Google commits $1bn to boost Africa’s digital infrastructure

The tech giant Google has pledged $1bn to grow its African operations in an effort to tackle the continent’s digital divide, improve citizens’ access to social media, and shore up the continent’s digital infrastructure….

Google commits $1bn to boost Africa's digital infrastructure

The tech giant Google has pledged $1bn to grow its African operations in an effort to tackle the continent’s digital divide, improve citizens’ access to social media, and shore up the continent’s digital infrastructure.

The tech giant said it is also aiming to boost internet speed and capacity on its top services in the continent. It plans to connect at least 30m Africans to the internet in the next three years through the rapid expansion of its Google Station business model.

The move comes just weeks after Google unveiled a three-year $5bn strategy aimed at increasing cloud storage and adding more financial support to its projects.

“Our goal is to connect as many people as possible, and at a much faster rate,” said a Google spokesperson. “It’s been nearly a decade since we were last here in Nigeria.”

The announcement follows the launch in Nigeria of Google Station, a co-working space that aims to encourage the country’s young entrepreneurs and job seekers to participate in the digital ecosystem, by providing them with support, services and infrastructure to their businesses. The company, known for its internet search engine, video sharing site YouTube and cloud technology, has announced similar projects across the world.

Nigeria, Africa’s most populous country, has high internet access, with 60% of households having access, while only half of the country has any access to bank accounts.

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