Observing the local Internet scene with the ISP’s on one end and the government on the other ,one cant help but laugh at the whole mess. . . .here we have a government that promised fast cheap access to the Internet and is being held hostage by never ending questions as to why the Internet isnt getting any cheaper and on the other hand are the ISPs who have always been in it for the money and aren’t about to register a loss just coz we have a loud mouthed government dishing out promises as usual. . . . .
In my analysis the Internet price at the grass roots wont go down any time soon until a few things are addressed. . . .Major amongst these things is infrastructure. Laying infrastructure is very expensive and any sound business man will tell you you don’t throw money into a dark hole unless it will come out multiplied. They therefore lay the cheapest networks/ in only the most high yielding areas and sit back and wait for the profits. . . .there’s really nothing wrong with such a set-up. . .after all the companies are accountable to the shareholders not the public. .. . the buck then rests on the Government. . . .They should figure out how to get a broadband capable connection into every home (even if its not being used. . . .)this way the infrastructure bit would be taken care of and it would just leave the pricing and service delivery bit. . . .They can do this by encrusting it in law that any new residential building being supplied with power should also have an internet connection . . whether the inhabitants use it or not should be irrelevnt because chances are someone down the line will need it.
Also an academic recently pointed out to me that there were two schemes of connecting to the international fiber network, one was where you pay to get connected(like we do) coz its like a favour they are doing you and one where you connect for free since its mutually beneficial for both networks to be interconnected. This I think is where Kenya and Africa in general went wrong. We did not create enought value within our countries for them to see a need to connect to us. For instance what is stopping the local universities to establish interconnections via fiber without even the need of ‘outer’ internet services?(yahoo etc). . .information exchange would be instantenious and that would be value right there. . .research bodies and academic institutions didnt need seacom to share their findings, neither did creating metropolitan/neighbourhood networks where movies,local news,chatrooms,bulletin boards,could be shared for a minimal cost or for free as a community endeavour. . . .all this would have done what seacom does today with facebook/gmail/ebay does. . . . . . .Just my Rantings