Although there are many mobile providers in Africa, there is virtually no broadband infrastructure within major cities and their suburbs. According to 3air’s research, over 99% of Africa’s population lacks access to broadband internet connection or stable TV and IP telephony signals. From this, it is immediately evident that Africa’s economies are severely underserved. 

3air and the K3 Broadband Solution 

The 3air platform uses K3’s broadband technology to provide network connections to billions of people worldwide by leveraging blockchain technology. The K3 broadband mesh network uses patented technology to provide stable, reliable, and affordable wireless broadband internet connections. 

The hardware setup includes a base station that can provide IP telephony, digital TV, and internet within a 50KM radius with the capacity to host 50,000 users with network speeds of up to 1000Mbps/ User. The technology is especially suitable for densely populated urban areas in emerging economies because it does not require digging trenches. 

Services provided by K3 include:

  • Ultra-High-Broadband Internet speed

  • OTT Services (Netflix, Apple TV, and other TV, streaming services, Timeshift, VoD functionality, 150+ SD and HD digital TV channels, for an unlimited number of TV users because TV signal is broadcasted)

  • VoIP Content (Full premium functionality services: Simultaneous Multiple Line use, Caller ID, Transfer, Fax, Voice Mail, etc.)

K3’s Last Mile project has been operational in Sierra Leone since 2019 and is currently spreading into the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). K3’s vision aligns with 3air’s—to bring equal opportunities to Africa’s cities by providing stable, secure, affordable broadband, TV, and telephony. K3’s broadband solution will kick start 3air’s plans to deliver broadband connectivity to the DRC and Nigeria and, eventually, to additional countries. 

So what is 3air bringing to the table? The 3air platform enables financial services through decentralized financial (DeFi) tracking and digital identity services. DeFi lowers the entry bar for the billions of people who still lack access to traditional bank accounts and financial services. For instance, 3air NFTs are embedded with connectivity bundles that, when activated, provide access to the broadband mesh network. In addition, 3air will enable African community members to use crypto, credit cards, or cash to access decentralized lending, borrowing, and yield farming. The DeFi marketplace is ever expanding.

IP telephony & digital TV market analysis in Africa

3air’s market analysis reflects the current status of broadband data, IP telephony, and digital TV in Africa.

Broadband data

The broadband market is dominated by Africell, Airtel, Vodacom, Orange, etc., with a heavy focus on the mobile phone sector. However, Africa's lack of cable infrastructure and fixed broadband has motivated these players to enter the ISP space via Wi-Fi hotspot dongles and point-to-point solutions for residential and enterprise customers. As neither of these solutions provides fixed broadband services on par with western standards, they provide highly-priced services with limited functionality and capacity. 

Digital TV 

The two market giants, DStv and Canal+, operate on satellite technology, which is highly vulnerable to signal disturbances from extreme weather conditions like rain. They offer various digital TV channel offerings with packages ranging between $7 to $105 per month. 

IP Telephony

Market participants provide IP telephony only for additional fees. Such services are not frequently purchased due to the inability to provide PBX systems critical for enterprise offerings and large corporations and the absence of IP phone functionality.

Market analysis for Sierra Leone indicated that the average K3 customer used 140 GB of data per month. This shows that internet provider Vodacom’s most robust package of 100 GB is insufficient for regular broadband use and does not even include TV and IP telephony. 

This data represents the situation in most major cities in Africa.

Together, 3air and K3 will provide consistent high-speed broadband services for residential, government, and corporate clients, costing around 50% less than the competition.

Check out 3air’s website at 3air.io or follow them on their TwitterTelegram and Youtube to find out more about the project and what they are doing.