More Africa NewsNigeria: Elon Musk’s Starlink company to start trading in August

August 3, 2022by myles0

Nigeria is Africa’s largest telecommunications market. This high-potential market attracts foreign investors in a context marked by strong demand for broadband connectivity and the acceleration of digital transformation.

After obtaining the approval of the Nigerian authorities, the Internet satellite network Starlink of the American company SpaceX will begin to officially provide its services in Nigeria from August. This information was revealed by the billionaire of South African origin Elon Musk via a post on the social network Twitter, on Sunday July 24.

Use of Starlink satellite Internet service is subject to the purchase of a starter kit and a monthly subscription. The price of the kit, with all the necessary equipment, is 99 USD, according to the company’s website. The price of the monthly subscription has not yet been disclosed. This price is significantly lower than the kit in the United States, where it costs 599 USD, in addition to the monthly subscription which costs 110 USD.

In May 2021, Starlink began prospecting in the Nigerian telecommunications market as part of its expansion into the African continent where demand for high-speed connectivity has accelerated, particularly due to Covid-19. The license also targeted South Africa and Zimbabwe, among other markets.

It was finally a year later that Starlink was able to reach an agreement with Nigerian Communications (NCC), which awarded it two licenses. These are an International Gateway License and an Internet Service Provider (ISP) License with a term of 10 years and 5 years respectively. The company will harness them to bring high-speed Internet connectivity through its satellite constellation of approximately 2,000 devices orbiting the Earth.

With the official launch of its activities in Nigeria, Starlink should be able to bring broadband to all Nigerian populations, even those living in the most remote and landlocked areas. The company is also expected to contribute to the Nigerian government’s goal of covering 90% of the national territory with broadband, by 2025, as part of digital transformation. However, this ambition could be hampered by the cost of services, which is beyond the reach of the average Nigerian, especially if he lives in a rural area. 

Source: Agence Ecofin

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