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Google Free Wifi: The Hidden Opportunities Behind The News by Obinna156: 2:47pm On Aug 01, 2018
Recently, Google the biggest search engine in the world has launched Google Station in Nigeria, the most populous country and as well the country with the 98 million internet users, the biggest in Africa. Google Station is a program to provide high-quality, high-speed Wi-Fi hotspots in partnership with 21st Century, one of the largest fiber network providers in Nigeria.

Google Station will be rolling out in 200 locations in five cities across Nigeria by the end of 2019, bringing Wi-Fi to millions of people. Sites will include markets, transport hubs, shopping malls, universities and more. Other African countries would wish they are Nigerians by now with this development. Google has succeeded in rolling out Google Stations in India, Indonesia, Thailand and Mexico.


Consequently, we will explore how individuals and businesses can leverage in this great opportunity.

More Digital Consumers: With the launch of Google Station in Nigeria, it is expected that an additional 10 million internet users will be added to the existing 98 million internet users. This is a great opportunity for businesses to step up their presence in the digital space. Many businesses in Nigeria are still scratching the surface of the digital economy or new economy, but they are yet to get a grip hold to harness the enormous opportunity it presents. Business leaders need to embrace the new digital business models to be able to leverage fully the limitless potentials of the new economy.

Many new businesses will be created: The thought of starting a new business in Nigeria most times is very daunting. There are some challenges that make startups to arrive dead on arrival like the high cost of internet. Many large Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) spend a large amount of money paying internet bills. Don't worry Google has given you a soft landing. Never underestimate the power of the internet. Facebook, Amazon, Google, Twitter, YouTube came into existence because of the internet. Nigerians are very creative in all ramifications. The impact of this access to the high-speed internet will be mind-blowing, despite the fact that cybercriminals will be on the rise. There will always be the dilemma of users.

More businesses would transform - with the availability of free internet offers businesses these three advantages viz, scale, scope and speed. High scaling allows businesses to provide more product and services to a larger market. Jumia Nigeria is a perfect example. Companies and businesses with physical locations need to have a significant online presence. With a serious online marketing strategy, a struggling business can innovate faster. Uber Nigeria is seriously disrupting the business of taxi drivers in Lagos and some other major cities in Nigeria. Scope allow business to sell the wider variety of products to a larger audience. It is easier to add more products to your catalogue in your online store compared to physical stores. Speed allows businesses to conduct business transactions with the click of a mouse.

Easier access to data - another advantage of businesses using the internet is easy to access data. This will enable businesses to generate digital data with some apps and software that needs internet connection, automate every process that can be automated, and help business managers to ask questions that may arise. Questions like how many people visited my website, viewed this product, clicked on this link, their demographics, online behaviours, many metrics can be easily answered. As a business analyst, I work with data everyday, analyse the data and develop actionable insights from my analyses. Facebook, Google, YouTube, Twitter, Instagram have access to data than you can ever imagine. The Cambridge Analytica scandal is still fresh in our memories.

More jobs would be created - As more tonnes of data are being generated, more people would be needed to slice, dice, mine, analyse, visualize, model these data. In this age of virtual reality, augmented reality, machine learning anything is possible. New skills will be needed to thrive in this digital age.According to World Economic Forum, some jobs will disappear, others will grow and jobs that doesn’t exist today will become commonplace. The top 10 skills that will be needed by 2020 include

Complex Problem Solving
Critical Thinking
Creativity
People Management
Coordinating with Others
Emotional Intelligence
Judgement and Decision making
Service Orientation
Negotiation
Cognitive Flexibility

All these jobs require the use of the internet for maximum efficiency.

Tighten your seatbelts, the digital era is Nigeria golden era.



Obinna Osigwe is a business analyst in Lagos Nigeria.

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