Increasing Momentum in Tanzanian Digital Landscape Boosts Sales of Smart Kitochi
Cape Town, <13 November 2019> –KaiOS Technologies, maker of the leading mobile operating system for smart feature phones, together with Vodacom, Azumi and MediaTek announced partnership in Tanzania, launching the first affordable smart feature phone, Smart Kitochi.
This collaboration marks a major milestone for the African market, as it’s the first time all four mobile powerhouses have come together on a project with the goal of eliminating the digital divide for the billions of Africans still disconnected.
The Smart Kitochi, launched by Vodacom Tanzania PLC, Tanzania’s leading cellular network company, is powered by KaiOS, starting at a discounted price of TZS 48,000 ($20 USD). The device comes with a special offer, which includes a monthly bundle of 4GB data, 100 mins talk time and 500 SMS for the first 6 months.
The Smart Kitochi also provides access to popular apps such as WhatsApp, Google Assistant, Facebook, YouTube, and many other unique native content, giving more Tanzanians access to a previously inaccessible digital society, via the KaiStore. The Smart Kitochi runs on Mediatek’s highly integrated chipset platforms, enabling 3G and 4G connectivity and other smartphone-like features such as Wi-Fi, GPS, and boasts a 1400mAh battery, which powers up to 6 hours of talk time.
Since hitting the shelves on November 1st, the Smart Kitochi has been popular among Tanzanian people, and the sales for the smart feature phone have surpassed expectations within two weeks of the launch, so volumes have been ramped up to meet the demands.
“We launched in the African market a year ago with a focus on ensuring first-time mobile users have access to affordable solutions, and we’re excited to expand these efforts into Tanzania alongside Vodacom, Azumi and MediaTek”, said Sebastien Codeville, CEO of KaiOS Technologies. “The digital divide is very prevalent across Africa, but we know devices like the Smart Kitochi, will positively impact people’s lives. We’re also focused on building a content ecosystem through our developer portal and supporting African developers, through developer workshops across the continent. These efforts ensure content and services are valuable and relevant to each individual market.”
“Given this is the first device of its kind in Tanzania, it’s very exciting to see that people are already embracing the product with open arms, and are enthusiastically transitioning to the digital world”, said Sylvester Moyo, Executive Head of Terminals of Vodacom International Business. “With the competitive price and special data bundle offer, we anticipate market adoption will gain further momentum as the acceptance of the product features increases. This launch forms part of our bigger strategy to contribute towards positive economic development through bridging the digital divide.”
“We’re particularly encouraged by this newly forged partnership because together we’re able to guarantee African users a seamless mobile content experience,” said Tayshira Khan, Head of Azumi Mobile Africa. “The Smart Kitochi is removing barriers to mobile adoption, and eliminating the digital divide in Tanzania, a country heavily impacted by its negative effects.”
“Not only does this partnership demonstrate KaiOS’ support for MediaTek’s high performance chipsets, but also shows our commitment to developing economic and quality mobile solutions to emerging markets”, said Rami Osman, Director of Corporate Sales and Marketing for MEA of MediaTek. “This device in specific is the first step in strengthening the Smart Feature Phone proposition in East Africa. Following this launch we will continue to support Vodacom users across its footprint to unlock the potential of connecting to internet and communicating with each other using very affordable devices.”
KaiOS is a light operating system, which enables a new category of affordable smart feature phones that require limited memory, while still offering a rich user experience. It supports 3G + 4G/LTE, Wi-Fi, GPS and Hotspot. KaiOS-enabled phones come with popular apps and services like WhatsApp, Google Assistant, Facebook, YouTube, and Google Maps, as well as a store for apps called the KaiStore with over two hundred essential apps and counting, from global and local content providers. It is now the third largest mobile operating system worldwide, running on over 100 million devices shipped across Europe, Africa, Asia and Americas.
About KaiOS Technologies
KaiOS Technologies powers an ecosystem of affordable digital products and services, and exists to empower people around the world through technology. Its flagship product, KaiOS, is the leading mobile operating system for smart feature phones with more than 100 million devices shipped in over 100 countries. Kai’s mission is to open up new possibilities for individuals, organizations, and societies by bringing mobile connectivity to the billions of people without internet in emerging markets, as well as providing those in established markets with an alternative to smartphones. KaiOS is based on HTML5 and other open web technologies. Devices running on the platform require limited memory, while still offering a rich user experience through access to apps like Google Assistant, YouTube, Facebook, Google Maps, and Twitter.
Vodacom Tanzania PLC is the leading mobile communication service provider with the fastest data network in the country. We provide communication services to over 14 million subscribers. Vodacom Tanzania and its subsidiary companies are part of the Vodacom Group registered in South Africa, which is in turn owned by Vodacom Group Plc of the United Kingdom. It has been registered in the Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange (DSE) with registration number ISIN: TZ1886102715 Stock name: VODA. For further information, please visit our website: www.vodacom.co.tz
About MediaTek Inc.
MediaTek Incorporated (TWSE: 2454) is a global fabless semiconductor company that enables 1.5 billion connected devices a year. We are a market leader in developing innovative systems-on-chip (SoC) for mobile device, home entertainment, connectivity and IoT products. Our dedication to innovation has positioned us as a driving market force in several key technology areas, including highly power-efficient mobile technologies and advanced multimedia solutions across a broad range of products such as smartphones, tablets, digital televisions, OTT boxes, wearables and automotive solutions. MediaTek empowers and inspires people to expand their horizons and more easily achieve their goals through smart technology. We call this idea Everyday Genius and it drives everything we do. Visit www.mediatek.com for more information.
About Azumi Mobile
Azumi Mobile is a leading global mobile phone company providing a wide range of handsets to customers including a variety of feature phones and smartphones.
Originating in South America with a large customer base, it has expanded to Africa where the local headquarters resides in Johannesburg. Azumi Mobile Africa has distribution of devices into 11 countries in Africa and growing. For more information, please visit www.azumi-mobile.com.
KaiOS Media Contact
Vodacom Media Contact
MediaTek Media Contact
+27 82 068 6355
Azumi Media Contact
+27 84 777 6613