Technology (103)

Technology Minister Applauds Huawei For Technological Transformation

Technology Minister Hon. Elioda Tumwesigye who is also the Chairman of Ntare School Alumni applauded Huawei for technological transformation in Uganda. 

This happened at the Ntare School Alumni fundraising dinner at Sheraton Hotel Kampala on 13th December where Huawei contributed 15 laptops for information technology boost in Ntare.   

“I thank Huawei for this wonderful contribution of 15 laptops to Ntare School. This is a big boost for the school’s technological transformation”, says Hon. Elioda Tumwesigye, the Minister of Science Technology and Innovation and Chairman of the Ntare School Alumni.

Huawei’s Executive Director of Government and Enterprise Business Mr. Benny Bai commended the school’s Alumni for birthing great leaders and influential people in Uganda.

He also added that, “one of our Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives this year is to invest in Education, that is why we carried out activities such as: the ‘Seeds for the Future’ training program in China for the 10 selected best university students, the Seeds for the Future internship program that has seen 400 plus students receive hands-on training since 2012 of which many have acquired permanent employment at Huawei. We have this year donated 40 laptops to Kamwenge district schools to boost technology, 5 laptops and 200 school bags to Kireka Police School and today we shall give 15 laptops to Ntare School”. 

Also present at the Ntare School fundraising dinner was the Prime Minister of Uganda Rt. Hon. Ruhakana Rugunda, Hon. Matia Kasaija, the Minister of Finance and Prof. Ephraim Kamuntu, the Minister of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities among Others.

Kadaga Lauds Huawei For Improving Education In Busoga

Hon. Rebecca Kadaga, the Speaker of the Parliament of Uganda lauded Huawei for their efforts in improving Education in Busoga Kingdom.

This happened at the Busoga Kingdom Headquarters in Bugembe, Jinja on 21st November where Huawei donated large examination printer, large examination photocopier, office printer and copier, reception chairs, laptop, desktop computer and reception table among others to the Busoga Kyabazinga Examination Board (‘BUKEB’). 

The donation worth 30,000,000UGX was handed to BUKEB by Mr. Bai Chengyu, Huawei Uganda’s Executive Director – Government and Enterprise Business in the presence of the Kyabazinga of Busoga His Royal Highness William Gabula Nadiope, the Speaker of Parliament Hon. Rebecca Kadaga and the Chinese Ambassador to Uganda H.E. Zheng Zhuqiang. 

“I thank Huawei for this wonderful donation that will boost the Education in the Busoga Region. Busoga had the worst six performing districts in the national examinations. But with this boost I believe there shall be a big improvement,” said Hon. Rebecca Kadaga, The Speaker of Parliament of Uganda at the donation ceremony. 

“I also commend Huawei for their Corporate Social Responsibility programs like Seeds for the Future, I however wish that Busoga region is considered in the selection of the participants to take part in the final 10 students that receive technological training in China under that program, let two come from Busoga region,” she added. 

Speaking at the ceremony, the Chinese Ambassador to Uganda H.E. Zheng Zhuqiang also commended Huawei for being a responsible corporate citizen and encouraged the people of Busoga to embrace education. 

“I urge the beneficiaries to embrace education because through it, the world is empowered by knowledge to make the impossibilities possible,” he said.   

Mr. Bai Chengyu, Huawei’s Executive Director – Government and Enterprise Business group noted that the donation will improve the education standard in Busoga and encourage many parents to invest in their Children’s pursuit of knowledge. 

On the same day, Huawei also donated approximately 200 bicycles to the people of Kamuli to improve health, livelihood and also to boost poverty eradication campaigns in the district. The donation worth 100,000,000 UGX was handed over to the people of Kamuli in the witness of the Speaker of Parliament Hon. Rebecca Kadaga at the Kamuli Youth Centre.

Jumia Food Launches Uganda's First Alcohol Delivery App

Jumia Food has launched Jumia Party - a New 1 hour alcohol delivery service App in Kampala. The new app gives users access to a full marketplace of spirits, wines, beers and mixers so that the process of picking the evening's inebriant of choice feels a lot like ordering food from Jumia Food. Just with alcohol.

Jumia Party has partnered with Pernod Ricard, the world's No 2 producer in wines and spirits, to provide on-demand delivery to homes and offices in Kampala. Alcohol delivery orders can be placed through the new app free on ios and android or by visiting Jumia Party is also available for selection on the Jumia Food platform -- replacing the Online Bar.

Placing a drinks order could not be simpler. Customers log on to the free app or by confirming they are of legal drinking age, they select the items they want and add to cart, then checkout after confirming delivery location.

Riders pick customers' orders from the nearest fulfillment centre and dispatch it within 1 hour. Customers pay either with cash or card on delivery or via MTN Mobile Money. ,

"Kampala comes to life at night, which is unfortunately when most liquor shops and supermarkets close," said Ron Kawamara, Jumia Food MD for East Africa.

"Jumia Party is our answer to having popular late night drinks delivered at the tap of an app, and at lower prices than in the supermarket."

"Our mission with Jumia Party is to make sure you always have quick and affordable access to your favourite alcohol brands, whenever you want them. Whether you've run out of wine at dinner, find yourself empty handed at a party, or just want a cold one delivered to your couch, Jumia Party has you covered", concluded Ron Kawamara.

Pernod Ricard Kenya MD, Denis Ochanine noted that the ongoing innovation is at the core of their strategy - flexibility to new trends and understanding consumer expectations makes us the industry leaders. 

“Through our development of Jumia Party we are using the digital space to interact directly with our consumers and provide them new consumption moments. Most importantly it allows us to put forward customized offers tailored to their preferences. As the Jumia Party platform grows we look forward to enhancing it with innovative product offerings".

Furthermore, to celebrate the app's launch and Jumia Food Black Friday, customers will have access to discounts up 50% from November 24 - December 8, 2017 on select popular products.

Jumia Uganda Lines Up 14 Days Of Black Friday Discounts

Jumia Uganda, has announced the return of its annual Black Friday discount sale - but for the first time, the leading online shop will offer Black Friday discounts for a 14 day period instead of just 1 day.

Exclusive discounts of up to 70% will be revealed across all product categories including electronics, appliances, fashion, home supplies, kids products and more, from November 24th to December 8th - on the online shop and via the free Jumia mobile app. 

“Black Friday” originated from the U.S. when retailers noticed a spike in sales on the day after Thanksgiving. Retailers decided to capitalise on this trend by offering discounts and special deals - and now, “Black Friday” has grown in to a global movement that Jumia has made sure Ugandans do not miss out on. 

Jumia Uganda’s Country Manager, Ham Namakajjo, advises shoppers to 1) research their desired products in advance as they await the discounts; and 2) take advantage of the Double Shillings voucher promotion.

“We are giving our customers the opportunity to save even more during Jumia Black Friday. If they purchase a 20, 30, or 50k voucher on our website before November 23rd, we will give them double the money to spend during Black Friday,” Namakajjo announced at the Jumia Black Friday press meeting. 

“With the support of our Black Friday partners: MTN, Samsung, Tecno, Infinix, Fero, Bata, Pampers and Kwese TV - we have planned a shopping event that will save our customers a lot of money as we approach the festive season,” Namakajjo concluded. 

As Jumia’s campaign will run for 14 days, alongside other festivities such as flash sales, contests, voucher and prize giveaways, the campaign has been dubbed the ‘Jumia Black Friday Festival’. Not only will shoppers enjoy discounts and special deals that cannot be found anywhere else in Uganda, but those who place an order during Jumia Black Friday also stand a chance to win the prize of a lifetime: 2 flight tickets to Dubai. 

For convenience, orders are placed online through or the Jumia app, delivered directly to the customer’s preferred location, with the option to pay cash or card on delivery in Kampala; and MTN Mobile Money across the country. 

Jumia will continue to post updates on its social media platforms to keep fans informed about all things to do with #JumiaBlackFriday. 

Facebook, Twitter, Instagram: @JumiaUG

Huawei’s Contribution To Empowering Telco Industry Recognised At AfricaCom 2017 Awards

Huawei, leading global ICT solutions provider received two prestigious awards, “Delivering Excellence in Customer Experience” and “Best Innovation in Broadcast - Broadband Convergence” at the just wrapped up AfricaCom 2017 in Cape Town. 

Delivering Excellence in Customer Experience is a joint award to MTN and Huawei in recognition of the work done in helping more customers feel the brighter side of life. 

The award recognizes MTN’s deployment and implementation of the Huawei Customer Experience Management (CEM) solution in MTN SA. The solution helps MTN proactively manage the experiences of its customers, focusing on each customer and each service level. The CEM solution offers MTN a richer insight into what its customers are looking for right now, and also their future expectations. The solution, as part of MTN Group strategy, is deployed in MTN SA and is also being deployed in other MTN OPCOs. 

“Our customers and our people form the bedrock of our business. We need to make sure we truly understand the needs and experiences of our customers so that we can shape products that will truly brighten the lives of all our many users. Consistent investment means we have a network that is second to none. Through our partnership with Huawei, we can now focus that network on a more customer-centric approach, that allows us to be more proactive and predictive in how we meet our customer’s needs,” said Giovanni Chiarelli, Chief Technology and Information Officer of MTN SA. 

Huawei’s CEM coupled with MTN’s Per Service and Per User platform enables a MTN customer journey or “lifecycle experience” to be captured. That journey can then be measured and analyzed in near real time allowing for a highly proactive engagement with the customer. 

“This is just the first step in our CEM programme. We have made some progress but there is still much to achieve. Our focus remains the continuous improvement of the network and all our customer interactions, and we believe we have a knowledgeable and strong platform in the deployment and implementation of the collaboration with Huawei’s CEM tool,” Chiarelli said. 

The award for Best Innovation in Broadcast - Broadband Convergence is a joint award that Huawei shares with Telkom, for the introduction of the Telkom LIT video service in South Africa. 

The Telkom LIT_ video service is the first of its kind in South Africa and aims to address the need for video entertainment services without the data usage concern. The Telkom LIT_ proposition provides customers with free music and video streaming from some of the world’s most popular content providers on specified Telkom packages. The launch of the product, together with its innovation, has allowed Telkom to provide this service without causing additional strain on its network; and manage its costs whilst providing superior content services to its customers. 

“This innovation is aimed at really transforming the way South Africans consume digital entertainment. By removing the worry of additional data cost we are putting unlimited entertainment in the hands of our consumers,” says Attila Vitai, Telkom Consumer CEO. 

These awards recognise Huawei’s continued contribution to the improvement of customer experience and offerings available in the telco industry in Africa.

Liquid Telecom Partners With Huawei To Deliver 100G Links Across South Africa

Leading pan-African telecoms group Liquid Telecom, a subsidiary of Econet Global, has partnered with Huawei, the leading global information and communications technology (ICT) solutions provider, to deliver 100G upgrades to its network in South Africa.

The upgrade to 100G wavelengths will take advantage of the latest DWDM technology from Huawei, enabling Liquid Telecom to offer additional capacity, faster speeds and greater redundancy to customers across South Africa.

The first phase of the project will see Liquid Telecom deploy Huawei’s OptiX OSN Solution along 1200km of its long-haul network connecting Johannesburg and Cape Town.

The 100G link will support growing demand for cloud-based services and provide customers with high-speed access to Liquid Telecom’s data centres in Johannesburg and Cape Town, which are currently undergoing major expansions to meet the needs of global cloud players and enterprise customers.

In the second and third phase of the project, the DWDM core network will be extended to the north west then north east regions of South Africa, providing more enterprise and wholesale customers in South Africa with high bandwidth connectivity.

In addition, the network upgrades will support Liquid Telecom’s new CloudConnect for Microsoft Azure ExpressRoute service, which enables customers to create private, predictable, high performance, SLA-based connections between Azure data centres and infrastructure on their premises or in a colocation environment.

“Higher networks speeds and bandwidth will play an integral role in supporting the rise of the African cloud. Through our partnership with Huawei, Liquid Telecom is ensuring that its network is ready to meet the increasing demand from businesses for cloud-based services,” said Nic Rudnick, Group CEO: Liquid Telecom.

OptiX OSN Solution is Huawei’s next-generation core packet-optical OTN platform for 100G/400G/1T and beyond, which is used for building high-performance backbone and metro networks. It integrates Huawei’s advanced Packet, OTN, and SDN-oriented Optics Transport technologies, and offers a high-density architecture with ultra-low power consumption per bit.

We are delighted to be supporting Liquid Telecom with next-generation network technologies that are ready for the new cloud era,” said Li Peng, president of Huawei Southern Africa region.

“The deployment of our OptiX OSN solution in South Africa further demonstrates our technology expertise and commitment to deliver innovative optical transmission solutions, “ he concluded.

What Are Some Previous Winners Of MTN Innovation Awards Up-to?

Today, nine innovations will be recognized at the gala dinner of the MTN Innovation Awards 2017. The first ever MTN Innovation Awards were held in 2015, recognizing several developers for their products that were helping in improving the livelihoods of Ugandans.

The winners from each category were awarded $1,000 dollars each. In 2015, the winners included, ClinicMaster, BrainShare, Yo! Payments Gateway, Intelligent Works, Outbox, Fezah, Lyndsay Handler of ReadyPay - Outstanding Woman in Innovation and Solomon King of FundiBots - Innovation achiever of the year.

As MTN prepares for the MTN Innovation Awards Gala dinner on Wednesday, 8th November 2017, we caught up with some of the previous winners in order to find out what they were up to.

Lyndsay Handler – Most Outstanding Woman in Innovation

Handler is the founder and CEO of Fenix International, a company responsible for the building and selling of the ReadyPay Solar Power System. She won the 2015 Most Outstanding Woman in Innovation for the ReadyPay product. About 150,000 households in Uganda are currently using the ReadyPay system and has since moved its innovation headquarters to Uganda from San Francisco, United States.

In October 2017, Engie, a French-based energy company agreed to acquire 100% stake in Fenix International. Fenix International has invested about $30m in developing the ReadyPay off-grid solar power system and Engie was seeking to tap into this space as and an opportunity to make a return on investment.

"This new investment from Engie will enable us to expand into other countries in Africa. We are looking at Ivory Coast, Nigeria and we recently expanded into Zambia. Power is a means to an end and we want to see more households being able to acquire our kit. It is still unacceptable that people are still using Kerosene. It is dangerous," Lyndsay explains.

ReadyPay is an expandable, lease-to-own home solar system financed through installments over Mobile Money. 

Intelligent Works (now Alien Age LTD)

Nansana Town. That is the location of what was then known as Intelligent Works. Now called Alien Age, this application was the winner of the SME Category of the MTN Innovation Awards 2015. “When went to register the company after winning the $1,000, we found that the name Intelligent Works had already been taken. That is how we opted for a new name,” explains Martin Katumba the founder of the company.

Alien Age is more of a school management system that helps schools generate reports, track student performance, track school fees payments and can run offline. Katumba says that they have about 200 schools using their system that is upgraded every year with new features.

“We are indeed making some money and have two companies that are currently selling our licenses. The company has been growing and we continue to see more schools coming on board,” he adds.

ClinicMaster International

Located along Bukoto Street, in Kamwokya, the winners of the best application in the Health Category at the 2015 MTN Innovation Awards, Clinic Master boasts of growth.

“2016 has been our biggest year in terms of growth. From the numbers we are seeing, 2017 could even be better. On average, we have had 30% growth in clientele since 2015,” Wilson Kutegeka, founder and CEO ClinicMaster explains.

ClinicMaster is web-based health information management and billing system used in several hospitals and clinics around the country. Kutegeka notes that the endorsement from the MTN Innovation Awards 2015 helped them build a company that is known for its good reputation. Importantly, he says that recognition of entities already operating instead of concepts that were still on paper.

Yo! Payments

Inside the UAP Nakawa Business Park, Yo! Payments, a mobile money payment aggregation system. It was the winner of the Financial Services category of the MTN Innovation Awards 2015. As a business, Yo! Payments has expanded its operations, aggregating mobile money for more entities, including commercial banks.

“We’re still delivering the promise of a cashless economy. It requires a paradigm shift and is a constant agenda. We have been growing since the company was started in 2006 and we continue to see the opportunity since cash is still king in the country. That is the opportunity," says Gerald Begumisa the CEO Yo! Payments


The winner of the Education category, Brainshare, at the MTN Innovation Awards 2015, has also continued to expand. Its founder, Charles Muhindo, explains that the student revision platform has been rolled out to more schools in the country.

“The schools understand that there is an opportunity to share knowledge but also a chance for some revenue to be made when their school past papers and reading material are accessed by other schools,” he says.

Muhindo explains that the application will continue to grow in terms of access to more schools get online, computers and understand why knowledge sharing is important.

Connectivity, Affordability And Accessibility Key Focus For Africa’s Digital Inclusivity

African Telecommunications Union (ATU) highlighted importance of connecting rural and remote areas in Africa to economic opportunities at AfricaCom held on 7- 9 November in Cape Town, saying that connectivity, affordability and accessibility key focus for Africa’s digital inclusivity and rural network coverage. 

The Secretary General of African Telecommunications Union (ATU) Abdoulkarim Soumaila said at ICT Africa forum during the premier Pan-African technology, telecoms and media event that, connectivity has the potential to positively impact and transform people’s lives in a number of areas, including health, education and financial services and agriculture. 

“All people must be able to access the Internet in order to exercise and enjoy their rights to a better quality of life, dignity and equality.” Abdoulkarim said.

Statistics from GSMA shows that approximately 53% of the world’s population is still unconnected. Four-fifths of this unconnected population are located in Asia-Pacific and in Africa. On average, 69% of the African population do not have access to the Internet, with many of those unconnected living in rural areas. 

Abdoulkarim stated that there is a definite need for smarter strategies and co-operation amongst the various stakeholders to ensure digital Inclusivity.

“In order to make rural connectivity a reality, governments and stakeholders need to make it a priority. It is necessary to develop suitable networks at an appropriate time and gradually overlay infrastructure and services until the ultimate goal of an ICT Society and Knowledge Economy is achieved.” Abdoulkarim said.

The forum with the theme, “Build a Better Connected Africa – How to Accelerate the Development of ICT Systems” was attended by government officials including communication ministers from South Africa, Angola, Ghana, Namibia, Zimbabwe, representatives from GSMA, Deloitte, Huawei and Telco Operators in Sub-Saharan region.

Siyabonga Cwele, Minister of Telecommunications and Postal Services of South Africa said there are a number of obstacles to increasing access to ICT services among African countries, from low levels of digital literacy, to insufficient infrastructure to support the delivery of services, and the high cost to connect, which creates a huge digital divide, and this forum is an opportunity for leaders from regional government agencies, top carriers and industry stakeholders to exchange ideas on innovation, best practices and models for sustainable growth. 

“Government approach towards reducing the digital divide should include both the supply side and demand side interventions. Creating ICT policies and regulation based on the new ICT ecosystem helps in defining the various roles that will be played.” Cwele said.

Lipeng, president of Huawei Southern Africa region said most African policy-makers have created favorable environments for the ICT sector, and the private sector also plays an important role in provision of the technology, solution, service and training, help transforming and enriching people’s life through communication.

“Huawei is ready to share our local practices and global expertise with all related stakeholders, to contribute to accelerating ICT development in Africa.” Li said.



Telecom Carriers Can Achieve New Growth By Providing Great Customer Experience - Huawei

Leading global ICT solutions provider, Huawei called on telecom carriers in Africa to focus on providing customers with a great user experience to achieve new value-driven growth. 

Paul Michael Scanlan, CTO of Huawei’s Carrier Network Business Group made this appeal in his keynote speech at AfricaCom, the premier Pan-African technology, telecoms and media event which kicked off today in Cape Town. 

“The ICT industry can play a crucial role in fuelling new growth in Africa through increased economic activity, innovation and productivity,” he said. 

With a fast growing population, ICT demands in Africa are far from being met. Latest statistics from the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) show that proportion of households with Internet access in Africa for 2017 is 18%, fixed-broadband subscriptions per 100 inhabitants in Africa for 2016 was 0.26%. The global research also found that nearly 9 out of 10 young individuals not using the Internet live in Africa or Asia and the Pacific. 

“A better connected digital world is fast approaching, connectivity is no longer a privilege but a necessity. We notice that African markets still have a growing, underserved user base. This presents Africa with a historic opportunity for development,” Scanlan said. 

As a key participant at AfricaCom, Huawei’s theme for this year is ROADS to New Growth, with a focus on working together with operators and industry partners to explore ways to build a successful ecosystem that will speed up return on investment (ROI) and achieve value-driven new growth. 

With an improved user experience as the focus, carriers needed to respond to user demand by relooking at their entire business and operation models as well as restructuring their telecoms networks. 

“We believe that the impact of information and communications technology should be measured by how many people can benefit from it, that’s why we strive to engineer broadband technology to the highest standard, faster than ever, for everyone, everywhere.” he added. 

At AfricaCom, Huawei will also host an Operations Transformation Forum for Carriers where it will share its solutions to creating additional business value while provide a better, more compelling experience.

Huawei Unleashes Potential Of Pole Sites To Support Mobile Broadband Growth

Mobile Broadband (MBB) is developing rapidly across the world, especially in urban areas. In this new era, wireless networks will require many small cells across a city to ensure a better user experience, improve network performance, and prepare for 5G-oriented evolution in the future.

This requires telecom operators to shift from pure macro cell towers, which are hundreds of feet tall and transmit wireless signals for miles, to embracing multi-layer networks that enable small cells from virtually any site such as street lamps, utility poles and traffic lights.

Market insights indicate that enormous resources are available around the globe for site deployment, including approximately 1 billion power and street light poles, 100 million monitoring and transmission poles, 10 million phone booths, and 10 million billboards. Most of these poles already have the core elements required to deploy a site, such as power and transmission resources, and right of way (ROW), making them ideal site locations

It is estimated that the number of outdoor pole sites will exceed the number of traditional tower sites by 2020, and outdoor pole sites will become the mainstream option for the intermediate network layer. In fact, according to ABI Research, over the next five years pole site usage is expected to grow by 26% per annum.

Challenges to acquiring and developing new sites

The benefits of pole sites are recognized by operators and many are gaining access to sites through third-parties that have already-approved sites. However, there are still significant obstacles in terms finding appropriate sites, obtaining permits and meeting regulations which have long approval cycles, and high rental fees.

For example, in South Africa the average site approval includes leasing negotiations, aviation approval, environmental approval, government approval, and many other links. The approval cycle takes up to 6 months and the average success rate is only 30%. Traditional site construction takes at least one month and civil engineering costs account for nearly 50% of the total site construction costs which can impact the operators’ investment in equipment and network supply capacity. 

Reducing site costs and increasing efficiency to enable MBB growth

To help operators overcome these challenges and seize growth opportunities, Huawei’s approach is to help operator optimize total cost of operation, shorten ROI and enhance site efficiency. Huawei has developed innovative scenario-specific solutions namely PoleStar, TubeStar, and RuralStar that enable more sites in a simple, fast and cost-efficient manner.

Huawei PoleStar is for urban areas and can be installed on lamp posts and a variety of other locations in a matter of hours. Huawei TubeStar enables wireless devices to be embedded in light poles and are therefore environmentally friendly allowing operators to easily obtain permission for installation in sensitive areas. Huawei RuralStar is useful in rural areas because it decreases power consumption by 85% and cost by 70%.

Huawei provides operators with a total solution package (including site acquisition, equipment supply, and delivery) which helps them find new site resources and reduces on-air time with a 40% TCO saving. Huawei has already applied this model with several African operators.

In South Africa a site alliance has been formed from cooperation between stakeholders, such as the government, businesses and operators. With a wealth of experience in network planning, Huawei is fully aware of the locations where sites must be added and provided valuable insight into which specific sites could be leased to multiple operators.

By deploying pole sites, South Africa MTN which operates in many African countries, has saved $75K in construction costs for each single site, the site TTM is only 4-5 months, and the investment payback period for central urban areas is less than 1 year.

Given the large investment that operators are planning to make to improve connectivity over the coming years, they must build new sites to optimize network coverage and accommodate the sustained increase in MBB traffic. Pole sites are an ideal solution to these challenges and by partnering with Huawei, operators can reduce site CAPEX and OPEX to enable efficient MBB networks that improve citizens’ lives, create jobs and increase economic competitiveness.

Subscribe to this RSS feed



Mostly Cloudy

Humidity: 74%

Wind: 22.53 km/h

  • 24 Mar 2016 28°C 22°C
  • 25 Mar 2016 28°C 21°C