poa! Internet has the cash and the tech to serve a huge part of the nearly 6 million Nairobi residents but the firm has struggled with uptake in informal settlements which it estimated to be a broadband goldmine.
Therefore, in a new strategy to retain existing and attract new users, the firm today launched a free public Wi-Fi network across Nairobi and Kiambu counties in partnership with Fon, a global Wi-Fi network with a Wi-Fi community of over 21 million hotspots.
The two firms have deployed more than 3,000 hotspots of street Wi-Fi in Nairobi to be accessible to home broadband subscribers in Kibera, Jamhuri, Kawangware, Kangemi, Kabiria, Waithaka, Racecourse, Kinoo, Dagoretti, Kikuyu, Kiambu, Ting’ang’a, Kirigiti, Ndumberi and Githunguri.
“We realized that if we were truly going to deliver a step-change in access to the Internet in Kenya, we needed to innovate and build new business models around next generation technology,” said Andy,” said Andy Halsall, CEO of poa! Internet.
UKO POA Wi-Fi can also be used by non-broadband subscribers at prices far lower than traditional data bundles. For these pay-as-you-go users, the Wi-Fi network, at speeds of up to 2Mbps, offers unlimited volumes of data for just Sh10 an hour, or Sh50 a day.
Fontech, the technology arm of Fon, makes managing and operating Wi-Fi smart and simple for operators and enterprises by its software-based solutions. Fon’s and Fontech’s global clients include AT&T, British Telecom, Telstra, KPN, SFR, Deutsche Telekom Group and Vodafone Group.
“Fon developed the Wi-Fi sharing model that now dominates the Internet landscape in the West. Wi-Fi sharing access points provide Internet in homes and on the streets of many developed nations, and we are proud to bring this technology to East Africa” said Andy.
“High speed home broadband with free access to thousands of Wi-Fi hotspots, and low-cost unlimited internet access on the street for those who can’t afford a home connection is transformational in bringing affordable internet to all Kenyans” said Andy.