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MTN, TD Mobile Partner to Unveil Freetel ICE 2 Android Smartphone

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(L-r): Dr. Ernest Ndukwe, former EVC of NCC; Mrs. Gozy Ijogun, managing director, TD Mobile; Leo Stan-Ekeh, chairman of Zinox Group and representative of the key partners, during the launch of ICE 2 in Lagos.

MTN, telecoms giant and TD Mobile, Sub-Saharan Africa’s biggest mobile device distributor, have officially unveiled the much-anticipated Android smartphone, FreetelICE 2 at an event held Thursday in Lagos.

Designed for the Nigerian market, the ICE 2 smartphone is one of many devices from the stable of Freetel, Japan’s largest selling smart phone brand in open market.

The Device
ICE 2 is designed in the state-of-the-art design center in Tokyo, Japan while manufacturing is overseen by Japanese engineers with over 40 years of experience. In addition, the device is Google GMS certified, confirmation that it meets Google’s performance requirements and properly runs the Google Apps. 

Book lovers will also be thrilled by the ICE 2 which comes pre-loaded with Worldreader’s free e-library of 50,000 e-books, which enables Nigerians to read their favourite book at no cost.

The smartphone will sell for about N13,000 ($35), an attractive price-point that is expected to deepen the pace of smartphone penetration in the country.

Powered by Google’s most recent Android operating system – Android 7.0, the revolutionary ICE 2 comes fully equipped with the latest software and security updates including Google Play Protect: a newly-developed software which continuously works to keep one’s device, data and apps safe. In addition, the smartphone is pre-loaded with MTN’s latest apps including MTN Music Plus.

Massive incentives await the first 200 subscribers to get the Freetel ICE 2. In addition, all customers who buy the device will also enjoy double data bonus on every data bundle they buy for three months, courtesy of MTN.

According to Rahul De, MTN’s chief marketing officer, “We are excited by this partnership because our focus over the years has been on connecting millions of Nigerians to each other and the world, thus expanding access to information, entertainment and endless opportunities.

“The affordable and innovative ICE 2 takes us further along this journey, allowing more Nigerians make the transition to smartphones.”

Also speaking at the event, Mrs. Gozy Ijogun, managing director, TD Mobile, disclosed that the launch of the FreetelICE 2 is a fitting testimony to the company’s landmark strides in making ICT products and devices accessible, affordable and usable across Africa.

“Since inception, TD Mobile has been the leading driver of smart devices penetration in the West African sub-region. The launch of the FreetelICE 2 resonates with our mission of spear-heading a technology revolution in Africa and further shows why we have remained in the forefront of bringing the best and latest technology products to the sub-region. Through the strategic partnerships with our massive network of operators, dealers and retailers, we are sure to see the ICE 2 Android smartphone in the hands of millions of Nigerians in no time,” she enthused.

On its part, Adama Diallo, Google’s head of Nigeria for Android Partnerships, emphasized: “We have been truly impressed by the quality of the Freetel ICE 2 at this price point. We are excited to continue working with ecosystem partners like Freetel, TD & MTN to offer Android devices at every price point and connect more Nigerians to the internet.”

A subsidiary of ICT distribution power-house Technology Distributions Ltd. (TD Africa), TD Mobile will add the ICE 2 smartphone to a growing list of devices from international brands represented in line with its status as the biggest mobile devices distributor in the West African sub-region.

Considering TD Mobile’s wide reach and unmatched presence in major Nigerian cities and other West African capitals; the company will deploy its huge distribution capacity in taking the device to every action station in the metropolis as well as every nook and cranny in the hinterlands.

The ICE 2 goes on sale nationwide this September at all major online and offline retail stores including MTN’s retail outlets.

Nigeria CommunicationsWeek believes that technology makes life more exciting and helps improve the lives of people around Nigeria and indeed the world. So since 2007, we have devoted our energy to independent reportage of technology and how they affect lives.

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NCC: US Delegation‎ Visits Commission, Lauds Regulatory Strides

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(L-R): Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, Executive Vice Chairman, NCC; Rachel Atwood Mendiola, Manager, U.S Embassy; Engr. Ubale Ahmed Maska, Executive Commissioner, Technical Services, NCC; Mudari Aliyu Dura

 

Nigerian Communications Commission NCC, Thursday, received a delegation from the United States Embassy in Abuja,

The team, led by Rachel Atwood Mendiola, Fraud Prevention Manager, United States Embassy, was received by the Commission’s Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive, Prof. Umar Danbatta and other top Management staff of the Commission.

The delegation was at the Nigerian Communications Commission’s Head Office to gain insight into the workings of the Commission and to commend NCC’s Management for its regulatory strides in sustaining the growth of the telecommunication industry in Nigeria.

 

Prof.Danbatta while addressing the delegation, recalled to the admiration of his guests some of the Commission’s efforts in ensuring effective regulation of the telecoms sector and providing an enabling environment for telecoms services to flourish, exponentially attributing the Commission’s successes to the faith reposed on it by the consumers and their unflinching loyalty.

 

And that is, the reason the Commission commits itself irrevocably to protecting the interest of consumers and all stakeholders in the industry.

He told his guests that, “NCC continues to be a strategic member and active participant in the activities of many bodies including the International Telecommunications Union (ITU), African Telecommunications Union (ATU), and the West Africa Telecommunication Regulators Assembly (WATRA).”

To demonstrate the resilience of the telecommunication sector even in the face of challenging economic climate, Danbatta stayed that the sector contributed about 9.5% to Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product in the second quarter of 2017 and credited the Nigerian telecom consumers with the successes recorded because of their patronage.

The EVC/CEO of NCC said it is the faith the consumers have demonstrated in the sector that made the Management of the Commission to declare the 2017 as the Year of the Telecom Consumer to celebrate the primacy of the consumer and to rededicate itself to addressing the challenges of the consumer.

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NCC Ignores Telcos, Says No to OTT Regulation

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Prof Umar Garuba Danbatta, NCC’s executive vice chairman

Nigerian Communications Commission [NCC] has said it can’t regulate Over The Top Technology [OTT] for now, refusing the telecom operators’ call that the technology be regulated in the country.

 

OTT operators are firms like Facebook, WhatsApp, 2go, Instagram and others who ride on social media to reach their audience.

 

Prof Umar Garuba Danbatta, NCC’s executive vice chairman disclosed this Thursday when a delegation from the United States [US] embassy paid a working visit to the commission’s headquarters in Abuja.

 

‘’ The operators are saying we should do something about the OTT. That the OTT is riding on their infrastructure to make money and all other. But it will be very difficult to regulate OTT,” Prof Danbatta said.

 

According to him, though NCC understands the operators’ plight ‘’ the truth is that there is nothing we can do for now’’.

 

The NCC EVC, said he had interacted with head of telecom industry’s regulatory agencies in US and some other advanced economies and he was indirectly told that OTT couldn’t be regulated for now.

 

He also said NCC couldn’t regulate content in the social media as this falls within the jurisdiction of its sister regulatory agency, the National Broadcasting Commission [NBC].

 

He also told the US embassy delegation which was led by Rachael Atwood Mendiola to convince US investors to come and invest in Nigeria’s telecom industry as this is the best time to stake their money in the country.

 

‘’We want investors to come and invest in telecoms infrastructure across the country. I believe they will make their money in no time. Our investment environment is becoming friendlier, our security has improved greatly and the Federal Government had promised some number of incentives for would-be investors.

 

‘’ Plus we still have access gap. We still have about 200 locations across the country yet to have telecom services. This has cut off about 40million people, including people in my local government in Kano. So, investors can come in and take this opportunities.’’, he said.

 

But he said the NCC was working to see the access gaps blocked in the next two years.

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Nigeria to Increase Mobile Broadband Subscriptions to 50% by 2020

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NCC headquarters, Abuja, Nigeria

By peter oluka

Nigeria has disclosed plans to increasing the current coverage of the active mobile broadband subscription per 100 from 20.95 per cent to 50 per cent by 2020.

This was disclosed by Mr Bolaji Akinremi, minister plenipotentiary, Permanent Mission of Nigeria to the UN, while delivering Nigeria’s statement on ‘Information and Communications Technologies for Development’ at the UN General Assembly’s debate in New York.

Active mobile broadband subscription is the number of subscriptions to mobile cellular networks with access to data communications – like the Internet – at broadband downstream speeds of 256 kilobit per second.

Nigeria’s mobile broadband subscriptions per 100 inhabitants increased from 1.0 inhabitant in 2012 to 11.7 inhabitants in 2016.

Akinremi said Nigeria recognised the direct impact of Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) on the wellbeing of Nigerians.

“The Government of Nigeria recognises the reality that Information and Communications Technologies has direct impact on the nation’s ability to improve the economic wellbeing of its people.

“The Government of Nigeria is committed to facilitating universal availability and cost-effective access to communications infrastructure and promoting utilisation of ICT in all spheres of life.

“Nigeria is committed to achieving cutting-edge global ICT standards, encourage rapid ICT penetration among all socio-economic levels.

“The Government of Nigeria is also committed to increasing the current coverage of the active mobile broadband subscription per 100 from 20.95 per cent to 50 per cent by 2020.

“Nigeria is committed to promoting and encouraging local production of ICT hard and software so as to reduce import dependence and generate foreign exchange by exporting to the regional and continental markets”.

He said that involving developing countries in the ICT revolution would bridge the wide gap of access to information among people.

According to him, if the information gap keeps widening, the possibility of attaining sustainable development by 2030 is not certain.

“It is in this vein that Nigeria further calls on Member States to consider giving Information and Communications Technologies a pride of place in the education curriculum. By so doing, they will undoubted bridge the digital divide,” Akinremi added.

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