Google Subsea Internet has just landed in Africa, promising fast connectivity

A subsidiary cable owned by Google that promises to double the speed of the Internet for millions of Africans arrived in Togo on Friday, the agency said, the latest step in a multi-year project to provide cheap access to users across the continent. The Equino Cable, the first of its kind to reach Africa, has cut off its route from Portugal and will double the speed of the Internet for Togo’s 8 million inhabitants, Google said in a statement.

This may be a taste for other countries set up for convenience in a region where Internet usage is growing rapidly but where networks are often crippled and slow in economic development.

The new line will also make land in Nigeria, Namibia and South Africa, with potential branches connecting nearby countries. It is expected to be launched by the end of the year.

According to a 2020 report by GSMA Intelligence, sub-Saharan Africa is the least-connected region in the world, with about a quarter of the population still lacking mobile broadband coverage, compared to 7 percent worldwide.

Most West African countries are below the World Bank’s global ranking for Internet penetration.

Togo will benefit first. According to the Africa Practice and Genesis Analytics Assessment commissioned by Google, the cable is expected to reduce internet prices by 14 percent by 2025.

Google says the cable will indirectly create 37,000 jobs in Togo by 2025 and increase GDP by $ 193 million (approximately Rs 1,470 crore).

Thomson Reuters 2022

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