Safaricom PLC, the big kahuna of telecommunications in Kenya, is about to take us on a cosmic journey! You heard it right – they’ve got their sights set on launching satellite internet in our beloved country. Buckle up, because this is going to be one stellar ride!

Kenya’s largest mobile service provider has teamed up with AST SpaceMobile, Starlink’s rival, to make this grand plan a reality. It’s like a space race of epic proportions, and we’re here for it! This cosmic collaboration will allow Safaricom to tap into AST SpaceMobile’s top-notch technology and infrastructure, ensuring we get nothing short of reliable, out-of-this-world connectivity.

This satellite internet service is no ordinary upgrade. It’s like giving our current broadband offerings a turbo boost! Picture this – faster Wi-Fi, stronger cellular networks, and supercharged fibre optic cables. It’s like upgrading from a bicycle to a rocket ship!

Now, here’s a fun coincidence! Safaricom’s satellite internet is launching at the same time as SpaceX’s Starlink in Kenya. It’s like two cosmic twins competing in a celestial race!

The journey to this cosmic connection began with the testing of AST SpaceMobile’s prototype satellite, Bluewalker 3. They launched it into space on September 10th, 2022. And guess what? The spacecraft was built with a massive 693 square feet aperture to beam connectivity right to our cell phones using 3GPP-standard frequencies.

But hold onto your seats, my friends, because the real adventure is yet to come. The satellite is gearing up for official trials right here in Kenya later this year. Safaricom and other African operators will join forces to put it to the test. And it doesn’t stop there – this trial is going to span an impressive 49 countries across Africa, Europe, and the Caribbean, with the help of 200 satellites.

And here’s a little sneak peek into the future – AST SpaceMobile has big plans! Once they successfully complete the trial, they’re ready to scale up their satellite deployments in partnership with Vodacom. That’s right, folks, they’re aiming for nothing less than providing ubiquitous communications to 4G devices across Africa and beyond. It’s like turning our entire continent into one giant interconnected galaxy!

AST SpaceMobile, the masterminds behind this cosmic connection, are no small fry. They’re a publicly traded satellite designer and manufacturer, hailing all the way from Midland Texas, United States. Their mission is to build the SpaceMobile satellite constellation – a revolutionary space-based cellular broadband network. What’s unique about it? Well, it will allow our existing smartphones to connect to satellites even in areas with coverage gaps. It’s like waving a magic wand and saying goodbye to those pesky internet dead zones!