Facebook has announced a partnership with Cell C and Cambium Networks to launch its Express Wi-Fi service in South Africa.
Express Wi-Fi is part of Facebook’s global initiative to spread Internet connectivity, and offers affordable Wi-Fi bundles to subscribers.
It is designed to complement mobile data offerings by providing a low-cost, high-bandwidth alternative.
In a press statement, Facebook said its latest Express Wi-Fi partners include Cell C in South Africa, Vodafone in Ghana, and Globe in the Philippines.
These companies will help Facebook to provide “fast, affordable, and reliable access to the Internet”.
“With Express Wi-Fi, Facebook works with Internet providers and mobile operators to help build and grow their Wi-Fi businesses in a sustainable and scalable way,” the company said.
Cambium Networks technology
Cambium Networks said it is also expanding its collaboration with Facebook to drive the Express Wi-Fi service.
The company is integrating Facebook’s self-organising mesh access technology into its cnPilot portfolio of indoor and outdoor of Wi-Fi Solutions.
A Cell C spokesperson said they are excited to see the two technology companies coming together to make mesh-based Wi-Fi networks a reality.
“Facebook brings new technologies, tools, and business models that help bring people online to a faster Internet, and Cambium Networks brings its cost-effective and proven wireless innovation.”
MyBroadband asked Cell C for further details about its Express Wi-Fi involvement, but the company said it could not provide details of the service at this stage.
Facebook’s mesh Wi-Fi technology
Facebook’s self-organising, self-healing mesh Wi-Fi technology reduces the need for operators to spend time manually configuring their networks.
In the event that an access point (AP) goes offline, the Wi-Fi mesh technology uses its self-healing functionality to automatically reconfigure the mesh to work around the AP that is down.
The technology reconfigures the mesh to operate via the remaining meshed APs or gateway APs.
This self-organising mesh access technology is designed to scale to more than 50 Wi-Fi APs.