Econet Teams Up with Alphabet to Expand Network Connectivity in Africa

Econet has teamed up with X’s Project Taara – Alphabet’s moonshot factory (formerly known as Google [x]) – to expand and enhance affordable, high-speed connectivity to communities across Sub-Saharan Africa.

This makes it the first roll-out of Taara’s wireless optical communication technology in Africa. Taara’s links offer fibre-like speed internet access in areas where it’s not economically viable, or too difficult to install fibre, for example, over rivers or in areas where it is unsafe to dig trenches for cables.

Econet will deploy Taara’s technology in Africa across Liquid Telecom’s Fibre Optic Backbone and Mobile Network Infrastructure starting in Kenya. 

“This technology and our partnership with Taara forms an important building block towards realising our vision of a digitally connected future that leaves no African behind,” says Econet’s Executive for New Enterprises, Norman Moyo.

Liquid Telecom and X have been running pilot tests of the technology in Kenya since 2019. This included testing across the waters between Mombasa Old Town and Diani in Kwale County, Kenya to bring high-speed bandwidth to communities on the South Coast.

Nic Rudnick, Liquid Telecom’s CEO says “Liquid Telecom has always been an early adopter of leading-edge technologies that support the Econet mission of using technology to empower Africans for economic prosperity. The trials we have conducted in Kenya have shown encouraging results of how we can reach new underserved areas with huge bandwidths as well as increase our network reliability. Every time we have connected a new country to our fibre network, our investment into middle-mile infrastructure has enabled people outside of the major cities and towns, to enjoy high-speed data”.

Edited by Jenna Delport
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