In Brief:

Technology & Convergence

- Cisco announced that the Wananchi Group, Africa's pioneering provider of triple-play (broadband, multichannel cable television and voice telephony) and VSAT (broadband data and Internet) services, has signed a contract for the purchase of Cisco network technology solutions and services in East Africa. The agreement is supported by Cisco CapitalSM, a wholly owned subsidiary of Cisco, specializing in providing effective financing solutions and a deep understanding of Cisco's products, services and customer business requirements. Wananchi Group, currently the only triple-play operator in East Africa, will roll out its new services in nine countries in the eastern African region: Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, Malawi, Ethiopia, Sudan and Zambia.

- The  Brazilian government will test ISDB-Tb in South Africa from the end of the month, in an effort to persuade this country to adopt it. Along with the rest of the Southern Africa Development Community (Sadc) region, is migrating from the analogue broadcasting signal to digital as required by the ITU. The Brazilians have modified the Japanese standard by adding their own software called Ginga, which allows for free mobile-TV and internet services. It has been renamed ISDB-Tb. But some commentators claim Brazil will be the only beneficiary of the adoption of its standards, not South Africa which has spent 10 years investing in DVB-T skills.