Announcing the Winners!
Gram Marg Solution for Rural Broadband
Open source low-cost hardware prototype utilizing Television White Spectrum to provide affordable access to rural communities.
“We purposefully had a broad call for innovation in this Challenge. We hoped we would find a team with the ingenuity to create a low-cost and scalable solution, the humility to experiment and iterate, and the vision to imagine a way to change people’s lives for the better. Gram Marg delivered fully on all three.”
“What impressed me particularly about Gram Marg was their ability to use TV White Space spectrum to radically reduce the cost of connectivity. Also, their technology is open source, which means that it is accessible to anyone anywhere.”
“In my view, innovation to support equal access to the internet for the remaining 3-4 billion must demonstrate three things. Scalability to thousands of remote communities, sustainability of the solution, and of course affordability given the target market that we are serving. In a very competitive field of entrants, Gram Marg ticked all those boxes quite comprehensively.”
Afri-Fi: Free Public WiFi
Model to make Project Isizwe financially sustainable by connecting brands to an untapped, national audience, specifically low-income communities who otherwise cannot afford connectivity.
“The Afri-Fi approach towards community building, partnerships, developing local community entrepreneurs and inclusivity, with a goal of connecting some of the most marginalized communities, are all key factors in why they deserve this recognition and are leading the FREE Internet movement in Southern Africa.”
Free Networks P2P Cooperative
Cooperative that enables communities to set-up networks to get access to the Internet and then supports itself through the cooperative fees, and while co-creating the knowledge and respecting the local cultures.
“The Free Networks P2P Cooperative surprised me with their very simple but highly innovative solution proposal: empowering communities to build their own infrastructure in an affordable and sustainable way. I will closely follow their path forward and can only encourage funders and communities to get in touch and work with Bruno and his amazing team.”
Bottom-up telecommunications co-operatives that allows the most disadvantaged rural areas of South Africa to self-provide affordable communications at a fraction of the cost offered by other operators.