Access to the internet was a luxury not so long ago, but today it’s an essential utility where growth and innovation are concerned. Yet, approximately half of the world’s population do not have regular access to broadband service.
Being without broadband can lead to community and individual setbacks; a lack of broadband creates an economic gap between those who have access and those who do not. Everything from job hunting and banking to education is more difficult in the 21st century when a user can’t get online. Ammbr seeks to close some of this gap using a mesh network of hotspots created by blockchain technology.
What are the challenges for providing broadband access?
Providing consistent broadband service is easier said than done. Since the advent of wireless and broadband internet, there have been several classic barriers to providing consistent internet service. Beyond matters of infrastructure and security, costs and availability are pertinent challenges.
Costs and availability
Giving people access to broadband isn’t free. Not only does it take significant resources to bring cable infrastructure to a community, but users may not have the resources to pay for its services – at today’s prices set and controlled by a few major players. Practically, a system for micro-payments do not yet exist. Think of someone who may need to only download a few kilobytes of data of email and would pay a few cents. Even users who can afford data plans, for example, may limit their activity to a restricted plan of 250 MB or 500 MB per month. This leaves many people with no option but to wait until they have “free” access.
But even “free” access is not commonly available around the world. In many places even if Wi-Fi is available at locations like a coffee shop, it may be limited to 30 minutes or a fee. And there is the cost of the coffee and food, or travel costs and time to a library or similar location.
Wouldn’t it be great if broadband access was commonly available and you can ‘sip’ as much as you needed and pay in small micro-payment increments? Maybe it’s the equivalent of only a few cents for checking and sending a bunch of WhatsApp or WeChat messages, or a couple of dollars’ worth of tens of gigabytes of usage.
How does the lack of broadband affect people?
Limited access to broadband has been shown to negatively affect communities in several significant ways. Quite simply, people who do not have access to broadband are more likely to face insurmountable challenges to financial advancement and access to new industries. As technology continues to advance, a lack of regular and consistent access to the internet leads to:
Gross disparities in market pricing
Farmers may sell produce for a fraction of current market prices, or consumers may pay significantly more without quick access to price comparisons. An empowered consumer can bargain and trade more fairly.
Limitations for innovation and banking
Businesses and individuals alike are less able to create new financial opportunities for themselves without an online presence. Similarly, it becomes all but impossible to conduct secure banking on a large scale or handle regular financial transactions.
Minimized access to labor pool
Businesses that want to hire new employees will have a tough time accessing the full labor pool. Likewise, available workers have a much more challenging time locating employment vacancies.
Without broadband, businesses and communities often struggle to adopt more-efficient practices for financial transactions, commerce and more. This problem becomes worse over time as people fall further behind new advances.
Slowed economic growth
Because of the loss of productivity, people who lack reliable broadband also notice slower economic growth in their communities. For instance, cities will have problems luring in tourists to begin with, and providing them with ample connections to the outside world once they arrive. This discourages travel to the area.
Less access to information and education
Without access to broadband, many people are limited in how they can get an education or keep up with world affairs. Falling behind the world in art, science or other issues in turn leads to lack of productivity and economic growth in many cases. With affordable broadband access, even when traditional education is not affordable, users can access massive open online courses (MOOCs), typically for free, and still empower themselves with modern skills.
How does Ammbr help?
Ammbr is aiming to enable users with broadband access to make the internet available to other people. People who already have a smartphone, tablet, or laptop will be able to access this new system of affordable Wi-Fi hotpots. It stands to benefit users who can’t afford a large data plan or experience gaps in broadband coverage. They will be able to roam between hotspots, an experience akin to having unlimited 4G, making job hunting and financial services more accessible.
Using blockchain technology, users can engage in a shared economy of broadband. Ammbr networks allows users to earn and exchange tokens when sharing Wi-Fi. While there is no guarantee of profit for providers, tokenizing internet access with Ammbr seeks to put more people online through its advanced network.
Public sale of the AMMBR tokens that will eventually be used on this network will go on sale starting September 1, 2017. For those interested in the technology or token sale should review the whitepaper available on www.ammbr.com
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