Zimbabwe and regional technology news and updates

Finally, the Telecel Zimbabwe website is back online

The Telecel Zimbabwe website was taken down in early February last year, and yesterday, more than a year later, the website has been brought back online. This is good; it makes it so much easier to find information about the company; tariffs, services on offer, recent developments, contact information, coverage and other such important stuff.

Some thoughts on the Nhava scandal

When we wrote an article about G-Mobile launching a range ‘local computers’ last year, we mentioned the controversial issue of local companies (Nhava & G-Mobile) possibly buying unbranded computers, getting them branded with their company name and selling them locally as locally made computers. We asked the readers for their opinions on the matter and reactions ranged from “low price is all that matters” to “Guys adding a sticker to a clone made in china is not true innovation.”

The Telecel side of the story: Indigenisation, Expats & Buying Zimbabwe

Barely seconds after we posted the accusation by Telecel that NetOne won’t share infrastructure, a email from Telecel appeared in our inbox with a press release titled “Telecel MD gives evidence to parliamentary committee” attached.

Telecel has been mainly silent on the issued leveled against them in the past few months but the appearance before the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Media, Information and Communication Technology has obviously forced them to come out and speak.

Zimbabwe’s telecommunication statistics summary (2010)

Last week, we had an opportunity to visit POTRAZ, the country’s telecommunications regulator. There we got some stats of Zimbabwe’s telecommunications as at September 2010 and we thought we would share the data here.

Telecel accuses NetOne of refusing to share passive infrastructure

Telecel, the second largest mobile operator in Zimbabwe by subscriber base, has accused state owned (and smallest) mobile operator, NetOne, of refusing to share tower infrastructure. Telecel Zimbabwe CEO, Mr. Aimable Mpore made the accusation in a response to questions about Telecel’s shareholding structure from the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Media, Information and Communication Technology.

Telecel reduces cost of calling other mobile networks

In a release we just received, Telecel has announced that it is scrapping the extra cost of calling mobile numbers outside the Telecel network. Effectively, this means Telecel subscribes will now call NetOne and Econet numbers at the same rate they call Telecel numbers.

Review: PowerTel Mobile Broadband

Two weeks ago, Techzim got the opportunity to test the PowerTel mobile broadband service. We’ve been using the connection as a primary for one of our laptops at the office, taking it through the paces and below is what we think about it.

Econet hosts Econet Mail outside Zimbabwe, and they explain why

A friend pointed us to something strange the other day: Econet is hosting Econet Mail outside Zimbabwe. The webmail system is hosted at Rackspace in the United States.

NetOne introduces new mobile voice package

Yesterday, state owned mobile operator, NetOne, started an advertising campaign for a new mobile voice package called Relaks. The package promises lower tariffs and free SMSes. We contacted NetOne today and they sent us a press release prepared to announce the new package.

University of Zim scientist develops a drought and climate change adaptation game

When we visited the Research and Intellectual Expo at the University of Zimbabwe last week, we saw some very interesting displays. One such display was at the UZ Soil Science and Agriculture Engineering department where a senior lecturer, Dr Emmanuel Manzungu, is developing a computer-based game that helps farmers and their advisors to make strategic decisions about responding to drought and climate change.