This page lists some of the thematic topics addressed in the DigI project
Internet Lite for All
Q: Why free access to information for all?
- A: Free access to information is the main driver for #DigitalInclusion and #SocietalEmpowerment. It is like the walk on the Internet". Yes, we need someone to construct the roads. Once they are built, pedestrians and cyclists can use the roads for free. Exactly the same as what we want to achieve: free access to information, and premium access to broadband content.
Q: What is Internet Lite for All?
- A: Internet Lite for All is our vision for the world. Internet Lite is text, pictures and local video to be provided for free to everyone in the society through information spots. The full Internet with broadband content, streaming and gaming is still available, but has to be paid for.
Q: What is the InfoInternet Standard
- A: The InfoInternet Standard needs yet to be developed. The main idea is to provide free content following the InfoInternet Standard, and premium content for all other content and services. There are several ways to achieve the Freemium model through InfoInternet, e.g. using a proxy like Opera Mini og Google Web Light, an own html5 standard, an 5G network slice or filtering of broadband content.
Q: What can I do to get an Information Spot in my village?
- A: In short, we have the following steps:
- I) Whom can/should we involve? Which organisations and authorities need to be involved, who are the people in the district/village/community?
- II) Which building at what location do we want to connect? Examples are school, medical dispensary, governmental building, market place
- III) What is the status of the mobile network? We typically connect to Mobile Networks, even far away, to perform connectivity. Read more on how to establish an Information Spot.
- IV) Do I get electricity from the grid or a solar panel?
- Read more in our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) or
- Check what is required to establish an Information Spot
- Have a look at our Solutions
need to add links to this page
This page lists the results from the field meetings, as well as links to specific events and our recommendations
- Field Visit Iringa og Migoli, Apr2019
- Field Visit Selela Mar2019
- Trip report and recommendations from the EAC Health & Scientific conference
- 1 Thematic Topics
- 2 Migoli
- 3 Esilalei
- 4 Mbaash
Our installations in the villages in Tanzania were performed in Mar/Apr2019, being:
- Esilalei, Arusha District,
- Migoli, Iringa District
- Izazi, Iringa, District - see also our Blog on It takes 90 min to connect a village
- Selela, Arusha District,
- Patandi Teachers College, outside of Arusha - extending the reach
In Selela 2G networks from various operators are present, though none of them has a 3G coverage at the market place, the dispensary or the school. The main reason is that the 3G towers are too far away, in the case of Halotel the distance is more than 20 km from Selela to the Halotel tower on the hill-side close to Mbo wa Mtu.
Currently the market place is connected, based on a 3 m pole connected to an existing pole on the roof, reaching up to about 6 m over ground.
The potential extensions include a link to the school, and the link to the dispensary. However, we first need to clarify on how to attach the pole to the buildings.
In Migoli both Halotel and Vodacom provide 3G networks, with towers being provided right within the village. About 2.5 km east of the village is the Nyerere High School, with 1271 children and xxx teachers (status: Apr2019). Thus, bringing an information spot to the school will allow for education in digital matters.
The teachers were very optimistic about the capabilities of digital education, and even pointed out Internet addresses with content specially designed for teaching the children.
Note: if you know about other content, please drop us a note on [BasicInternet.org]
Receiving the mobile network is not a problem, the regular 3G network is excellent. Though, we decided to install our directive LTE antenna, allowing for an even better signal to noise ratio, and thus higher capacity. An iron pole of 9 m was set-up on the outside of the PC room, allowing the Internet to be directly connected to the PCs in the room. Measures of field strongest indicate that we cover about half of the public space. With one more directive antenna, we will be able to cover the whole space.
On top of the mast are the two sector antennas, located ca 9 m above ground. At this height they look over the trees, as well as over the top of the house. The LTE antenna is located at 6 m.
With two sector antennas, one covering the school area, and the second one pointing to Migoli village, we have the opportunity to establish Wifi information spots almost everywhere.
The Dining hall is about 150 m away, to be covered with an extension hot-spot.
Equipment installed and needed
Equipment installed: LTE, 2 sector antennas, LNCC (ASK), 1 set extension hot-spot
- village/school platform, evtl school server (tbc)
- 1 Wifi spot (to be connected by cable to cover the school place and the headmaster office)
- Embraco, 4 x 15 m cable (for 2x sector antennas, LTE antenna, and Wifi spot), 4 x 6 m cables
- 1 switch (8 ports)
===== Esilalei ===
Esilalei is located
Esilalei has currently the basis set-up, being an LTE antenna and our LNCC
The dispensary is about ??? away, and will need directive antennas (6 m poles) to be connected - not decided.
===== Mbaash ===
The Mbaash Dispensary is located about 14 km NorthEast of Selela
The challenge has been the construction, to be fixed to the dispensary office. The following entities need to provide their permit to allow for modifications at the house: ????? Due to these restrictions, no decision has been taken on how to further connect.
A solution might be to set up a pole, instead of fixing a construction to the wall.
From the connection of the first 5 villages, we achieved excellent results:
- In each village we find people having a tremendous People in the villages
Standard poles come in the length of 6 m, which is sufficient for connectivity to reach the mobile network tower being more than 20 km away (case Selela market), or being hidden by the landscape (case Izazi). In addition, the 6 m poles reach up to 2-3 km point-to-multipoint connectivity in rural Tanzania.
In case of larger distances, our solution is to extend to 9 m high poles on the site of the sector antenna (case Migoli), allowing a line-of-site over the top of the trees. In case of the Izazi Dispensary, we used a 6 m pole at the governmental building, and added a 9 m pole at the dispensary.
We would like to thank our collaboration partners in Tanzania. Through the combined effort of the government (Ministry of Health, Universal Communication Service Access Funds (UCSAF), National Institute for Medical Research), Academia (Sokoine University of Agriculture, Muhumbili University), Mobile Operators (especially Tigo and Vodacom), and the communities we achieved our goals of bringing “free access to information for everyone”.
- we connected villages which were “impossible to connect” Izazi and Selela,
- we brought free information to schools Migoli: Nyerere High School, Market places Selela market and Migoli village centre, governmental buildings Izazi and will connect dispensaries Izazi Dispensary
- we achieved tremendous positive feedback from the society. Does not matter where, we were welcome and got all the support we wanted. ‘’Everyone recognised the value of free access to information’’.
- The mobile operators (Tigo and Vodacom) were very helpful in offering fair deals for the pilots, and involved us in their plans.
- National institutions like UCSAF with Peter Ulanga fully supported us with background information to perform the roll-out.
- our input to the UN High Level Panel on Digital Cooperation is well reflected by the topics brought out by the panel, being inclusiveness, trust and capacity building.
- Inclusiveness: Everyone has free access to information
- Trust: we collaborate with health authorities to enable highly trusted content on the local village platform. In addition, the InfoInternet standard filtering text and pictures will remove vulnerable content from Web sites before being presented in the information spot.
- Capacity building is key of “Internet Lite for All”, with a village server with free access to information and apps to download
- early results from the medical intervention using video and animations to inform the local communities show outstanding results in health knowledge uptake.
Though, there are lot’s of areas still in need to be elaborated
- Adopting the Nordic model of 1 contract with up to 6 SIM cards and a combined data package to create a better base for the information spots,
- A framework for establishing and operating information spots in the villages. In a country being as big as Tanzania, the business model of operators does not allow a coverage of mobile broadband everywhere. Thus, combining mobile network with information spots is an excellent opportunity for digital inclusion, but is currently not addressed in the framework for mobile licenses.
- the distribution of vouchers and the costs for video. Currently, data packages cost 30.000-35.000 TZS for 10 GB data per month. Given that a video of 1 hour typically consumes 1 GB, that means that 1 video costs 3.500 TZS, which is beyond reach for the majority of people. Though, a solution might address sponsorship or social sharing of video content to the local village spot.
- Empower the communities to extend the access to information
- the development of the village platform enabling local communities to contribute to knowledge creation.
- The framework for governmental involvement,
- transferring the existing information into digital information and
- focus on new business models for free access to information, involving communities and mobile operators.
- 2 villages (Izazi and Mgoli) in Iringa districts are for HIV, TB and Cysticercosis
- Migoli: has TIGO 3G tower in the village, Latitude: -7.145672 | Longitude: 35.819636, Altitude: 717 meters
- Izazi: 2G connection from Migoli tower (no 3G), Latitude: -7.23764 | Longitude: 35.720995, Altitude: 753 meters
one Village in Monduli (Selela)
- Selela, Latitude: -3.210762 | Longitude: 35.947617, Altitude: 1043 meters, TIGO tower on the mountain 5-7 km away
- Esilalei (Lat -3.46945, Long 35.97469) - received 3G Tigo coverage Jun2018
For best praxis, rather extend the reach in the villages than to expand to other villages.
Note: discussions of other villages - GPS coordinates from https://www.gps-coordinates.net)
Villages to be connected
- Kimande (Iringa) - Baseline in Apr2019 - ready to be connected in Okt2019
- Idodi (Iringa)- Baseline in Apr2019 - ready to be connected in Okt2019
- (Mungere (Lat -3.3178, Long 35.892))
- further villages, if requested (and installed) from collaboration with NGOs