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All posts tagged "Africa"

  • Facebook launches Internet.org in Malawi

    The Internet.org project by Facebook is now available in Malawi through the TNM and Airtel Malawi. The project is an initiative by Facebook to bring together technology leaders, non-profits and local communities  with the goal of connecting the two thirds of the world that don't have internet access. Only one out of every three people can access the web, Internet.org says, and this is its plan change this. “Giving people free access is the right thing to do. We will keep connecting more people and more countries, and we won’t stop until every person in the world can connect to the Internet,”...

  • Smartphone shipments grow in Middle East, Africa as affordable devices become popular

    Smartphone shipments to the Middle East and Africa, according to a Q4 2014 Handsets tracker released by analyst International Data Corporation (IDC), experienced an unprecedented year-on-year growth of 83% in 2014. The growth was primarily caused by the increased availability of cheaper models and dual-SIM devices. In 2014, smartphones accounted for 41.9% of all mobile handset shipments to the region, up from 27% in 2013. The growth of more affordable smartphone, though a positive thing, has negatively affected feature phones. Year on year in 2014, feature phone shipments were down by 4.5%. Smartphones priced under US$100 captured 20% share of...

  • Facebook’s Internet.org is coming to Nigeria #MWA2015

    Facebook on Wednesday announced plans to launch Internet.org app next month in Nigeria. The Internet.org app encourages telecoms to provide free and affordable access to certain web services like Facebook and Wikipedia. Announcing the plan for Nigeria, head of public policy for Facebook Africa Ebele Okobi, told participants at the Mobile West Africa 2015 conference, that the imminent launch in Nigeria follows similar ones in other African countries including Ghana, Zambia, Tanzania and Kenya. Speaking to Memeburn on the sidelines of the conference, she added that the app could be launched on more than one telecoms network in Nigeria, making the...

  • Why Africa’s mobile games should become powerful marketing tools #MWA2015

    Even though the opportunities for them are quite vast and numerous, mobile game companies in most parts of Africa are still trying to crack the market with varying degrees of success. In a fireside chat at Mobile West Africa 2015 with Zubair Abubakar, the Nigerian game developer and co-founder of ChopUp admitted that no game company in Africa is at the same level of monetisation as their counterparts such as King's Candy Crush which makes more than US$1-million weekly from in-app sales alone. This is while the local industry continues to grow in terms of number of companies, games and...

  • This drone footage shows off Africa’s most incredible landscapes

    Relais & Châteaux Africa has uploaded a video made up of drone footage that showcases the true beauty of Africa. The footage was shot using a DJI Phantom 2 with Zenmuse H3-3D Gimal with GoPro 3+ at 2.7K with an ND filter attached. The drone captures enchanting views of Africa. As it takes flight, over different landscapes, it captures stunning visuals of Zambia, South Africa, and Botswana. Here is a list of the places featured in the video as listed in YouTube: 00:00 – 00:13: Game Drive - Morukuru Family – Madikwe Game Reserve - South Africa 00:13 – 00:20: Elephants -...

  • Vodafone’s digital school in a box will benefit 15 000 child refugees

    The Vodafone Foundation has announced an initiative called Instant Classroom, a digital school in a box. The concept, which can be set up in 20 minutes, was unveiled at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. The purpose of the initiative, Vodafone says, is to help give children and young adults in poorly resourced refugee camps the opportunity to continue their education. The company says this year alone Instant Classroom will provide up to 15 000 children and young adults aged from seven to 20 with advanced teaching aids that are currently only available in a minority of schools in developed nations. Instant...

  • Liquid Telecom secures $150m funding for Africa-wide fiber network expansion

    Independent data, voice and IP provider Liquid Telecom Group has announced it has secured additional funding totalling US$150-million to finance the expansion of its fiber network to more locations in Africa. The fund was facilitated by Standard Chartered and provided by large global investment banks. Over a period of about five years, the company says it built what it calls the largest independent cross-border fiber network in Africa -- which spans more than 18 000km and connects a total of 15 countries in East and Central Africa. The additional fund, Liquid Telecom says, will be spent on the extension of...

  • Here’s where Africa’s payments revolution should be happening today

    In emerging markets, mobile money services have the power to simplify lives, offering people the convenience of paying from anywhere and at any time, but also to transform them, playing a social noble role by addressing the unbanked or underserved population in Africa, offering them payment services they did not have access to before. Africa is a continent filled with digital opportunity. With the mobile phone as the primary online device and a 72% mobile phone penetration rate, by far surpassing landline internet connections, the African digital revolution will take place through the small screen. Seven out of 10 of...

  • MTN now lets people send money between Ivory Coast and Benin

    The MTN Group has revealed the launch of a mobile money cross-border payment service between Ivory Coast and Benin, positioning itself in the middle of the mobile money industry that has grown massively in Africa. The service, it says, has been introduced to enable the cheaper and easier movement of money in the West African region, potentially cutting miles that people have to walk to banks. This service is not the first of its kind that MTN has initiated between two countries. Back in April, the mobile giant introduced a similar service between Ivory Coast and Burkina Faso. The success of...

  • Apple will donate some of its sales this shopping season to fight Aids

    Your next iPod or iTunes app could help fight HIV/AIDS in Africa. The December holiday season is the most profitable time of the year. Statistics aside, have you seen what happens on Black Friday? People go absolutely ape for the latest laptops, flatscreen TVs and patio furniture. To raise money and awareness during this time, Apple -- proudly carrying the world's most popular brand title -- is having a fundraising campaign to help fight HIV/AIDS in Africa after having partnered with the US-based NGO, Product (RED). For the next two weeks, a special section of the Apple's App Store called...

  • Facebook’s had to adapt its plans to give Africa free internet access

    Rumour has it that Facebook is in advanced talks with Avanti, a UK based satellite operator, regarding a project that will see it provide free internet access across Africa. The project is part of the Internet.org initiative, spearheaded by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg. Though Facebook and Avanti have refused to confirm the rumour, the deal is expected to be announced in due course. Facebook turned to Avanti following a snub by mobile operators when Zuckerberg announced this plan earlier this year. In fact Vittorio Colao, the chief executive of Vodafone, rejected Zuckerberg’s appeal, saying there was “no reason I...

  • 9 graphs that will give you new insight into Africa’s thriving mobile landscape

    We love graphs. They are colourful, digestible and usually provide interesting, insightful data. Below are a couple of charts provided by GSMA's latest report The Mobile Economy that we thought you'd be interested in. We all know by now that mobile is a big deal in Africa. While it's great that the continent is one of the most penetrated regions in the world, it's even more interesting looking at how this technology effects people, from boosting GDPs to creating jobs and innovations. Read more: Sub-Saharan Africa will have half a billion mobile subscribers by 2020 2G connections accounted for 85%...

  • African women in tech: Nkem Begho on being geeky and manly in the tech space

    "Women in tech are thought to be geeky and manly. They are thought to have no fashion sense and probably all wear nerd glasses. I find that women in tech are perceived as unsexy, however I believe that your profession has nothing to do with how you look or who you are as a person." -- Nkem Begho Where are the women in tech? Who are the women building technology or working in technology in Africa? These questions and many more are asked on a daily basis. When it comes to technology in Africa, the general consensus is that...

  • Exit stage left: lessons from reporting Africa’s tech scene

    In the last four years I have learnt a lot about technology, innovation and entrepreneurship in Africa. I have met Africa’s brightest and its bravest. I have walked the path of its past and seen the clearly marked walkways of its future. Erik Hersman from the iHub once told me that once you have been to deepest darkest Africa, it’s hard to ignore the opportunities for innovation. He was right, and you don’t have to search to far to find the opportunities. From Madagascar to the beautiful red sunsets of Tunisia, the opportunities lindy hop for anyone who will see...

  • IBM to launch mobile health-tracking initiative to track Ebola

    By relying on its supercomputers' brain power, IBM is going on a mission to help track Ebola as well as government-related issues in Sierra Leone -- the country currently most affected by the disease. The BBC reports that citizens can use SMS or voice calls to map out the virus and prevent it from spreading. IBM's systems would then be able to efficiently curate this data. Scheduled radio broadcasts are set to encourage...