Microsoft launches Office 365 in Kenya
SOFTWARE| June 27, 2012, 12:43 p.m.
By Semaj Itosno, Nairobi, Kenya
Software maker Microsoft will on Thursday launch its newest Windows operating system, Office 365, in Kenya.
Office 365 is cloud-based, meaning that it can be accessed remotely. It brings together Windows operating systems such as Microsoft Office, Microsoft SharePoint Online, Microsoft Exchange Online and Microsoft Lync Online, all of which enable computer users to use enterprise email, shared documents, instant messaging, video and web conferencing, portals and more within a short time.
The firm will, however, slap a monthly fee on the new system in line with what it is doing in other parts of the world.
Microsoft says this fee will mainly be determined by use. In other markets, such as the US where the service has been launched, the monthly subscription fees ranges between Sh168 (USD2) and Sh2, 268 (USD27) per user.
Louis Otieno, Microsoft’s general manager for East and Southern Africa, said with Office 365 businesses will not need to invest in internal servers or data storage facilities thereby reducing their IT costs by up to an estimated 50% while boosting productivity.
“With Office 365, businesses or even the government can work on files and documents at the same time and share ideas as easily as they can share calendars it also gives people new ways to work together with ease, on virtually any device,” said Mr Otieno.
Microsoft is targeting, government, corporate and small medium business with this latest product.
“With this product it will be possible for the government to issue its entire staff across the country with e-mail accounts in less than an hour,” said Otieno. Retail prices for Microsoft traditional software are pegged on the user groups, for example students, home users, and NGOs that pay lower amounts compared to enterprise users.
Two weeks ago, Kenya’s Finance Minister, Njeru Githae, removed import duty on software, a move aimed at making it cheaper for users and also to attract foreign investors into the IT industry.
Vendors sell their software either by loading them onto CDs or offering a user licence. Software loaded on CDs attracts a 25% import duty and 16% value added tax (VAT). Customers who buy the user license only pay the VAT.
The Microsoft launch will also include the Nigerian and South African markets, where the firm says this has been made possible by the improved telecoms infrastructure.
Kenya has four undersea cables: Seacom, Essay, TEAMs, and LION, which connect the country to the rest of the world and vast inland fibre optic infrastructure across the country.
This has allowed telecommunication firms such as Kenya Data Networks, Safaricom and Dimension Data to launch storage facilities for electronic documents (data centres) which was not possible before.
MORE SOFTWARE NEWS
Two Oceans Marketing simplifies a complex stock environment with Sage X3 and Sage Inventory AdvisorTwo Oceans Marketing has implemented the Sage X3 and Sage Inventory Advisor from Sage Enterprise (Previously Sage ERP Africa) to streamline stock management. Read More
Riding the wave of West Africa’s digital economyCompanies in Nigeria and the rest of the region who do not embrace the digital world will be at a serious disadvantage to their competitors, says Sage. Read More
Technology driver of other sectors, says Asseco chiefNigeria’s former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Odein Ajumogobia, has advised businesses wishing to optimise resources and increase production to embrace technology, adding that it is the force that sits at driving seat of economic development. Read More
Uganda’s Infinity Computers awards services, cloud deal to IBMLeading Ugandan IT services provider Infinity Computers has chosen IBM to deliver cloud, analytics and IT services to support a wide range of new web and mobile offerings for its clients. Read More
Red Hat Brings Open Source curriculum to EMEA studentsRed Hat Academy, an open source education programme, is now available to universities with the required technology and support environments in the Europe, Middle East & Africa (EMEA) region. Read More
Luba Freeport streamlines its sea of paper with Sage X3Luba Freeport has implemented the Finance and Distribution modules of the Sage X3 business management solution to automate its business processes across finance and operations. Read More
Microsoft releases Office 2016On Tuesday, Microsoft Corp. began the worldwide release of Office 2016. Read More
Harley’s accelerates its business processes with Sage X3Harley’s Limited, a Kenyan company that imports and distributes medical equipment and pharmaceuticals into the East African market, has streamlined its business processes and improved agility by rolling out the Sage X3 applications suite. Read More
Global Study finds DevOps a key contributor to bottom lineCA Southern Africa has revealed details of a recent study which shows that having a DevOps strategy helps drive tangible business benefits to enterprises. Read More
Enterprise app stores the cornerstone of enterprise mobilityUltimately, an enterprise app store is the future of enterprise mobility, says In2IT Technologies South Africa. Read More
FEATURED STORYeCommerce in Africa urged to take advantage of mobile
The Executive Chairman of Alltel has urged operators of eCommerce in Ghana and Africa as a whole to take advantage of the current trend for Africans to trade online via their mobile handsets.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHNigeria needs $25b investment in broadband, says Wood
Telecoms executive Adrian Wood speaks to Kokumo Goodie about investment potential in Nigeria.