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Internet in Africa -Kenya Part 1

19 Mar

Mobile-Internet-OperatorAccording to OpenNet Initiative many sub-Saharan African governments view the Internet as a key tool for development and are developing ICT policies accordingly, though the region still lags behind the rest of the world in both number and percentage of Internet users.

This is mainly because of Poor infrastructure and Electricity access among other factors.Kenya’s Energy Minister, Kiraitu Murungi, has said that only six percent of rural Kenyans have access to electricity. Even the urban population is not fully catered for in terms of electricity access,  the 2000 World Health Organisation report put the estimate at only 43 percent of urban dwellers who had access to electricity.

Internet access is more scarce in sub-Saharan Africa than anywhere else in the world. African Internet users account for less than 5 percent of the world’s online population, and in many countries’ Internet penetration rates are less than 1 percent.This is likely to change in the near future, particularly with the growth of the mobile Internet and the rapid increase of mobile phone use in Africa as a whole.

According to the latest statistics report published by the Communications Commission of Kenya for the July to September 2012 quarter, the country’s  mobile penetration rate grew to 77.2% (from 75% in the previous quarter) on a mobile subscriber base of 30.4 million active SIM cards.

Kenya is also in the process of drafting a policy that would see the country provide 4G (LTE) services to mobile data subscribers.This means that Kenya will seamless streaming of video chat and fast downloading of applications, games, videos and pictures much more than the current (2G) and 3G being offered at the moment by the Communications Authority of Kenya.

Technology and ultimately the internet has become an integral part of the economy and therefore it cannot be ignored. Since “change” is the biggest constant in technology Africa can only keep up with the revolution so as to meet with international standards and also change the statistics for the better.



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