World Wi-Fi Day: The Importance of Connecting the Unconnected

By Ray Savich   June 20, 2016

Today marks the first annual World Wi-Fi Day, a day that commemorates the need to connect the many unconnected communities around the world.

It’s estimated that more than four billion people still don’t have regular access to the Internet. That’s roughly three fifths of the Earth’s population. With all of the innovations that have transformed the wireless industry in the past decade, I know we can do much better than this.

This is why at Cambium Networks, we’re inspired every day by the possibility of expanding Internet access on a massive, global scale. Our equipment is used on every continent, in more than 150 countries – and there’s still so much more we can accomplish.

Two days from now, we will unveil a breakthrough technology that we believe will drive down the cost and difficulty of deploying new wireless networks in an unprecedented way. But in the meantime, I wanted to share a few of my favorite stories that show how Cambium Networks has helped connect the unconnected through the years:

A lifeline for refugees: Camps on the island of Lesbos, Greece have taken in thousands of refugees from Syria and Iraq. The people in these camps are often separated from family and friends, and need a way to communicate with loved ones – so a reliable network is essential. To help build a network, we sent resources and equipment to charity organization Disaster Tech Lab so the camps could stay connected indefinitely.

Class, disrupted: The island nation of Papua New Guinea has over 10,000 schools, but until a few years ago it was difficult for them to communicate with each other (and even internally). Without reliable network access, tasks as simple as payroll proved a challenge, and students missed out on vital online learning opportunities. I’m intensely proud that Papua New Guinea’s Department of Education now uses our point-to-multipoint solution to connect classrooms, schools and offices throughout the country.

Stopping poachers in their tracks: In South Africa, rhino poaching threatens to destroy an already endangered species. To catch poachers as soon as they enter the perimeter of its conservation area, the Limpopo Rhino Security Group uses ePMP™ 1000 and PTP 650 links to power a robust video surveillance network.

Connecting a digital desert: With all the talk of connecting communities in need worldwide, it can be easy to forget that many Americans still lack basic Internet access. Many of the homes in Chicago’s South Shore neighborhood, for instance, remain completely unconnected. So in partnership with Leave No Veteran Behind, we helped connect the Windsor Park Lutheran Church to establish a Wi-Fi resource for the whole community.

Now that I’ve shared a few stories with you, I’d love to hear about yours! Here’s how you can participate in today’s festivities:

Wishing you all a happy World Wi-Fi Day – here’s to the next billion people connected!