Google, Orange partner on African innovation
INTERNET| July 28, 2011, 2:56 p.m.
Orange and Google have signed a partnership that aims to take access to new Google services to users across Africa.
In line with the deal, Orange’s 60 million African mobile customers will be able to stay in touch with their Google services and Google users will be able to extend their network by using SMS-based services.
In a statement, Orange and Google said the partnership would use Orange’s SMS platform to bring Google’s services to African customers.
The partners said the agreement marked an important step forward that would facilitate access to the growing mobile internet market in Africa.
They noted that by the end of 2010, only 1.4% of the population in Africa and Middle East had access to broadband services, compared to 62.5% for mobile services.
Gmail’s SMS Chat service, which will eventually be launched across Orange’s footprint in Africa and the Middle East, is already available in Senegal, Uganda and Kenya. It will be launched in four additional countries - Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Guinea Conakry and Niger - in the coming months, and will be launched as a trial in Egypt through Mobinil. Orange and Google are now looking to extend this partnership to include other services.
The services proposed under Google SMS are only the first stage of this partnership. Orange and Google are now exploring ways of bringing other Google services to the whole Orange customer base.
Commenting on the partnership, Xavier Perret, VP Strategic Partnerships said: “By bringing the full potential of the mobile internet to our customers in Africa, this strategic partnership is a step forward in Orange’s “Digital Coach” strategy.
The Group’s capacity to combine its knowhow on service infrastructure with innovation, and by adapting its offers to local needs, will enable it to provide mobile customers across Africa with access to internet-based services in the best possible conditions. We are delighted to work with a major brand like Google and we know that by innovating together we can really change the role mobile technology plays in our customers’ lives”.
MORE INTERNET NEWS
AccessKenya in Kes 300m fibre investmentAccessKenya Group has completed the rollout of its metropolitan fibre network in key target areas around Nairobi and its environs. Read More
Malawi Internet cost reduces with submarine cable connectivityMalawi Telecommunications Limited (MTL) has said the country’s Internet access is now 50 percent cheaper than it was five years ago, due to optic fibre cable connectivity to the submarine cable. Read More
Congo’s Université Marien Ngouabi launches websiteL’Université Marien Ngouabi, Congo Brazzaville’s oldest tertiary institution, launched its first website this week. Read More
Internet of Things – when problems can be hidden in a billion placesIn the Internet of Things era all things can be connected. But when billions of things are connected, there are also billions of points of contact to sift through to identify faults, says Riverbed. Read More
Internet.org business plan a “race to the bottom” - 2goPartnerships between African operators and Facebook’s Internet.org app that make certain content free to subscribers is a “race to the bottom” which will shrink long-term revenues and hurt local content providers, according to Marc Herson, COO of mobile social network 2go. Read More
Liquid Telecom to launch FTTH services in Kenya, RwandaLiquid Telecom has announced it will launch Fibre To The Home (FTTH) in Kenya, Rwanda and two other African countries early next year. Read More
Rwanda officially launches 4G LTE networkRwanda has officially launched its 4G LTE network, aiming to take access to 95% of citizens by 2017. Read More
Submarine cable to be built across South AtlanticAngola Cables has signed a contract with NEC Corporation to build the world’s first submarine cable system across the South Atlantic. Read More
Inquest into politician’s death turns to satellite imagesAn inquest into the death of an opposition politician has seen the parties involved toying with the idea of using satellite image experts. Read More
FEATURED STORYGSMA: half a billion mobile subscribers in SSA by 2020
The number of unique mobile subscribers in Sub-Saharan Africa will pass the half billion mark in 2020, says a new GSMA report.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHAfrica lags on digital migration
Only three African countries have so far completed the digital migration process, and serious issues are hampering the migration in other nations.