There never could have been a better stage to showcase Africa's ICT talent at the just concluded Transform Africa 2013 Summit. And participants did not disappoint.
Africa showed the rest of the world that it can be a hotbed for innovations that fit in perfectly with its environment. Most of the showcased apps were created to override day-to-day problems encountered by millions of Africans and improve their lives.
People travelling to upcountry destinations are now able to pay their fares using Tigo’s mobile money service, Tigo Cash.
“The facility will help all subscribers registered on the Tigo Cash mobile money service to buy bus tickets using their phones, from anywhere and at anytime of the day,” said Daniel Barrientos, the head of mobile financial services at the telecom service provider at the launch of the service last week.
With technological advancement, businesses no longer have to spend huge sums of money on adverts to reach out to clients. ICT firms are now able to build and avail mobile applications to help businesses reduce unnecessary transactions and communication costs.
Innocent Kaneza the CEO of ESICIA, a Kigali-based ICT company, says mobile applications are appealing to most business people since they are cost-effective and can reach many clients faster.
The One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) project has so far covered 407 schools across the country. At least 207,026 laptops have been distributed, according to Nkubito Bakuramutsa, the OLPC Coordinator in Rwanda Education Board.
Bakuramutsa told The New Times yesterday that Rwanda has been ranked third globally after Peru and Uruguay in terms of rolling out laptops in primary schools.
He added that at least all 30 districts have five OLPC-enabled schools.
ìThe project now focuses on seeing each school in all 416 sectors equipped with laptops.î
A regional bus company has installed Wi-Fi connection on their fleet, an effort officials said will go a long way in upping service delivery to travellers. Jaguar Executive Coaches said the initiative is aimed at responding to the needs of society, and hopes it will give them a competitive edge over other regional bus operators. Jaguar coaches shuttle passengers between Kigali and Kampala in Uganda.
Local institutions have been urged to adopt the country’s .rw Internet domain to promote local content and enhance their presence online.
Didier Nkurikiyimfura, the ICT director at the Ministry of Youth and ICT, said many institutions and firms, especially the small-and-medium enterprises, do not have an online presence. He encouraged them to take advantage of the local domain and establish themselves on the web.
“Every company can register a domain name to have a website under the .rw domain and a personalised email linked to the domain name,” he said.
Rwandans living in the Diaspora have started registering their roaming SIM cards online. The Rwanda Utilities Regulatory Authority (Rura) said the project, which started on Tuesday, targeted MTN Rwanda subscribers.
The Rwanda Information Communication Technology Association (RICTA) targets to register about 5000 web domain names by 2016, following the re-delegation of Rwanda’s Country Code Top Level Domain (ccTLD), “.rw” from Belgium a couple of months ago.
RICTA late last year gained all the rights from Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) to manage the government’s web which was formerly managed in Belgium by Frederic Gregoire, a Belgian entrepreneur, under his Swiss-based company NIC Congo – Interpoint.
Traders in the country will begin to receive training on the usage of electronic tax payment platforms in a move aimed at easing the process of tax collection.
Starting in May, the campaign by Rwanda Revenue Authority (RRA) and the Private Sector Federation (PSF) will be geared towards helping traders become familiar with automated tax payment which is a new phenomenon in the economy.