NIGERIA- Nigeria now has Starlink, according to SpaceX. In a tweet on Monday, the Elon Musk-owned firm confirmed Nigeria was its first African customer.
The company tweeted, “Starlink is now available in Nigeria – the first African country to receive service.”
With Starlink Internet services, Nigeria becomes the 47th country in the world.
It aims to provide high-speed internet coverage to rural and geographically isolated areas using a constellation of Low Earth Orbit satellites.
As of December 2022, the Nigerian Communications Commission reported 47.36 percent broadband penetration. In 2023, Nigeria hopes to increase its broadband penetration to 50 percent and in 2025 to 90 percent.
The ‘Nigerian National Broadband Plan: 2020–2025,’ reads in part, “The new Broadband Plan is designed to deliver data download speeds of a minimum 25Mbps in urban areas, and 10Mbps in rural areas, with effective coverage available to at least 90 percent of the population by 2025 at a price not exceeding N390 per 1GB of data (i.e. 2 percent of median income or 1 percent of minimum wage).
According to the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Pantami, the country has achieved 100% broadband coverage as a result of Starlink’s licensing and operation.
According to him, “Based on the National Broadband Plan, we were to have 90 per cent broadband coverage by December 2025. However, we recently gave a license to Starlink to provide services, and this has given us 100% coverage, about 3 years ahead of schedule.”
While Starlink has now begun operations in Nigeria, citizens are concerned about the high price that will prevent them from accessing its services.