Microsoft's Airband initiative is starting to operate in Latin America and Sub-Saharan Africa. By 2022, it aims to bring 40 million new Internet users to the world. Airband, founded in 2017 to improve internet access in rural US, will now target users in Latin America and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Utilizing unused Cognitive Radio Networks (TVWS) in the 600 MHz spectrum in the Americas, the company has enabled 3 million Americans to access broadband. The company plans to benefit from Cognitive Radio Networks as well as other innovative technologies in international operations and will cooperate with local companies.
Companies that will cooperate with Airband are expected to be able to understand specific needs for each area, work with governments to overcome legal barriers, and work with Internet service providers to provide internet access to end users.
In the meantime, let's add that Microsoft's efforts in this area have yielded results in Ghana and Colombia. The company made use of Cognitive Radio Networks to initiate the interenate of 2 schools and 5 farms. In this context, the company also invests in local service providers, 6 million Colombians living in rural areas connected to the Internet. In Ghana, the company removed restrictions on Cognitive Radio Networks, enabling 800,000 people to benefit from this service.
It is worth noting that Microsoft is not the only technology giant to engage in gaining more Internet users worldwide. Googe's Next Billion Users initiative focuses on more users using Google Services, while Facebook is testing drives for internet drones and satellites to expand its user base.