Zero data charge on educational Websites – FG considers policy
The Nigerian government is considering implementation of a zero data charge on educational websites policy as it reiterates intention of improving the broadband penetration across the country.
This was revealed by Isa Pantami, the minister of Communications and Digital Economy in an address at a recent webinar in Abuja. The minister who was there represented by Mr Usman Gambo, director, Information Technology Infrastructure Solutions, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), stated that sufficient access to the internet was necessary to boost the broadband penetration level in the country.
Nigeria’s broadband penetration currently stands at 40.2% and the ministry hopes to accelerate it to 70% in 2025 through its National broadband plan. It should be noted that the Nigerian telecom regulator, the NCC, is a commission under the ministry of communication and digital economy and literally comes under the dictates of the ministry.
The focus of the National broadband 2025 plan is on enabling appropriate contents, infrastructure, capabilities for learning and teaching, the minister had said.
Zero data charge on educational Websites — Geared towards meeting up with the 2020-2025 broadband plan
Although they are yet to come out clean about how this data policy is to be implemented, the ministry states that the move is a part of its vast broadband plan.
To meet-up with the infrastructural requirement necessary to offset the broadband penetration deficiency, the minister said the ministry had established digital centres, capacity training centres, e-accessibility centres, school knowledge centres, e- Libraries, ICT Hubs and innovation parks across the country especially in rural areas where these are seldomly obtainable.
The zero charge on educational sites policy is one of the ways the government hopes to employ in meeting-up with their broadband penetration target. And this zero data charge policy had long already been employed by some selected telecommunication operators like MTN and 9mobile.
9mobile CliqLite offers teens free access to educational sites
The CliqLite is one of the operator’s value-added tariff packages, although targeted for only kids between the age of 8 and 15.
With the plan, they stand to enjoy free internet access to any supported 6 educational sites, 1 social platform and 1 game site. Parents or guardians are as well provided with an option to whitelist or blacklist certain websites in the event they are not convenient with their kids accessing them.
Additionally, there’s an airtime sponsoring feature available on cliqlite. This feature allows your child(ren) get allocated airtime according to the value and frequency you’ve set. This airtime would be charged from you account.
Still further, your ward’s birthday would get more celebrated as they would be offered rewards on their birthday. 9mobile cliqlite comes with educational materials including primary, junior, secondary school textbooks, to help children supplement their in-school learning. This is in addition to some other numbers of educational apps they would be offered access to. These applications include the popular Okada book, spell me right app, Wikipedia app, typing tutor, a dictionary app and a pronunciation app.
Learn more about 9mobile cliqlite plan.
MTN offers its subscribers access to selected educational websites
Industry leader MTN offers all its prepaid subscribers access to government e-learning websites, although at a 500MB data cap.
This free 500MB meant for mPulse & Government e-Learning websites is refreshed daily upon a visit to these selected e-learning websites. The data bonus is earned each day by visiting any of these portals and they are suitable for primary, secondary and tertiary education students.
Tabled below are the supported websites:
The bonus is accessible for subscribers of any of its tariff plans.
Airtel and Globacom are yet to unveil any of similar policy. However, they have packed in their offerings some bountiful data and calls benefits. The new Glo Berekete offers mouth-watering data benefits while Airtel’s ODU smartbox improves the efficiency of its home broadband (HBB) subscribers.