Friday, 24 February 2012

Kenya - The twitting Capital of Africa

Anybody who has entered a bar in Kenya knows that Kenyans like to talk. Especially about politics. So it shouldn't be a surprise that Kenyans have taken Twitter to their heart.

But I have to admit that I was shocked when I saw the recent report from Portland and Tweetminster which shows that Kenyans are twitting more than even Egyptians. Total Tweets from Kenya is only beaten by South Africa but if you consider the number of tweets per person connected to the Internet Kenyans are the most twitting people in Africa:

56% of all tweets in Africa is send from Mobile Devices and 60% of tweeters are between 20 and 29 years old

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Uganda to represent East Africa at Mobile Premier Awards

The top 20 global apps from the AppCircus 2011 World Tour has been announced to pitch live for Best App of the Year at the 6th Annual Mobile Premier Awards on February 27th, in Barcelona –  coinciding with the Mobile World Congress.

East Africa is represented by MaFutaGo by Christine Ampaire, Project Manager ( Kampala, Uganda) – The app was created by a team of five university students. It helps users find the cheapest and nearest petrol station in Uganda.

Amongst the finalists, were emerging and established app developers from Brazil, Germany, Kenya, Romania, South Africa, United Kingdom and United States. Each finalist has created a winning App that represents the rapid growth and popularity of Apps the world over.

This once again confirms that Africa have an opportunity to become a center for development of Software to the new mobile devices. So get cracking with the coding and attend the Android Developer Challenge for Sub-Saharan Africa

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

New report predicts that Android will dominate in Africa

New report from In-Stat predicts that Android will gain 80% market share in Africa: “The Android OS has taken the smartphone world by storm. In just two years, Android has become the top smartphone OS worldwide.” The Handsets making headway in Europe and US is however not the same as the devices being popular in the developing world: ‘the Android handsets that are selling well in the US and Europe are not the same low-cost Android handsets selling elsewhere in the world. New In-Stat ( research forecasts that low-cost Android handsets will reach a penetration rate of 80% of total smartphones in Africa, India, and China by 2015.

The low-cost Android smartphone segment is comprised primarily of smartphones released with Android 2.2 or 2.3, since these versions are a good blend of features with modest memory and processor usage. The low-end low-cost smartphones generally stick with EDGE and processors running at 600MHz or lower, because a single-core EDGE chip sells for well under $10. For our purposes, low-cost means smartphones that are $150 or less”

I personally think that In-stat underestimate Africans willingness to invest in quality mobile devices. For most people here a smartphone or tablet fulfill a lot of different needs.

In Europe or US  it is a gimmick that a phone have radio or a torch but in Africa these functions are in demand. And it doesn’t stop there a smartphone in Africa is:

  • Your Internet Browser
  • Your email device
  • Your Bank Branch
  • Your MP3 Player
  • Your Watch
  • Your Calendar
And not to forget it is also a way to show your standing in the world.

Soon it will also be your TV and you DVD so don’t tell me that we are not willing to pay a little extra to get the latest technology.

Android Developer Challenge — Sub-Saharan Africa

Want to develop Apps for Android or have you already made your first App. Then you might be interested in Googles Amdroid Developer Challenge for Africa.

Google is launching the Android Developer Challenge for Sub Saharan Africa, which will provide awards for great mobile apps.

To help you get cracking with the coding there are a number of Android Developer Events across Africa. You can read more here:

Africa is the fastest growing mobile market in the world and Android is the fastest growing Operation System in the world. Why could Africa not be the leading Android Software developer as India is for Windows?

The next big thing to hit the mobile market

5G wireless is almost here

IEEE 802.11ac is the latest WiFi standard that is about to be released. and based on the specifications it will make a splash in pond when it arrives.

The Theoretical maximum bandwidth is above 1GB per second with 500MB per second for a single link. With 5G you will be able to stream mulitple HD movies at the same time or back-up your data to a wireless Hard disk within minutes.

The first WiFi router with the new chipset was released by Quantenna  at the end of last year and several companies has released Chipsets for Mobiles and Tablets since then.

The standard utilize Mimo and high-density modulation (up to 256QAM). this issuers not only high capacity but also alonger range than todays WiFi Standard.

Here is a short introduction to 5G:

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Android could finally give Africans access to ICT

There has been many initiatives to increase the penetration of ICT in Africa. For many years the lack of high capacity backbone and access network has made internet connectivity very expensive for ordinary Africans but with the arrival of Optical Fibers connecting most African countries to the worldwide web and the build out of 3G mobile networks the focus is now increasingly moving to the terminals as the One Laptop per Child initiative is an example of.

Cheap mobile phones is now the most commonly used device to access the Internet and with a penetration of Internet enabled phones of between 15% and 25% in most African countries the Internet has finally started to reach the masses. According to Internet World Statistics 15.6% of all Africans now have access to the Internet:

Even though phones enable users to check their email, update Facebook and use instant messaging they still don’t offer the full access to the Internet and IT technology. Android Tablets do however hold the promise to change this.

Tablets are cheaper than PC’s, They have battery and low power consumption which is key in Africa where many areas are not connected to the grid.

Another major cost that has hampered the use of IT technology in Africa is the high cost of software but again Android offers a solution to this. There are thousands of free applications which addresses most need of students or low income users like free office packages, programming packages etc. Some African countries has even made school books available in soft format enabling students to read the whole school curriculum on their tablets.

In India the Government has introduced a program to give students subsidized Tablets in order to make sure that children are exposed to IT Technology as early as possible. With a subsidy of $25 the price for an Android Tablet is $35 which makes it affordable for many students. A similar program could connect 1 million African students at a cost of 25 million. Not a fortune if there were the political will to make sure that the next generation of Africans are prepared to compete in the connected world.

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Android is dominating in the Toilets

Here’s another funny survey: 87% of Android users admitted to using their device while on the toilet.

11mark surveyed 1000 Americans and discovered neither men nor women are going to the bathroom empty-handed. They found out that 74% of men and 76% of women use their mobile phones in the bathroom. Out of this number, 63% of people take calls and 41% initiated a call. Moreover, 67% read text messages while 38% surf the internet.

Surprisingly, men are the ones who are more attached to their smartphones compared to women. 30% of men said “I don’t go to the bathroom without my mobile phone,” only 20% of women answered yes to this. 20% of men also work from their bathroom cubicle; while only 13% of women do this.

On the subject of which smartphone people use on the toilet, 87% of respondents use their Android device, while 84% and 77% were BlackBerry and iPhone users, respectively. Compared to BlackBerry users (who answered phone calls), Android and iPhone users were most likely using a social network or an app on the toilet.

“The writing is on the stall,” says 11mark’s Nicole Burdette “This study confirms what we all know – that the last private place is no longer private. And, that the ‘mobile-everywhere’ phenomenon is flushing out a host of new opportunities for savvy communicators.”

Friday, 3 February 2012

Android users are more likely to have sex on first date

A recent survey by has revealed Android users need lovin’ a little quicker than iPhone and Blackberry users.
The survey was broken down by’s “Relationship Insider” Kimberly Moffit, who revealed that 75 percent of Canadian singles believe e-mail and texting have significantly improved their dating life. “More so than zodiac signs or astrology, smart phones are the new way Canadian singles can decode their dating style and determine if they’ve met their match,” wrote Moffit.
So, what does your smartphone say about your life love?

iPhone Users: The Office Romantic
  • iPhone addicts are the most likely to date someone in their workplace. Nearly a quarter of iPhone singles have had an office romance in the last five years.
  • After a first date, iPhone users wait just one day to reach out, while Android or BlackBerry users will wait until after 2-3 dates.
BlackBerry Users: The Drunk Dialer
  • If you’re dating a BlackBerry fan, prepare to imbibe. BlackBerry users are most likely to drink alcohol on a first date – 72 percent will have a boozy beverage on a first night out.
  • A whopping 67 percent of BlackBerry users say they have experienced love at first sight.
Android Users: The Seducer
  • Android users are most likely to be seduced on a first date. 62 percent of Android singles say they’ve done the deed after date number one, compared to 57 per cent of iPhone users and 48 percent of BlackBerry users.
  • Out of all smart phone users, Android fans are most likely to have a one-night stand (55 percent).
  • 72 percent of Android fans have visited an online dating site, compared to 58 percent of iPhone users and 50 percent of Blackberry users.
Source venturebeat

Mobile Internet on the rise in Africa

At the end of 2011, there were the first signs of smartphone use on SMS: for the first time in some countries, rather than the volume of SMS growing inexorably, it declined for the first time. Russell Southwood looks at how wider use of mobile Internet may affect SMS volumes in Africa and at two of the new generation of interfaces designed to make it easier for Africans to use the mobile Internet.

You don’t need to be a rocket scientist to know that the number of smart phones and feature phones in African countries will increase. With this increase, many users will go from an unvaried diet of voice and SMS messages (with a soupcon of paid services) to a much more varied diet of use. It is not hard to envisage the day when the number of smart phone and feature phone users may make up as much as 40-60% of all subscribers

SMS is simply e-mail in “short trousers”: it’s easy to use but it’s significantly more restricted and more expensive than sending an e-mail. You can’t use it to share things like photos with friends unless you can use even more expensive MMS’s. But although price is one of the single biggest factors affecting consumer’s decisions on the continent, the other big factor is habit. The change of use requires not just a person to send an e-mail but someone to understand how to receive it.

This is where the new generation of browsers come into play. If both of those sending and receiving are on Facebook, then it solves that problem: they both understand how to do it. The widespread use of MXit on Blackberry in South Africa as an Instant Messaging tool to avoid SMS costs is another illustration of how this works. What starts with 15-24 year olds, slowly cascades across the age groups.

Read the whole article here

Android 4 ICS arrives to Africa

IT-Depot introduce Android 4 powered Tablets to East Africa and they look pretty tasty.

The first model is Ainol Nove 7 Elf:

A 7" tablet featuring a capacitive screen, WiFi and 8GB Hard Disk.

The second model is Zenithink C91:

A 10" Tablet with Capcitive Screen WiFi and 8GB Hard Disk.

Both model supports 3G Modems you should however test with IT-Depot if your moem is supported.

Android add to their Leader position in the US Smartphone market

comScore Reports December 2011 U.S. Mobile Subscriber Market Share

Smartphone Penetration Climbs Over 40 Percent during December Holiday Shopping Season
RESTON, VA, February 2, 2012

comScore has reported key trends in the U.S. mobile phone industry during the three month average period ending December 2011. The study surveyed more than 30,000 U.S. mobile subscribers and found Samsung to be the top handset manufacturer overall with 25.3 percent market share. Google Android strengthened its lead in the smartphone market to reach 47.3 percent market share.

Top Smartphone Platforms
3 Month Avg. Ending Dec. 2011 vs. 3 Month Avg. Ending Sep. 2011
Total U.S. Smartphone Subscribers Ages 13+
Source: comScore MobiLens
Share (%) of Smartphone Subscribers
Sep-11Dec-11Point Change
Total Smartphone Subscribers100.0%100.0%N/A
Google 44.8% 47.3% 2.5
Apple 27.4% 29.6% 2.2
RIM 18.9% 16.0% -2.9
Microsoft 5.6% 4.7% -0.9
Symbian 1.8% 1.4% -0.4
Interesting to notice that all the legacy market leaders; RIM (Blackberry), Microsoft and Symbian (Nokia) are loosing market share. Android has become the prefered choice among smartphones owner over an amazingly short time.
Source: comScore