Africa is a continent of great opportunity and potential, but as a whole, the continent needs to work to become more globally competitive for the benefit of industries such as tech to truly thrive. Africa competes for foreign direct investment with other emerging markets such as Asia, Latin America, and the Caribbean. Africa needs to address a number of key issues in order to rival their main competitors in the market and carve out a competitive landscape that will attract foreign direct investment. Africa’s average competitiveness ranking is 21 percent compared to Latin America and The Caribbean’s average ranking of 40 percent, and Asia’s average ranking of 57 percent.
Culture: Latest News
Kurt Davis Jr., 1:32 pm AFKI Original
It is surprising how many business people assume Africa is behind the times in technology. Infrastructure may be a problem…but technology is a different story, and in fact, innovation and active appreciation for the wonders of technology are present throughout the continent. Sub-Saharan Africa, in many instances, can make a Western business person feel like they underuse their mobile phone…or simply feel behind the times when they do not know how to use M-Pesa.
Peter Pedroncelli, 9:26 am
The winners of the Facebook First Bots for Messenger Developer Challenge were announced this week, with submissions from Egypt doing very well. Egyptians featured prominently among the winners and runners-up of the three categories, as did Morocco. A total of 60 finalists from 64 countries in the Middle East and North Africa region were considered for the eventual winner’s prize, which included $20,000 in addition to three months of Facebook mentorship.
Peter Pedroncelli, 8:47 am
The new dotAafrca top-level internet domain appears to be very popular among trademark owners, as it has attracted just short of a thousand registrations during the initial registrations period, known as the sunrise phase. The top-level domain has been through its sunrise phase, is now in its landrush phase, and will be available to the general public from July 4, but already dotAfrica is showing why it has been much-anticipated. The heavy initial interest in the dotAfrica domain places it in the top 10 worldwide for the number of domain name reservations during the sunrise phase of a launch process.
Peter Pedroncelli, 6:17 am
Mobile phone sales across the African continent fell during in the first quarter of 2017 in comparison with the fourth quarter of last year, but East Africa still remained in positive growth territory. Overall shipments of mobile phones to Africa in the first quarter amounted to around 54,5 million units, which represents a decrease of 8,2 percent versus fourth quarter data for 2016. A sharp decline in smartphone sales, which were previously growing consistently, contributed to the first quarter growth negativity, with a staggering 17,6 percent decline in the smartphone segment for the first three months of the year
Peter Pedroncelli, 8:42 am AFKI Original
Africa has embraced mobile like few other regions of the world have, with some of the highest mobile penetration rates and the majority of internet users accessing content online via their mobiles. Whether one considers online banking, apps for healthcare, connecting through social media or voting for a political party, Africans have fully embraced mobile technology and all of its possibilities. Here are the 12 things you didn’t know about how Africans have embraced mobile.
Peter Pedroncelli, 5:32 am
African fintech startups continue to be an example to similar entities in other sectors, attracting substantial investment while disrupting the financial services market on the continent. The innovative solutions that fintech enterprises are producing have attracted the attention of banks and investors, in the hope that these financial disruptors become the next PayPal or similar concept in Africa. The last two years have seen a sharp increase in the number of businesses created in this sector, with 301 African fintech startups identified across 20 countries on the continent.
Peter Pedroncelli, 5:47 am
French telecommunications operator Orange have announced the launch of an African startup investment initiative that will support innovative startups across the continent. Orange has earmarked $56 million for investment, with half of it set to be invested indirectly through funds that specialize in the digital sector. The other half of the funds will go towards the creation of a new initiative, called Orange Digital Ventures Africa, which will invest directly in African startups within a number of industries including logistics, e-commerce, transport, energy, fintech, and e-health businesses.
Peter Pedroncelli, 3:16 am AFKI Original
Social media has taken the world by storm in recent years, and the number of active Facebook users in Africa is a testament to the fact that the continent is also part of the social media trend. With Facebook being the most popular of the social media networks, and the proliferation of mobile throughout Africa providing the ideal breeding ground, the combination of factors has led to a growing user-base for the company. Africa is home to around 330 million internet users, and around 44 percent of them are active on Facebook.
Peter Pedroncelli, 4:39 am
Dalkom, a privately owned operator based in Somalia, has signed an agreement with Intelsat SA for satellite services that will lead to expanded broadband access and capacity in East and Central Africa. Intelsat SA, integrated satellite communications specialist and operator of the world’s first globalized network, will assist Dalkom Somalia in increasing its broadband enterprise and direct-to-home (DTH) services in East and Central Africa and the Middle East. The multi-year agreement will allow Dalkom to incorporate Ku-band satellite services provided by Intelsat 17 to extend their current services
Staff, 7:37 am
In 2017 there will be over 16 million active smartphone users in South Africa. This number is expected to grow exponentially over the next five years to reach more than 21 million users. The rapid rise in mobile phone usage in South Africa can primarily be attributed to the popularity of social media, which in turn has also sparked an increase in mobile phone usage to buy and sell online. The upturn in active mobile phone users has also affected internet usage and consumer habits drastically.
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