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    Why BB Subscription Is Cheaper Than Other Data Plans in Nigeria






    I stumbled on a thread at Nairaland yesterday, where the OP shared
    the NCC (Nigeria Communications Commission) response to her query on why
    Nigeria network providers can't make other data plans to be as cheap as
    BIS (Blackberry Internet Subscription). I'm sure you will agree with me
    that the issue of expensive data plans especially for Android
    smartphones has been generating a lot of comments online lately.





    According
    to the thread, RIM, the manufacturer of BlackBerry, utilizes a special
    compression algorithm to serve users of Blackberry handsets who have
    subscribed for BIS. Whenever such a BIS subscriber surfs the internet
    and opens a webpage, a request is sent via the BB's browser requesting
    for the page to be downloaded to the phone. This request is channeled to
    RIM’s gateway in Canada, which fetches the webpage, compresses it and
    sends the compressed data back to the BlackBerry phone as a download.




    Blackberry icon



    On
    an Android smartphone, the request to open a webpage by subscribers is
    sent to the gateway of the network operator which then processes the
    information and sends back the page to the Android phone as a download
    (the data is not compressed - thereby requiring more bandwidth).



    The
    amount of bandwidth uploaded is identical between both Blackberry and
    Android phones, the difference lies in the fact that most of what
    subscribers do on their phones is to download content which varies on
    both. BlackBerry is indirectly subsidizing bandwidth by compressing the
    content downloaded by subscribers.



    In effect, an
    internet subscriber using an Android smartphone to open a webpage may be
    downloading 100KB of data, while a subscriber using a Blackberry
    opening the very same webpage would be downloading 25KB due to the
    compression of data by RIM.



    Bandwidth in Nigeria is an
    expensive resource, because most data is transferred wirelessly. This is
    the reason why the NCC is promoting wired infrastructure around the
    country through such projects as WIN (Wire Nigeria) as well promoting a
    Broadband roadmap for the country which will greatly reduce the cost of
    bandwidth thereby reducing the cost of browsing the internet on
    smartphones.



    I hope you now understand why BIS might continue to be cheaper than other data bundles.




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