Issue no 275

Top Story

Bottom-of-the pyramid markets - the sub-USD100 laptop and the search for the holy grail

The idea is a simple one. Lower the price of a device and you will get more people to buy. Bottom-of-the-pyramid markets - those in the lowest global income band (below USD1500 a year) - provide a tantalising market opportunity. Wharton Business School academic C K Prahalad has argued this case in his book the Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid. This week saw the launch of MIT's Nicholas Negroponte's USD100 laptop which makes ambitious claims to becoming more "an education project" for school children than a cheap laptop for the masses. But the road to hell may well…

Telecoms

TUNISIA UNDER PRESSURE FROM ALL SIDES AS IT PREPARES TO HOST WSIS SUMMIT

Last week a coalition of human rights groups known as the Tunisia Monitoring Group issued a report that declared Tunisia unfit to hold the World Summit on the Information Society,…


Telecoms

LIBYA'S LARGEST OPERATOR AL-MADAR EXPANDS CAPACITY AND COVERAGE AND TO GO IP

Libya's largest operator, Al Madar is quadrupling its network capacity and coverage. It has chosen Ericsson's Mobile Softswitch solution under an agreement in which it will supply a complete GSM…


Telecoms

HIGH TAXES KEEP MOBILE PHONES OUT OF REACH, SAYS GSM ASSOCIATION

High taxes in many developing countries have made mobile communications unaffordable for hundreds of millions of people, holding back social and economic development, according to a study by the GSM…


Telecoms

SA ICT SECTOR URGES GOVERNMENT TO SLASH VOICE AND DATA COSTS

Telecommunications companies are hoping government will finally heed their advice to slash the cost of voice and data services when a second seminar to address telecommunications prices is held next…


Telecoms

ERICSSON AND VMOBILE NIGERIA SIGN FIVE-YEAR STRATEGIC FRAME AGREEMENT WORTH USD2 BILLION OVER 2 YEARS

Vmobile has selected Ericsson as a strategic partner for its 'Roll Out Service Everywhere' (ROSE) project estimated at USD2 billion over the next 24 months. This initiative will see the…


Telecoms

ZIMRA WITHHOLDS ZIMBABWE INDEPENDENT SATELLITE FOR OVER 6 MONTHS

IN what appears to be a political move to thwart the business growth of the Zimbabwe Independent and Standard newspapers, the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra) has for the past six…


Telecoms

RWANDA'S KARISIMBI ANTENNA TO COST USD2.3M

The government is to spend a whooping Frw 1.3 billion for the reconstruction of the 40-metre antenna at Karisimbi Summit in Ruhengeri province. "There is no doubt Karisimbi Tower Project…


Telecoms

Telecoms News - In Brief

- According to news agency MENA, Egypt’s telecoms regulator, the National Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (NTRA) has announced plans to licence a third mobile operator to compete with MobiNil and Vodafone…


Telecoms

TELECOMS, RATES, OFFERS AND COVERAGE

- Telkom Kenya has rolled out a VoIP service, intensifying competition in the market. The operator claims that its offering will be the cheapest in the country, with calls to…


Internet

CISCO PIONEER TO KICK OFF AFRICAN INTERNET FORUM AT FOR ACT 2005

One of Cisco’s pioneering engineers, Jim Forster, will be kicking off the African Internet Forum at the seventh annual African Computing & Telecommunications Summit (ACT 2005), to be held in…


Internet

MWEB HOME LAUNCHES SOUTH AFRICA'S BIGGEST PODCAST

  MWEB Home has teamed-up with Arno Carstens to create South Africa's first big local music podcast. Published via www.mweb.co.za on Thursday, 29 September, the podcast will feature an interview…


Internet

INTELSAT WINS CONTRACT WITH THE AFRICAN VIRTUAL UNIVERSITY TO PROVIDE INTERNET BANDWIDTH SERVICES

Intelsat has been selected by the African Virtual University (AVU) as its strategic communications partner in an initiative to establish a higher education bandwidth consortium which will make Internet bandwidth…


Internet

ISP MARKET REPRESENTS HUGE GROWTH OPPORTUNITY FOR AFRICAN GSM OPERATORS

GSM operators in Africa have an opportunity to drive massive growth in average revenue per user (ARPU) and traffic on their networks by offering ISP services such as Internet and…


Internet

INTERNET PUTS MOROCCAN CENSORS UNDER GREATER PRESSURE

While satellite television often attracts the lion's share of analysis about new media and their effect on prospects for democratization in the Middle East and North Africa, another technology may…


Internet

TELKOM SA HAS NO PLANS TO ROLL-OUT BROADBAND IN SOWETO

  Last week, president of the SMME Forum, Tebogo Khaas, caused a stir at iWeek when he told delegates there are no ADSL installations in Soweto -- one of the…


Internet

AFRICAN MINISTERS' POSITION ON INTERNET GOVERNANCE - THE DAKAR RESOLUTION

"We, the African Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) Ministers, gathered to consider "Africa's Common Position on Internet Governance", in Dakar from 5 to 6 September 2005, thank His Excellency Abdoulaye…


Internet

Internet News - In Brief

- President Kibaki has announced that the e-government policy is currently being implemented in Kenya, and will improve communications services across the country. As part of the project, the IT…


Computing

CHINA'S LENOVO TO ATTACK KENYAN MARKET WITH CHEAP PCs

A Chinese firm that recently took over IBM's personal computer (PC) business will set up distribution structures in Kenya for its array of products - ranging from mobile phones to…


Computing

WHY COMPUTER PRICES CAN'T BE REDUCED IN NIGERIA - ZINOX BOSS

After four years of producing world class computers in Nigeria, the Chairman of Zinox Technologies, Mr. Leo Stan Ekeh, has blamed high import duties and too many delays at the…


Computing

AFRICAN FREE SOFTWARE DEVELOPERS TO GATHER IN UGANDA  

Africa Source II, a week-long workshop that will bring together free software developers from across the continent, is to be held in January next year. The workshop will be held…


Computing

Computer News - In Brief

- Realyst, a supplier of Contract Risk Management solutions, last week announced that it had strengthened its presence in Africa with the appointment of Softworks Limited as one of its…


Mergers, Acquisitions and Financial Results

TUNISIE TELECOM SHORTLIST DELAYED A FEW DAYS

The Tunisian government is likely to delay the selection of candidates for a 35% stake in Tunisie Telecom in order to get more detailed offers from some bidders, a person…


Mergers, Acquisitions and Financial Results

On The Money - In Brief

- MTN Uganda’s profits rose by 14% to UGS67.8 billion (USD36.59 million) in the year ended March 2005 on the back of a 45% jump in subscribers during the period,…


Digital Content

ANGOLA'S NATIONAL CUSTOMS LAUNCHES INTERNET PORTAL

Angola's National Department of Customs (DNA) last week inaugurated in Luanda its Internet Portal. The website www.alfandegasdeangola.com is aimed at providing its customers with a wide range of information on…


Digital Content

READERS' RESPONSES: ISSUE 274 - GUINEA: 4TH GSM LICENCE FINALLY AWARDED TO INVESTCOM HOLDING SA

Reference your article on Guinea, kindly note that Investcom owns and operates 8 GSM networks in the Middle East, Africa, and Europe. Our operations are in: Benin, Liberia, Guinea Bissau,…


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PEOPLE

Tina Owusu Prempeh Nana Yaa Owusu Prempeh, Chief Executive Officer of Tinifa Ghana Ltd and also based in New Jersey, USA has been appointed as Honorary Chairperson of National Republican…


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EVENTS

VOICECOMM 2005 Tuesday, 3 November 2005 - The Hilton, Sandton Join Cisco Systems and ITWeb at VoiceComm, one of the key IPC-focused events in South Africa, where you will be…