ICT4D start-up (Kitchener-Waterloo, Canada and Abuja FCT, Nigeria) working to launch HITCH “Data Mesh”, consisting of high-speed smart solar-powered WiFi Mesh Router clusters, for users to form affordable Community Broadband Mesh Networks in emerging markets.

Data Mesh consists of inexpensive rugged WiFi SOHO mesh routers (with embedded storage, processing, and solar/battery capacity), collaborating to form aggregated infrastructure for caching and delivering Content, Services, and Applications to local users, but also enabling sharing of Internet access via authorized backhaul link.

Team won PCH Hardware Hackathon in Kitchener-Waterloo, Canada in June, 2015, by developing a prototype of envisioned SOHO mesh router & software kernel to anchor an affordable, accessible, and available broadband content delivery network.

HITCH also includes unique business model for rapidly scaling and aggregating mesh network capacity in various Base of Pyramid markets, starting in Africa – where ...
ICT4D start-up (Kitchener-Waterloo, Canada and Abuja FCT, Nigeria) working to launch HITCH “Data Mesh”, consisting of high-speed smart solar-powered WiFi Mesh Router clusters, for users to form affordable Community Broadband Mesh Networks in emerging markets.

Data Mesh consists of inexpensive rugged WiFi SOHO mesh routers (with embedded storage, processing, and solar/battery capacity), collaborating to form aggregated infrastructure for caching and delivering Content, Services, and Applications to local users, but also enabling sharing of Internet access via authorized backhaul link.

Team won PCH Hardware Hackathon in Kitchener-Waterloo, Canada in June, 2015, by developing a prototype of envisioned SOHO mesh router & software kernel to anchor an affordable, accessible, and available broadband content delivery network.

HITCH also includes unique business model for rapidly scaling and aggregating mesh network capacity in various Base of Pyramid markets, starting in Africa – where it is building an e-Agriculture Platform for the benefit of farmers and other stakeholders in Nigeria’s Food and Agriculture Industry, in rural, semi-urban, and urban underserved and unserved areas.

HITCH design is disruption of the “Data Center” into dynamic “Data Mesh” model, by making each Server (processing, storage, power, and networking) component, an interconnected Client-Premises-Equipment. Forms a Hyper-Local Cloud; decentralizing Data Center from one central location, to clusters of redundantly interconnected distributed locations, enabled by cheaper and faster resource components.

Data Mesh is cheaper to organically and dynamically implement. Participating Users (who join, by purchase or lease of HITCH CPE to be connected into Community Data Mesh) also earn revenue by joining and contributing increasing capacity/resources from their HITCH router.

Since Data Center is broken up and placed in User’s homes, offices, etc., and stores/delivers data for a number of businesses/organizations, Users are also beneficiaries of revenue earned. Creates additional incentive to connect to and remain on Data Mesh.

Moreover, Data Mesh is scaled, 1 cluster or community at a time; starting with normative threshold of 2-15 mesh nodes at initial deployment. Community mesh clusters are interconnected via TV White Spaces or 3rd-Party Network backhaul, to enable Metropolitan or Community Area Network service coverage zone, on Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) access.
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Recommendations

Nada Basir

I had the pleasure of getting to know Uche and Steve during their Masters program as their Social Entrepreneurship Professor. I have watched these two work endlessly on this venture. I have also had the chance to watch their venture evolve. As a strong advocator for creating social impact through disciplined business models and by leveraging technology, Hitch is one of my favourite examples of disruptive business startups that do good. These are the businesses of the future, and Hitch embodies this.

Julius Adewopo Research Fellow and Geospatial Analyst at International institute of tropical agriculture

Hitch by Flexfinity is driving an impressive innovation that is leveraged by (user-)community-targeted algorithms. This is a promising approach for scaling-out content delivery and accessibility among variety of users (farmers, service providers, governments etc) who often do not exist in close spatial proximity, but require timely content access to make optimal decisions.