Issue no 263

Top Story

Cheaper mobile phone-based POS could make African credit card sales easier

For years credit cards have failed to penetrate developing nations the way they have impacted the rest of the world. This is down to the fact that many merchants and traders in these countries do not accept card payments, only cash or cheques. Conventional card payment processing terminals are expensive and most African merchants simply cannot afford them. However, with the rapid growth of wireless technologies new options to bring electronic transaction authorisation to non-traditional locations worldwide are being created. Convenient mobile payments and transactions are allowing merchants to process card payments anytime, anywhere and more importantly, cheaply. Soon cards…

Telecoms

TWO OF GHANA’S MOBILE OPERATORS SET TO OFFER GPRS AND KASAPA LAUNCHES GOES CDMA

Spacefon’s new parent company Areeba has insisted that all its networks must offer GPRS so its Ghana subsidiary has been testing it both technically and with a small number of…


Telecoms

SOUTH AFRICAN SNO SHAREHOLDER PREDICTS XMAS LAUNCH

Eskom Enterprise Division, one of six shareholders in South Africa’s start-up second national operator (SNO), says it is confident that the new telco will have customers making calls over its…


Telecoms

THREE TELCOS IN MOROCCO BID FOR NEW FIXED LICENCES

Moroccan regulator ANRT has announced that three operators have lodged bids for new fixed line licences, following a tender launched in late February to introduce competition to the market, which…


Telecoms

ECONET FILES TO RESUME ARBITRATION IN NIGERIA

Econet Wireless has filed papers in the Federal High Court in Nigeria, asking a judge to re-appoint the international arbitration panel, so that it can complete the arbitration process over…


Telecoms

ITU REFOCUSES ON THE DIGITAL DIVIDE

The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) has launched a new development drive designed to bring access to information and communication technologies to the estimated one billion people worldwide who are still…


Telecoms

VIRGIN TO LAUNCH IN SA 'SOON'

Talks between Cell C and the Virgin Group are going well, and the companies expect to soon sign a deal that will see them launch a 50/50 partnership. According to…


Telecoms

Telecoms News - In Brief

- Senegal's second mobile operator Sentel has now 530,000 subs. - The telephone service in Ghana is not much improved since our last visit two years ago. Spacefon’s mobile subscribers…


Telecoms

TELECOMS, RATES, OFFERS AND COVERAGE

- UAE-based satellite operator Thuraya has tied up with satellite telecom distributor Afrospace and fixed line incumbent Ethiopia Telecommunications Company (ETC) to launch services in Ethiopia. The government hopes that…


Internet

MAURITIUS AIMS TO BECOME WORLD'S FIRST UNWIRED WI-MAX NATION

Mauritius is about to become the world's first country to deploy a complete nationwide high-speed wireless network. The government calculates that the new network will make the beautiful island a…


Internet

GS TELECOM GOES INTO PARTNERSHIP WITH BENIN'S OPT TO INSTALL CDMA DATA NETWORK

GS Telecom has gone into a joint venture with Benin’s telco incumbent OPT through a local partner Universelle. It has installed a Huawei 2000 CDMA wireless local loop (operating at…


Internet

GIXP OPENS AT LAST WITH THREE ISPS, MORE TO FOLLOW

The long-awaited Ghana IXP was installed and started operating this week from the Kofi Annan Centre. The first four ISPs connected were: Busy Internet, Ecoband, K-Net and Teledata (which does…


Internet

INTERNET GHANA TAKES ON GHANA TELECOM OVER ANTI-COMPETITIVE PRACTICES

Internet Ghana is going to arbitration with Ghana Telecom over its disputes with Ghana Telecom and its broadband offer. The dispute is complex and Internet Ghana has many different points…


Internet

MYSTERY GHANAIAN WI-FI ISP IS RUN BY BROTHER OF MINISTER OF WORKS AND HOUSING

After several weeks of rumours about a high-profile public servant being involved in setting up an ISP, the truth finally came out and was much simpler than first met the…


Internet

Internet News - In Brief

- Africa Online Ghana is to launch a wireless broadband service at the end of July. It is looking at offering 256K to residential (USD85 per month), small home office…


Computing

NEW SMART CARD TECNOLOGY EXPANDS AFRICAN BANKING ACCESS

African banks are caught in a vicious cycle: lack of infrastructure and weak technology mean poor service and high costs. Few customers can access bank services, so savings levels remain…


Computing

SA IT SERVICES MARKET TO REACH R27.5BN BY 2009

African ICT market analyst, BMI-TechKnowledge, has released its latest report - 'The South African IT Services Report and Forecast, 2004 - 2009', which shows that the SA IT services market…


Computing

NAMIBIAN GOVT GIVES ND2 MILLION FOR COMPUTER TRAINING

The Namibian Cabinet has approved N$2 million from the Social Security Commission's (SSC) Development Fund to assist 323 unemployed youths obtain information and communication technology (ICT) qualifications. This follows an…


Computing

Computer News - In Brief

- It’s like the old saying about waiting for buses:’You wait hours for one and then four come along all at once.” Having waited nearly five years for public ICT…


Mergers, Acquisitions and Financial Results

MTN BUYS TELECEL COTE D'IVOIRE AND TARGETS ZAMBIA

Acquisitive African mobile operator, MTN has apparently agreed to purchase stakes in two more cellular operators. At the same time, it is reportedly being lined up to replace Turkcell in…


Mergers, Acquisitions and Financial Results

VODAFONE OFFERS KENYA USD100M FOR CONTROLLING STAKE IN SAFARICOM

Vodafone, the giant British mobile phone company, could soon take a controlling share of Safaricom - the largest cellular phone company in East Africa. Confidential documents revealed that, away from…


Mergers, Acquisitions and Financial Results

WESTEL ON THE BLOCK AS PARENT COMPANY HAS BEEN ACQUIRED BY ALTEL

Westel's parent company Western Wireless International of Seattle has been bought by Altel. Western Wireless has had two ill-fated investments in Africa: the SNO in Ghana and Comstar in Cote…


Mergers, Acquisitions and Financial Results

On The Money - In Brief

- Ghana Telecom is to be privatised in the next two years and Ghanaians will be encouraged to buy a 30% stake in the company through a share placing on…


Digital Content

VODAFONE BLOCKS CHILD MATERIAL ON CELLPHONES

Children who download pornography easily and cheaply on their cellphones will have their fun cut short when Vodacom makes blocking available. This was what Alan Knott-Craig, group CEO of Vodacom,…


Digital Content

Web And Mobile Data News - In Brief

- A website has been launched by a group of Nigerians, to deter former military dictator, General Ibrahim Babangida from making a come-back. The website, www.againstbabangida.com, has as one of…


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EVENTS

Q-KON VSAT TRAINING EVENT IN GHANA (18-19 AUGUST) Endorsed by PanAmSat, Q-KON's training academy provides practical VSAT Field engineering training in Africa. Next course date: 18 & 19 August, Accra…