More Africa NewsEutelsat’s Konnect: Silent Force Reshaping Nigeria’s Satellite Internet Landscape

October 11, 2023by myles0

Nigeria’s satellite Internet space is evolving rapidly with Eutelsat’s Konnect, in partnership with Internet service provider, Coollink, to bring about revolution in the Nigerian market.

According to a statement signed by the Country Manager for Konnect Nigeria, Modupe Okeowo, the internet service provider has played a major role in rendering service to viewers.

“If you’ve ever tuned in to watch Big Brother or the UEFA champions league on MultiChoice’s DStv, you’ve likely used Eutelsat’s satellite service. But the European behemoth has ambitions beyond broadcasting; it’s challenging other internet providers in ways that could redefine the satellite internet landscape in Africa.”

The statement reads further that for context, 864 million of Africans were still unconnected to the Internet.

“The divide between rural – urban connectivity is growing wider, and the continent features a median Internet speed of 31 Mbps. The challenge on ground is humongous, but the Konnect service seems up to the task.

“We aim to connect 1 million unconnected in sub-Saharan Africa within the next 3-4 years. Nigeria is pivotal to this considering the number of unconnected people and the impact of connectivity on economic growth,” said Okeowo.

Konnect was launched in 2020, and offers speeds of up to 100 Mbps for its users. With unlimited data plans as low as N7,900 and device costs starting from N45,000, it has taken a segmented approach to cater to different users, from SMEs and homes to hospitals and businesses.

“As such, the company is able to offer quality Internet service to customers of all needs and budgets. While there are speed limits across the different plans, users can still enjoy full speeds between 10pm and 7am for big downloads and updates.

Okeowo explained that the use of segmented pricing and innovative speed limits has allowed Konnect and its partner, Coollink, to navigate the challenges of low purchasing power and high capital costs in Nigeria. Compared to other internet providers whose pricing starts at ₦‎30,000, Konnect seems to better understand the local market.

“An important point considering the scale of Konnect’s ambition: to connect 1 million unconnected individuals in Sub-Saharan Africa, with Nigeria being pivotal to this plan. If price is not an issue, it would come down to preference.

“The Konnect satellite is geostationary, not Low Earth Orbiting (LEO) satellites used by other internet providers. Not to bore you, just know that Konnect is farther from the Earth, and covers a wide area that lets you access the service wherever you live in Nigeria,” Okeowo added.

The statement noted that those satellites closer to the Earth reduced coverage.

“While Konnect has wider coverage, it’s already looking to gain the best of both worlds.

“The company plans to add more capacity over Nigeria within Q2 2024 and launch its LEO services over Nigeria in Q4 2023, further addressing the demand for connectivity.

“In addition, Eutelsat are working closely with OneWeb to prepare a proposed merger for later this year. OneWeb boasts a constellation of 648 low earth orbiting satellites and will put Konnect even further ahead of competitors. The merger will allow Konnect to offer higher speeds and more affordable latencies, making them a formidable player in the satellite internet market,” he stated.

The statement noted that Konnect is the silent force, that’s been here all along, reshaping Nigeria’s satellite internet landscape.

Source: Leadership

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