Professor Abubakar Sadiq Hussaini, who chairs the Telecoms & Wireless program, says telecommunications infrastructure and equipment are too expensive to be deployed to small rural populations.
Noting that telecoms are businesses, not charities, Dr. Hussaini contends that operators can only deploy their equipment where they will recoup their investment within a short time. “This is one of the reasons why telecommunications is very poor in rural communities,” he continued.
Dr. Hussaini, who started with history, said the telecommunication network was still evolving from the analog technology (in the 1980s), originally designed to carry human voice, to the emergence in 1991 in Finland of 2G (a digital voice call plus messaging), the 3G technology (in 2003), designed for multimedia (video, data, and music) communication with better internet experience and seamless roaming globally, to the faster broadband internet (4G or Long Term Evolution with triple download speed).
Prof. Hussaini said the next future generation telecommunication is 5G based on Internet of Things (IoT) where devices and sensors become active nodes and agents on the web with abilities to be accessed and to interconnect with other devices.
He urged the Federal Government to provide incentives to telecommunication operators to cover all the rural areas or for rapid deployment of infrastructure and equipment required to support future mobile services and applications.
Dr. Hussaini was a guest lecturer on April 12 at an Introduction to Computing class for new students.
He noted that these infrastructures are expensive and most rural areas do not have the needed population to recoup the money spent on their acquisition. He maintained that there is a need for the government to intervene with incentives to mobile phone companies to expand telecommunication networks to Nigeria's rural communities because the mobile phone is everything now, connecting us with everything. Once we are connected, rural and urban communities can connect themselves via mAgriculture, mHealth, Mobile Money, mYouth, and so on.
On networks and networking, he explained how data networks are a major facilitator in connecting with people. These data networks, he said, are enabled by telecommunications and internet infrastructure.
He explained how optical fiber or radio aids in the transmission of data for fixed broadband technology. He said there is usually a transmitter in every distance of 50 km which receives, amplifies, and transmits the data to another transmitter until it reaches the destined receiver.
He said for cellular/mobile phone technology, everyone is connected to a base station.
Reported by Omorogbe Omorogiuwa