The Computer Society of Kenya

Since 1986

Mobile commerce deals in Kenya pass Sh1 trillion mark


Friday April 13, 2018

The value of mobile commerce transactions, including those designated as Pay Bill and Buy Goods and Services, has passed the Sh1 trillion mark for the first time.

Data for the second quarter of 2017/18 from the Communications Authority of Kenya (CA), shows transactions grew to Sh1.17 trillion up from Sh714 billion in the previous quarter - an increase of 64 per cent within three months.

This is despite reduction in the number of mobile commerce transactions to 308 million compared to the previous quarter’s 352 million.

The number of transactions on Safaricom’s M-Pesa (Lipa na M-Pesa module), for example, fell despite the value of the transactions nearly doubling.


Can we regulate telecoms market without price controls?


Wednesday, April 04, 2018

Kwame Owino’s critique of the Communication Authority (CA) of Kenya’s approach to regulating the industry provokes some thinking. He argues that CA is obsessed with price controls as if it is the only tool for regulating the industry.

Specifically, he criticises the recent consultant’s report on the market analysis as laying the foundation for CA to engage in “unimaginative instruments of price controls and forced infrastructure sharing”.

Whereas this seems to be true, it begs the question: Can the telecoms market be regulated without invoking the traditional price controls?

If the answer is yes, then what are these alternative mechanisms for regulating the communications industry? This is actually an open and ongoing research area.


Confusion as evangelists, sceptics and pragmatists debate blockchain technology


Wednesday March 14, 2018

We have occasionally discussed blockchain technology in this column over the past two years, with the most recent discussion being published in January this year.

What is surprising is that the more we talk about blockchain and cryptocurrencies (cryptos), the more confusion it brings to the debate. I have identified three groups of people or positions that arise whenever this discussion crops up.

The first group is the evangelists. This group imagines that blockchain and cryptos are the solution to every problem in the world. They spread and force the gospel of blockchain and cryptos to everyone, including those not bothered to listen.


Kenya tops in phone internet traffic globally


TUESDAY, MARCH 20, 2018 

Kenya is leading globally in share of internet traffic coming from mobile phones overtaking Nigeria, which was at the top in 2017.

At 83 per cent, Kenya is now at the top, with Nigeria coming in second at 81 per cent.

This has been attributed to the country’s high level of smartphones penetration rate which recently surpassed the 40 million mobile subscriptions in 2017 and stands at 41 million (+3 per cent), with reach at 90.4 per cent of the adult population.

Other leading countries include India (79 per cent), Singapore (78 per cent), Ghana (75 per cent), Indonesia (72 per cent), South Africa (71 per cent), Thailand (69 per cent), Saudi Arabia (64 per cent), Turkey (62 per cent), China (61 per cent), UAE (61 per cent), Poland (59 per cent), Malaysia (57 per cent), and the rest of the world at 52 per cent.


Telkom to get Sh4bn for network upgrade


Monday March 05,2018

Telkom Kenya is set to receive a Sh4.1 billion ($40 million) loan from the European Investment Bank to boost infrastructure and mobile money network.

The European Investment Bank (EIB) said the loan, which is still going through appraisal, will only form part of the funding for Telkom Kenya’s Sh9.34 billion ($92 billion) network expansion project.

“The promoter [Telkom Kenya] will invest in its mobile network to improve its coverage and quality of services, especially for mobile services, and will launch an open eco-system mobile financial service product,” says EIB in a disclosure statement.


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