Etisalat Nigeria has launched a revamped version of its EasyMobile App. According to the company, among features, the new EasyMobile App enables customers on the network to get things done by eliminating the trouble of having to remember, text or dial certain codes before they can access services from their devices on the etisalat network.
Etisalat further revealed that the EasyMobile App now comes with an enhanced user interface and improved user experience with features that enable personalisation and instant customer support. The App is zero-rated, which means subscribers do not need to have data to use it.
Commenting on the App, the Director, Brands & Experience, Etisalat Nigeria, Elvis Ogiemwanye, explained that with the new EasyMobile App customers can further optimise the innovative value offerings that are available to them on the Etisalat network.
“The new EasyMobile App further demonstrates Etisalat’s unflinching commitment to continuously offer innovative services that help Nigerians to solve problems with the least effort as most things can be done on the app with just a tap. We are delighted at this latest product; it underlines how we leverage innovation to make life a lot better for our customers.”
In addition to other services that are available on the app, it can be used to interact with an Etisalat Customer Care Executive via live chat, opt-in and out of services, access promos and special offers, locate Etisalat Experience Centres and purchase airtime or data with a debit card. The App is available for download on Apple App Store and Google Play Store for iOS and Android devices.
Nigeria: Jongla unveils light usage instant messaging app
At the latest Mobile West Africa Conference, which was held in Lagos Nigeria, Jongla unveiled its “light” instant messaging app. At the launch, the company revealed that the app is expected to enable users to send and receive free text messages, stickers, photos, videos and voice messages over the Internet using low-speed Wi-Fi networks as well as 4G, 3G, EDGE and GPRS.
At the reveal the company stated that the app essentially opens up the world of free instant messaging to people living and working in Africa, where cellular and data services are often unreliable and expensive. The company further revealed that the app has been specifically designed for emerging markets, as it takes only 2.5MB to download on Android phones compared to more than 20MB for most other messaging apps.
The company further revealed that the app also includes features such as:
Jongla Out – Jongla allows users to chat with all their phone book contacts. Users are not restricted to chatting only with other Jongla users. If the recipient does not have the app installed, they can chat via Jongla web app without needing to download or register.
Voice Messaging – Jongla includes an embedded voice effects studio. Users can record up to one minute of push-to-talk voice messages and add sound effects to make them sound like a different person.
Security – Jongla is using full TLS encryption to keep chats safe and protects privacy by allowing users to set a personal passcode lock.
According to WeAreSocial’s Digital in 2016 report, around 102 million of the 986 million mobile connections in Africa are classified as active social media users. For Nigeria, the figures are 154 million subscribers with 11 million active social media users.
Riku Salminen, CEO of Jongla, said “We have made instant messaging possible for people who don’t have high-end smartphones and live and work in areas where there is often limited access to mobile broadband.”
He added that: “We chose Nigeria to launch Jongla in Africa because we know that many people here are frustrated with the current user experience that most of the IM apps offer. We have been able to solve various technical challenges without needing to compromise on functionality.”
“Users want something more fun and personal than just basic messaging to connect with friends and family. We believe in a world where everyone can communicate instantly, freely and securely from anywhere and with anyone regardless of where they live, which phone they have and which network they can access, he concluded”
The Jongla team is currently working to add new social and collaborative features to Jongla that will go way beyond traditional messaging. The next generation of Jongla, introducing new social features, will be launched by mid-2016.
Jongla is already localised to 20 languages and it can be downloaded for free by people living and working across Africa from the App Store, Google Play, Windows Phone Store, and Firefox.
Nigeria Introduces $9m Seed Funding For Software Development
Nigeria is set to roll out its first seed funding for local software development, the country’s Minister of Communication Technology, Omobola Johnson has revealed.
The $9 million seed capital will be Nigeria’s first investment in a number of Nigerian and African tech startups, Omobola said at the kickoff of the DEMO Africa event in Lagos on Thursday.
The DEMO Africa event, which is holding in Nigeria for the first time since it was launched about three years ago will see 40 African start-ups pitch their solutions on how they intend to use technology to create opportunities and solve challenges. They are doing this with the hope of securing more funding that will enable them take their ideas and innovations to the next level.
Omobola noted that there is need for African governments to leverage on internet opportunities which could directly create job opportunities that will generate income, create wealth, jobs, new business opportunities and economic expansion.
“One report highlights this potential and predicts that the internet can contribute up to $300 billion to Africa’s GDP by 2025 and this is from an estimated $18 billion in 2013,” she said.
Ombola enjoined African governments to also invest more in infrastructural development to support and sustain Information Technology (IT) growth within the continent.“It is good to show prowess in software development but it is even better to develop businesses and companies that are powered by that software. The recent IPOs of Twitter and Ali Baba are testimonies of what is possible. I can’t imagine that it is too often that you get this level of government participation in Demos around the world. And this is because government, innovation and entrepreneurship are rarely mentioned in the same breadth. But governments, indeed, African governments, have an important role to play in catalyzing the startup industry as evidenced in the US and of course, Israel.”
To capture the opportunities presented by the IT industry, Permanent Secretary at the Nigeria Ministry of Communication Technology, Tunji Olaopa said “any policy initiative at all that has no value proposition for the youths, or better still, that does not, among its many objectives, target the incredible but still largely undeveloped and untapped energy of our largely youthful population, is non-starter. The least we can do, therefore, at policy level through targeted investment as entrepreneurs and in our corporate social responsibilities is to create critical mass of role models and benchmarks that could challenge our youths on innovation trajectory.”