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A philanthropic spirit encompassed with an entrepreneurial mind, I am passionate about technology and the things technology can help people to achieve.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Why Zimbabwe Needs BlackBerry Service...!!!

I have been following news about Econet Wireless' attempt at bringing the BlackBerry Internet Service (BIS) to Zimbabwe for some time now. My own investigations as far back as 8 months show that the infrastructure has been put in place. In June 2011 I read an article in the Herald that PORTRAZ had jumped into the fray. Stopping Econet Wireless from continuing with the service or preparing for launch. I had hitherto waited to see if PORTRAZ can come up with something, maybe a license for the service. More than 6 months down the line there is no news about a license. At the heart of PORTRAZ's fears is a political hand with the following players:

Central Intelligence Organization

The Zimbabwe spy agency prides itself on nothing else apart from being a terror squad serving ZANUPF. Outside of Zimbabwe nothing has been done by CIO to advance the cause of Zimbabwe or its citizens. A normal day's work for the spooks I imagine is adding friends on Facebook, writing comments on Newzimbabwe.com defending ZANUPF or bashing the opposition parties. Some I am sure are dedicated to reading flagged emails flowing in and out of Zimbabwe.

My prediction is that if BlackBerry Service is launched in Zimbabwe, most opposition & business people will jump onto it because of the encryption offered. Despite having a different appeal to the spy agency both handle information that can result in a lot of damage if it lands in the wrong hands. For the opposition it will be a safe heaven and a vital link with members in and outside of Zimbabwe. Government departments like ZIMRA can also improve efficiency of service delivery with such a service. Zimbabwe has much to gain/save from this technology and if PORTRAZ carry out a survey they will see the positive far outweigh the negative. But when fear is the guide then the outlook is blinkered.

Zimbabwe Tech Sector: Dinosaur Age???

The other day I was trying to access one of the mobile network service providers in Zimbabwe to have a SIM card registered, this being 72 hours after the initial attempt to register had been done. I realized how much Zimbabwe is lagging behind in terms of technological advancement. It is shocking that to register a SIM card takes even more than a day. If the mobile providers have access to their own network what stops them from completing the registration at one go? In South Africa all you need is proof of residential address and ID document then within 5 minutes you are registered. Is Zimbabwe failing to provide such a service? More so if the registration takes place at one of the mobile operator's offices.

With that in mind I did a cursory look at the service providers' websites, my first stop was Econet Wireless, there was nothing fancy, it resembled a website for a very simple company. The services I would have expected to see being offered are:

  • Online portal to access one's mobile phone account for itemized billing, call history, recharge history.
  • A free email service that can be set-up on a user's phone and accessed on the site.
  • Cellphone packages for handsets, broadband services.
  • Free SMS service within network.
  • A forum for users to interact, post problems and provide solutions.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Zahara - My Guitar (Lyrics)

Another bird has grown
another part of each of us is gone, yeah
Another right has been wronged
But we go on until, until
The words of each of us are all too real
till I am not able to feel how you feel
And I cannot say how long it will take for you to heal

But I believe you healed, you healed, you healed,
I believe you healed, you will, you will
someday your broken heart will mend, yeah yeah
And you will find your smile again, yeah yeah
So take your time, for time is what it's gonna take
And then you awake to find there's one less tear
I believe you healed, you healed, you healed,
I believe you healed, you’ll be healed, you will be healed x3