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Connectivity

Eutelsat, Facebook plan major African Wi-Fi rollout

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Eutelsat and Facebook are partnering to extend Wi-Fi connectivity throughout sub-Saharan Africa.

The partnership will combine Facebook's Express Wi-Fi platform and Eutelsat's Konnect offering to provide broadband services via satellite across several regions on the continent.

The Paris-headquartered satellite company said it aims to connect thousands of people in rural and underserved communities spanning Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Nigeria, Côte d'Ivoire, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Kenya, Madagascar, South Africa, Cameroon, Ghana and Zimbabwe.

Express Wi-Fi is a platform developed by Facebook Connectivity that enables partners to build, grow and monetize their Wi-Fi businesses in a scalable way, while providing their customers with fast, affordable and reliable Internet access.

Express Wi-Fi is being used in more than 30 countries, including multiple African markets.

Eutelsat and Facebook have already conducted successful pilots in rural and underserved areas of the DRC, enabling local businesses to offer affordable Internet access to customers on a pre-paid basis.


Want to know more about connectivity in Africa? Check out our dedicated Connectivity content channel here on Connecting Africa.


"At Facebook, we're committed to working with partners to help expand connectivity in sub-Saharan Africa, which continues to be the region with the highest coverage gap. Connectivity is essential to ensuring access to jobs, education, healthcare and more," said Fargani Tambeayuk, head of connectivity policy for sub-Saharan Africa at Facebook.

Philippe Baudrier, GM of Konnect Africa at Eutelsat, agreed saying the partnership aims to get more people online in the most underserved areas of sub-Saharan Africa.

"This initiative is the perfect example of the power of satellite connectivity to bridge the digital divide, with unmatched economic and social benefits," he added.

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— The Staff, Connecting Africa

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