Zimbabwe and regional technology news and updates



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Kenya’s Safaricom partners with Google to launch an affordable 4G smartphone

Safaricom has launched an affordable 4G enabled smartphone in partnership with Google. The device is called the Neon Ray Pro and retails for KES5 000.00 (around US$46.43). But with this program dubbed “Lipa Mdogo Mdogo” individuals will deposit KES1 000.00 (around US$9.29) and then pay KES 20.00 per day (US$0.19) to make up the balance. […]

Kenya’s Safaricom And Google Join Forces To launch Affordable YouTube Bundle.

Safaricom and Google have join forces to combine their data capabilities to launch an affordable YouTube bundle for Kenyans. In an effort to increase the exposure of their customers during this lockdown period. Safaricom through its partnership with Google introduced the KES 10 Bundle. What is the KES 10 Bundle? “The new daily bundle, which […]

Safaricom Accused Of Selling Subscriber Data

An ex-Safaricom employee suggested that the biggest mobile network operator in Kenya sells data to micro-financing companies and betting agencies. Last year, the MNO was taken to court by a customer who alleged the company had sold personal data of 11.5 million customers to betting companies. It has now come to light that one of […]

Econet Of Kenya -Safaricom- Sued For Data Privacy Violation

Safaricom the biggest movie network operator in Kenya is being sued for violating the privacy of 11.5 million of it’s customers. According to Kenyan outlets, the mobile network operator is being accused of leaking data of their customers involved in gambling. The data, which the petitioner herein viewed personally, was specific to gamblers who had […]

Safaricom’s All In One Bundles Are Comparable To What We Are Getting Locally

Safaricom’s All In One bundle offers subscribers an all-inclusive package that has data, minutes and SMS’s hence the name. On top of this Safaricom has recently begun giving 5GB monthly data for YouTube videos at no extra cost which is pretty cool. The extra data is available on the cheaper KES1000 (US$9.90) & KES2000(US$19.80) All […]

M-Pesa Customers Outraged After PayPal Accounts Were Blocked For ‘Fraudulent Behaviour’, But They Adhere To PayPals T’s&C’s

Kenyans who happen to use M-Pesa felt hard done by as they woke up to find that their Paypal linked accounts had been ‘limited’ without being forwarned.  Being limited means that they are not able to make any PayPal payments, which include sending and receiving money. So it essentially means that they are blocked. In […]

M-Pesa (Kenya’s EcoCash) Set To Launch A Social Network To Increase Mobile Money Transfers

Safaricom (M-Pesa’s parent company) is reportedly working on a new social messaging application Bonga, which will be integrated with its M-Pesa payment service. Its customers will be able to chat and send, receive money on the platform. The integration of mobile payment technology and messaging applications is a trend taking place globally. Facebook has opened […]

Is data really that much more expensive in Zimbabwe?

We all know as fact that data prices are unjustifiably high in this country. We know this but do we have the numbers to prove it? I had a conversation recently with a friend in South Africa and we started comparing data prices. Turns out that universal truth we all hold on to might not […]

Kwese TV signs its biggest mobile network deal in Africa yet

Econet Media, the company behind the relatively new kid on the block in African TV called Kwese, has reportedly signed a deal with Kenya’s largest mobile operator Safaricom. Safaricom mobile subscribers will have Kwese TV as one of the services offered by the network. To the best of our knowledge, this is Kwese’s largest network access deal […]

Naspers looks for partnerships with African mobile networks, braces for competition with Netflix

Naspers’ statements come at a time when the African VOD space has attracted a scramble from a number of services which include Netflix, Amazon and Econet’s Kwese TV. These have emerged as serious contenders as demonstrated by their major investments in content.

Uber launches in Thika, Kenya – Fights for market presence in the East African country

Uber won’t have the market to itself. Safaricom, Kenya’s largest mobile telecoms operator has unveiled its own Uber-like cab service called Little Cab which is meant to provide a metropolitan transport solution at a lower cost.

African telecoms is vicious, just ask Orange as it exits Kenya

All this sounds rather familiar, especially when you look at Telecoms in other African markets. Strong operators and market leaders lean on monoplosistic tendencies that choke smaller competitors. Regulation doesn’t fully enable a level playing field, and some utterances around licencing and State ownership have a tendency of rocking the boat.

EcoCash NFC card surfaces as new product – update

The EcoCash NFC (Near Field Communication) card which was being tested last year has now resurfaced.

Econet CEO & Liquid Telecom shortlisted for World Communication Awards

The list of nominees for the 2015 World Communication Awards, an annual ceremony which accompanies the Total Telecom Festival has just been released and Douglas Mboweni, the CEO of Econet Zimbabwe has been nominated for the CEO of the Year award. Also nominated is Liquid Telecom for the best Wholesale carrier Award.

As MTN zero-rates data for VOD here’s why other providers might follow suit

It was recently reported that MTN South Africa, the mobile network operator, zero-rated data for MTN FrontRow. This is the operator’s Video On Demand (VOD) service. This has implications on what might work for VOD services in Africa aligned to broadband providers.

Government buys Portnet, POTRAZ report, TelOne profits,the M-PESA API : Podcast

In this episode, we discuss the latest POTRAZ report, the new Infrastructure sharing regulations, ZIPCASH’s progress in mobile money, the M-PESA API that was shared by Safaricom and TelOne’s profitability.

Lessons for African operators as Safaricom opens M-PESA API to developers

Recently, there was a lot of excitement stirred up when Safaricom, Kenya’s largest mobile operator, released the Application Program Interface (API) for its mobile money service M-PESA to local and international developers. This is a step forward for Kenyan mobile commerce and e-services, but also shines light on the importance of startup and developer engagement.

Gtel clinches devices distribution deal with Airtel

G-Tel has made strides into Kenya by partnering with Airtel in a deal structured to take advantage of Airtel’s market share to deliver mobile phones on credit.

Bump in the road for Gtel’s move into East Africa?

Gtel was reported to have established a new market in Kenya through a deal with Safaricom. Now, it turns out the Zimbabwean mobile device startup spoke too soon. Safaricom has denied signing any deal with Gtel, even though it has confirmed that it has made contact with mobile device startup.

Safaricom now has an LTE decoder- Is this what we should expect from NetOne?

I’m sure I’m not the only person who’s not fully convinced that our country has this digital migration issue under control. Even though NetOne paid for this whole project, I’m proudly wearing the skeptics’ cap until I see something really convincing and I know there’s a huge number of Zimbabweans who feel the same way. The […]

Econet launches EcoCash Savings Club an m-wallet product for “maRound”

Despite the huge success that mobile money has been enjoying, some of its iconic services don’t seem to get noticed. Case in point, EcoCash Save. Considering our challenges with financial inclusion, this was a great concept. But other than the EcoCash Credit we haven’t heard much noise or product iteration around it, until now. Yesterday […]

Podcast: #MWC15, Virtual Reality, MTN, 5G, EcoSure signups, DStv & Orange

In this week’s edition of the podcast, we discuss the highlights from the Mobile World Congress that took place in Spain in the past few days. This included a discussion on virtual reality, 5G and Orange’s low-cost smartphone for Africa. We also touched on the MTN results, EcoSure and its strategy to involuntarily sign up EcoCash subscribers, […]

Kenyan mobile operator Safaricom to try its hand at broadcasting

According to an article carried by IT News Africa today, Kenyan mobile network operator, Safaricom has applied for a digital broadcasting licence. This move comes as the MNO is setting out to harness the opportunities that have come from the digital migration which was carried out in Kenya. This is the same analogue to digital migration […]

Emerging Ideas & Telecel collaborating on Pitch Night and startup initiatives

A lot has changed since Emerging Ideas hosted its first Pitch Night in 2013. Through organic growth and a consistent delivery on its promise to provide entrepreneurs with a platform for honest feedback and building relationships, the monthly event has expanded its audiences. One big change has been the establishment of a relationship between Emerging Ideas and local […]

Zim developer comes up with EcoCash ledger app to monitor m-money transactions

Sometime last year we wrote about the M-Ledger Android application that had been launched by Safaricom as an “accounting service” for the mobile money service M-Pesa. It was the product of a Kenyan startup that was working with the leading Kenyan mobile network. Noticing the relevance of such a service for Zimbabweans who use mobile money […]

Zimbabwean MNOs can you catapult-a-startup please?

When Safaricom launched a $1 million venture fund for Kenyan startups, it was applauded by everyone who follows the sort of relationships African mobile network operators have with the startups in their countries. This was the story of the big player in the tech ecosystem reaching out to the little guys, the fledgling startups. It […]

Safaricom now has a venture fund: Will local operators do the same?

The biggest news in East African tech entrepreneurship this past week has to be about the new venture fund that Safaricom launched a few days ago, aimed at encouraging the development of tech solutions and mobile application development. It’s hardly surprising that Safaricom is the network operator to do this. It’s involvement in the tech startup […]

Safaricom partners locals for M-Ledger: Can’t we have the same collaboration in Zim?

ITWebAfrica reported that yesterday Safaricom launched a new Android application called M-Ledger for their mobile money service, M-Pesa. M-Ledger is an easily accessible mobile money accounting service which lets users to monitor and manage past transactions on a single view from mobile phone. It also gives options to gather data in spreadsheet form. It  was developed […]

Shared mobile money agents: Does this benefit the ecosystem?

It’s been reported that the Competition Authority of Kenya (CAK) has pushed through an order compelling Safaricom, Kenya’s largest mobile operator, to share its mobile money transfer agents with the other mobile networks. This regulatory intercede in the Kenyan mobile money space is similar to what we noticed earlier this year in the Zimbabwean mobile […]

Mobile operators MTN, Orange, Millicom & Safaricom, see opportunity in tech startups

Yesterday, Orange Telecom, a French owned mobile telecoms company with operations in a number of African countries, announced the launch of a startup incubator in Niger. The incubator is the third the company has launched after similar ones in Niger and Mauritius. Earlier in the month, Safaricom’s CEO, Bob Collymore told Bloomberg TV Africa that they are […]