Kenya to increase Internet speed by June

ICT Principal Secretary Jerome Ochieng’ addresses the media (left) as Mombasa County Chief Officer for ICT Anwar Ahmed gestures during an inspection tour of various digital installations at Telkom Kenya Mombasa offices on March 20, 2021. PHOTO | KEVIN ODIT | NMG

What you need to know:

  • ICT Principal Secretary Jerome Ochieng' says work to increase the bandwidth capacity to be completed in two or three months.

Kenyans will from June start experiencing faster Internet speeds as the government completes plans to increase capacity by up to tenfold.

ICT Principal Secretary Jerome Ochieng’, during a visit at the Telkom Kenya offices in Mombasa, said due to the increased Internet usage in the country, the ministry is expanding the bandwidth for increased efficiency.

According to data from the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS), the total available bandwidth capacity in 2019 was 6.2 million Mbps, a twofold increase from two million in 2016.

“We will increase the bandwidth by ten times to have faster Internet speeds for citizens. The Covid-19 pandemic has made us think and work differently. The Internet has become everything to us, we are too much becoming dependent on the Internet,” said Mr Ochieng’.

“We are at 95 per cent complete and certainly within the next two to three months, we will be able to finish the administrative work before Kenyans start enjoying the benefits.”

He also said cabling from Mombasa to the flagship project Konza Technopolis has been laid to provide ready-to-plug backbone ICT network.

The government is setting up a national data centre at Konza, smart city facilities and services to support the technopolis, e-government as well as small and medium enterprises services.

Mr Ochieng’ said that most government agencies will use the data centre, reducing the cost of doing business and also help in managing government data.

“We want to ensure people have reliable and affordable data. The demand has grown and we are expanding the bandwidth capacity to give much faster services to our citizens,” the PS said.

The Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated the shift to technology for e-learning, e-commerce, electronic financial transactions and entertainment as virus control measures such as social distancing has forced millions to connect from their homes.

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