Issue no 796 25th September 2015

Top Story

Smile will launch VoLTE networks in three Africa countries and promises revolutionary voice pricing

Last Smile announced that it had raised US$365 million in debt and equity financing. This moved it from being a small ISP with an interesting story doing LTE into a different place. This week Russell Southwood caught up with CEO and founder Irene Charnley about what Smile’s planning to do with the money. Smile has gone through several versions including using WiMAX when it was seen as the coming technology but has seemed to hit its stride with implementing broadband mobile in three countries (Nigeria, Tanzania and Uganda) using LTE. Although Charnley has worked for MTN, the sheer slog of…

Telecoms

Airtel and Liquid Telecom Sign Pan-African Agreement to Provide Fibre Connectivity to Towers

Bharti Airtel's mobile broadband subscribers in Africa will soon enjoy faster Internet access speeds on its 3G and 4G networks. This follows an announcement today that Airtel will use Liquid…


Telecoms

East Africa countries move closer to common SIM card registration

Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda and South Sudan have now moved closer to firming a common SIM card registration framework, following a rise in crimes perpetrated through mobile devices. Regulators and information,…


Telecoms

Cell C launches LTE network; to offer Wi-Fi calling from 1 October

South African mobile operator Cell C has launched its 4G LTE network in Gauteng and parts of Durban, with plans to have 200 LTE-enabled sites in operation at year-end and…


Telecoms

East Africa: Tanzania Set to Abolish Phone Roaming Costs

People travelling from Tanzania to other East African countries like Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda and Burundi, will no longer incur roaming charges when making or receiving calls across the borders. The…


Telecoms

Equitel loans hit Sh4bn, says Equity Bank

Loans borrowed from Equitel mobile money have hit Sh4 billion since its launch, underlining the vast potential of mobile banking in the country. Equity Bank CEO James Mwangi said an…


Telecoms

Telecoms - In brief

Cape Verde telecoms regulator the Agencia Nacional das Comunicacoes (ANAC) has opened a public consultation into the distribution of 4G LTE licences. The process, which was initiated on 21 September,…


Internet

Getting the next billion connected - Interview of John Bernard, Mozilla

John Bernard has been leading the global marketing team at Mozilla since 2012.This year he is joining AfricaCom to be part of a keynote panel discussion on targeting underserved communities.He…


Internet

Global broadband growth slows sharply: 4 billion still offline

UN Broadband Commission releases new country-by-country data on state of broadband access worldwide Broadband Internet is failing to reach those who could benefit most, with Internet access reaching near-saturation in…


Internet

300+ Instagrammers meet to tell SA stories

The South African Instagram community has descended upon the small town of Graaff-Reinet in the Eastern Cape for the first national Instameet from 24 to 27 September. On Friday morning,…


Internet

Facebook renames Internet.org mobile and Web app as Free Basics, platform now supports HTTPS

After a barrage of criticism targeted at the Facebook-led Internet.org initiative, the company announced today that it will now allow the use of encrypted services without charging data fees. Facebook…


Internet

Internet - in brief

Internet charges for mobile phone users roaming across East Africa are set to come down, with the Kenyan regulator pushing for a harmonised rate in a meeting set for this…


Computing

Samsung talks education and ICT Skills at 5th Innovation Africa

Samsung has announced it will be taking part in the fifth Innovation Africa Summit taking place at the Speke Resort Munyonyo, Kampala, Uganda from 30 September to 2 October 2015.…


Computing

Women in Tech Africa launches database of Africa’s high-flying women in tech

Women in Tech Africa, the largest women in tech group in over 30 countries, has created a database of a cross section of its members and links to their LinkedIn…


Computing

BRCK Education launches Kio Kit a value priced tablet for primary schools

Earlier this week, BRCK Education, a division of BRCK launched a value priced tablet that will be running web-based content and locally cached videos. BRCK is a Nairobi- based hardware…


Computing

IBM completes pro bono projects in support of Rwanda’s growth

An IBM team spent one month in Kigali working on three projects which were aligned with the Rwanda government’s SMART Rwanda agenda. The projects dealt with the Rwanda Development Board,…


Telecoms, Rates, Offers and Coverage

Telecoms. Rates, Offers and Coverage

Telkom doubles data for summer All Telkom customers are set to receive double their Telkom Internet data allocation for free from 1 October 2015 to 31 March 2016 the company…


Money Transfer

Orange Collecte puts mobile twist on crowdfunding

Orange Collecte, launched last week in the Ivory Coast, is putting a mobile spin on the crowdfunding concept. The service, developed in partnership with  French charity-giving site HelloAsso, is tied…


Money Transfer

FNB app active on 1.5m devices

FNB expects more consumers to migrate from doing banking over the counter to banking digitally. First National Bank (FNB) says its banking app is active on 1.5 million smart devices…


Money Transfer

KCB, GoSwiff to launch merchant-targeted mobile payment facility in Kenya

Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB), a financial services provider is set to launch a merchant-targeted mobile payment facility in Kenya through a partnership with GoSwiff, a global mobile commerce firm. The…


Mergers, Acquisitions and Financial Results

Altron sells Autopage clients for R1,5bn

Vodacom, MTN and Cell C will pay Altron a combined amount of about R1,5bn to take over the subscriber base of Altech Autopage Cellular. Interestingly, Altron is receiving less than…


Mergers, Acquisitions and Financial Results

Lonestar Cell-MTN loses tax case and must pay LRA USD19m

Liberian mobile operator Lonestar Cell-MTN, a majority owned unit of MTN Group South Africa, has lost its two-year court case with the Liberia Revenue Authority (LRA) concerning unpaid taxes. Local…


Digital Content

App helps to track 29 stolen British cars to wasteland in Uganda

Detectives tracing a Lexus stolen from London have ended up tracking it to Uganda - where it was found alongside a fleet of British cars worth more than £1 million.…


Digital Content

Tanzania: the smartphone apps putting Africa's fastest-growing city on the map

In Dar es Salaam, many people without formal addresses are denied access to services and a legal identity. But technology is set to change that. Johan Knols is used to…


Digital Content

Filmhouse Cinemas launch mobile app

Filmhouse Limited, a dynamic film exhibition company and operator of Filmhouse Cinemas has announced the launch of a blockbuster mobile app. The mobile app enable movie lovers view movie schedules,…


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Opportuntites

Win Ksh. 5.5 million in the Siemen’s Empowering People Award The competition basically seeks to identify innovative technical solutions to tackle global challenges in basic needs. Inventors and developer teams…


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Events

Fibre to Home Conference 201520-21 October 2015Kigali Rwanda"Despite the abundance of sub-sea cables linking Africa to the rest of the world, most African countries still struggle with a lack of…