VH Fibre Optics taps wireless to provide Internet connectivity
Fibre distribution and installation services company VH Fibre Optics is shifting focus to provide connectivity in outlying areas through the use of TV white space tech, wireless radios as well as WiFi.
It says these types of solutions are ideal for the South African and larger Southern African Development Community (SADC) market, as broadcast networks are already pervasive throughout the country, including in areas where it is currently not cost-effective to deploy fibre solutions.
“The combination and use of these wireless technologies provide the crucial ‘link’ for connectivity until critical mass and the viability of fibre is established in rural and semi-rural areas,” says VH Fibre Optics.
According to the company, which is part of Alviva Holdings, fast and stable connectivity is critical in today’s world, yet in SA and most of the SADC region, there remains a significant gap in its availability in urban versus rural and semi-rural areas.
“In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the need for ubiquitous connectivity has never been clearer. Unfortunately, large parts of South Africa, in particular, remain without access to high-speed bandwidth, and this has had severe implications,” says Johan Kleynhans, MD of VH Fibre Optics.
“Many learners were left behind when schools moved online, businesses that could not operate online were compelled to close, and opportunities for telemedicine were not available. With uncertainty still hanging over the future, it is a long overdue requirement to address this connectivity gap. Our focus is now on bringing fast, stable connectivity to all.”
VH Fibre Optics says it is expanding its portfolio and repositioning its offerings towards closing this gap, with “an end-to-end offering and new solutions that bring cost-effective connectivity options as an alternative to long-distance fibre”.
It says this offering will empower individuals, businesses and industries in previously disconnected areas to make use of the multitude of benefits attached to high-speed connectivity.
“In addition, VH Fibre Optics will be operating on a ‘build and transfer’ model, which enables network operators to take on a fully-developed network and extend their reach, and their services, into outlying areas.”
Further, Kleynhans says: “Locally, the National Development Plan 2030 aims to eliminate poverty and reduce inequality. We believe that connectivity, as an enabler for numerous digital transformation technologies, plays a vital role in achieving these goals and in bringing opportunities to all citizens. Our hybrid solution will enable our open-access fibre and wireless network clients to expand their market, helping all of South Africa to compete on a global stage and bringing economic stimulus.”
According to the company, there are also numerous opportunities in the SADC, as lack of connectivity is a common challenge across the region.
Kleynhans explains: “Fibre is not as prevalent in Africa as other regions across the world, and these alternative hybrid technologies have a significant role to play in connecting the continent.
“Our goal is to tailor our solutions to address the specific challenges in each market instead of using a one-size-fits-all approach, with the ultimate aim of bridging the connectivity gap. It is the key to progress and empower businesses and individuals across not just South Africa, but SADC and the rest of Africa.”