In what is possibly a first for Kenya, residents of Ting’ang’a Kiambu County will now have affordable unlimited Internet access. This is because of poa! Internet, a community Internet service provider (ISP), launching in the village.
The village of Ting'ang'a has more than 20,000, residents and it is located in a coffee and dairy farming zone. Although it is classified as a peri-urban village, it doesn't even have a single bank branch.
"African internet has for too long been dominated by the challenge of a digital divide, with the rich and urban long since fully connected, but low-income and rural Kenyans hidebound by a lack of internet infrastructure and poor access to affordable services," said Andy Halsall, CEO at poa!.
Extending affordable Internet access across Kenya
poa! is an ISP that develops and delivers unlimited, affordable Internet to low-income communities in Nairobi and Kiambu counties in Kenya. Their aim is to ultimately contribute to local, social and economic growth.
The launch in Ting'ang'a is part of the ISPs second stage of its connectivity strategy, i.e. connecting rural villages in Kenya to unlimited Internet access. This follows on from its first stage of launching they're affordable
Internet services to low-income areas of Kibera, Kawangware, Jamhuri, and Kabiria.
"Our mission has always been to develop the technology and infrastructure to connect the unconnected, initially in Nairobi's slums, and now across the country's villages. Beyond the provision of low-cost internet access, we are also aiming at creating jobs for the residents, both directly and indirectly. Our model gives priority to local youth in recruiting for our sales teams. We shall also be working with local schools and community centers to provide free community Internet services," said Chris Rhodes, COO at poa!.
poa!'s new home service provides unlimited Internet access for KSh1,500 a month (approximately $15.00 a month). This is about is less than half the cost of a 4G data bundle from Kenya's other more popular [telecommunications] companies.
"Overall, our partnership with local communities through our community Internet model enables us to build multiple access points across vast areas, solving one of the largest connectivity disparities between the digital haves and have-nots in Kenya" concluded Halsall.
Cover image credit: Screenshot of poa!'s website.