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While looking for cybercafes in Benin, I came across a few interesting sites about internet in Nigeria/Ghana/Benin
The most interesting one was this excerpt from a fairly long article about Internet availability in Nigeria. Apart from the high use of Sat Transmission as well, no wonder a lot of IP's resolve to Gilat or the American host, it's also which company has the highest take up rate for communication.
The bit I noticed was that Yahoo have 99% of the take up there, so it's no wonder the Lads don't see anything strange having banks/police/FBI/etc having yahoo addresses.
While explaining how most of the broadband service providers get their broadband resources, Ojuri said that they all use VSAT technology. According to him, most VSAT service originates from Europe, North America and Asia. He disclosed that most of the service providers buy their bandwidth from British Telecom, via some telecom companies who operate the hubs. “Your hub are the people buying the bandwidth in bulk from BT or AT&T. It might be 2 meg, 4 meg and 6 meg.”
He said that VSAT is just a connecting rescue from a remote area, back to the source of the bandwidth. “VSAT just offers connectivity to share out of that bandwidth,” he noted.
Besides, Ojuri said the cost of the bandwidth at the end of the day depends on how many middlemen an operator went through before he gets the bandwidth.
On bandwidth availability in Nigeria, Ojuri surprisingly argued that there is more bandwidth than we require, in the country. Said he, “In the actual sense, from our own network perspective, we have a lot more bandwidth than what we require in Nigeria.”
He said what Nigeria lacks is good bandwidth management. “The thing is that we don’t have good bandwidth management in the country. For instance, people always talk about dedicated bandwidth of 64 kilobytes. I can assure you that most cybercafes and organisations do not maximise the use of their so-called dedicated bandwidth. Why? Most of them don’t understand how the thing works. All the spamwares, pop-ups, eat up bandwidth. Some people use webcam on the net even when the application is not activated. All these activities consume bandwidth. You will find out that at the end of the day, out of 64 dedicated bandwidth, 18 are being wasted. There are so many other areas where bandwidth use is being abused.”
But the next question is whether the bandwidth is really available, considering the fact that most cybercafés complain of shortage of bandwidth. To this question, Ojuri said, “The availability is not as good as it should be”.
Ojuri said Internet content in the country revolves around Yahoo content services.
“If you go to any cybercafe or even corporate bodies, 99 per cent of the content is yahoo. For instance, we realised the importance of Yahoo in the country, when we had problems with our Yahoo Messenger, last year. I got more calls from our client, more than when we have congestion on our network. What happens if someone decides to host Yahoo Nigeria in the country, whereby Nigerians begin to chat with themselves. I am aware a lot of people chat with people abroad. But 30 percent of traffic still resides locally. This local traffic would help free bandwidth that can be applied for other use.”
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