’s Village Island system has been deployed in each village providing a full communications system that includes VSATs, Wi-Fi routers, solar-power, two communal tablets per village and service management.
Gilat Satcom is also providing the satellite connectivity to its VSATs in each village. The integrated Wi-Fi networks then provide local connectivity for data and VoIP to the communal tablets as well as to devices – phones, PCs, tablets and laptops – already owned by villagers and local businesses.
The entire system is housed in a purpose-built communications block (the Community Hub) in each village, photos of which can be seen at http://www.gilat.net/village_Island2.html
Gilat Satcom’s Village Island solution was chosen by Nigeria’s Total IT Solutions as the infrastructure and service platform for the Community Hub networks. Total IT Solutions is rolling out the networks on behalf of Nigeria’s Universal Service Provision Fund (USPF) which was established to facilitate the extension of ICT and network services to rural, unserved and underserved areas of the country.
The latest figures from the USPF are that around 36.8 million people in Nigeria live in areas that are more than 5km from a BTS and are therefore considered underserved or unserved.
Muhammad Yahya Sanda, CEO of Total IT Solutions, said “The 10 village networks already exceed my expectations – and, most importantly, the expectations of the villagers. We all have friends and family in rural areas and now they are connected to us and to education, medical services, commerce and so much more.
Gilat Satcom’s Village Island is an extremely well-designed, self-contained system and key to the success of this project. Village Island enables us to build low-cost networks which can easily scale with demand.”
Following the success of these networks, Total IT Solutions plans to rollout hundreds more across rural Nigeria using Gilat Satcom’s Village Island system.
Mr. Eran Yoran, CMO and Head of Business Development at Gilat Satcom said: “Providing affordable access in rural Africa is an ongoing theme for the telecoms industry. We have worked for a long time to provide a solution which is both affordable for the village end-user and profitable for the entire supply chain.”
Gilat Satcom’s Village Island portfolio provides all the components required to build extremely efficient and cost-effective self-contained networks. It has been specifically developed to provide the Internet, VoIP and Video over IP over an affordable private satellite network with prices for connectivity for individual villagers starting from $1 a month.