Starlink comes to Africa

An old saying states that if you give a beggar food, you will have to feed them daily. But if you show them how to fish, they will never go hungry again. This can be related to the news about Starlink setting up a shop in Africa. Cryptocurrency investment has been increasing every time and showing potential to become one of the biggest markets in Africa. But one factor that slowed the adoption rate in the continent was the poor internet connection. Cryptocurrency is developed to require an internet connection to allow investment and other transactions to be carried out. But Africa has, or rather had, the poorest internet connection in the world. This will soon be in the past after Starlink announced its plan to provide fast and reliable internet connection in Africa. 

It seems that in the news involving technology, you cannot go for a week without hearing about something big Elon Musk has done with the ability to affect lives positively. Starlink is one of Elon Musk’s companies. Starlink is one of the departments under Space X, his company with the plan for space exploration and to travel to Mars. Starlink is one of the money-generating projects for the company to fund their space exploration projects. They send satellites into space and ensure they are spread around the planet. These satellites connect and offer internet access to people on the ground. These services can improve internet access in locations with poor connections. Elon Musk offered Starlink services to Ukraine after Russia destroyed the country’s internet infrastructure. 

On May 27th, 2022, Starlink announced that it had been working closely with African governments and had secured regulatory approvals and licenses in two of the 54 countries. The two countries are Nigeria and Mozambique. The two countries will be connected to the Starlink internet between July and September, a huge step forward for Africa and cryptocurrency. Users who want access to the internet will have to deposit $99 to get the Starlink kit. The kit comprises the dish, router, and cables required to connect the dish to electricity and the router. On land, people only need a dish to capture waves from the satellite to be placed outdoors and a router. 

Although this is not much, a few have criticised it might be too much for some people. Considering the local economy and the amount of money people make in a day might be less than a dollar, this amount might be high for most. But considering Wi-Fi connections might be an investment to help people make money, I know that Starlink will hugely impact society. The main impact will be increasing internet accessibility in Africa, especially in rural areas. Manu internet suppliers in Africa avoid investing in internet access in Africa’s rural areas. 

Their main concern is the high installation cost they would have to cover in regions with low-frequency use. They also fear the huge cost of operations and maintenance required for the projects. Starlink, on the other hand, does not fear these expenses. Their investment lies in satellites that orbit the planet and serve urban and rural areas as they move. This ensures that every satellite launched can serve both rural and urban areas.

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