This week saw the ACE cable connect one of its second phase cable landing stations in Cotonou, the capital of Benin. Like many francophone African countries, Benin has a monopoly telecoms provider that is holding back the growth of the market. Russell Southwood looks at what ought to change.
This week international MVNO operator Lycamobile announced that it has got a licence in Cameroon where it has set up a subsidiary. Others are in the wings and this could bring a new wave of competition on international calling. Russell Southwood looks at what might develop.
In late May 2015, Etisalat Nigeria launched a new data center in the Nigerian capital, Abuja. There are already several data centres of scale in Nigeria's commercial centre Lagos but this is the first of what will undoubtedly be several, writes Balancing Act's Senior Analyst, Sylvain Beletre.
Speaking at the launch of the Data Centre, the Chief Executive Officer, Etisalat Nigeria, Matthew Willsher said that the investment was made to ensure that the customers’ experience on the network is seamless and hassle-free.
For a long time it looked as if satellite operators and resellers serving Africa were out of tune with their customers. When fibre arrived in quantity, customers were resentful for all those years of paying for satellite capacity at what seemed like top dollar. Finally, finally under some competitive pressure from new operators they seem to be tuning into new markets. Russell Southwood spoke to Eran Shapiro is Director, Business and Technology Ventures at Spacecom, operators of AMOS satellites.
At GSM 3G Africa (now AfricaCom) 2006. London-based South African Niall Murphy was talking about how the company he was then CTO for, The Cloud was covering the UK and parts of Europe with Wi-Hot spots and that a small but growing portion of its data use was voice.
There are well over 100 online and mobile music platforms in Africa and not a week seems to pass without another one being launched. This week it's the turn of the two francophone Congos – DRC and Brazzaville – as music platforms start to spread more widely into francophone Africa.
Africa’s e-commerce sector has now got a foothold in a wide range of countries, some obvious but many less obvious. As with m-money, it will grow in some places but not others. Russell Southwood looks at how things will change and who the winners and losers will be in the telecoms and internet sectors.
Africa’s telecoms and internet sectors have made enormous progress over the last ten years and many barriers to the expansion of the business have come down. But there are still a number of inconvenient facts that stand in the way of the business continuing to grow and attract new investment. Russell Southwood tries to identify the walls that will need to come down to speed new growth.
One of the biggest clusters of high-price monopoly fibre providers is to be found in Central Africa. Things are changing but not as quickly as they should be for these countries to remain competitive. This week Equatorial Guinea announced that it had signed up for a JV to create a national fibre network. Russell Southwood
With hindsight, the growth of e-shopping in South Africa and Nigeria was perhaps inevitable. But the more interesting story is how internationally backed start-ups like Jumia are beginning to make inroads into countries that have much smaller markets. Russell Southwood spoke to a couple of key players in Cote d’Ivoire and Cameroon.