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Reach A Hand launches app to ease access to sexual and reproductive health information

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Humphrey Nabimanya the Founder and Team Leader at Reach A Hand Uganda during the SautiPlus launch.

Humphrey Nabimanya, the Founder and Team Leader at Reach A Hand Uganda at the SautiPlus launch.

By Our Reporter

Reach A Hand, Uganda (RAHU) has launched a mobile application which is specially designed to allow easy and convenient access to information about sexual and reproductive health & rights.

Dubbed “SAUTI plus”, the app which is available for download on the Google Play store seeks to help young people understand and safely exercise their Reproductive Health Rights. It provides a safe space where young people can ask and have questions about their sexual reproductive health answered.

Speaking at the launch of the app, Humphrey Nabimanya the RAHU Founder and Team Leader, said the application is an innovative milestone in the organization’s continuous effort to find effective ways of communicating with young people.

“We are always innovating and finding new ways to reach young people. The SAUTIplus application will go a long way in helping us achieve this. It is an innovative one stop mobile app for young people to receive information on Sexual Reproductive Health, livelihood, entrepreneurship and other opportunities in a language that they understand.” said Mr Nabimanya.

“The information on it is in various forms such as 60 second educative videos, street casts, blogs and podcasts. There is also a tab for a counsellor to offer solutions to the challenges of the young people.” He further explained.

The application also provides referrals to youth friendly health service centres reducing the stigma associated with young people and sexual reproductive focused health visits. 

At the same event, RAHU also launched the new season of MTV Shuga Down South which is a series that uses sexual-health messaging with gripping storylines exploring the issues of sexual relationships between young people against a backdrop of continuing HIV infections.

The youth-focused series fosters discussions around the issues of unplanned pregnancy and HIV/AIDS on the continent and other youth centered issues such as abusive relationships, sexual assault and so much more.

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Local Business

MTN Uganda unveils new free messaging platform for customers

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ayoba

By Our Reporter

MTN Uganda, in partnership with SIMFY AFRICA, has launched a messaging platform called ‘ayoba’ that will enable customers to access more affordable communication.

ayoba is an instant messaging app available for now for Android devices and soon for iOS and works with any network. What makes it different from other messaging apps is that you can still chat (app to SMS and SMS to app) with anyone regardless of whether they have the ayoba app or not. MTN customers can reply to these messages on SMS even when they don’t have the app.

According to Wim Vanhelleputte, MTN Uganda’s Chief Executive Officer, this innovation underscores MTN’s leadership ambitions in innovation as it helps Africa claim its place in the IM evolution.

“We are keen to see Africa actively participate in the global digital revolution that is now being further accelerated by the Covid-19 situation. Innovation and the connectivity that goes with it, are particularly key to our digital proposition. They are both crucial in our contribution to the social and economic transformation of our country,” said Wim Vanhelleputte.

“ayoba is not just a new platform for people to chat with each other, it is a one of a kind digital platform that elevates the concept of instant messaging to a whole new level of instant and integrated connecting,” he added.

With the app, you can also securely send and receive text messages, voice messages, videos, images, audio and other files with any of your contacts, using your mobile internet connection. MTN customers will however not need any data (MBs) to use the service. They can use it free of charge up to 1GB of data, every month.

Speaking about this partnership, David Gilarranz CEO of SIMFY AFRICA, “We are delighted to partner with MTN in Uganda and to offer its customers the ability to use the app with no data costs. In the coming weeks, our app will surely become a super app as we will be adding more features, like mobile money and music, as well as allowing other apps to co-exist in ayoba. We would like to take this opportunity to thank MTN Uganda for trusting our journey.”

ayoba is a Pan African messaging platform, built by Africans for Africans. It is available in several African languages, such as Swahili, Luganda, Hausa, isiXhosa, and Yoruba.

It has end-to-end encryption to keep users’ data safe and ensure their privacy as they chat with their contacts regardless of their device or network. ayoba also has channels on sports, fashion, cooking, health, and games.

In addition to texting, customers can also initiate voice calls with their contacts, from within the ayoba app. The call will be charged as a standard voice call using the customers’ available airtime or minutes.

The app is available for download on Google Play store.



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Local Business

Building the 5G future on an LTE foundation

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By Staff Writer

The latest report from GSA shows, by the end of May 2020, 386 operators globally had announced they were investing in 5G, , among which 81 operators in 42 countries/territories  launched 5G commercial services, including the most recent MTN 5G launch in South Africa.

5G, the fifth generation of mobile networks, will enable enhanced mobile broadband, mission-critical communications, and massive Internet of Things (IoT) communications between equipment.

However, today the immediate need is for online, digital communications, which can easily be provided by 4G or LTE networks.

The good news is that LTE is also the foundation for the revolutionary move to 5G.

Narrowing the digital divide and empowering more of the world’s people with online connectivity is key to overcoming poverty and attaining a sustainable future. This will require constantly expanding LTE (4G) mobile broadband coverage and adoption.

Living and working online is becoming acknowledged as a human right. Sadly, billions of people remain excluded from the opportunities of the online economy, according to Emmanuel Coelho Alves, Senior Marketing Director at Huawei. 

“There is a need to redouble our effort for more digital transmission and inclusion to support United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and bring the excluded 3.9 billion of world’s population online,” he said, “It won’t be easy, but with cross-sector efforts from government and partners in the private sector, academia and civil society … we can achieve that.”

Alves was speaking at the recent online LTE Summit 2020 held by the Global System for Mobile Communications (GSMA).

Alves said that there had been progress in expanding global mobile broadband coverage, with almost 66% of areas now covered. Of these, 90% had access to high-quality networks such as 3G and 4G.

Around 80% of the world’s population now has mobile coverage, according to the latest GSMA report. Of these, more than 50% of connections are already on 4G.

In Sub-Saharan Africa, there are 456 million unique mobile subscribers, representing 44% of people, with this proportion expected to grow to 50% by 2025.

The GSMA report predicts that Africa will be the fastest-growing global region, with a compound annual growth rate of 4.6%. However, mobile broadband subscriber numbers remain significantly lower, with 239 million subscribers and a penetration rate of just 23%.

Bringing Africa’s people into the mobile economy will require ongoing expansion of mobile broadband services such as 4G, with penetration expected to reach 39% by 2025.

“4G provides an extremely good asset when you go later to 5G,” said Alves. “4G has been deployed widely in the past years. 4G is the capacity layer in city, leveraging massive MIMO (multiple-input and multiple-output) in hot spots with significant traffic.”

By applying a standard known as ENDC (E-UTRAN New Radio – Dual Connectivity), network operators are able to use both 4G and 5G schedulers together. 

It is also possible to use a technology known as DSS (dynamic spectrum sharing) to allow for real-time allocation of spectrum resources between 4G and 5G, depending on network traffic. This can be achieved with millisecond accuracy.

“Currently, 4G is the main mobile broadband layer, and what is replacing 3G,” said Alves. “But on top of this, 4G has flexible capabilities that allow 4G and 5G to work together from the network level.

Industry leaders believe that in the medium term, 4G will be the layer of choice for global mobile communications, while 5G will mainly be used in more industrial communications.

However, 4G networks already have the capabilities to guarantee an optimal user experience for 5G users, including services such as virtual reality, augmented reality, and cloud gaming.

It thus makes sense for national networks to invest in 4G to secure future growth opportunities, while already supporting leading-edge 5G capabilities.

Mohamed Madkour, VP of global wireless networks marketing and solutions at Huawei, said at the AfricaCom 2019 conference in Cape Town last year, that “all investment in expanding 4G and organising site assets will reduce the amount of money needed to switch on 5G in the near future. Every rand spent on 4G is thus a rand invested in 5G.”

Whether seen from a network operator or a policy perspective, 4G is thus not simply an interim step towards 5G. The 4G foundation already heralds the arrival of our 5G future.

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Local Business

Itel Mobile launches Two Power Series, the itel P36 and P36 PRO LTE.

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By Staff Writer

itel Mobile, Africa’s leading consumer-centric smartphone brand, has introduced cutting edge additions to its flagship power series; itel P36 and P36 Pro LTE.

The P36 series consolidates the smartphone for everyone brand investments in mobile communication offerings that are budget-friendly, durable, and reliable.

With itel P36 series, itel sets a new innovation and growth record in her quest to rank among the top-three mobile brands globally.

The series advances the legacy of long-lasting battery performance with a 72-hour battery life and internet connectivity upgrades.

Through a detailed understanding of the consumer, the brand has satisfied mobile communication needs and earned significant recognition over the years. In 2019, the International Data Corporation (IDC) ranked itel Mobile as one of the top 4 smartphone players in the Middle East and Africa. It is also the global no. 1 feature phone player according to another 2019 report from the IDC.

The Superfast Advantage
Enabled by a 5000mAh battery, the series come with a 5V, 2A, 10W fast charge feature. This means 10 minutes charging gives the user 1 hour for phone calls. To get the series to full charge, it takes just 3 hours and 25 minutes- two times up from the 7 hours, 50 minutes obtainable on the regular 5000mAh battery. And the battery can last 72 hours

The series has an impressive 6.5” HD+ Waterproof Fullscreen display and 8.6mm slim body design set-up. Also, itel P36 and P36 Pro LTE sport dual security – face unlock and a multi-functional fingerprint sensor to protect and guarantee privacy for users. 

“The introduction of itel P36 and P36 Pro LTE affirms itel Mobile’s sustained push towards innovative and stylish smartphone offerings at a budget-friendly price. It’s also about value creation for the consumer with major improvement on features and specifications that surpass what is obtainable in the market. The brand is keen on sustaining this momentum for the ultimate goal of satisfying our consumers.” said Lindah Nakityo Kasasa, itel Digital Marketing & Communications Executive, Uganda.

First of Its Kind
Sustaining a well-established culture of providing innovative mobile communications offerings to everyone, the itel P36 Pro LTE is fitted with 4G LTE, the first of its kind on the series. It’s a premium offering that delivers superfast internet connection without buffers. It’s 8 times faster than the itel P33 Plus launched last year. This amazing speed ensures fast uploads, downloads, and smooth play of HD videos.  

With itel P36 series, itel sets a new innovation and growth record in her quest to rank among the top-three mobile brands globally.

The itel P36 and P36 Pro LTE are available from June 13th, 2020 in all itel Mobile branded outlets nationwide. 

About itel

Established in 2007, itel is an entry-level and reliable mobile phone brand for everyone. Adopting “Join. Enjoy” as its brand philosophy, itel’s mission is to provide budget-friendly mobile communications technology to everyone. It democratizes technology by giving entry to technology and connectedness to consumers without prior access to it, allowing them to get closer and benefit from their social connections. After more than 10 years’ development, itel has expanded its presence in around 40 emerging markets globally. itel has a product portfolio of smartphones, tablets, and feature phones and in 2017, it achieved a landmark sale of more than 77 million devices globally. African Business, an authoritative business magazine in Britain, has ranked itel 16th in the 2017/2018 TOP 100 MOST-ADMIRED BRANDS IN AFRICA ranking. For more information, please visit: http://www.itel-mobile.com/itel/

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Specials/Features

6 Ways to easily access your NSSF account on your phone or computer

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NSSF Go App

You can access NSSF services anywhere, anytime on your mobile phone or computer.

By Our Reporter

Gone are the days when you had to first visit NSSF offices to access their services. NSSF services are now available at your fingertips.

The Fund, over the years, has introduced different platforms to improve their service delivery, and enable members to access NSSF services in an easy and convenient way from anywhere.

Whether you want to register, update your details, or just check your NSSF balance, you can now easily do so using your mobile phone or computer.

The Fund offers a wide range of e-channels that are convenient, user friendly and easy to navigate.

These channels include:

1. NSSFGO App

The NSSFGo app is a fast and convenient way to monitor your account. Through the app, you can view your current balance, check your salary growth rate, make voluntary contributions, know how much of your salary you contribute to NSSF, project retirement payout, see employment history, and see e-statements, claim for your age benefit and so much more. You can also register to become a member of the Fund using the app.

Download the NSSFGo App by clicking here if you’re an Android user or click here if you are an iPhone user , you can also search for “NSSFGo” on both stores.

2. NSSF Web App

The fund also provides the option of experiencing the app functionality without necessarily downloading it.

Access NSSF services on your mobile phone, desktop or laptop by visiting the NSSFGo website.

Log into the web app with your registered phone number or email to access your account and all the features the mobile app provides with the same look and feel.

3. NSSF Corporate Website

You can also easily access NSSF services from the comfort of your office or home via their website. The website has a self-service section where members can see e-statements, make NSSF payments and also leave feedback among others.

It is also the primary online information portal for the Fund where you will find the latest updates, career opportunities, annual reports, to mention but a few.

4. SMS

Can’t connect to the internet? No problem. Access NSSF services using any mobile phone, whether a feature phone or smart phone, by simply sending a text message to 6773.

1. For balance inquiry, send BAL to 6773
2. For mini statement, send MINI to 6773
3. For benefits claim status, send CLAIM to 6773

5. USSD

You can also register yourself for NSSF using your feature phone or access a mini statement and balance using the USSD option. The feature will work on a kabiriti or feature phone or smartphone.

Step 1: Dial *254# and choose your preferred language
Step 2: Select register member and then register self
Step 3: Enter your national ID number (NIN)
Step 4: You will get an SMS with your NSSF number.

6. Toll Free Line

If self-service is not your thing or you prefer speaking to a customer service agent, NSSF offers a toll-free line 0800286773 for any inquiries and requests. You can also contact customer support via WhatsApp on 0784259713 and the support team will reach out to resolve any challenges you might have.



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