Inside Uganda’s emerging fintech ecosystem
In a country where internet penetration is high, Uganda is in the middle of a technological revolution.
This week, the country will become the first African country to have its internet connection upgraded to ultra-broadband from a dial-up connection, after which any business – or individual – in the country will have access to high-speed internet.
The upgrade will help the country’s small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to reach their online market and become more efficient in their operations, as well as improve their sales and marketing.
The upgrade is part of Uganda’s Digital Nation project, which aims to increase access to advanced digital technology across the country for a number of reasons, including the lack of broadband infrastructure across the country.
This blogpost is part of an ongoing series for African Tech Report on how African countries are implementing digital technology in the hopes of improving the overall economy of the country and its citizens.
So far, the Ugandan government and telecoms operators have successfully used a network of satellites to connect the country to the rest of Africa. Uganda became the second African country to get satellite internet after Kenya this year.
Gizmodo reported that as part of a collaboration between the UK Space Agency and the Uganda telecommunications company Ncell, an additional satellite was being loaded onto the same rocket that was used on a previous space mission to provide internet service to the Tanzanian village of Mpeketoni, where the internet connection cost $150 a month.
“If you’re working on a network problem as part of your project or solving another challenge that is around the world, there are satellites available from all over the planet,” says James Hogg, the CEO of Ncell.
In Uganda, the satellite internet is being used to bring internet to an area of the country that has traditionally been disconnected, Hogg says.
“We are connecting people in very remote parts of the country, parts of which we didn’t connect before.”