Orange to accelerate its multi-service operator strategy in Africa

5348551307 7952b8a3ed zOnline education will make it possible to train the millions of professionals the continent needs for its development. (Image source: IICD/Flickr)Orange, a French telecommunications company, will accelerate its multi-service operator strategy in Africa with innovations to democratise access to smartphones, promote e-education and support the start-up ecosystem

Democratise access to digital

Africa has taken a technological step by switching directly to mobile phones. The prospects for the smartphone market continue to see exponential growth. It is estimated that at least 660 million Africans (compared to 336 million in 2016) will be equipped with a smartphone by 2020.

This breakthrough can be explained by several factors, mainly due to the fact that Orange is fully mobile: it has established mobile payment services (via the Orange Money service), it continues to invest in mobile Internet coverage (14 Orange countries with 4G) and offers affordable prices to make it accessible to all.

Orange continues to innovate by partnering with KaiOS Technologies to democratise access to digital services in Africa.

In 2019, Orange customers in Africa will have access to a new category of smart feature phones with KaiOS, the operating system from KaiOS Technologies that creates an emerging ecosystem of digital products and services at an affordable price.

In addition, customers will be able to use Google’s digital assistant in French, English and Arabic to help overcome language and literacy challenges.

The first product to be launch will be a 3G smart feature phone, followed by a 4G version later next year. The new phones will provide access to popular apps like Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Google Search, Google Maps and the Google Assistant.

High-quality online lessons for all, everywhere

Of all the digital revolutions, e-learning is one of the most transformative for Africa. Online education will make it possible to train the millions of professionals the continent needs to take charge of its development.

Through its “African Digital School” programme, Orange aims to mobilise its infrastructure, access and expertise to help Africa rise to the challenge of training young people, especially in digital growth sectors.

The first partners in this programme are major French institutions such as the CNED and the University Institutes of Technology, as well as the startup OpenClassrooms for IT lessons.

Orange has announced a new partnership with the Virtual University of Tunis, the world pioneer in online education, which has been offering digital training to all Tunisian students for over a decade.

The partnership aims to support access to their courses and training in the African countries within Orange’s footprint. A similar partnership will be signed in December with the Virtual University of Senegal, another leading provider of online training in Africa.

Identify, support and guide African startups

Orange will award its “Orange Social Entrepreneur Prize in Africa and the Middle East” at the AfricaCom Awards 2018.

This competition aims to reward the best projects of African start-ups that contribute to improving the living conditions of local people through digital activities, for example in the fields of education, health, agriculture, mobile payments or sustainable development.

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