Internet Usage and Performance Analysis of a Rural Wireless Network in Macha, Zambia

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There have been a number of rural wireless networks providing Internet access over the last decade but little is known about how the Internet is being used, how these networks perform and whether they follow similar trends when compared with Internet usage patterns in developed regions. The authors analyze a set of network traces from the Linknet wireless network in Zambia, which provides Internet access to approximately 300 residents of a rural village using a satellite link and a combination of point-to-point links, hotspots and wireless mesh networks. The analysis reveals largely web-based traffic as opposed to the peer-to-peer traffic dominance that one finds in urban areas.