Opera Mobile hits 100m users in Africa

SMWAfrica Opera 2016 State of mobile web ReportState of the Mobile Web Africa, 2016 aims to shed light on the opportunities and challenges we experienced in bringing the next 100 million – and beyond – online. It will also take an in-depth look into some of the data and statistics of the African mobile web.Furthermore, the report highlights the usefulness and importance of data compression technologies, especially as it concerns high data costs, which has slowed down the adoption of mobile Internet.

“We believe data compression is as relevant and useful now as it was a decade ago – in fact, with the growth of smartphone penetration coupled with prohibitively high data costs, it’s a critical enabler,” said Richard Monday, VP for Opera, Africa.

The compression technology used in Opera Mini and Opera Max helps consumers save on data costs and addressed issues relating to congestion and page sizes.

In fact, the report states that in 2016, Opera’s compression technology has allowed South Africans to save approximately US$111m in data costs, with Nigerians and Kenyans saving US$280m and US$116m, respectively.

To get the full report, click HERE.

Africa’s mobile video explosion a boon for Facebook

Image result for facebook videoA report from Sandvine, ‘Global Internet Phenomena Report: Africa, Asia-Pacific & the Middle East’, revealed that in Africa video consumption on mobile networks in the region has over doubled to 18.1% from 8.6% last year. Since YouTube was the top mobile app in the Middle East and Asia-Pacific regions, Sandvine predicts that in the next 18 months, seeing the rapid video growth in Africa, YouTube will become the top mobile video app in that region as well.

The fall of web traffic associated with the ageing WAP (Wireless Application Portal) in Africa over the past two years also indicates that smartphone adoption in the region is on the rise, giving mobile video apps a platform for the expanding internet-connected population.

“The rapid growth of video on mobile networks in Africa underscores the need for operators in the region to have solutions in place that allow them to measure, monetize and optimize the real time entertainment traffic that subscribers value,” said Sandvine’s COO of sales and global services Tom Donnelly. “These strategies have been extremely successful for our customers in both Asia-Pacific and the Middle East, and has allowed them to provide their subscribers a high quality of experience when they are using the applications they care the most about.”

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Mobile Video Viewership in Africa Doubled in the Last Year

new-youtube-mobile-appCanada-based broadband company Sandvine has today released a study titled The Global Internet Phenomena Report that takes a look at the growth of online video in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East. Culled over the summer from the data of more than 300 of Sandvine’s customers across the globe — with respect to both fixed and mobile networks — the company found that video viewership on mobile networks has more than doubled in Africa over the past year, from 8.6% of all internet usage to 18.1% today.

And the lion’s share of this video viewership is taking place on YouTube, which is already the top mobile app in both Asia-Pacific and the Middle East, according to Sandvine. The company predicts that YouTube will become the top mobile app in Africa within the next 18 months. Throughout the rest of the world, mobile web traffic is dominated by “real-time entertainment” services, as Sandvine puts it — or applications that facilitate streaming video or audio on-demand. Right now, however, usage in Africa is mostly comprised of web browsing and communication services.

Facebook is another huge player in the Middle East, where its eponymous app as well as Instagram and WhatsApp account for 20% of all mobile traffic in the region. And in addition to real-time entertainment, web users in the Asia-Pacific region tend to be outsized users of filesharing services like BitTorrent, which account for almost 30% of all traffic on fixed networks in the region.

Another unique characteristic of video viewership in the Asia-Pacific region, according to Sandvine, is the popularity of peercasting apps like QVoD and PPStream, which enable users to stream live events while simultaneously distributing these events to fellow viewers.

For additional findings about web and video trends across Africa, Asia, and the Middle East, check out Sandvine’s Global Internet Phenomena Report right here.

Ericsson Partners with Vodafone M-Pesa on water payments in Africa

Image result for mpesaEricsson announced that it has partnered with Vodafone’s M-Pesa in an effort to simplify mobile money payments and cash collection between M-Pesa and businesses, according to a press release.

The first deployment under the deal will connect M-Pesa with the growing network of Grundfos safe water kiosks throughout Kenya and Tanzania, with other countries to follow.

“Vodafone is delighted to enable access to affordable, safe water for our M-Pesa customers as a result of the partnership with Ericsson M-Commerce Interconnect for Grundfos systems,” said Michael Joseph, director of Mobile Money for Vodafone.

“Breaking down the walls that exist in the mobile money ecosystem represents a significant leap forward in creating much-needed connections between wallet providers and enterprises,” said Peter Heuman, head of mobile financial services for Ericsson. “When digital payments become pervasive in cash-based societies, new opportunities that were previously unimaginable become reality.”

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