Internet service kiosks necessary in southern Africa

As more and more business executives get access to the prestigious Euro Mastercard Visa (EMV) cards accepted by most registrars, we find the cost of registration slowly coming down and less use of the local registrars.

Why focus on the business user? Our region is one part of the world with changing trends with regards to formal versus informal employment.

Fifty percent of the region’s population falls into the SMEs categories, with each one selling a product or service in its local or central area. The same service and or product will also be sold in another locality.

Our talk of globalisation is not achieved until the SME transcends the neighbourhood barrier and this is easily achieved by having him/her online.

One wonders how long it will be before we can have internet kiosks, not for internet use but for internet services provision; dotted across the plain as we do with the mobile phone services.

Many a time the regulator has been blamed for not making appropriate provision to foster internet use, but given the growing number of access providers, surely one of them must want to do things differently from the others, for it to make business sense.

The relationships between service providers and regulators is sometimes shrouded with mistrust and lack of information sharing.

In recent years, a member of our team realised that if the Zimbabwean internet connectivity regulator was to inspect all Wi-Fi router sites, 99% would be found to be in breach.

The allowed Wi-Fi distance without requiring special licensing is listed in the regulation as 50m. Now with even the least of the latest technologies, 100 to 300m coverage is the norm for Wi-Fi.

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