The Vision of an Informed Africa

COMPUTING

|
Image: Richwell Phineas. By BiztechAfrica
Richwell Phineas

By Richwell Phinias, founder and CEO of Dariro.com, a Zimbabwean online communication platform.

The Vision of an informed Africa involves an Africa that is connected with the world and in the same way connected among its own citizens.

Today, people of African origin across the globe share experiences, skills, knowledge and information among themselves but within the jungles of global communication platforms. Having learnt global languages, etiquette, value systems and technologies, we share what we share but at the same time trying to perfect our adoption of global tools at the distortion of our own beliefs.

The next wave of technology flowing through Africa will see the people creating their own platforms of communication in their own understanding.

As internet access reaches all corners of Africa, there will be a growing need for e-inclusion among even generations who might not be so schooled and exposed to global communication etiquette.

For example, with the penetration of 3G internet in rural Zimbabwe, it now means that folks in the rural areas with internet-enabled handsets are also coming on Facebook. That is coming to the internet without having used a computer before but just following the trend to reconnect with relatives and friends in urban areas and abroad.

Facebook makes communication quite easier and cheaper compared to telephones, fixed or mobile.

As more and more people become internet and technology savvy, it is creating opportunities for developers to work on platforms and applications from an African perspective.

Mobile applications addressing communication and knowledge sharing needs among farmers, traders, schools, health services, religion and other general spectrums of society will start mushrooming in Africa.

These applications are not going be just customization of similar applications from across the world, I believe not, for certain areas like traditional customs cannot be benchmarked from outside as some of the practice are only limited to Africa.

We are going to see as many mobile applications and communications platform developed with a heavy bias towards local content even in the mainframe of the systems.

We already have investors and developers coming from the Silicon Valleys out there coming to develop local content platforms for Africa but in the long run I am quite sure and certain that it is only those platforms and applications developed by the Africans themselves that are going to ultimately dominate the market.

Unlike all the other forms of business, the barriers to entry are low and what will rules will be the ability to innovate and a deeper understanding of cultural needs of the people which can only be executed and managed so well by the Africans themselves.

A couple of years ago I anticipated a future where Africans in the Diaspora who had first access to broadband services, skills and knowledge of the internet, would take advantage of the platform to tell the African story.

Today, that is a reality as we have as many locals fully utilizing various communication platforms from social networks, cloud computing platforms to even the ubiquitous email technology.

So as we move away from hindrances like online payment gateways for Africa and bandwidth access and cost, soon rather than later, Africa's economy, politics, religion and social life is going to embrace the internet technology on a broader scale.

At the moment the Asian tigers and China will really be an inspiration in as much as localizing technology is concerned.

In the coming few years as tablets and smart phones invade Africa making less attractive internet access devices cheaper, more and more people are going to be online. This is going to create lots of opportunities for business in web and mobile applications development.

The ecosystem which will also involve online payments is also going to create for us financially success stories that will motivate more business minded and innovative entrepreneurs. Just as such stories of technology luminaries as that of Bill Gates, Larry Ellison, the late Steve Jobs and recently Mark Zuckerburg have lighted the way for more adventurous and innovative entrepreneurs, the same is going to happen in Africa.

A few successful individuals are going to ignite a spark of innovation on the continent for the continent.

The vision of an informed Africa is in our control. The platforms will change, they will get renewed and re-launched but in the end the people of Africa will be more connected, networked and informed than before.

About Richwell Phinias

Richwell Phinias is an internet marketing consultant and website developer based in Zimbabwe. His burning vision is to see the development of local content on the internet allowing African communities and businesses to interact seamlessly first among themselves and then with the world. This will be achieved by creating online platforms that are easily adopted by people as for their various businesses.

He is the founder of Dariro.com, an online communications, networking and information sharing platform that opens up opportunities for business, artists, churches, NGOs and individuals to benefit from the advancement of internet technology. His passion and desire is to use the internet as an affordable avenue for various users to network and interact with their respective stakeholders, albeit on a global scale.

He believes that people are as developed as the information they can access.



Share the News

Get Daily Newsletter

comments powered by Disqus

MORE COMPUTING NEWS

Botswana women missing from ICT

There has been a rallying call for women in Botswana to consider a lifetime participation in the Information and Communication Technology if the sector is to realise any meaningful growth as well as a fair gender representation.   Read More

Globecomm, Tanzania Support Foundation take computers to rural school

Globecomm announced today that it has donated desktop computers to a school in the Tanzanian village of Selela to aid the mission of the Tanzanian Support Foundation to help small communities become more self-sufficient in education, healthcare, hygiene and clean water.   Read More

The Network is dead. Long live the network!

Your network is vastly bigger than the Internet itself, says Infoblox.  Read More

Schneider Electric’s off-grid solar and backup power inverter/charger now in southern Africa

Schneider Electric Solar Business, a global leader in solutions for the solar power conversion chain, has released its off-grid solar and backup power inverter/charger, the Conext SW, in the southern African region.  Read More

Phase3 seeks digitally enhanced life for special needs kids

West Africa’s largest independent fibre optic infrastructure and telecommunications services provider, Phase3 Telecom, has urged stakeholders in the ICT industry to offer children living with disabilities a good quality of life through the deployment of assistive technology. Read More

Kenya, China partner to grow ICT skills

Global technology company Huawei, in partnership with Kenya’s Ministry of Information and Technology, has dispatched to China the first beneficiaries of the “Huawei Seeds for the Future” Internship programme. Read More

Big trends for 2015

Industry experts share their thoughts on the innovations that will impact business next year. Read More

ASUS appoints Andre Goosen as Country Service Manager

ASUS, the Taiwanese technology innovation brand, has appointed Andre Goosen to the position of Country Service Manager, a new role created in line with ASUS’ increased focus on after sales service. Read More

iWayAfrica managed service solution launched in Kenya

Pan African telecoms operator, Gondwana International Networks (GIN) has announced that its iWayAfrica business has launched a managed infrastructure and services solution in Kenya.  Read More

Kenya Ports Authority first to deploy Pamoja’s RUBiQ cloud platform

The Kenya Ports Authority is the first institution in East Africa to adopt the RUBiQ Cloud-based governance, risk and compliance platform.  Read More

PRESS OFFICES

Sage ERP AfricaSAP AfricaSage Pastel AccountingTrust PayVMWareSamsung ElectronicsMitsumi DistributionPhoenix DistributionMTN BusinessSchneider ElectricMultichoice

FEATURED STORY

PWC: Optimism abounds but a bumpy journey ahead for somePWC: Optimism abounds but a bumpy journey ahead for some

PwC’s ‘Capital Projects & infrastructure in East Africa, Southern Africa and West Africa,’ report says infrastructure spend in the region is projected to reach $180bn per annum by 2025.

IN DEPTH

Africa lags on digital migration Africa 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.