ConnectIN:Testing the gaps in First Nations’ Internet connectivity

Getting adequate access to internet continues to be an issue for First Nation communities. But the extent of this problem is still not fully known.

In 2019-2020, ConnectIN evaluated the internet connectivity of First Nation communities in western Canada. Led by led by three First Nations regional technology organizations, its goal was to better assess gaps in infrastructure and services, in order to better inform policy that address these challenges.

raspberry pi

How Did It Work?

  • Small computing devices (banana pis) were installed in participating public builds
  • These devices recorded: internet latency, internet speed, and the amount of traffic on the network
  • The devices could not see who was using the internet, or what websites were being visited

transmission tower

What Were the Outcome?

  • The project will ended February 28, 2020
  • Over 20 communities participated
  • The results (and the methodology used) are available to view here
  • The data clearly demonstrates where internet-building programs should focus

rural computing

How To Join

  • Other communities wishing to deploy similar internet tests are now able to copy this methodology
  • The setup for the banana pi devices has been made open source
  • Cybera has created a data platform for communities to upload and analyze their data
  • For advice on how to start your own internet data project, contact

ConnectIN was supported by a grant from the Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA) through its Community Investment Program.

The project was led by representatives from the Manitoba First Nations Education Resource Centre, the First Nations Technology Council, and the First Nations Technical Services Advisory Group. Additional support is provided by Cybera and the University of Alberta.

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