by US Mission Geneva
Internet access in developing and underdeveloped counties generally face big challenges in terms of infrastructures like fiber optic cables, back-bone cable connections, lack of reliable internet Service providers (ISP), slow or not very fast internet connection speed (poor services), limited internet access to the general public, and high cost of internet access/connection.
Nigeria is not an exception to these problems even though there seems to be significant improvements in recent times and big plans for the future, the problems still exists and stands as a challenge yet to be conquered. Plateau State and Jos its capital city are both in Nigeria and are not exempted from the Nigerian situation.
Internet access in Jos city and indeed Plateau State and even Nigeria as a country has been mostly through the use of satellite (VSAT) which is considerably a very expensive means of internet access. People who cannot secure the high cost of owning or maintaining one usually patronize the public internet cafes or go for the internet access services offered by mobile telecommunication companies present in the State.
Locally it costs from about $ 1.00 to $ 2.00 (N150.00 to N300.00 as at march 2010) or even more for every hour of internet accesses at public internet cafes within the Jos metropolis. Notable local internet cafes and internet service providers in Jos, even though some have gone out of business include; Net-link 24hr (Jos Business School), Bethnan Internet CafÃ©, Rabjib, Zecon, Afrione, Zebeh, Logic Systems, UCL Internet CafÃ©, System Links, Metro CybercafÃ©, MD Internet cafÃ©, etc. Also worthy of note is that most of the local Internet Service Providers (ISPs localized in the Jos-Plateau) make use of the Wi-Fi (Wireless Fidelity) technology, MMDS (Multipoint Microwave Distribution Service) and sometimes fixed WiMax (World-wide Interoperability for Microwave Access) through the ISM bands to connect customers to their VSATs (internet access satellite) equipment for internet access. This involves the use of customer premise equipments like antennas (receivers) and wireless routers and Telco-Office transmitters mounted on pole/masts which operate mostly on line-of-sight (LOS) and sometimes on non-line-of-sight (NLOS).
With all the speeds that these Wireless Local Area Network (WLAN) and Wireless Metropolitan Area Network (WMAN) offers; the through-put at the end of the day for the customer drops down to the actual shared internet access speeds available to the internet service provider (ISP) for its customers which is at most 5-7kbps (kilobits per second) on a very good day.
However, internet access today in Jos city and in Plateau State is generally being dominated by mobile telecommunication companies offering mostly General Packet Radio Services (GPRS), Enhanced General Packet Radio Services (EGPRS), Third Generation mobile internet access (3G), and EV-DO RevA type internet access technologies with the use of customized modems unique to each mobile telecommunication company operating as an internet service provider which are in a few cases better than what the local internet service provider (ISP) alternative has to offer. These mobile phone and telecommunication companies are the likes of MTN (MTN Fast Link), Zain Mobile, Starcoms, Zoom, Visafone, Multi-Links Telkom, and Glo Mobile.
Generally, the internet is very accessible in Jos and in Plateau State even though not at real broad band speeds, it is still very usable depending on the Internet Service Provider (ISP) you chose to use. However the best we have tested so far, even though not devoid of down time problems is the Multi-links Telkom’s EV-DO Rev A hybrid internet access modems. We rate it our best in terms of speed, and reliability, even though is fails in terms of reach-ability (it is not usable in some rural areas), setup (first time installation) and affordability (compared to the cost of what other mobile phone telecommunication companies are offering).
In the midst of all these, one thing is for sure; you will never lose torch of the internet to connect with family, friends, and colleagues or to surf the web and do some downloads or whatever you use the internet for whenever you find yourself in the lovely city of Jos or in most parts of Plateau State.
Markets & places of interest on the Jos-Plateau; Building Materials and Vegetable Market, Gada Biyu Market, Faringada Tomatoes Market,, Langtang Street, Rukuba Road Market,, Ahmadu Belo Way, Jama’a Junction, Mangu Market, Jengre Market, etc.
The Jos-Plateau in Nigeria is also the place to find the following commodities in abundance and at good wholesale and retail prices. Commodities like; vegetables (including Irish potatoes, Cucumber, Cabbage, Tomatoes, Green pepper, Green peas, water melon, Water, Onions, Carrots), grains (including Popcorn, Sorghum, Millet, Yellow Maize, White Maize, Beans, Acha, Rice, Soybeans, Sesame seeds), fruits (including; Oranges, Bananas, Mango, Pineapples, Strawberry, Grape), (including Cow, Calf, Goat, Sheep, Goat, Chicken Eggs, Broiler chicken), and gem stones (including Topaz, Ruby, Tourmaline Blue, Pink Tourmaline, Aquamarine, Quartz, Sapphire), and many more.
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