A nicely unpolished video from Digicel Papua New Guinea on what connecting the next billion actually means.
In no particular order:
- People steal the solar panels (this is an even bigger problem with diesel generators)
- The network goes down if it rains for too long
- Access to power of any kind is crucial for your users
- How many different distribution networks does a mobile operator have to build?
- Most of those sites probably aren't going to be able to handle everyone in the area watching YouTube (hence - data pricing, zero-rating and the problem with net neutrality)
In the next 5-10 years, almost every single person you see on the screen is going to own a smartphone. What they pay for data, and how they think about charging, is another matter. Meanwhile, one might suggest that for some of them a mobile phone is the first electrical device of any kind they've owned.