Mobile data is ‘black gold’

By Semaj Itosno, Nairobi, Kenya

Digital trends specialist Tomi Ahonen believes mobile data is the black gold of 21st century, and it remains the next sure frontier for companies.

Speaking on Wednesday at the ongoing Mobile East Africa 2014 conference in Nairobi, Ahonen, who is an author and mobile and digital trends specialist and consultant, called on app developers to leverage on mobile platforms to offer solutions.

He said that the mobile industry will be worth 6 trillion dollars this year and developers, companies need to take this opportunity and use it.

He argued that the Internet made traditional media lose revenue but the "the media has opportunity to make money from mobile," he said.

The Motivational speaker on mobile, a former Nokia executive and lectures at Oxford University, said the rising prominence of mobile phones has made it a necessary gadget that service providers must think round.

He said Africa is a fertile ground for business that target mobile platforms citing the success story of M-PESA, the Safaricom mobile money platform and the fact that even the illiterate masses own mobile phones.

"Mobile is the 7th mass media which came in the 2000s after Print, Recordings, Cinema, Radio, Tv and Internet, and now is used as a Camera, for Mapping purposes, Banking, Credit, Computers, Telecoms, Print, Broadcast, Social Media and all the rest that anyone can think of," he said.

Mobile is different from internet, the two should not be mistaken to be the same due to the fact that they both power each. It’s easy to make money on Mobile than it is on the Internet, he said.

Also speaking at the event, Robert Lamptey, CEO of Saya Ghana, called on young developers to concentrate on building solutions to be assured of business and income rather than aiming at white collar jobs. 



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