The Chief Executive Officers the MTN Group, KaiOS Technologies Inc., China Mobile Communications Group Company Limited and Unisoc have announced a partnership to launch the world’s first 3G smart feature phone in Africa, powered by KaiOS.
The new product allows customer to upgrade from a feature phone with only voice and text capabilities, to a fully connected handset with fast, 3G internet.
Through the efforts of all parties, the product will help convert 2G users to 3G, allowing people to enjoy high-speed mobile networks. The new smart market feature phone is powered by the Unisoc smart chipset with up to 256MB RAM.
Among the features of the new smart phone are 2.4’ screen, 256MB/512MB RAM/ROM, a 2000MAH battery, and and space for dual sim. It will be available starting from the first quarter of 2019.
Rob Shuter, Group President and CEO of MTN, said, “As MTN, we are proud to be part of this partnership that supports our ambitions to deepen digital inclusion in our markets. This initiative contributes to the achievement of one of our key goals to provide affordable data enabled handsets to our customers, and by so doing, remove some of the barriers to mobile internet adoption in Africa.
Sebastien Codeville, the CEO of KaiOS technologies said: “With 834 million people still unconnected to the internet in Africa, the launch with MTN, UNISOC and China Mobile stand to have a significant impact on communities across the continent”, noting that the partnership would see to bridging the digital divide on the continent.
However the new product will retail between $20-$25.
Li Huidi, Executive Vice President of China Mobile Communications Group Co., Ltd, said, “As the largest Telecom Operator in China, we have made fruitful attempts at rapidly promoting business development through device customization. We hope to share our experiences in this regard with international operator partners, and help them expand market presence through device customization, thus delivering the dividend of reliable mobile networks to more users.”
With customized solutions and excellent services, they will create a rich and diversified mobile ecosystem for Africa that will enable more than one billion African consumers to connect intelligently.