HAVANA, Dec. 30th (Agencias) ETECSA, will offer the internet service in mobile phones starting in 2018, an old claim by Cubans, who until this year could not connect from their homes, according to the official media of the Island cited by EFE.
The president of ETECSA, Mayra Arevich, insisted on the “favorable impact” of the novelty “on the lives of Cubans”, although she did not provide details about the new service, included among the “challenges” of the company for the coming year.
The state monopoly usually speaks of “news” in reference to services that are offered in most countries in the world for years: such as the possibility of connecting to the Internet from home or thanks to a mobile phone contract.
Internet access is one of the pending subjects for Cuba, one of the most disconnected countries in the world.
As part of the strategy to bring the network of networks to Cubans, the state monopoly opened several public Wi-Fi hotspots since July 2015, which now totals more than 500 throughout Cuba and recently began the commercialization of Nauta Hogar packages in the homes. service that was only allowed to a small professional sector.
Last November, the authorities of ETECSA registered 672 complaints across the country regarding scams in the WiFi zones and especially the theft of the balance of the Nauta accounts.
Also, the state monopoly recognized that when it started these WiFi points in 2015 it did not have a valid security certificate to offer public internet.
As for Internet service in homes, Arevich said in an interview with Cubahoy official YouTube channel that “more than 11,000 clients have hired the Nauta Hogar that in March was launched in Havana and from September it gradually extended to the rest of the country. “
In 2017, according to official data, ETECSA activated 600,000 new mobile lines in the country, for a total of 4.5 million.
Cuba registered more than 4.5 million Internet users in 2016, which means 403 connected per 1,000 inhabitants of the Caribbean nation, in which some 11.1 million people live, according to the authorities.
On the island an hour of connection in the 505 points of public WiFi costs one dollar and the four packages of 30 hours of Nauta Hogar have prices ranging between 15 and 70 CUC (equivalent to the dollar), an expensive service for the Cuban who receives an average salary of about $ 29 per month.
The state company says that its will “is to bring the process of computerization of society to as many natural persons as possible”, but the prices, the low speed and quality of the service, and the practice of limiting access to critical sites of the Government, such as DIARIO DE CUBA, question that assertion. Rather, they point to an attempt to get around the constant international criticism without losing control over the information that Cubans receive.