Google has launched its first wi-fi network in Uganda’s capital Kampala, as part of its scheme to broaden access to affordable high-speed internet.
The company said it is making the broadband wireless network available to local internet providers, who will then charge customers for access. The web giant disclosed that the network is now live in 120 prominent locations in Kampala.
Official statistics show Uganda has about 8.5 million internet users, making up 23 percent of the population. Google hopes that by improving internet capacity in the city, local telecom companies will then be able to offer faster, cheaper broadband access to their customers.
The company estimates that one day’s unlimited data using the new network should cost 1,000 Ugandan shillings ($0.30, £0.20), although local providers will decide how much they want to charge for the service.
The wireless network forms part of a wider project to improve web infrastructure in Africa, which has seen Google lay 800km (500 miles) of cables in Uganda to establish a fibre optic network. There are now plans to expand the project to the Ghanaian cities of Accra, Tema and Kumasi.