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Internet connectivity is transforming rural areas of Latin America

Internet connectivity is transforming rural areas of Latin America

Bridging the digital divide
Available in English Español

FONATEL, Claro and Ericsson bring universal telephony and internet access to Tortuguero and its neighboring rural communities in Limón, Costa Rica. Learn about Fixed Wireless Access (FWA), technology that has provided rural communities in Costa Rica with high-speed internet access.



As an ecosystem, FONATEL, Claro and technology providers like Ericsson, we have taken on the challenge of connecting the unconnected in rural and hard-to-reach areas in order to eliminate the digital divide in the region and bring digital transformation to all communities.

“We have seen a significant improvement in access to education. An increase in the abilities of the community to reach beyond the city limits to attract more tourism, as well as an increase in entrepreneurial efforts”

— Chafic Nassif, CEO LATAM North and Caribbean, Ericsson

The challenge

Delivering high-speed connectivity to rural communities presents technical and economic challenges:

  • The area where El Tortuguero is located is considered a rural area with little or no access to connectivity.
  • The local geography means the only option for transporting telecommunications equipment is via river boats
  • Many of the sites where towers were installed are protected areas with no access to the electricity grid.
Providing high-speed connectivity to rural communities

The solution

Fixed Wireless Access Opens Up a World of Opportunity

While millions of people continue to wait for access to connectivity, Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) presents an efficient and scalable alternative to wired connections. Through the installation of 12 Radio Site Solutions, some which solar powered, we have been able to provide internet connectivity and mobile services for twelve communities and 4000 inhabitants, who now have better access to education, health services, financial services, innovation, information, among other benefits.

By utilizing the existing mobile network, FWA provides the capacity to deliver high-speed connectivity services to these previously underserved areas and communities.

Fixed Wireless Access Opens Up a World of Opportunity
“From Claro, we are always looking for initiatives that allow us to contribute to reduce the digital divide, generating a positive impact on local development (…). We are happy that the community of Tortuguero now has this resource. Also, all this is possible thanks to partners like Ericsson who contribute with their knowledge and thus, we can fulfill our purpose."

— Seth Artavia, Claro Costa Rica's Spokesperson

The result

Twelve radios were deployed and enabled in the area, providing internet coverage for twelve communities and 4000 inhabitants in the area.

Changes people's lives

Many of the residents in this area work in the tourism sector. Thanks to connectivity, local companies now have the opportunity to access more markets and business models through internet services.

Education for the future

Thirteen elementary schools and three junior high schools are now connected, providing access to new education resources

Education for the future