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Microsoft will connect another 40 million global users to the Internet

2019-10-08 17:09 by


Microsoft aims to provide Internet access to 40 million unserved and underserved people by July 2022 through its Airband Initiative. Microsoft won't simply connect these rural areas, but also drive digital transformation to support agriculture, education, rural entrepreneurship, and telemedicine, while also developing off-grid energy sources where necessary.

Initially, Microsoft will focus on rural and remote communities in Latin America and Sub-Saharan Africa, with other regions to follow. The company will implement a four-part approach that will focus on working with local ISPs and communities to build out affordable and reliable internet access. Microsoft is pushing regulators for access to TV White Space (TVWS), which are wireless frequencies that can be repurposed to deliver internet access across a wide area.

"Extending Internet access to 40 million people around the world in the span of three years is a big task - but it's informed by our ongoing work in connectivity, experience with partners and engagement from development finance institutions," Shelley McKinley-Head of Technology and Corporate Responsibility, Microsoft, wrote in a blog post on Monday.

Microsoft's international efforts have already had some success. In Colombia, for example, it has completed a small project to get two schools and five farms connected to the internet using TVWS technology, and it's also co-invested with local ISPs to extend internet access to 6 million rural Colombians. In Ghana, it's worked to deregulate TVWS technology in a move that will allow one broadband provider to offer its services to as many as 800,000 people.

Read more -here-


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