The pandemic has been around since early 2020. Kenya went into lockdown in March of the same year. Many things have since changed: some companies have since made their operations virtual, and online learning, for students who can access the necessary tools, is now a thing.
Sometime in 2020, President Kenyatta approved the mass roll-out of Loon, a Telkom Kenya project with Google that would allow underserved regions access 4G signals via internet-beaming balloons.
The project, which has since folded, was part of a program that aimed to ensure that workers could do tasks at home and students could learn without putting too much strain on existing network hardware and services.
Now, it has emerged that Safaricom, on its side, worked with the Communications Authority of Kenya to allocate more 3G spectrum to manage the stress of the network caused by the spike in demand for data during the lockdown.
Safaricom says that the deal enabled it to serve customers at a time when the state was transitioning to online services.
The frequency allocated was 10 MHz in the 2 100 band (3G) for nine months until May 2021.
Safaricom has also requested for the extension of the spectrum allocated because the majority of people are still working from home.
To enhance our engagement with the CA, we now report on a quarterly basis to this body on Network Redundancy, Resilience and Diversity (NRRD) – Safaricom
Lastly, and at the moment, Safaricom’s network coverage per generation (% of the population covered) is as follows: 96%, 95%, and 94% for 2G, 3G, and 4G respectively.
We increased 4G coverage of the Kenyan population from 77% to 94%, enabling access to high-speed connectivity for customers who reside in areas where fibre is yet to be rolled out, thus enabling our customers to work remotely – Safaricom in a statement.