Lower-cost SA tablets target Africa
By BiztechAfrica – Aug. 1, 2012, 2:37 p.m.
Wise Tablets, a South African firm taking low-cost tablets to market across the country, says its next focus will be pan-Africa.
Wise Tablets founder Eugene Beetge launched the company around 18 months ago.
He says most technologies tend to be built for a global audience, and he and his team saw a need for products specifically designed for the local market.
In partnership with ZTE and Qualcomm, Wise Tablets has already brought to market a series of smartphones and tablet PCs, priced around USD150 for the Android smartphone and around USD440 for the tablet.
“We saw the need for ‘localising’ which is usually associated with language and country. The model then grew into ‘hyper localising’- where the product is preloaded with functions suited to a smaller entity, such as a school.”
“Apart from an affordable price, you don’t get a vanilla flavour device from us. Our experience and stats show that tablets and smartphones are dismally understood and less than 1% of SA knows what they are. Our model preloads devices and thus on our tablets, you literally get all the global functions and apps as well as local content, and then on request, you get hyper local content too,” says Beetge.
He says the company plans a ‘massive’ roll-out of the new generation ZTE WISE devices in South Africa later this year.
With growing interest from players across Africa, Beetge expects to begin expanding into the rest of Africa next year. There will be opportunities for African resellers to partner with the company in taking the product to market, he says.
“This expansion was a major reason why we partnered with ZTE and Qualcomm who have incredible African footprint already,” he says.