Decades of sanctions have left a lasting impact on the state of affairs in Cuba and that’s really a major reason why it’s among the least connected nations on the planet. The world has rapidly adopted faster internet technologies while Cubans have been stuck in the past, however, there’s a ray of hope for them now. The country’s state-owned telecommunications company has announced that it’s finally going to launch the first domestic broadband service in Havana.
ETECSA, the telecommunications company, will allow Cubans living in Old Havana, the old colonial center of the capital city, to get the broadband service provided by Huawei. Restaurants, cafes and bars will also be able to get the broadband service.
Public Wi-Fi hotspots have started to pop up in the capital city but they usually cost about $2 per hour and that’s really not a viable option for most citizens as that’s nearly 10 percent of the average monthly salary in Cuba.
Previously home broadband service was only offered to employees of foreign companies or diplomats who had to pay several hundred dollars per month to get a connection with average speeds a fraction of what one finds elsewhere.
It remains to be seen though how affordable this new broadband service is going to be. Nevertheless it’s a step in the right direction to eventually bring Cuba into the new digital age.