The UN estimates that by 2015 Lagos will be the world’s third most populous city with over 23 million citizens. As such the need to transform Lagos into a smarter city has become imperative. Technological advancement necessitates dependence on electronic information dissemination. Internet affects everyday requirements in all aspects of society from education and citizen involvement to health and entertainment. Books, journals and newspapers are commonly being replaced by electronic versions and superseded by Internet sites.
However, although this transformation is typical in higher-income countries it is still not widespread in developing countries. There are two main reasons for this digital divide:
As hardware becomes more accessible, the infrastructural gap has become the main issue. Poor Internet penetration makes the delivery of content a major obstacle. Statistics show the level of penetration is as low as 28% within Nigeria while the country ranks 3rd in the world for sub-standard Internet speed which means that even when there is Internet coverage it is often not capable of dealing with faster more inclusive and interactive services.
The City of Lagos is looking for a scalable city-wide Wi-Fi solution with the option of working in a disconnected mode with an independent power source. Typically, these hotspots will be set up for various uses such as content provision for schools, libraries and community centres. It is essential that the solution can work as a hotspot, content server for data storage and can operate in a standalone mode.