A group of professionals from Cisco Systems, world leader in networking solutions, is advocating for increased Wi-Fi access in Nigeria, claiming it can improve Internet user-experience in the country as it is capable of ensuring traffic decongestion known to result from increased mobile data traffic on the Internet service providers (ISPs).
Cisco Internet Business Solutions Group (CIBSG) reached this position following a recent survey across Nigeria. With a large amount of Wi-Fi enabled devices, service providers need to integrate both Wi-Fi and traditional mobile networks to meet the connectivity needs of their consumers, according to the findings.
Stuart Taylor, the director of Cisco IBSG Service Provider Practice, said that participants in the survey described the recurrent downtime of traditional mobile networks as a major unpleasant experience, an observation that further renew consumers’ outcry for Wi-Fi enabled devices to seek alternatives.
Taylor added that the survey showed a larger percentage of mobile devices in the Nigerian market have Wi-Fi Internet access capabilities, which make it users’ preferred access technology when available and accessible.
“As demand for mobile devices and network connectivity continues to grow, both Wi-Fi and traditional mobile networks will be critical to meeting the needs of mobility-enabled consumers,” he said.
“In Africa as well as globally, service providers are in an enviable position of being able to successfully integrate these networks and the experience of their customers to provide what the market wants: New Mobile.”
For ISPs to capture the opportunities that are available in Africa, according to Taylor, they should consider offering free public Wi-Fi access with a home broadband subscription to capture Wi-Fi business opportunities. He said this is possible by retaining existing customers and attracting new ones.
The ISPs should also consider the growing demand to incorporate Wi-Fi as an integral part of portfolio, ability of service providers to Target Wi-Fi use in the home and delivery on the New Mobile.
Cisco IBSG’s director in charge of emerging markets, Peter Ford corroborated Taylor’s position adding that the government of African states, especially Nigeria, also have roles to play.
“One of the mandates of governments throughout Africa is to provide its citizens with universal access to broadband connectivity.”
“This has already resulted in an increase of mobile devices in the country putting service providers and mobile operators in the ideal position to take advantage of the high demand for smart phones, tablets and other connected devices that generate a significant amount of mobile data,” Ford said.