Hard on the heels of Nokia’s collaboration with UNICEF to improve digital education and training in schools in parts of Senegal comes news of a USTDA and AirJaldi Networks partnership focusing on digital connectivity in India.
USTDA, the US Trade and Development Agency, has awarded a grant to Indian internet service provider AirJaldi Networks for a feasibility study to help expand broadband connectivity to more than 30 million people in rural and peri-urban communities across India.
USTDA links US businesses to export opportunities by funding project preparation and partnership-building activities that develop sustainable infrastructure and foster economic growth in partner countries. AirJaldi is a leading innovator and implementer of technically and economically viable internet connectivity solutions for rural areas.
To conduct the study AirJaldi selected Vernonburg Group, which says its mission is to support governments, companies, non-profits, and other organizations with the development and implementation of regulatory regimes, programming, business models, and technologies that could be used to eliminate the digital divide.
The study will evaluate the technical and economic viability of expanding AirJaldi’s broadband network into new rural and peri-urban areas, as well as modelling sustainable business cases and scenarios for delivering affordable connectivity and value-added digital services for customers in these markets.
In addition it will identify and prioritize infrastructure investments for AirJaldi to expand broadband connectivity across 16 Indian states, design network architecture, evaluate technology options and provide a financing plan. The study will also assess other critical areas that will be necessary for the project’s implementation.