Microsoft uses TV white spaces in broadband pilot

Microsoft Corp. is using TV white spaces and solar-powered base stations in a project with the Kenyan government which aims to provide mobile telephony and Internet connectivity in Africa.

The program, called the Microsoft 4Afrika Initiative, will also be accompanied by the launch of a Huawei Technologies smartphone specifically for the African market.

Microsoft 4Afrika targets to bring 1 million small and medium sized businesses online, train 100,000 workers in computer skills and help 100,000 recent graduates develop skills that will boost their employability. Microsoft said it will help place in jobs, no less than 75 per cent of the new grads.


Canada closer to unlicenced ‘white space’ broadband
Kenya’s mass market yet to access affordable Internet

Microsoft will also be introducing the Huawei 4Afrika handsets in seven Aftican countries. The units are full-function Windows 8 smart phones which will come pre-loaded with applications designed for Africa.

Poor spectrum policies and lack of terrestrial data infrastructure to support mass market connections have been blamed to the lack of affordable Internet connections in many areas of Kenya.

The broadband project will cover locations near Nanjuki and Kalema Kenya. It will use TV white spaces, the unused portions of the wireless spectrum in the frequency bands typically allocated for television signals.

Radio signals travelling in TV bands are able to cover longer distances and penetrate more obstacles than other types of radio signals. They will require a fewer number of the solar-powered base stations that will be deployed for the project.

Microsoft said it will use dynamic spectrum access to allow smart phones to tap into the TV white spaces.

The initial installations in Najuki will provide broadband access to a healthcare clinic, a primary school, two secondary schools and a community centre.


Would you recommend this article?


Thanks for taking the time to let us know what you think of this article!
We'd love to hear your opinion about this or any other story you read in our publication.

Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

Featured Download

Featured Articles

Empowering the hybrid workforce: how technology can build a better employee experience

Across the country, employees from organizations of all sizes expect flexibility...

What’s behind the best customer experience: How to make it real for your business

The best customer experience – the kind that builds businesses and...

Overcoming the obstacles to optimized operations

Network-driven optimization is a top priority for many Canadian business leaders...

Thriving amid Canada’s tech talent shortage

With today’s tight labour market, rising customer demands, fast-evolving cyber threats...

Staying protected and compliant in an evolving IT landscape

Canadian businesses have changed remarkably and quickly over the last few...

Related Tech News

Tech Jobs

Our experienced team of journalists and bloggers bring you engaging in-depth interviews, videos and content targeted to IT professionals and line-of-business executives.

Tech Companies Hiring Right Now