Microsoft brings TV white space project to Ghana, announces partnerships

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Part of the 4Afrika Initiative, Microsoft’s TV white space programme first took form in South Africa last year in efforts to provide low-cost wireless connectivity to the masses, and has now recently expanded to Ghana. The tech giant has also partnered with SpectraLink Wireless and Facebook and announced that it’s now involved in programme pilots in ten countries.

The basic concept of TV white spaces relies on frequency bands which are generally set aside for television transmissions in order to provide low-cost wireless networks.

This technology can help Microsoft further its 4Afrika Initiative to empower African students, entrepreneurs, developers and others to become even more active global citizens using tech.

The partnership with SpectraLink Wireless and Facebook will allow wireless networks to cover entire campusses in All Nations University College and Koforidua Polytechnic, Ghana.

John Sarpong, CEO of SpectraLink Wireless says, “With SpectraLink Wireless’ Edutech-as-a-Service platform, students and faculty will have access to the best productivity applications on the market and Internet access at true broadband speeds. All at a low cost per user per month. We look forward to rolling this out in Koforidua and the rest of the country.”

“TV white spaces technology, when combined with other low-cost wireless technologies, such as Wi-Fi, offers a substantial opportunity for businesses, consumers and governments around the world to improve the economics of broadband network deployment and service delivery,” said Paul Garnett, director in Microsoft’s Technology Policy Group.

Facebook, Microsoft and SpectraLink Wireless are members of the Dynamic Spectrum Alliance which is a global, cross-industry alliance focused on increasing dynamic access to unused radio frequencies. The organistion has been active with similar projects in Singapore, the Philippines, Taiwan and recently Scotland.

Jacques Coetzee: Staff Reporter


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