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 Friday, June 13, 2008

APA-London (United Kingdom) Africa now has 300 million mobile phone subscribers with a penetration rate fast approaching 30 percent, according to the latest marketers’ assessment unveiled on Thursday in London.

As many prefer pay-as-you-go use, mobile phones are attached to bikes and boats and taken to where the business is.

In Uganda these bikes, known locally as boda bodas, are hooked up with spare batteries and desktop mobile devices to create what are affectionately known as ’Bodafones’.

Some mobile phone functions can be more useful in Africa than in Western countries, such as the ability to work as a torch.

Charging phones is more of a problem but the arrival of cheap solar panels should help solve that.

In South Africa, the phone model “Call Me” allows Vodacom subscribers to send up to five messages per day, free of charge, requesting a call back from the receiver.

Services such as these have emerged in response to consumer behaviour, users who would have previously “flashed” the person they wished to speak to by ringing their phone once and hanging up.

“Call Me” formalizes the process, helps minimizes network traffic through fewer prematurely disconnected calls.

Most parents with teenagers are probably familiar with the idea.

Source: Cellular News.