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2nd AfICTA Summit elevates 'Africa Together' concept to 'Fostering Smart Africa'   Ndukwe eyes the Senate 
E-friction Analysis: 'Greasing the Wheels of the Internet Economy"    Apple's Watch is not iWatch; It is Applewatch
ROAD TO SUPERFAST COMPUTER: Google set to develop Computer of the Future   Galaxy Backbone earns BSI's ISO27001:2013 Certification 

FG appoints Yusuf Kazaure as MD Galaxy Backbone

  Broadband Agenda: Minister says Local Content Tops Nigeria's focus 
ATCON appoints Belmang to manage its Celebration    ROAD TO SUPERFAST COMPUTER Google set to develop Computer of the Future
In Gitex 2014, Nigeria goes on Investor hunt   

Banjo cautions on National Licenses for Spectrum 

AFRINIC supports ATCON, Ng ICT Forum and B-width Consortium on IPV6 Training   NCC set to auction spectrum in 2.6GHz Band 
Bayelsa charts the ICT path to rapid industrial development    ITU set to confront counterfeiting of ICT products and devices 

Bayelsa on the rise to being a smart State 

  Enter: CloudShare, a layer3 solution  
Internet of Things matches on to the next stage as Thread Group emerges    Phone 4 ALL via Virtual SIMcard
Dewole Ajao reviews Inauguration of NgREN  

'Communication Jamming is illegal' - NCC 

AT MICROSOFT Satya Nadella opens up to Team   

Samsung GALAXY Apps comes to market 

Leading Technology firms form 'OIC' to promote interoperability   NCC, corporate governance and a detour on Consumer Parliament process
TELEVISION: Plasma finally gives way to UHD   Mainone's Tie-3 Data Centre coasting home to completion
Enter: THE GREEN CABLES Concept Submarine cables that will monitor disasters    PERSONALITY : The Callsign Founder called Zia Hayat
Reality of Internet of Everything   FOR THE RECORD #bringbackourgirls
Our commitment to industry development is total - Phase3 Telecom   By 2018, 52% world's population will have access to the internet - Cisco Study 
NCC set to launch Corporate Governance Code on Thursday in Lagos   NCC commences InfraCos licensing process 
NCS confirms Lead Speakers for ENUGU Conference    MTN Nigeria gets Ferdi Moolman as CFO 
Phase3 Telecom advocates Gender Equalisation for Rapid ICT Development     Omo Oaiya now WACREN's Chief Technology Officer 
MaiOne's Funke Opeke to give Academy of Engineering Dinner Speech   Boubakar Barry wins 2014 NII Service Award 
Gombe, Bayelsa, Ondo, Anambra and Katsina may soon be 'Smart City States   Broadband Council refocuses to address slow penetration 
Digital Forensic Laboratory ready for commissioning - ONSA    NCC commended for providing inter-iXPN exchanges Fibre link
Know it if you never did - All governments wiretap   PhoneDoctorService gets Open University Partnership
Google Commits $3bn to new 180 low orbit satellites   Cybersecurity Forum targets Industry Input 
RACE OF THE OPERATING SYSTEMS Samsung to roll out first Tizen powered Phones soon    Lagos tech firm floats training centre for repair of Smartphones, tablets, etc
Google complies with 'Right to remove' with conditions   Bitflux invites ISPs to partnership  for Enhanced and Cheap Access to
Wireless Broadband Services
NSA to host Cybersecurity Forum in Lagos    Unilag, Uniben Teams pulled through to the Shell Eco Marathon final race,
'The true reasons why Investors invest' - Jegede    Apple Google agree to drop suits against themselves 
NCC prohibits Jamming Devices    BitFlux to make Presentation to B/band Communication Service Providers 
ATCON re-elects Lanre Ajayi as President    #BringBackOurGirls, 2billion hits, 1.5billion tweets and re-tweets
Bitflux confirms final roll-out preparations   At The ITW - MainOne leads African Brands 
Nigeria's first fibre optic tv debuts as ipNX adds IPTV to its Service Bouquet     UN-CSTD set to discuss ICT4D
Lekki Phase 1 awaits ipNX FoS    ipNX commissions Fibre Optic Service (FoS) in VGC Estate
Abuja Economy shuts down for World Economic Forum   FCC to impose Fine against Telco for infringement on service to the deaf
2 Years of AfICTA   Court Ruling: Both Apple and Samsung are copycats of one another
STOP USING MICROSOFT INTERNET EXPLORER BROWSER   Londoners go gay as dot London Domain takes off 
NCC strengthens to enforce Compliance    Phase3 Telecom named Best Fibre Infrastructure Provider 
Illegal Operator gets a slap on the wrist    Finally, Microsoft has now acquired Nokia 
W.TEC, WITIN partner with CommTech Ministry on Technology Club for girls   Abuja to host Internet Governance Forum July 10
Google buys Drone-maker Titan Aerospace to boost Access   Message from CEO MainOne
Nigeria's low ICT rating and its amazing transformation powers   Drop Dropbox Campaign rises against Rice's appointment
US worries over Nigeria's planned local content measures   FG appoints Peter Jack as DG-NITDA
Cuba protests US sponsorship of Twitter service    



International solutions firm
rides on Phase3 Telecom infrastructure
for optimum communication

October 29, 2014 - World class solution Consultants, Messers Adam Smith International, is known to have invested in high speed network infrastructure provided by Phase3 Telecom for its critical communication needs worldwide.  

Adam Smith, as we speak, is involved in 32 different mega projects in seven West African countries, 15 in Nigeria alone, and its requirement for communication is rated so highly that network infrastructure the type which only  firms of Phase3 calibre can support. 

These projects are focused on planning for climate resilience; developing solar markets, developing harmonised tax laws; building the capacity of countries' economic management systems; promoting stability and market development; providing environmental advisory services in Nigeria, Togo, Cameroon, Ghana, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and The Gambia. 

Phase3 Telecom CEO, Mr Stanley Jegede, feels honoured that his firm  is the choice brand for Adam Smith operations to provide IP and telecommunications services for their several offices and pledged to continue to ensure they enjoy quality of service and exceptional customer experience. He pledged that 'Phase3 is uncompromising in ensuring existing and potential clients across West Africa leverage the investments it has made in its aerial fibre network to make them more successful in their business operations'.

Space Diving:
Google's Top Shot shoots into World Record 

October 25, 2014 - The story sounds very much Googlelike for its ground breaking achievement. 

Yesterday, Google's Senior Vice President Knowledge, Alan Eustace got himself into the stratosphere in a balloon filled with 991million cc's of helium that rose at .005km/sec. After about two-and-a-half hours, Eustace dissociated from the balloon and dived towards Earth from more than 40km up. The speed of his fall was faster than that of sound. At 5.5km he deployed a parachute, and within 15 minutes after cutting the cord he landed on ground safely. 

On landing, Eustace said he found it 'amazing and beautiful'. "You could see the darkness of space and you could see the layers of atmosphere, which I had never seen before." 

A similar flight by Felix Baumgartner 2012 did 38km against Alan Eustace's 41km leading to the conclusion that Eustace actually broke the former's record. 

The news really is that Eustace did all this secretly in collaboration with Paragon Space Development Corporation but without the prying eyes of the media. He had been preparing for it since 2011. Another is that Alan Eustace is 57. At that age, that is certainly a feat. Felix Baumgartner was 43 in 2012.

NCC flags on
2.6GHz Frequency Spectrum Auction

October 28, 2014 - The Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC has announced that the Information Memorandum giving details of requirements, time table and auction process for the auction of Frequency Spectrum Licenses in the 2.6GHz band has now been published on the Commissions website

Message from CEO, Mainone

October 24, 2014 - We have recently re-visited our Mission, Vision and Values here at MainOne and Customer Service Week provides us with a good opportunity to share that information with our customers. We realize that every interaction with you, our customers, is not scripted and thus we hope that in your daily interactions with us, we are staying true to our mission and values that we collectively cherish as a team. We set ourselves a new Mission to 'Deliver World Class Communications Services' and agreed a common set of values based on : Customer Focus, Respect, Integrity, Team Spirit, Excellence, Reliability and Innovative. We trust that you find these values evident in our daily activities with you, our customers and stakeholders.

Meanwhile, the buzz within MainOne and all over town is about our new Tier III data center. The building now looks like the architect's model which implies construction is almost done with interior civil works complete, exterior painting nearing completion, and external landscaping about to start. In order to welcome our customers, final touches are being placed to the interior mechanical and electrical installations which we will start testing and commissioning within the next few weeks. It is such a beehive of activity and it is heart-warming to see all our committed staff and contractors push themselves to deliver the very best data center that we can in record time.

We trust that you will visit, even if you did earlier, when the facility was still a construction site.



234Radio gets Proprietary App 

October 24, 2014 - Renowned Online Radio, 234Radio is now available on Android and iOS platforms. On your Android devices, please go to Google Play Store and find 234Radio.  

On your iPhone, iPad, Mac and other Apple devices, go to App Store and search for 234Radio. The app is also available on Amazon App Store. 

Best of Music. On Radio. Online.


Viagra: Stigmatised pill, protects the heart  

October 20, 2014 - The open access journal BMC Medicine published a research report today that Viagra apart from serving as an erectile dysfunction pill can also improve functioning of the heart in patients with a variety of cardiac conditions, with no effect on blood pressure. 

That is to say that Viagra could be used as a safe treatment for heart disease. 

The explanation goes further that Viagra was originally tested for heart problems on the basis of its vasodilatory effects. Its results as an anti-angina drug were only modest, but patients reported the unexpected side effect of improved erections. The focus of interest in this drug shifted rapidly from the heart to the bedroom. 


WHO declares Nigeria Ebola-Free 

October 20, 2014 - 42 days after the last new case of Ebola was recorded in Nigeria, twice the time required for incubation of the virus and manifestation of the decease, the World Health Organisation (WHO), declared in Abuja this morning that Nigeria is Ebola free. Mr Rui Gama Vaz speaking for WHO said it is a spectacular success story for Nigeria. 

What did Nigeria do right to fight the spread of the decease after the index patient imported Ebola into the country in July 2014? Nigeria declared an emergency spontaneously, trained local doctors immediately, managed all fear around the decease, called for international support, spread the word widely about preventive measures, managed the resultant exaggerations and abuse of information, the citizenry was mobilised with very good measure and the Minister of Health was on top of coordination of the entire management. 


Malaria Destroyer Game, MDG,
shines at WSA Awards

October 18, 2014 - Mobile Software Solutions Ltd received the World Summit Award Africa 2014 for m-Entertainment/Lifestyle category yesterday at the just concluded 2nd Inter-Ministerial Conference on Science, Technology and Innovation (STI), held in Rabat Morocco, 14-17 October 2014. 

According to Mr. Chris Uwaje, Chairman of Mobile Software Solutions Ltd who received the award, the solution - Malaria Destroyer Game (MDG) - was selected for its innovation, originality, human-health impact, International appeal and endorsements by National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), UN (UNESCO e-Learning Chair) Open Media and Centre for Values and Leadership (CVL) amongst others.  

Mobile Software Solutions Ltd is a Nigerian company established a year ago as an IT Start-up focused on e-Health solutions and especially to add verve to the campaign to shoot down Malaria Pandemic in Africa.


New Wi-Fi developed by Samsung Research 

October 18, 2014 - Samsung Electronics R&D Center said during the week that new possibilities have been opened up for the future development of Wi-Fi technology meaning that on application, innovative changes await Samsung's next-generation devices.  It is to be called the new 802.11ad standard up from 802.11ac. 

According to a posting by the Centre, 60 GHz Wi-Fi technology that enables data transmission speeds of up to 4.6 Gbps will be possible thus allowing high-speed downloads that are five times faster than the current achievable  rate of 866 Mbps. 

There are limitations though. At 60 GHz, walls and other objects become real impediments to Wi-Fi signals, so transmissions will probably be limited to devices within a radius of a few meters. This is because, as the frequency is increased, attenuation of the signal in the atmosphere occurs, meaning that increasing power levels are required to achieve the same signal strength achieved at lower frequencies. 

The transmission rates will also be limited by the internet bandwidth available to the device from which the original data is being transferred, no matter the speed of Wi-Fi transfer as, in reality, you cannot upload faster than the limitations of your internet connection.


VDT fetes Customers,
unveils new Corporate Identity

October 10, 2014 - VDT Communications Ltd will unveil a new corporate identity on October 22 at Jade Palace Chinese Cuisine, Victoria Island Lagos.

Mr David Ese, VDT's Marketing Communications Manager announced in Lagos this week that it will be an excellent platform for the Company to interact with customers and flag-off the new identity on which it will leverage to go international, full scale.

VDT is the promoter and financial backbone of the success of its associated company, Bitflux Consortium which it led to win the 2.3GHz Spectrum auction early in the year. With this, it  will provide 4G LTE Advanced, thus breaking a new frontier in high speed internet access in Nigeria.


Google's Campus spreads 

October 6, 2014 - Storming the world! That seems to be what Google is doing with Google Campus - a phenomenon of creating and recreating entrepreneurship in young people and making them change the world positively. According to the conceptors 'We build community hubs, called Campuses, where entrepreneurs come to learn, share ideas, and launch great start-ups.' 

The Tech giant just announced it will be in Spain - Campus Madrid that is - coming after London, Tel Aviv, Dublin, Warsaw, Sao Paulo, and Seoul. 

Very proud of its beginnings, Google says for a dream which began as start-up in a garage, 'supporting start-ups remains a very important part of our DNA. We continually see that when people are empowered to dream big and are empowered to take action, that entrepreneurs turn those ideas into growing companies, creating a powerful startup community, solving big problems, and supporting a thriving economy'.  

The idea started in 2012 with London and has been going round the world that is ready for it. New programs which will add to existing one when it comes up in Madrid include Campus for Moms, CampusEDU and Office Hours with Googler mentors.


Ndukwe eyes the Senate 

October 2, 2014 - Dr Ernest Ndukwe, Telecommunications engineer and Past Executive Vice-Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission, (NCC) confirmed in an email response to a CyberschuulNews questionnaire on the information that he was opting for active politics that indeed he would be running for a seat in the Senate. He seeks to contest for the Senate seat of Anambra South Senatorial zone under APGA. 

Mr Ndukwe it was, who, while serving as Chief Executive of the Nigerian Communication Commission from year 2000 and for eight years provided the leadership that changed the face of telecommunications in Nigeria. During the period, the Commission opened up the telecom industry to investment on a scale and in such a professional manner that may not be easy to match, if ever. He is at this time a Leading Consultant as Chairman Openmedia Group and corporate player in the Nigerian economy.

For his service he earned the awards of Officer of the Federal Republic, OFR, Fellowship of the Nigerian Academy of Engineering, FAEng and other honours.

The Media called him 'Mr Telecom' in appreciation.

2nd AfICTA Summit elevates the 'Africa Together' concept to 'Fostering Smart Africa'

October 1, 2014 - Taking off from the perspective of President Paul Kagame's passion for a connected Africa, there are indications that the AfICTA Summit 2014 which is scheduled for November 3 - 5, 2014 in Cairo, Egypt will examine what African decision makers are doing to make the 'smart Africa' vision a reality. 

Summit Strategy Planning Committee Chair, Mr Hossam El-gamal, says the conference will make ICT Ministers and top decision makers across Africa to share experiences on what they are doing that is working and how they arrive at such milestones. Questions will be posed on whether there are metrics to underscore the impact of transformational policies and initiatives deployed and discussion panels will also explore mechanisms for collaboration among stakeholders in the ecosystem to foster a 'smart Africa'. 

There will also be intense probe into the progress made on Smart Africa Solutions that relate to all e-application platforms such as in Governance, Learning, health, Agriculture, the broadband issue and ICT industry development generally across African countries.


Malaria Destroyer Game, 7 other Apps win African Content Award

September 23, 2014 - Mobilesoftware Ltd's Malaria Destroyer Game which was launched in Lagos in February 2014 has been named one of the winners in the African Content Award - WSA Mobile 2014. 

7 Other winners in different Categories emerged from Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Morocco, South Africa, Tunisia, and Uganda.

In a Best African m-Content 2014-Winner announcement early in the week, Peter A. Bruck, WSA Chairman told Mobilesoftware Ltd said 'It is my pleasure to herewith inform you that the African Content Award Jury selected your project as the best African mobile solution in your category. Therefore you are one of the WINNERS of the AFRICAN CONTENT AWARD 2014!  'We invite you cordially to receive your awards at the 2nd Ministerial Forum on Science, Technology and Innovation in Africa, organized by the African Development Bank, African Union, UNECA and UNESCO. The event takes place in Rabat, Morocco from Oct 14 - 17'. 

Malaria Destroyer Game, MDG, is a multi-layered series of educational mobile games designed to save lives and eradicate malaria in Africa - particularly in Nigeria. The full graphics animation tackles the challenge of 300,000 annual deaths caused by malaria in Nigeria.  

It offers the user insights into the major challenges in the eradication of mosquitoes from the environment. MDG users learn everything about how mosquitoes transmit the illness in a simple and fun way. Quizzes and learning cards enhance knowledge of malaria habitat, while users can fight mosquitoes in adventure game settings.

Mr. Chris Uwaje, Chairman Mobilesoftwares Ltd in an email response to a questionnaire on the process and significance of this recognition said "Our hidden smiles and inspirations radiate in serving humanity, peace advocacy, impacting and saving life".

Google to build Large Data Centre in Netherlands

September 23, 2014 - After Ireland, Finland and Belgium Google has announced it will build a large data Centre in Eemshaven North Netherlands by mid 2016. It will cost 600 million euro to build and employ 150 direct jobs. 

Spokesman Mark Jansen said in a blog post yesterday that the Centre will occupy 44 hectares and was chosen because of stable Dutch energy supplies. 

In another posting today, William Echikson, Head of Data Centre Community Relations, for Europe confirmed the story and added 'The Internet is growing fast and so is demand for our services, from search to Gmail and YouTube. In order to keep up with this growth, we are announcing a new EUR600 million investment over the next four years to build a new Data Centre in Eemshaven, the Netherlands. 

The new Dutch data centre will benefit from the latest designs in cooling and electrical technology. It will be free-cooled - taking advantage of natural assets like cool air and grey water to keep our servers cool. Our data centers use 50% less energy than a typical data center - and our intention is to run this new facility on renewable energy.'

Pan-African University, Layer3 to build 10GbE Network in Lagos 

September 23, 2014 - The Pan-Atlantic University in Nigeria is known to have commenced building a high grade network with capacity for high resolution video streaming for learning in real-time, and the support of bandwidth-intensive applications across multiple campus facilities, laboratories and auditoriums. 

The Network for which the University recently selected Layer3 and Juniper Networks to build allows for scalable upgrade from 10GbE at commissioning to 100GbE connections in future and it is designed to meet massive bandwidth demands, while optimising return on investment (ROI) with capabilities for easy transitioning to software defined networking in the near future. 

Both Nnamdi Nwokoye, the Director ICT of Pan-Atlantic University and Vivian Atureta, Layer3's Business Development Manager are happy at the prospects of collaborating to deliver such Next Generation Network that will transform teaching and learning and certainly a reference point for one of the first of such research compliant infrastructure in Nigeria.

CommTech Ministry urges all States to sign up to the Smart State Initiative


September 19, 2014 - The Federal Ministry of Communication Technology has  expanded its invitation  on Smart State Initiative to all tiers of government in the country as it urged all State Governments to sign up to the Memorandum of Understanding.  The Initiative commenced in 3 states of Lagos, Cross River and FCT and it is already being tested in Anambra, Bayelsa, and Ondo while others will follow soon.


This was one of the communique issues released at the end of the third meeting of National Council on Communication Technology held in Yenagoa two weeks ago. The Initiative is a strategic accelerator for expansion of broadband infrastructure to all communities in the country.


The communique also admonished all tiers of government to consider the adoption of the Open Data Policy as a means of creating jobs, making data available for policy formulation and decision making as well as reducing the cost of governance and improving public service delivery.


Apple's Watch is not iWatch; It is Applewatch

September 10, 2014 - Among technology giants that have taken communication into the heart of wearables, Apple Inc has taken a lead to launch not just a watch but a new family of watches. 

Yesterday, at the Flint Centre in Cupertino, California, the same place where Steve Jobs had unveiled the original Macintosh in 1984, Apple's CEO, Tim Cook, unveiled the watches and also two new versions of the iPhone. Contrary to expectation though, the watches are to be known as Applewatch and not iWatch.

The new iPhones predictably bear bigger screens which is an answer to the edge that other Smartphone manufacturers are currently using to draw customers because of the increasing use of phones for video and photographs.

ISPON, MICROSOFT NIGERIA sign deal on Industry Development

September 9, 2014 - The Institute of Software Practitioners of Nigeria (ISPON) and Microsoft Nigeria will work together to build indigenous capacity, bolster local content, and advocate protection of intellectual property rights in software development. That was the message in a partnership white paper signed in Lagos last week by the two industry players. The ceremony also served as a formal signup of Microsoft Nigeria to membership of ISPON.

President of ISPON Mr Pius Okigbo Jr said it was necessary that Microsoft Nigeria plays a key role in the realisation of ISPON's objectives just as Mr. Kabelo Makwane, Country Manager, Microsoft Nigeria pledged that the partnership should be on a long term basis judging by the enormity and importance of the issues identified.

Mr. Chris Uwaje, immediate Past President of ISPON who was also present at the ceremony, commended the new partnership and welcomed Microsoft on board. He urged the Company to assert its role in the development of the Nigerian software ecosystem as Nigeria has a pool of young talented software developers.

Microsoft Corporation recently elevated Microsoft Nigeria to a stand-alone subsidiary in recognition of the maturity of the local market and the immense opportunities it offers.

E-friction Analysis: 'Greasing the Wheels of the Internet Economy" 

September 9, 2014 - The good impact of ICT in driving economies faster is very easy to understand. Not so the numerous factors that inhibit access to it and especially to online interaction. In developing economies, it is fashionable to blame Government for all sources of problems. Justifiably so since most systems in such economies throw up second best minds to hold political power.

These inhibitions, now described as e-friction, is the subject of a report titled "Greasing the Wheels of the Internet Economy" which ICANN brokered and Bolton Consulting Group produced. It is yet another eye opener and a useful document to all those who care about how global economy can be further helped by the Internet. 

Yesterday, in Nairobi Kenya, Mr Chris Mondini, ICANN's Vice President, Stakeholder Engagement North America and Global Business, gave a presentation on the report. He spoke at an event put together by Bob Ochieng, ICANN's Manager, Stakeholder Engagement - East Africa who assembled Kanyan stakeholders for an industry briefing on the status of ICANN's Africa Strategy. 

Essentially, the report argues that reducing or eliminating the sources of e-friction can significantly grease the wheels of Internet economy worldwide. Sounds like saying the obvious especially considering that the four sources which it identifies have been recounted over and over again. But its research analysis gives more verve to the subject. 

Highlight of the report is its identification of the four sources of e-friction, namely those that are information related, individual related, industry related and infrastructure related. 

Besides it finds that the countries with the lowest e-friction tend to score well in all four components and that if e-friction is reduced, small and medium enterprises will perform better in a digital economy. What is more, good policy in a few areas will impact on e-friction and can speed the development of internet use and individual countries internet economies. And finally that the continued growth of the digital economy depends on limiting internet friction and fragmentation.

Galaxy Backbone earns BSI's ISO27001:2013 Certification 

September 9, 2014 - Galaxy Backbone Ltd announced early in the week that it has again been adjudged worthy of the upgraded new version of the ISO27001:2013 certification by the British Standard Institute (BSI). 

The BSI is a global provider of management systems assessment and certification solutions, which provides independent assessment and management systems certification for clients in over 120 countries worldwide. 

Galaxy Backbone received the initial Certification to ISO/IEC27001:2005 in 2011. That certification was valid for 3 years and it expired on July 5, 2014.  It therefore submitted to a fresh Information and Security Management Systems (ISMS) verification and recertification audit in June 2014 thus leading to this award. 

For an institution that provides public service critical national ICT infrastructure, this is a plus to the international competence rating of the Company especially as Nigerian public institutions are not known to submit to highly rated evaluation process of this type. 

This must have been one of the good news that Mr Gerald Ilukwe, outgoing Managing Director of the Company and his successor Mr Yusuf Kazaure took to Senator Anyim Pius Anyim, Chairman, Board of Directors of the Company at a valedictory board meeting and formal presentation of handover notes early in the week. 

An elated Gerald Ilukwe told the Board of Directors that the ISO/IEC 27001:2013 Certification is an independent revalidation of Galaxy backbones ability to protect information assets from all manner of threats. Accordingly, the company would use the opportunity of the new Certification to raise stakeholder awareness on information security issues such as cyber security, information security, disaster recovery and business continuity planning and its implications for supporting the role of ICT in governance and national development.

Google set to develop Computer of the Future 

September 5, 2014 - Google has announced that it is in a new partnership with the University of California to develop quantum computers which apply quantum bits rather than the traditional binary system of ones and zeros to process information.  

This, the researchers say, will make the computers exponentially faster than digital computers. And that is to say the emerging computer will be super faster than those we know of today.

Google has been researching potential applications of quantum computing since May 2013, when it bought a D-Wave, a company that is developing what may be called the first commercially viable quantum computer, the "Vesuvius". 

Last Wednesday Hartmut Neven, Director of Engineering at Google Quantum Lab announced in a blog posting that the Quantum Artificial Intelligence team at Google is launching a hardware initiative to design and build new quantum information processors based on superconducting electronics. 

'We are pleased to announce that John Martinis and his team at UC Santa Barbara will join Google in this initiative. John and his group have made great strides in building superconducting quantum electronic components of very high fidelity. He recently was awarded the London Prize recognizing him for his pioneering advances in quantum control and quantum information processing. With an integrated hardware group the Quantum AI team will now be able to implement and test new designs for quantum optimization and inference processors based on recent theoretical insights as well as our learnings from the D-Wave quantum annealing architecture. We will continue to collaborate with D-Wave scientists and to experiment with the "Vesuvius" machine at NASA Ames which will be upgraded to a 1000 qubit "Washington" processor'.

FG appoints Yusuf Kazaure as MD Galaxy Backbone

September 5, 2014 - There will be change of guard today in Galaxy Backbone Ltd  where Mr. Yusuf Kazaure, former Executive Director for Corporate Services will take over from Mr. Gerald Ilukwe, pioneer Managing Director, who is retiring after an eight-year maximum statutory tenure.  

The new Managing Director is a CommTech for Development expert who kicked it off as foundation CEO of Jigawa State's Galaxy Information Technology and Telecommunication Ltd in 2002. He crossed over to Galaxy Backbone at the latter's incorporation in 2006 and along with Gerald, they built the Company with commendation. He is trained in Architecture, computing, and business. 

Galaxy Backbone is Federal Government owned; incorporated as a limited liability firm with mandate to provide Government's connectivity requirements, data hosting and management services for government business. It is perceived to have done very well. 

It is one of the two Limited liability firms, the second being NigComSat Ltd which President Olusegun Obasanjo government incorporated against popular professional opinion and whose ill-thought-out mandates were at best warped. For its good management however, Galaxy Backbone waded through the wait-and-see attitude of industry pundits who merely waited to write the epitaph of the two contraptions. Galaxy Backbone gave no such room. 

It was the exact opposite at NigComSat Ltd where things wobbled from day one and still is. While Galaxy Backbone's mandate went through careful tapering to what makes it eventually useful to Nigeria today, NigComSat Ltd moved from one contrite mandate to another. Some may even say it is a government firm that was established to develop the engineering of electronic voting. Its mandate remains as unclear as it is unattainable.

Google set to develop Computer of the Future 

September 5, 2014 - Google has announced that it is in a new partnership with the University of California to develop quantum computers which apply quantum bits rather than the traditional binary system of ones and zeros to process information.  

This, the researchers say, will make the computers exponentially faster than digital computers. And that is to say the emerging computer will be super faster than those we know of today.

Google has been researching potential applications of quantum computing since May 2013, when it bought a D-Wave, a company that is developing what may be called the first commercially viable quantum computer, the "Vesuvius". 

Last Wednesday Hartmut Neven, Director of Engineering at Google Quantum Lab announced in a blog posting that the Quantum Artificial Intelligence team at Google is launching a hardware initiative to design and build new quantum information processors based on superconducting electronics. 

'We are pleased to announce that John Martinis and his team at UC Santa Barbara will join Google in this initiative. John and his group have made great strides in building superconducting quantum electronic components of very high fidelity. He recently was awarded the London Prize recognizing him for his pioneering advances in quantum control and quantum information processing. With an integrated hardware group the Quantum AI team will now be able to implement and test new designs for quantum optimization and inference processors based on recent theoretical insights as well as our learnings from the D-Wave quantum annealing architecture. We will continue to collaborate with D-Wave scientists and to experiment with the "Vesuvius" machine at NASA Ames which will be upgraded to a 1000 qubit "Washington" processor'. 

AT IGF2014 Istanbul, Turkey
Broadband Agenda: Minister says Local Content Tops Nigeria's focus 

September 4, 2014 - Nigeria's Communication Technology Minister, Dr Omobola Johnson, told the Internet Governance Forum in Istanbul, Turkey midweek while contributing to a discussion on Policies Enabling Access, Growth and Development on the Internet that building the country's local content capacity is a major focus of the Broadband agenda. 

The point was also made by Ms Funke Opeke, CEO of MainOne, that the construction of her Company's Data Centre is a critical infrastructure whose focus is also to empower youth productivity pointing especially to distributing content of Nollywood films which is a thriving sector of the economy.  According to her "We realise that Internet Access can improve economic outcomes for the large youth population that we have in Nigeria. Delivering affordable Internet services to more of our youth will make a critical difference in our economic development and deserves the Industry's utmost attention." 

Dr Jimson Olufuye, Chairman Africa ICT Alliance, AfICTA, who spoke at the plenary, gave an industry account of major progress made in the application of the resources of internet in Nigeria where the private sector has been embraced by Government. He mentioned in particular the one-day cheque clearing regime which was just being announced by the Central Bank of Nigeria as the forum was in session and canvassed for a spread of such outreach to the private sector across the developing countries of the world. He commended the work of the CSTD. 

Host country Turkey, is very well known for extreme intolerance to the profits of the internet and its governance record in that regard is appalling. It is an irony that it the place the United Nations appointed to host the 2014 edition of the annual talk shop which started 8 years ago. In the past one year alone, Turkey had shut down social media platforms of twitter and YouTube just as it has jailed journalists and hounded others who seek to use internet to expose fraud. Former prime Minister, now President Recep Tayyip Erdogan once said that twitter is a 'menace' and treated all social media platforms as such. 

Good a thing European Union Vice President Neelie Kroes raised the issue and made appropriate rebuke of the Government of Turkey.

20 years of Industry Advocacy
ATCON appoints Belmang to manage its Celebration

August 29, 2014 - The Association of Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria, ATCON, has indicated it would celebrate its 20th anniversary in a way yet to be revealed and on a date it is yet to mention. 

Meanwhile it has appointed Belmang Ltd., Publishers of IT & Telecom Digest, a local front-liner in telecom exhibition management to market and manage the anniversary celebrations. Belmang's CEO Mr Mkpe Abang whose publications are unarguably the industry's best expressed happiness at its appointment by ATCON. 'Our company is humbled by the recognition given it by ATCON and accepted the appointment with a deep sense of duty. We would do our utmost in the marketing and management of the event to make it a pride for the industry and the Association' 

President Lanre Ajayi said the Association's 20 years witnessed productive advocacy and engagement of all stakeholders in building the industry from a monopoly into the dawn of liberalisation and transforming it into a true CommTech industry. 

ATCON came into existence shortly after Nigeria liberalised the telecom industry in 1993 and more than a quarter of active players in the industry are enlisted on its membership. 


Banjo cautions on National Licenses for Spectrum 

August 28, 2014 - President of the Nigeria Internet Group, Mr Bayo Banjo,  told a forum discussion on  frequency allocation by auctioning in Lagos today that the idea of issuing national licenses for spectrum must the viewed with caution. A spectrum license that is issued to one operator to provide service in all parts of Nigeria but which turns out to leave any part of the country from enjoying service after a long while will mean the spectrum has been inefficiently managed especially as it is normally difficult to withdraw the license or penalise the licensee. 

Mr Banjo, a telecommunications engineer, suggested that the industry regulator rather issues 37 individual licenses to cover each state so that should the operator renege in executing a license in any part of the country in good time, such allocation may be conditionally withdrawn. 

It was one of the several opinions expressed by industry players a majority of who favour regionalisation of spectrum allocation. 

The Forum discussion was hosted by the Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC to take input on issues relating to the plan and process of spectrum auction as it prepares to auction 2x 70MHz spectrum slots in the 2.6GHz band.

The Commission is known to be planning to issue spectrum licenses for regional coverage.


In Gitex 2014, Nigeria goes on Investor hunt 

August 27, 2014 - Nigeria is in top gear preparation for its Country Partner status involvement in Gitex, an ICT Investment Conference due for Dubai October 12 - 16, 2014. The Nigerian Pavilion will promote start-ups as well as well-honed indigenous ICT companies. 

'Invest in Nigeria - The gateway to Africa', its chosen theme captures the mood and mission of Nigerian officials  and the country is certain to feature her forays in Agriculture, where it has done very well, and in Information technology where it is pushing the frontiers in a focused direction. It is expected to be a business and investment peering platform to also feature key decision makers from the MEASA including government functionaries and business leaders. 

From an African observatory, Gitex is arguably the second largest ICT event in the world. It recorded over 154, 000 visitors last year 25, 000 of which came from Africa. NITDA says it is using the Gitex event to promote Nigeria's ICT potentials and encourage its budding innovators to attract global attention and investors. 

According to Communication Technology Minister, Dr Omobola Johnson "The ICT Sector has been a prime motivator of real growth and contributor to the country's GDP. It has great attraction for investors and is a high-yield market," just as the Director General of NITDA, Mr. Peter Jack, told "We are using Gitex to affirm the fact that Nigeria welcomes investors and seeks global partnership to explore her diverse opportunities. Nigeria is in Gitex to meet Investors seeking new, dynamic and rewarding markets,"

NCC set to auction spectrum in 2.6GHz Band 

August 14, 2014- The Nigerian Communications Commission has announced intention to auction 2x 70MHz spectrum slots in the 2.6GHz band. 

It has therefore invited industry players and all stakeholders to a public Forum where all issues about the plan and the process will be discussed. The issues listed for discussion include: lessons from previous auction process, spectrum packaging including the use of spectrum caps, participation restrictions, licensing options, eligibility criteria, interference mitigation techniques, spectrum license tenure and roll out obligations.

Date  August 28, 2014
Venue  Oriental Hotel, Lekki, Victoria Island
Time  10am

AFRINIC supports ATCON, Ng ICT Forum
and Bandwidth Consortium on IPV6 Training

August 12, 2014 - 30 Network Engineers from 21 stakeholder players including Research and Education Institutions, NgREN and network operators participated in the AfriNIC/ Nigeria ICT Forum training course which held from 5 to 8 August 2014 in Abuja, Nigeria. 

Another version is also running at the moment in Lagos in collaboration with the Association of Telecommunication Companies of Nigeria, ATCON. When the training commenced earlier today, 37 engineers from 24 firms had registered to participate. 

AFRINIC has been leading the effort to promote and support IPv6 deployment throughout Africa to all stakeholders including network operators, mobile operators, academic institutions, end users, governments and regulators. 

Mr Adiel Akplogan, Chief Executive Officer of AFRINIC emphasized in a press release issued after the Abuja training that "Global IPv6 deployment is vital to the continued growth of the Internet and we have to act now to ensure that Africa enables its future users open and unhindered access to the global Internet. Our tailored IPv6 training program has been designed to help Network Operators and engineers in our region to better plan their IPv6 transition and to kick start deployment in their own countries. In addition to this, AFRINIC launched an IPv6 virtual lab in 2009 to widely support the community in hands on training for IPv6 deployment and offers information and documentation on a wide variety of IPv6 issues."  

Mr. Dewole Ajao, Operations Manager of the Bandwidth Consortium said in the same release that .

"We are very excited to see active participation by network operators and education institutions at this training' says. 'Along with the technical training received over the 4-day period, relationships have also been formed between the Network Engineers on the operators' side as well as the customers' side. This will definitely lead to improved quality of Internet services for everyone."  

AFRINIC offers several other Training courses and other capacity-building programs designed to support and develop infrastructure development in Africa and the Indian Ocean region.  AFRINIC Trainings are free of charge and open to all, although priority is given to AFRINIC members and to experts in the field.


ITU set to confront counterfeiting of ICT products and devices 

July 28, 2014 - Counterfeit, substandard and fake ICT products are such a serious issue that impacts developed and developing economies and latest information is that ITU is about now setting up an offensive against proliferation of such products and devises. 

Fake products pose enormous problems. Decreased sales of genuine products, erosion of brand value, goodwill and reputation as well as reduced incentive to innovate and invest are notable effects of faking and things cannot be left without check. Some products are even known to constitute dangers to the environment. 

This was recognised by the ITU and the Agency has since adopted a Resolution of the World Telecommunication Development Conference on "The role of telecommunications/information and communication technologies in combating and dealing with counterfeit telecommunication/ICT devices". The event will hold in November 2014 in Switzerland.  

According to a recent ITU publication on the subject, the objectives of the ITU event are threefold, namely to: (1) discuss the global scope and impact of counterfeiting and substandard ICT products on various stakeholders; (2) highlight the common concerns, challenges, initiatives, practices and opportunities of the various stakeholders in their fight against counterfeiting and substandard ICT products; and (3) examine the possible role of ICT standards development organizations (SDOs) and in particular the ITU, as part of the global strategy and solution to curtail counterfeiting and substandard ICT products as well as to assist members in addressing their concerns regarding counterfeit devices. 

The Agency is asking from contributions from all over the world.

Bayelsa charts the ICT path to rapid industrial development

July 27, 2014 - Mr Seriake Dickson is a man in a hurry. He strikes as someone who is genuinely committed to getting Bayelsa State on a quick march to top reckoning regardless that politicians are normally men of theatre. It was no longer news last week that Bayelsa is one of the eight states which the Nigerian Broadband Council has rated as deserving of the 'Smart State' status and to which the offer was presented. 

When Dr Omobola Johnson, Chairman of the Nigerian Broadband Council and Minister of Communication Technology took the floor at the Bayelsa Investment Forum to reel out the conditionality for being granted the Smart State status, Mr Dickson said yes to virtually all the items which the Minister listed. 

Mrs Johnson had specifically said that a smart state would earn: 1 the benefit of increased operator rollout plans within the state, bringing much needed employment and infrastructure to the underserved 2. The rollout of infrastructure connecting public schools and other state institutions to an advanced broadband communications network. 3. Controlled and reduced disruption to the road network infrastructure within the state, taking advantage of moments of road rehabilitation to also install fibre infrastructure and 4. The growth of ICT enabled products and services within the state including increased cellular and 3G coverage. 

To earn all the above benefits, a smart state must sign a Memorandum of Understanding to: 

1.       Charge a reasonable one off Building/Planning Permit Fee that is lower than what it charges today for each new BTS site applied for by operators & licensees

2.       Charge a nominal sum to be agreed as annual administrative fee per BTS site

3.       Assign a one-stop agency for the collection of ALL Taxes, Levies and Fees, and waive the Right of Way (ROW) fees in the state for two years

4.       Promote and encourage incentives for infrastructure sharing & co-location (e.g. operators of collocated sites may pay less tax)

5.       Enforce the 'Dig Once' policy that encourages and mandates first to build operators to install enough fibre duct infrastructure for others to access and share

6.       Refrain from the decommissioning of operational sites except where such sites have not been constructed to proper build standards

7.       Enforce the agreed build standards by the FMoW in constructing BTS infrastructure and Road infrastructure (the installation of ducts into existing or new roads) for ICT

8.       Protect installed infrastructure from vandalisation and destruction via an executive order criminalising such acts in accordance with the Cyber Crime Bill and the Critical National Infrastructure, CNI, Bill

9.       Reduce the time line for approvals for new Base station Transceiver Sites to within thirty (30) days  and

10.     Eliminate all other incidents of any other charges that may seem arbitrary or counterproductive to the spirit of the MOU. 

This was the Agreement Mr Dickson endorsed and it remains for the Broadband Council to mobilise agencies of Federal Government and industry players to deliver the terms of the Agreement if the State truly plays ball.


Enter: CloudShare, a layer3 solution  

July 24, 2014 - Cloud storage got a boost recently as Layer3 launched its version of cost effective solution, CloudShare. 

According to Vivian Atureta, Layer3's Business Development Manager, CloudShare provides a simple and secure platform for businesses of all sizes to store and retrieve data and media, share files and collaborate easily. It also provides storage capacities more than the average available in the industry today. 

The service runs out of secure data centres in Nigeria and can be accessed over secure VPN connections or over the Internet from all service provider networks at very low latencies. It is backed by industry-standard service level agreements and Layer3's revolutionary 24/7 technical support.

Bayelsa on the rise to being a smart State 

July 18, 2014 - The Government of Bayelsa State in Nigeria may be playing up to the bill of a Smart State as recently forecast by the Federal Ministry of Communication Technology. 

A report monitored on television today said the Governor, Mr Seriake Dickson told Dr (Mrs) Omobola Johnson, Minister of Communication Technology, as he presented a security InfoTech Centre for the Minister to commission in Yenagoa, that his invitation to world class investors is packaged on a plan to make the state an ICT enabled environment. 

Mrs Omobola Johnson who is also Chairman of Nigerian Broadband Council has argued that smart States are those which encourage the construction of infrastructure for broadband reach while others spend their time crafting legislation that are capable of discouraging private investment in ICT. Six states Gombe, Bayelsa, Ondo, Anambra and Katsina were recently identified as potential additions to Lagos and Cross River which had since been known to be truly ICT friendly. 

The Minister was in Bayelsa state in the company of members of the Broadband Council to participate in the States investment Forum and to endorse the Bayelsa example to other states which are yet to show friendliness to ICT infrastructure construction. Mrs Johnson told the participants that the ICT sector was the second largest contributor in the services sector, contributing about 17 per cent to GDP. 

The Governor appeared very forthcoming as he responded positively to all the advice that the Minister gave in her speech. He pledged substantial waver on the Right of Way charges to demonstrate his anxiety to get the state economy going just as he promised to centralise the interface of the government with ICT players. 

Lagos State was the first to reduce the cost of Right of Way from N3,000 to N500 per linear metre to make investment in building underground fibre friendly to investors. The state has also built other infrastructures that are capable of attracting investment to the environment. It is the reason that telephone operators would prefer to invest in such friendly environments. 

Phone 4 ALL via Virtual SIMcard
The future of connecting the world may be here already.
Movirtu and Airtel may commence empowerment from Africa

July 17, 2014 - The goal of connecting half of the world inhabitants who are yet to be connected may be getting closer by the day. The issue of poverty is one that must be addressed since the 2.4 billion people who live on less than $2 a day cannot afford even the cheapest most basic mobile phone. 

Movirtu, a young, London based company has come up with an idea of providing virtual SIM cards that can be used on borrowed or shared phones and it has been tested positive in a few countries in Africa where GSM standard is the popular mobile technology. The latest story is that Airtel, which operates in 17 countries in Africa, has bought into it. And this is how it works 

Put simply, Movirtu does away with the requirement for a physical SIM card. Instead, it allows operators to sell virtual SIMs, which exist only as numbers. To use one, a subscriber simply borrows a phone and enters a short USSD code which tells the network that the phone is now using another number. The subscriber can then make and receive calls from his own number (at his own expense) on the borrowed phone. All that's changed is an entry in the mobile network's visitor location register, a backend database. To return the phone, the subscriber must enter the code again, and all is back to normal. 

It s not that you walk to a stranger and ask to borrow his phone. Consider that children grow older and demand their own phones, families could get them virtual numbers so they have their own identity, without having to invest in extra devices. Or a group of a few people could share the price of a phone and use it with their individual SIMs. Think of the roadside business that can generate from there. 

A little patience will see the merit in this solution to bring the whole world into the network. At least so say the idealists of the Virtual SIMcards solution.

Airtel which signed a deal with Movirtu last month is also, as we speak, launching a Touching Lives Initiative in Nigeria, a platform which its CEO in Nigeria, Mr Segun Ogunsanya said is a social responsibility Initiative designed to alleviate peoples' suffering and bring smile to their faces.


Internet of Things matches to the next stage
Thread Group emerges 

July 15, 2014 - Eight days after Samsung Electronics joined five other firms to form the OIC (Open Interconnect Consortium), it again today joined six others namely ARM, Big Ass Fans, Freescale Semiconductor, Nest Labs, Silicon Labs, and Yale Security to form the Thread Group.  

And what is Thread? It is a new IP-based wireless networking protocol which Samsung says is designed to create the very best way to connect and control products in the home.  

In a release today in California, Samsung says 'recognizing the need for a new and better way to connect products in the home, seven companies today announced that they've joined forces to form the Thread Group and develop Thread, a new IP-based wireless networking protocol. The charter of the Thread Group is to guide the adoption of the Thread protocol. Thread Group founding members consist of industry-leading companies including Yale Security, Silicon Labs, Samsung Electronics, Nest Labs, Freescale Semiconductor, Big Ass Fans and ARM. 

While currently available 802.15.4 networking technologies have their own advantages, each also has critical issues that prevent the promise of the Internet of Things (IoT) from being realized. These include lack of interoperability, inability to carry IPv6 communications, high power requirements that drain batteries quickly, and "hub and spoke" models dependent on one device (if that device fails, the whole network goes down). With Thread, product developers and consumers can easily and securely connect more than 250 devices into a low-power, wireless mesh network that also includes direct Internet and cloud access for every device'.

'Communication Jamming is illegal' - NCC 

July 15. 2014 - For the second time running, the Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, has drawn public attention to the illegality which the sales and usage of phone jammers and jamming devices are. 

In a public notice issued in Abuja today, the Commission says it is empowered by law to prevent the use of any apparatus that causes illegal interference in disobedience of its regulations. 

It therefore warns that it would now prosecute offenders.

It will be recalled that a similar notice had been issued mid-May, 2014.

Inaugurating Nigeria's
National Research and Education Network, NgREN

A Review by
Dewole Ajao

July 14, 2014 - Many of the world's developed countries use dedicated research and education networks to provide cutting edge services and drive technological innovation. Last week, we witnessed the inauguration of the Nigerian Research and Education Network (NgREN) at the National Universities Commission (NUC) in Abuja. It was a big celebration with live music and enough to eat and drink. A video conferencing facility was demonstrated with remote participation from several Nigerian Universities and two overseas Universities who delivered their goodwill messages live. The Network Management Centre was also officially commissioned.

It was impressive to see the widespread support exhibited by the presence of delegates from the National Assembly, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Communication Technology, National Universities Commission and the Tertiary Education Trust Fund. The NUC Executive Secretary spoke about the need for more funds to extend the network, how NgREN has been able to reduce Internet bandwidth prices and how prices will come down to $20 per Mbps in the second phase of NgREN. He did admit that more needs to be done to build capacity within campus networks for the REN to really take off and offer services. There was also a report by the CommTech Minister that some 290km of fibre cable was being laid to connect teaching hospitals to their university campuses.

I believe the high point of the occasion was the directive by Mr. President that organizations like TETFUND, NITDA, and USPF provide necessary funds for the growth and expansion of NgREN to all higher education and research institutions. This kind of high level support can potentially move Nigeria forward if it is coupled with a sincere desire to make research and education contribute to national growth.

Beyond just downloading from the Internet, students and researchers in connected Universities should be empowered to further their research and education using NgREN. A basic example is access to meteorological data for research into suitability of different areas for crop production. The applications are limitless; the key is to open up the networks and content to students and researchers for innovation. The NREN should also be used to encourage collaboration and reduce duplication of efforts.

Very importantly, it would be good to see all the various research institutes we have across Nigeria plugged into the REN so we can harness their output. After all, what is the usefulness of research that ends up in a remote silo that cannot be accessed by those that could benefit from it?

This week's celebration could be seen by some as a demonstration of videoconferencing which has been a basic communication tool for several years. It goes beyond that; it is hopefully the beginning of a new era in learning and research in Nigeria.  I look forward to seeing real work being done with the REN and at the very least, access to research data that will help exploit opportunities and solve problems.

Samsung GALAXY Apps comes to market 

July 12, 2014 - Samsung Electronics says it is about to put on the shelf Samsung GALAXY Apps, the new app store that features hundreds of exclusive apps which, beyond its old version Samsung App, will offer greater customization and various promotions and discounts to users of Samsung Galaxy mobile devices. 

It comes in three sections, Best Picks, Top, and For Galaxy.  

  • Best Picks allows users to easily find recommended apps and promotions,
  • Top showcases the most popular apps which can be viewed according to their popularity, date, and price.
  • For Galaxy presents another galaxy of four sections. Galaxy Gifts, Galaxy Essentials, Apps for Professionals  and Galaxy Specials


Satya Nadella opens up to Team 

July 12, 2014 - The new folk at Microsoft must have spent time editing text and reducing a long speech to only 3000 words. In an email to the Microsoft Team last Thursday, Satya Nadella opened up.

Nothing new really. Not even new words. But a new determination. He wrote like he knows the journey is daunting.  

'The industry does not respect tradition - it only respects innovation'
'MS is a devices and services company'
'Determined to make the broadest impact'
'There will be dialogue this July - July is already 10, makes one wonder if the mail wasn't coming later than planned. The dialogue is on'

'At our core, Microsoft is the productivity and Platform Company for the mobile-first and cloud-first world. We will reinvent productivity to empower every person and every organization on the planet to do more and achieve more'
'Across Microsoft, we will obsess over reinventing productivity and platforms'
'Developers and partners will thrive by creatively extending Microsoft experiences for every individual and business on the planet'

And quotes Rainer Maria Rilke's words: "The future enters into us, in order to transform itself in us, long before it happens." 

And so on. 

Anything new?

NCC, corporate governance
and a detour on Consumer Parliament process

July 11, 2014 - Yesterday, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) presented a Code of Corporate Governance to the industry for implementation. The document is a non-binding, stakeholder generated set of codes facilitated by the Commission and designed to strengthen the industry further and ultimately protect private sector investment which stands at $25billion.

The Commission in another event also remodelled the Telecom Consumer Parliament (TCP), its flagship platform for promoting consumer protection and quality of service matters. The repackaged TCP focuses on discussing general issues such as dropped calls, illegal billing, unsolicited text messages and inaccessibility of customer care agents of service providers unlike the earlier model in which consumers raised individual complaints while Telco representatives attended to them.

The 'Parliament', an entirely Nigerian initiative, is known for its unique capability to reduce the temptation of consumers to litigate on issues that might be discussed and resolved at the various occasional sessions of the 'parliamentary' sittings and it has enjoyed wide public applause. What is more it takes turn of its sitting across the country.  It is yet to be clear if the objective of the TCP was being amended or fine-tuned.

sends top US intelligence officer parking

July 10, 2014 - Germany's spokesman Steffen Seibert said in a statement in Berlin this morning that a US intelligence station chief has been expelled over allegation of spying for Washington. It says there had been worries over outstanding questions in the last several months about the activities of the US secret services in Germany. 

Among other issues, there have been words going round on a US NSA inspired wiretap on Chancellor Angela Merkel's mobile phone. 

US government is said to have avoided making any statement yet.


Leading Technology firms form 'OIC' to promote interoperability

July 8, 2014 - Samsung, Intel, Atmel, Broadcom, Dell and Wind River have been listed among device producer firms which have decided to form a development group with a plan to improve interoperability and to define the connectivity requirements for the billions of devices that will make up the Internet of Things (IoT).

The group to be known as Open Interconnect Consortium (OIC) aims to define connection standards that will ensure interoperability of devices including PCs, smartphones, wearables and industrial appliances.

In a release by Samsung Electronics today, the group said "The OIC is focused on defining a common communications framework based on industry-standard technologies to wirelessly connect and intelligently manage the flow of information among personal computing and emerging IoT devices, regardless of form factor, operating system or service provider." 

The specifications could make it simple to remotely control and receive notifications from smart home appliances or enterprise devices using securely provisioned smartphones, tablets or PCs. Possible consumer solutions include the ability to remotely control household systems to save money and conserve energy

Member companies will contribute software and engineering resources to the development of a protocol specification, open source implementation, and a certification program, all with a view of accelerating the development of the IoT.


Mainone's Tie-3 Data Centre coasting home to completion

July 8, 2014 - MainOne says it will commission its N7 billion tier-3 data centre in the fourth quarter of this year. The centre will be the largest in West Africa for high reliability big data storage and distribution fit for high capacity users such as in banking, stores movement transaction and several online real time businesses. 

By adding data centre facility to its core business, MainOne will be the core of the internet in West Africa. So said Funke Opeke, CEO of MainOne in a recent television interview.

TELEVISION: Plasma finally gives way to UHD

 July 8, 2014 - Although reputed for brightness, motion management and good quality picture especially for sports and film purposes, Plasma TVs' heavy consumption of power and big frames under which it must come have been quoted as responsible for why consumers do not like it. TV makers have therefore preferred to produce curved and ultra-high-definition (UHD) types.  

Hitachi, Panasonic, Pioneer and Sony and now Samsung are known to have shifted their interest away from Plasma. LCD's (liquid-crystal display) and LED's (light-emitting diode) type are generally lighter and they are now in vogue. 

Perhaps if viewing centres sprout and the emphasis must be on the strengths of Plasma, it may come back to wax strong.


The Callsign Founder called Zia Hayat

July 7, 2014 - Think of the increasing demand on your password(s) and how, very soon, you will have problem managing them as you supply different codes for different purposes ranging from banking to whatever. 

A guy says he has developed an app and built a startup company he calls Callsign to replace passwords with call sign and he says it is business unlimited. Basically, Callsign will make identification simple, convenient and secure across the internet, telephone and in-person.

Should be if it does what it says and those folks in the banks and high-tech firms already agreed with him. Recently he raked $3m for a beta version of his app and that was what drew him up to us as news. 

He is Zia Hayat, CEO and founder of Callsign. He previously designed and delivered secure information systems, across financial services, retail, defence and telecoms sectors, in a career spanning BAE Systems, Accenture Consulting and Lloyds Banking Group.  

He said his firm is working with banks and telecommunications companies, among others, to allow customers to have one password and personal identification number for multiple applications from banking to online travel booking. They can also prevent routine sharing of their data online. 

Zia holds a first class honours degree in Computing & Electronics and a PhD for his thesis on Information Security in Ubiquitous Computing. 

Callsign is based at Google campus in London.


Submarine cables that will monitor disasters

July 5, 2014 - Green cabling is about equipping submarine communications cables with climate and hazard monitoring sensors to create a global real-time ocean observation network which will be capable of providing earthquake and tsunami warnings as well as data on ocean climate change and circulation. 

It is a new initiative of the ITU on realisation that 164 years after the first submarine cable was laid and with over one million kilometres of high capacity fibre laid across the globe, it is time to equip cables with climate and hazard-monitoring sensors that will be of great value to climate science, disaster warning and the future of oceans. 

A Joint Task Force on Green Cables Systems, chaired by Emeritus Prof Chris Banes and tasked to give visibility to the project and to realize the vision of a global network of 'green cables'. The good story is that there is  excitement among members of the JTF that it is doable and the private sector partners that have shown interest in the project.

It is not envisaged to be a rapid results kind of project but ITU, World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and UNESCO-IOC with research funding from Fujitsu, Huawei Marine Networks and Nexans, have taken the first bold steps towards the realization of this goal, and the journey is most certainly underway.


The Reality of Internet of Everything

July 4, 2014 - Those who were born after the invention of the photocopier are likely to think that there would be no literary world if photo-copying were impossible just as those who are just coming into the world now will grow up to think life will come to a halt if the internet were to suddenly collapse. 

The Internet of Everything, IoE, is already gaining momentum and there will be nearly as many machine-to-machine communications as there are people by 2018, just 4 years from now. That is to say, for example, that smart cars will have nearly four machine to machine connections per car in a future that is only 4 years away. That is exactly how the guys at networking giant firm, Cisco, put it in a presentation in Lagos yesterday. 

So revealing is the report and its projections that it provides a basis for all those who are involved in development and management of the internet space to stop and re-strategise. 

While it may be easy to follow through the prediction that mobile and portable devices other than PCs will drive the majority of traffic by 2018, it may be a little hard to conceptualise the forecast that desktop and personal videoconferencing will be the fastest-growing Internet service business growing from 37 million users in 2013 to 238 million users by 2018, Or at least to wave the projections off as the realities of other markets outside of Africa.

However, the trend readers also say even in Africa and the Middle East, Internet traffic will grow 5.5 fold from 2013 to 2018, a compound annual growth rate of 41%. 

The point really is that it is what people want that will determine where businesses locate and we may not wait for the entire infrastructure to settle in before entrepreneurs are driven into providing premium solutions. 

The on going world cup matches present an amazing case for unprecedented leaps in consumer appetite for digital viewing platform for football because tens of millions of people are viewing the games and/or highlights via the Internet. 

What all these mean is that it is not infrastructure that drives users demand but that users' demands are the drivers for infrastructure development. 

And to use the exact words of Dare Ogunlade, Cisco's executive who presented the facts and figures, "The reality of the IoE, the increasing demand for network mobility, and the emergence of 4K video are among the key trends highlighted in this year's Cisco VNI forecast that represent significant opportunities for service providers in Africa today and in the immediate future. Major sporting events like the FIFA World Cup have highlighted the enormous consumer and business appetite for a better viewing experience over the Internet using either mobile or fixed devices and service providers are seeking new innovative technology solutions that will deliver this enhanced experience."


By 2018, 52% of the world's population
will have access to the internet - Cisco Study 

July 3, 2014 - Cisco said in Lagos earlier today that going by its latest Visual Networking Index Global Forecast and Service Adoption for 2013 to 2018, global Internet Protocol (IP) traffic will increase nearly three-fold over the next four years due to more Internet users and devices, faster broadband speeds and more video viewing. The Middle East and Africa (MEA) region continues to be the fastest-growing IP traffic region from 2013 - 2018 with five-fold growth and a 38-percent compounded annual growth rate. 

The Cisco Virtual Network Index is an independent analysis that relies on real world mobile data. 

In a presentation by Mr Dare Ogunlade, Cisco's General Manager English Speaking West Africa, four growth catalysts, namely devices connected to the internet, internet users, increasing broadband speeds, and more video streaming online will drive the global ecosystem. The report shows that by 2018, 52% of the world's population will have access to the internet. 

'People, and not government, will drive this increase in broadband usage. When the demand comes from the subscribers, operators will go the extra mile to provide services knowing fully well that services result to revenue' said Mr Ogunlade and he advised network operators in Nigeria to consider using wi-fi to extend their services, increase network capacity to accommodate increasing mobile devices that will hook up to the networks and to prepare for streaming of high definition video on their networks. 


Our commitment to industry development
is total - Phase3 Telecom

July 1, 2014 - CEO Phase3 Telecom, Mr Stanley Jegede, reaffirmed in Abuja last week that his company would use its leadership position in the CommTech industry for the benefit of all. He gave the pledge in a message to the Africa ICT Professionals Conference hosted by the Association of Telecom Professionals of Nigeria. He admonished Africa ICT professionals to understand the needs of the local market and deliver solutions that address them. 

'Because of Phase3 Telecom's front-line role in the Nigerian and Africa ICT market place chooses to be a professional supporter of ATPN via sponsorship of this year's ICT professional conference because we want to demonstrate our company's commitment to always encouraging initiatives and programmes that promote or advocate the continued development of the ICT sector'. 


NCC set to launch
Corporate Governance Code on Thursday in Lagos

June 29, 2014 - Against the background of a growing call that telecom firms must enlist on the local capital market in Nigeria and considering the potency of an argument of prevalent poor corporate governance within the Nigerian economy, a sector-specific corporate governance code for the Communication Technology industry must be a good and welcome initiative. 

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) put a Corporate Governance Working Group together in the last quarter of 2012 and worked it through to the publication of a document in December of 2013. Six months after, the Commission said in Abuja last week that it would launch the code in Lagos on Thursday July 10 at the Eko Hotel. Dr Christopher Kolade, renowned player in public and private governance, and Dr. Fabian Ajogwu, a Senior Advocate who chaired the Working Group, will be talking around the framework and growth potential of the entire initiative and its deliverables. 

In a foreword to the Code, Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, Dr Eugene Juwah, argues that a Corporate Governance Code for the Nigerian Telecommunication Industry was necessary to address the peculiarities of the sector that are not typically dealt with under broadly-aimed Codes.  

There is however nothing in the codes that makes a peculiarity case for the telecom industry except that it is a good effort all the same. 

It is not known if the codes are being presented for application in the entire CommTech industry or limited to the telecommunications sector from where its authors were headhunted. Hopefully the Minister of Communication Technology will be talking to that when she speaks on Corporate Governance as a System of Promoting Transparency and Accountability at the launch on Thursday.


NCC commences InfraCos licensing process 

June 24. 2014 - The Nigerian Communications Commission has commenced the process to license Infrastructure Companies (InfraCos) for deployment of metropolitan optic fibre infrastructure and associated equipment in Lagos State and North Central (Abuja) Areas on an open access, non discriminatory, price regulated model. 

In a widely advertised Public Notice last week, it invited competent companies to submit tenders for its consideration.

 The Commission says it has examined and considered the open access model as the preferred strategic means for the deployment of optic fibre backbone infrastructure that will bridge the current broadband gaps, enhance development of local content and deliver cost effective services to Nigerian households and businesses. 

It gave tenderers up to August 4, 2014 to purchase tender documents and submit bids. 

In February 2014, the Commission licensed, on auction, Bitflux Communications Ltd for 2.3Ghz Wholesale Access for 4G LTE wireless services for nationwide coverage in the wake of implementing its broadband expansion strategy.


NCS confirms Lead Speakers for ENUGU Conference 

June 26, 2014 - There are indications that organisers of the Nigeria Computer Society (NCS)'s Annual Conference have head-hunted high calibre speakers through whose minds the Association will x-ray the theme "Building a Knowledge-Based Economy in Nigeria: The Role of Information technology" at its meeting in Enugu on July 23 - 25. 

Mr Niyi Yusuf, Country Managing Director, Accenture Nigeria, and a well known transformation change manager who has over 20 years experience leading government and private organizations as they navigate strategic change and new IT initiatives is pencilled to examine the application of knowledge, technologies and engineering in National Development.  

Funke Opeke, Founder and CEO, MainOne, is also very well known for her company's success in improving Internet Access and lowering wholesale prices, especially in the coastal cities of Lagos and Accra. She will report on the issues and on-going strategies on the matter of Broadband Access for All in Nigeria. 

Funmilola Odumuboni, Consultant, trainer and Manager for Cyber Risk Services at Akintola Williams Deloitte will examine the Challenges & Opportunities of Security Issues in a Knowledge-Based Economy.  

Others are Mr Dick Venema, CEO, Venema Advies Nigeria Ltd whose topic is Knowledge-Based Economy: Data Centre Delivery and Sustainability' and Mr Michael Olajide, Executive Director, Sidmach Technologies Limited for Applications of Information Technology and Local Content Development in the Economy: Issues & Challenges.


MTN Nigeria gets Ferdi Moolman as CFO 

June 24, 2014 - MTN Group has moved Ferdi Moolman from Irancell to Nigeria to resume as Chief Finance Officer. This was announced today by Sifiso Dabengwa, MTN Group President and CEO with a congratulatory message on a few executive movements within the Group affecting Nigeria, Uganda and Iran.

'We are delighted that we are able to fill these executive management positions from within our leadership ranks, in line with our leadership development strategy,' said Dabengwa.

Phase3 Telecom advocates
Gender Equalisation for Rapid ICT Development

June 23, 2014 - The campaign to re-order the visibility of the female gender in development opportunities especially in ICT got a boost last week when Phase 3 co-sponsored the world acclaimed International Girls in ICT Day 2014. 

Phase3 Telecom CEO, Mr Stanley Jegede argued in a message to the event said that the era in which the professions in the IT/ICT global space was largely dominated by the male gender; is coming to an end. He added that it is an exciting progress that the female gender in our world today are now taking on the immense potentials and possibilities of the IT professional fields based on the realization that very few jobs exist for men that are not also open to woman. He is optimistic that the global progress will also be hugely experienced in Nigeria and West Africa as more and more institutions and agencies advocate ICT skills for women in these regions. 

The subject matter, powerfully promoted by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU), and coordinated in Nigeria by eBusiness Life Magazine was to create a global environment that empowers and encourages girls and women to consider careers in the growing field of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs).


 - - - and in wellness too


Phase 3 Telecom also threw its weight behind a "Charity Walk", "Community Health Programs & Annual Lecture Series" of the Lifeline Care Association when its executives participated in a wellness program which was specifically designed to improve and enhance well-being, natural environment, provide educational or job/career development opportunities or seek to serve the needs of the underprivileged people within our communities.  

Phase3 Telecoms Morayo Nwabufo said at the end of the walk that 'we believe that our time, energy and expertise are valuable to our communities, but we also understand that non-profits need funds to support the good work they do' 

ICANN signs deal with Egypt and Qatar
to promote DNS industry in Africa and the Middle East 

June 23, 2014 - ICANN signed two agreements today, during the High-Level Government Meeting at its 50th Public Meeting in London. One with Egypt's National Telecommunication Regulatory Authority (NTRA), specifically calling for the establishment of a regional DNS Entrepreneurship Center (DNS-EC) in Cairo, to serve communities in Africa and the Middle East. The Center aims to contribute to the evolution of the domain name sector in Africa and the Middle East by developing and providing expertise in DNS technical, policy and entrepreneurial areas, as well as providing resources to support the implementation of initiatives and projects in this field. 

The project will be implemented in three phases - Foundation (1 July 2014-30 June 2015), Launch (1 July 2015-30 June 2017) and Operation (Ongoing). The aim is for the DNS-EC to become an independent entity serving Africa and the Middle East by the end of Phase I - 30 June 2015. 

The other agreement was signed with Qatar focusing on all involved parties agreeing to cooperate with the overall aim of supporting the development of the domain name industry and Internationalized Domain Names (such as those in Arabic scripts) in the region, as well as to promote the multistakeholder model of Internet Governance. It also calls for the collaboration in joint projects and activities in areas related to ICANN's mission and mandate. 

An excited Dr. Hessa Al Jaber, Minister of Information and Communications Technology, Qatar said after the signing ceremony that "We are pleased to have a strategic partnership with ICANN to enhance our national efforts in positioning Qatar as a prominent player in the global digital economy. Qatar will also support ICANN's multi-stakeholder model and globalization efforts to ensure that the Internet remains open and accessible for everyone"


Omo Oaiya now WACREN's Chief Technology Officer 

June 16, 2014 - West and Central African Research and Education Network, WACREN has since announced the appointment of Mr Omo Oaiya to the role of Chief Technology Officer for the association. In his new role, Mr Oaiya will be responsible for WACREN technical assets, counselling and supporting members on technical issues and supervising WACREN capacity building activities. 

Mr. Oaiya was in the Task Team set up by the Association of African Universities (AAU) that led to the incorporation of WACREN and has been acting since 2009 as the Chair of the WACREN Technical Committee on Infrastructure. 

Mr. Oaiya also supervises the developer team of EduERP, open source student and staff administration software for higher education and has a long history of academic networking and computing especially in Nigeria .   

MaiOne's Funke Opeke to give
Academy of Engineering Dinner Speech

June 15, 2014 - The Nigerian Academy of Engineering is known to have invited CEO of MainOne, Ms Funke Opeke, to give its 2014 Annual Dinner speech in Lagos next week. 

The annual Dinner Speech is a tradition of the Academy through which it picks the brain of front liners in industry, business and Government to oil its own process of articulating independent and expert advice to Government on matters of national importance pertinent to engineering and technology and related disciplines. 

She will speak on 'The Emerging landscape for Broadband Services'. 

Ms Opeke, herself an engineer, is one of African leaders in business and founder of Main One, a telecommunications solutions provider that built West Africa's first privately owned, submarine cable system interconnecting Lagos, Accra and Seixal, Portugal. Under her leadership, Main One has become a catalyst for change in West Africa's telecommunications landscape by improving Internet Access, and has become a leading provider of connectivity solutions across West Africa, with further investments in terrestrial fiber networks, and West Africa's largest commercial Tier 3 data center.  

The Nigerian Academy of Engineering is the highest body of very senior Nigerian and foreign engineering professionals who have distinguished themselves in business, academics and government. 

The weeklong activities of the Academy also include Inauguration of a new President, Rauf Ishola Salawu, a Professor of Electrical Engineering, and induction of 13 new Fellows into the Academy. 

Emeritus Professor, Alfred A Susu will deliver the 2014 Annual Lecture on 'Interdisciplinary: Implications for Complex Problem Solving' at the University of Lagos Main Auditorium on Thursday June 19, at 11.00am.


Boubakar Barry wins 2014 NII Service Award 

June 15, 2014 - WACREN CEO  Boubakar Barry has won the 2014 Network Information & Infrastructure (NII) Service Award.   Dr Barry who comes from Senegal won the award for his commitment to capacity building and Internet development in Africa including his work in supporting the emergence and the strengthening of several research and education networks in Africa. 

Dr Barry said as he received the award from the 2013 recipient, Mr Alan Barrett that "It's a great honour for me to receive the 2014 Network Information & Infrastructure (NI&I) Service Award. I see it as recognition of my active involvement in the Internet community for almost 20 years now. Being more active in the research and education networking community as Convener of AfREN for the past eight years, I would like to share this honourable moment with all those who work tirelessly to build state of the art infrastructures, and offer services to support quality education and research in Africa."


Gombe, Bayelsa, Ondo, Anambra and Katsina may soon be 'Smart City States'

June 12, 2014 - States that are ICT investment friendly may soon enjoy improved patronage of telecom service providers than those that are hostile to investment in telecommunications. This is because some states impose taxes on investments at a time when it makes better meaning to wait to put taxes on revenue accruable from business. 

Lagos and Cross River are two states which the National Broadband Council has considered to have implemented policies that are friendly to investment and therefore helpful to private sector support for implementation of the Broadband Plan.  

The Council in a press release after its 30th May meeting in Lagos said it is working towards identifying such states, constituting them into a league of Smart City States and presenting their cases for accelerated implementation of the Broadband plan 201 3 - 2018.  

Chairman of the Council and Honourable Minister of the Ministry of Communication Technology, Dr (Mrs) Omobola Johnson, said that the Smart City States drive is to engage governors and relevant authorities at the state and federal levels to address the issue of multiple taxations and accelerate the roll out of critical infrastructure across Nigeria. So far Gombe, Bayelsa, Ondo, Anambra and Katsina states are already considered well on their way to being Smart City States while Lagos and Cross River have since qualified. 

According to her, research by the Ministry of Communication Technology revealed that Right of Way, (RoW) charges, levies and taxes contributed about 70% of the cost of rolling out infrastructure in several states. 


Broadband Council refocuses
to address slow penetration 

June 12, 2014 - The Nigerian Broadband Council may have taken a more radical view of its mandate and made fresh directives to various agencies on the objectives that are set in the National Broadband plan. The plan prescribed a 3G coverage of 50% of the Nigerian population by 2015. 

The Council rose from its 4th meeting in Lagos recently noting that although Broadband penetration had gone up rather too slowly from 6 to 6.8% since implementation commenced, a recent Access Gap Analysis study conducted by the Universal Service Provision Fund, USPF, has given a clear indication of the areas of need and informed plans for addressing the needs of under-served and unserved areas across the country. The Access Gap Analysis specifically identifies population clusters of 500,000 and more that still require coverage with a view to directing attention into such prioritised areas for deployment USP funds. 

The Council noted that a recent issuance of 3.5GHz license to Biflux Communications meets the time line requirement of the plan and Lagos States agreement with the Association of Licensed Telephone Operators (ALTON) to reduce the cost of Right of Way, RoW, from 3000 naira to 500 naira per meter is a development that runs synch with the plan objectives. It puts hope in other strategic manuavres such as the constitution of some IT friendly states into a league of Smart States and harmonisation of the regulatory overlaps in the NCC and NESREA. The Council is also pushing for the release of more spectrum by the National Frequency Management Council, NFMC and the Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC. 


Digital Forensic Laboratory
ready for commissioning - ONSA 

June 9, 2014 - Office of the National Security Adviser in Nigeria said while announcing the forthcoming Cybersecurity forum scheduled for June 18 & 19 that a National Digital Forensic Laboratory is ready for commissioning and the forum will be an avenue to discuss its importance with senior industry players and IT professionals.  

The setting up process of the Nigerian Computer Emergency Readiness Team, ngCERT, is also at an advance stage. The ngCERT is expected to become operational by 3rd quarter of this year. 

The objective of the forum is to harness stakeholders input into the policy framework on cybersecurity, build national consensus on national cybersecurity roadmap and to facilitate unified e-security foundation for digital Nigeria.


NCC commended for
providing inter-iXPN exchanges Fibre link

June 8, 2014 - Accolades went the way of the Nigerian Communications Commission last Friday when it was revealed that the Commission has decided to provide physical fibre connection to link the three internet exchanges in Nigeria. 

Mr Mohammed Rudman, CEO of the Nigerian Internet exchanges made this known while responding to questions after a presentation on IPv6 and Broadband penetration in Nigeria at the IPv6 forum in Lagos. 

Mr Rudman said although the physical connection is yet to be implemented, the fact that NCC considered it  a necessary component of enhancing broadband expansion in Nigeria is something that is, on it own, commendable. 

'Now those who connect to our exchanges will pay less and local traffic will truly be kept local without an attraction to connections that will increase cost to users of broadband access' Mr Rudman said.


Know it if you never did - All governments wiretap
Operators say it must be guided by law

June 7, 2014 - Not less than six governments, whose names were not disclosed, have been mentioned in a Vodafone's first ever Law Enforcement Disclosure Report which was released on Friday. The report says they, some governments, make wiretap demands on telephone operators in very 'complex and controversial' manners. 

Although technology has made things to change considerably and very rapidly, many governments actually hide behind laws that were written when things were simpler to make these very inconvenient demands.

 Of course, no operator ever refuses compliance with orders of government in the market place except where it is tired of doing business. Vodafone concedes that in many countries there is always the conflict between the protection of the citizen's right to privacy and the duty of the state to ensure public safety and security. 

The report which reads like the outpouring of a frustrated author regrets that most of the laws which intelligence agencies and other government authorities relied on were first drafted in a much simpler era, when a household shared a single telephone landline, mobile phones were relatively rare and the internet as we understand it today did not exist. 

Lawful interception and, access to communications data, which is really the issue in contention, is a subject which many governments come largely divergent in their conception and implementation. Even from one regime of a government to another succeeding regime, there can be significant differences in focus and style. In many countries, operators are also prohibited from providing the public with any insight into the means by which those demands are implemented. 

There are cases when authorities have not responded to request for guidance on some unclear laws or where the security situation means that any form of engagement with the authorities carries an unacceptable level of risk. 

Like many other operators, Vodafone  would want governments to amend legislation which enables agencies and authorities to access an operator's communications infrastructure without the knowledge and direct control of the operator, and take steps to discourage agencies and authorities from seeking direct access to an operator's communications infrastructure without a lawful mandate. 

The good story is that Vodafone's privacy and law enforcement principles which is applicable in good corporate governance practice avoids any form of access to any customer data by any agency or authority unless it is legally obliged to do so.


PhoneDoctorService gets Open University Partnership 

June 6, 2014 - The PhoneDoctorService, a creation of Backup Networks Ltd and by which young technicians are trained to repair and manage smart devices including phones, tablets, laptops and cameras has got a partnership of the National Open University. 

Under that partnership, skills which are developed through this platform are to be examined and certificated by the Open University.

Mr Monday Ogbe, CEO Backup Networks Ltd, told CyberschuulNews that the program also allows partnership with other universities who may be inclined to development of skills of their students in addition to their normal academic programs.


Google Commits $3bn to new 180 low orbit satellites
'We must bring the whole world online'

June 3, 2014 - Google is furthering the mission of reaching all corners of the world with internet access. After investments in Project Loon and the Titan Aerospace, it has announced that it would invest in 180 low orbit satellites through which the unreached parts of the world would be conquered. 

The Wall Street Journal said yesterday that the project will cost $3bn. 

Project Loon, revealed last June, is a project that will send high-altitude balloons into the atmosphere to spread mobile broadband in remote regions while Titan Aerospace was acquired by Google in April and makes solar-powered drones that offer similar capabilities.

Cybersecurity Forum targets Industry Input 

June 2, 2014 - The National Security Adviser explained in Abuja last weekend why two days have been assigned to the Cybersecurity Forum which holds in Lagos on June 18 & 19, 2014. 

The first day of the Event is earmarked for Cybersecurity Strategy Bootcamp specifically designed for selected industries and professional bodies. It will involve technical discourse, interactions on cybersecurity strategy, sharing ideas and experiences from private sector perspective. This is to facilitate technical input of industry and opportunity for professional contributions into the national cybersecurity strategic plans. 

Organisers of the Forum said in Abuja last weekend that the huge investments in cyber-infrastructures are largely private sector driven. Hence, the first day of the event is exclusively earmarked for private sector technical input into the National Cybersecurity Strategy and is tagged Cybersecurity Strategy Bootcamp (CSB). 

The target audiences for the CBS are core heads of stakeholders industries, and technical senior professionals across both public and private sectors. 

The Chairman of Etisalat Nigeria, Mr. Hakeem Bello-Osagie will chair the forum, while Governor Babatunde Fashola will lead other dignitaries to declare the Forum open.


Samsung to roll out first Tizen powered Phones soon 

June 2, 2014 - Samsung's experimentation with Tizen Operating System may be yielding positive results as the Smartphone giant announced a rollout date for Samsung Galaxy Z which is the brand that will debut in Russia in the third quarter of this year before it starts going to other markets. 

Tizen is a Linux-based operating system for devices including smartphones, tablets, smart TVs, laptops and smart cameras. Samsung Galaxy Z will be the first brand of Samsung Phones that will not use Google's Android Operating System but the new Tizen Operating System.

. . . . . .Apple is also up to a new deal

June 3. 2014 - Apple is also flaunting a new Mac operating system design and better ways to exchange files, while new features in the software for iPhones and iPads include keeping tabs on users' health and the home.

Yesterday, Tim Cook, Apple's CEO and Head of software-engineering, Craig Federighi told several thousand developers about new features that come with the latest Yosemite Mac platform and iOS8, the software that powers the iPhone and iPad.


Lagos technology firm
floats engineering training centre

for repair of Smartphones, tablets, laptops, etc

June 3, 2014 - With anticipated improvement in public electricity delivery in Nigeria, there is hope that the productive sector will manifest the well known industry of the average Nigerian. Even as we speak, many youths are known to be engaged in wonderful endeavours and this is bound to see remarkable improvement if and when the ongoing power reforms produce results. 

One technology firm that has positioned Nigerian youths for active engagement in technology solutions is Backup Networks Ltd. The firm recently built a world class diagnostic workbench, named Phonedoctorservice, where various skills in repair and management of Smartphones, tablets, laptops, smart cameras etc will be transferred to willing Nigerians. 

With more than 200 million phones in use in Nigeria, there is tremendous opportunity for young school leavers to specialise in these skills and instantly convert themselves into employers instead of searching for non existent jobs. 

Mr Monday Ogbe, an engineer and CEO of Backup Networks told CyberschuulNews yesterday that his Company's Phonedoctorservice initiative has a workbench which is equipped with state-of-the-art facilities to diagnose, repair and re-engineer devices which otherwise may be thrown away if redemption opportunities are not provided.


Google complies with 'Right to remove' with conditions 

May 30, 2014 - A recent ruling by the Court of Justice of the European Union found that certain users can ask search engines to remove results for queries that include their name where those results are "inadequate, irrelevant or no longer relevant, or excessive in relation to the purposes for which they were processed." 

In implementing this decision, Google said, midweek, that it would assess each individual request and attempt to balance the privacy rights of the individual with the public's right to know and distribute information. 'When evaluating your request, we will look at whether the results include outdated information about you, as well as whether there's a public interest in the information - for example, information about financial scams, professional malpractice, criminal convictions, or public conduct of government officials.'

Google has provided a form for whoever has a removal request to fill. The form is however applicable to users in Europe and not in the US.


Bitflux invites ISPs to partnership  
for Enhanced and Cheap Access to
Wireless Broadband Services

May 29, 2014 - Bitflux Communications Ltd said in Lagos midweek that it would nominate a Vendor through which its 4G LTE offer would reach out to Nigerians when services start to roll out in Lagos, Abuja, and Port Harcourt in October 2014. The Vendor would be named in about a fortnight.

In a technical and commercial presentation which Bitflux representative Mr Biodun Omoniyi, a Director of the Company, made to the Internet Services Providers Association in Lagos on Wednesday, an open invitation was made to all internet service providers to come forward and partner with Bitflux under any of its four layers of partnership, namely: Brand Reseller, Service Provider, Enhanced Service Provider and Full Mobile Network Operator. 

Mr Omoniyi assured all prospective partners of Bitflux the opportunity to benefit from the bouquet of services which the 2.3Ghz Wholesale Access Service Licence makes available to his Company.  

NSA to host Cybersecurity Forum in Lagos 

May 27, 2014 - The Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) in Abuja is known to have drafted a National Cybersecurity Strategy and a National Cybersecurity Policy document for Nigeria.

A two-day National Cybersecurity forum is being organized to harness stakeholders' input into the National Cybersecurity Policy framework and to build a national consensus on the Roadmap that is in draft.  

The event will hold on 18th - 19th June, 2014 at Eko Hotel & Suits, Victoria Island Lagos. The first day of the event is earmarked for Cybersecurity Strategy Bootcamp for selected industries and professionals, while the second day of the forum is specifically for key decision makers and captains of industry.  

Highlights of the event are available on the forum portal and registrations has already begun


UNILAG, UNIBEN Teams pulled through
to the Shell Eco Marathon (SEM) final race,

May 27, 2014 - Two Student Teams working independently at the Universities of Lagos and Benin were shortlisted for the 2014 Europe edition of the Shell Eco-Marathon competition held in the Netherlands two weeks ago. With this, they moved on to join the main race towards winning the final Award.

Under the Competition, student teams from all over the world design and build ultra-energy-efficient vehicles to see how far they can drive using the least amount of energy. There are two classes and seven fuel categories: the Prototype class focuses on maximum efficiency; the UrbanConcept class encourages more practical designs. The competition is staged every year in Europe, Asia and the Americas.

The competition challenges university students worldwide to design, build and test ultra energy efficient cars. The Nigerian efforts are being supported in the main by Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited (SPDC) Joint Venture. 

To reach the stage, Uniben's Tuke-Tuke and Unilag's AUTONOV were cleared to join the race with cars from 25 other countries, comprising over 200 teams.

At Unilag, a core team of 16 students from several disciplines worked on 'AUTOVOV' a name which the students adopted for their project in honour of the late genius, Prof Ayo Awojobi (1937-1984) whose invention 'AUTONOV I & II' was widely acclaimed and remains a source of inspiration to the students. Uniben Team took the tuke tuke name from the local name for a popular public transport in Edo state. 

The teams were guided by Prof Ike Mowete and others in Unilag while Prof Akii Ibhadode and others handled the Uniben team. 

Support in the course executing the Unilag project came from Unilag Management, LG Design Laboratory, Unilag Radio, Google Plus Nigeria and Nigerite.


'The true reasons why Investors invest' - Jegede 

May 23, 2014 - Untapped potential and a vision of building true national development on robust and the right communication infrastructure are the reasons for commitment of investors' resources in development of infrastructure in Nigeria. 

This view was canvassed by Mr. Stanley Jegede, CEO of Phase3 Telecom when he spoke at the just concluded Cyber Nigeria Forum and Innovation Awards in Lagos. He pledged the resolve of his firm to take its network's high-capacity transmission network to other regions not yet reached in the continent. 

'At Phase 3 Telecom, we have helped in developing what we believe is Nigeria's most robust national communications backbone and have now moved away from merely developing the basic communications infrastructure into offerings solutions that will increase productivity and deliver the full benefits of global technology development' Mr. Jegede said.


Apple Google agree to drop suits against themselves 

May 20, 2014 - Barely one week after a Californian Court ruled that both Apple and Samsung are copycats of themselves in Smartphone's patent infringements, Google and Apple made a joint announcement early this week that they would drop all pending suits against one another. Rather they would work together to strengthen patent laws. Using their exact words: 

'Apple and Google have agreed to dismiss all the current lawsuits that exist directly between the two companies. Apple and Google have also agreed to work together in some areas of patent reform. The agreement does not include a cross license' 

Both firms have more than 20 suits against themselves in different courts in Europe and America. 

Bitflux Presentation to Broadband Service Providers rescheduled for May 28,

May 20, 2014 - A Presentation of Bitflux Communications Ltd on its Wholesale Wireless Broadband plan for Nigeria which was to feature as a special event at an ISPAN meeting on May 21, has been rescheduled.  This is in deference to popular industry request that the Event admits wider industry participation. 

Mr Sunday Folayan, President ISPAN, organiser of the meeting told CyberschuulNews that the meeting will now hold on Wednesday May 28, 2014. Venue is Golden Gate Restaurant Alfred Rewane Road Ikoyi at 12 Noon. 

Biflux Communications Ltd won the 2.3Ghz spectrum auction on February 19, 2014, and paid nearly N4billion for both the spectrum and operating License on March 11, 2014. 

NCC prohibits Jamming Devices 

May 18, 2014 - The Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC said in a public announcement last weekend that it is a criminal offence to sell, install or use any equipment which may hinder network operability. It has therefore banned the sale and usage of jamming devices. 

It warned that the consequences of non compliance may include seizure, detention, investigation and prosecution of any persons or organisations involved in the contravention.

BitFlux to make Presentation to
Broadband Communication Service Providers

May 15, 2014 - An arrangement under the platform of a revived Internet Service Providers Association of Nigeria, ISPAN, is being made to further rejig the communication technology industry for its overdue revolution in expanded broadband services in Nigeria. 

On Wednesday May 21, 2014, at 12 Noon, ISPAN will host a meeting at Golden Gate Restaurant, Alfred Rewani Road, Ikoyi in Lagos where Bitflux Communications Ltd will make a presentation to the industry on its Wholesale Wireless Broadband plan for Nigeria. 

Biflux Communications won the 2.3Ghz spectrum auction on February 19, 2014, and paid nearly N4billion for both the spectrum and operating License on March 11, 2014. It is known that the firm is already warming up to commencing a wholesale of 4G standard of wireless broadband services in the country. 

Mr Sunday Folayan, CEO Skannet, under whose initiative the presentation is being managed told that all industry players who do business in broadband services have been invited.

ATCON re-elects Lanre Ajayi as President 

May 14, 2014 - Mr Lanre Ajayi, an engineer, got unanimous endorsement of Members of the Association of Telecommunication Companies of Nigeria, ATCON, to run a second term as President at an Annual General meeting election held in Lagos yesterday.  Mr Ajayi pledged to upscale the Association's resolve to work with Government and the regulator to remove all sources of barriers to investment in the industry. 

Two of Mr Ajayi's predecessors, Dr Emmanuel Ekuwem and Mr Titi Omo-Ettu who were present at the meeting commended the President and his Executive Committee for good performance.

#BringBackOurGirls, 2billion hits,
1.5billion tweets and re-tweets

May 14, 2014 - One week after the whole wide world united in venting pent-up anger against Nigeria and its government, Google search picked up  2,170,000,000  hits  for the hatch-tag #BringBackOurGirls, a social media campaign designed to build worldwide pressure to find school girls who were abducted in Nigeria. 

And that came 3 weeks after it looked like the abduction of 276 girls (the highest of the various figures: 234, 239, 274, 276, 'over 200') which authorities in Nigeria mindlessly used as the number of school girls abducted by a clandestine sect which goes by the name Boko Haram remained unresolved. The sect had taunted the government with bombing, kidnapping, adduction and threats over the internet with amazing helplessness as response of government and its might.  

Some informed sources put the problems of Nigeria's militray on poor resources and a reported fear of engaging with the often better-equipped armed groups. Infact solders shot at their commander earlier today in Maiduguri for what amounted to frustration on account of what is clearly a matter of official corruption and poor equipment.

The campaign delivered handsomely as several strange first-time-ever things happened, except that not all the girls have returned to their parents. Mr Barrack Obama was first of several heads of government to join the campaign while Mrs Dame Patience Faka Ebele Jonathan was first First Lady to cry into a handkerchief on television shortly after joining the campaign. 

The Campaign hatch-tag is just about now migrating to #BringBackAllOurGirls

Update on the Wholesale Wireless Access Service License
Bitflux confirms final roll-out preparations

May 13, 2014 - The completion of an auction for the 2.3GHz spectrum by the Nigerian Communications Commission in February 2014 may have opened considerably enhanced access to nationwide high speed internet resource.

Recent checks on Bitflux Communications Ltd which won the bid revealed that the firm is at an advance stage of industry consultation preparatory to rolling out shortly. It is about now engaging with the regulator, vendors, consultants and other industry players to establish detailed technical requirements for a national 4G wireless broadband deployment aligned to current products & future roadmap. 

Bitflux's David Ese, Marketing Communications Manager, confirmed on Monday that request for Information documents are already being responded to by broadband communication service providers ahead of a selection of retail vendors that will latch into the infrastructure and service extension stream. 

Biflux Communications won the spectrum auction on February 19, 2014, and paid up nearly N4billion for both the spectrum and operating License on March 11, 2014.

At The ITW - MainOne leads African Brands 

May 12, 2014 - The International Telecommunications Week opened in Chicago today with over 5,000 delegates from about 1,800 companies representing more than 150 countries, to interact and discuss the latest market developments and business opportunities. 

Leading the African pack at the Event is Nigeria's MainOne whose CEO, Ms. Funke Opeke will moderate a panel session at the conference to discuss the impact of new services and technologies on carriers and operators in Africa, Africa's movement to Cloud services, and how infrastructure sharing models are enhancing broadband penetration, operational efficiency and QoS across Africa. 

Ms Opeke is a leading light of the West Africa regional investors' community. She told in Lagos last week that "We believe that our input at the International Telecoms Week will continue our efforts to enhance broadband Internet penetration in West Africa and especially Nigeria, so that MainOne can continue to lead the data boom that is currently taking place in our region".

Her perspectives as a major player in the telecoms industry in West Africa, and her position as the CEO of MainOne drew a large audience to this forum in previous years as global players have sought to gain insights on the telecoms market, ICT Infrastructure deployment and the future of broadband in West Africa. 

Nigeria's first fibre optic television service debuts as
ipNX FoS adds IPTV to its Service Bouquet

May 11, 2014 - Nigeria's leading fibre optic cable network provider and emerging multi-systems operator, ipNX Nigeria Ltd, recently announced the addition of television services to its Fibre optic Service, FoS, product bouquet making  it the first company to offer IPTV service in Nigeria.  

Mr. Ejovi Aror, ipNX's Group Managing Director, told over the weekend that the commencement of IP Television (a.k.a. IPTV) aligns with the strategic objectives of the company when it started the roll-out of fibre optic network cable system for residential and business customers.  

According to Mr. Aror, "the launch of ipNX TV fulfils our strategic objective of becoming Nigeria's first multi system operator to deliver Triple-play services i.e. internet, television and telephony to our customers, similar to what Verizon and AT&T are doing in the USA". He explained that set-up boxes (also known as STBs) have been delivered to one thousand subscribers of ipNX FoS who are today testing ipNX TV for functionality, content and reliability.  Feedback from these customers is currently being used to fine-tune the television system before it is launched to the public.  

ipNX TV is positioned to offer a new form of personal entertainment when compared to what most consumers of digital satellite television in Nigeria are already used to. The head of ipNX media and entertainment subsidiary, Tunbosun Alake, succinctly described ipNX TV "as an entertainment service that enables you chose what you want to watch, when you want to watch it and how you want to watch it" another way of describing features such as Catch-up TV, Video on Demand and Multiscreen device support which are some of the unique features of ipNX TV.  

ipNX TV carries a blend of both live TV channels and video on-demand (VOD) covering a large array of genres that include news, movies, lifestyle, education, religion, music etc. that the viewer is allowed to personalise for maximum entertainment.  

Nigeria has witnessed the rise and fall of several indigenous companies that have ventured into the direct to home and cable television business market which ironically DSTV a South African company has continued to run successfully in the Nigerian territory.  

ipNX TV is not in direct competition with any other pay TV service. 'What ipNX has done with its fibre optic services business model' according to Mr Aror, 'is to build a content delivery platform and network infrastructure with enough capacity to retransmit and distribute thousands of both live TV and video on-demand contents in a super reliable and efficient manner'. He further explained that ipNX TV is a platform that any content producer or aggregator can leverage to reach thousands of viewers in a reliable and secure manner.  

For example, ipNXTV runs on a fibre optic cable technology which unlike satellite service is not affected by rainfall and other inclement weather conditions. Accordingly he believes that ipNX TV and other television content producers and distributors can collaborate to improve the quality of service to Nigerian consumers both in content and quality of service. 

ipNX FoS took the telecoms industry by surprise when it announced late last year new residential broadband packages with speeds starting from 10Mbps for just N10,000 per month and another package offering N15Mbps priced N15,000 per month. FoS services at that time was only available in select parts of Victoria island but it now largely available in Lekki, Ikoyi and also being expanded to Magodo and Ikeja areas of Lagos State as well as FCT Abuja.


UN-CSTD set to discuss ICT4D

May 10, 2014 - United Nations Commission on Science and Technology for Development (CSTD) will hold a discussion on  major issues of ICT applications for development this week, May 12 - 16 in Geneva.

AfICTA Chair, Dr Jimson Olufuye, is scheduled to speak  in a panel discussion on 'ICTs for inclusion social and economic development'.

The panel discussion will focus on key policy challenges and opportunities for developing countries of recent developments in ICTs, including datafication, digitization, big data, open data, cloud computing, hand-held and portable devices like smart phones and tablets, specialized applications and local content.

In addition to the priority theme on ICTs, the Commission will address a second priority theme, namely 'Science technology and innovation for the post-2015 development agenda'.

Participants for the CSTD will include Ministers and high-level representative of government, civil society, the business community, academia, and international regional organisations.

Lekki Phase 1 awaits ipNX FoS 

May 9, 2014 - Nigeria's leading fibre optic cable network provider and emerging multi-systems operator, ipNX Nigeria Limited has signed an agreement with Lekki Peninsular Scheme 1 Resident's Association (a.k.a Lekki Phase 1), to launch its FoS service there. The agreement includes the delivery of broadband internet, telephony and cable television to occupants of Lekki Phase 1. It also includes the deployment of video surveillance cameras at strategic locations within the estate to boost security.  

Mr. Arho Akpe, an ICT business consultant and resident of the Estate said that residents have been yearning for a truly fast and reliable broadband connection. 'I am glad that our executives made this right decision that will surely benefit all of us'.  

Group Executive Director of ipNX, Mr Ifeanyi Amah, explained that this agreement represents another major milestone for ipNX because Lekki Peninsular Scheme 1 has always been in the plan for a long time. With over five thousand homes and still developing, Lekki Peninsula Scheme 1 is one the largest business and residential communities in the country. Mr. Amah believes that the fibre optic project upon completion will not only drastically improve the quality of lives of occupants of the estate but will in addition enhance the value of properties.  

With guaranteed speeds starting from 10Mbps (megabits per second), FoS allows users to access the internet at speeds at least 10 times faster than 4G-LTE while also making it possible to carry out multimedia communications such as watching cable television, video conferencing and online gaming.

ipNX commissions Fibre Optic Service (FoS) in VGC Estate

May 9, 2014 - A high speed broadband internet access with Fibre-To-The-Home capability was commissioned in Victoria Garden City (VGC) Estate in Lagos State last week.  

VGC has thus joined the growing league of housing estates and communities that have access to Nigeria's only true broadband internet service with speeds starting from 10Mbps. 

This is in fulfilment of a pledge given by ipNX Group Managing Director, Mr. Ejovi Aror late last year that the company would blanket over 150,000 homes in Lagos state with FoS by December 2014.   

In a recent media parley between ipNX and ICT correspondents and other industry stakeholders, Mr. Ejovi Aror said that this VGC project was a key milestone in the growth of Fibre to the home, F-T-T-H in Nigeria. He reiterated the challenges that ipNX encountered on this project such as difficulties in securing the initial right of way permits but was full of praise for the Executives of VGC properties and resident's association (VGCPORA) for their vision and support towards making what initially seemed like a pipedream now a reality. 

According to Mr. Aror, with the launching of ipNX fibre optic services in VGC, Nigeria is gradually witnessing the spread of the fastest and most reliable fibre to the home broadband technology ever to be seen in the country. 

ipNX FoS has continued to expand its foot print and accordingly to the company's reports has passed over 50,000 homes in Lagos state plus another 4,000 in Abuja. For example, FoS is now available in over fifty housing estates (including multi-tenant apartments) in Lagos and several others in Abuja and Port Harcourt. Some of the housing estates in Lagos that are now connected to ipNX FoS infrastructure include VGC, Femi Okunnu (Phase 1 and 2), Goshen, UPDC, Regal Sea-view, Safe Court, Treasure Garden estates in Lekki as well as Osborne Foreshore and Park View estates Ikoyi to mention a few. Others include Lekki Phase 1, Carlton Gate and Atlantic beach estate where network implementation is still on-going. 

ipNX's FoS is already heading to the Lagos Mainland districts of Ikeja GRA, Surulere and Apapa.

to shut down for World Economic Forum

May 3, 2014 - Nigeria's Federal Government in Abuja directed that all government offices and schools should shut down to enable it host delegates to the World Economic Forum which holds in Abuja from May 7 through Friday May 9. Government also advised private businesses which have large staff and customer flow to also shut down. 

Mr Anyim Pius Anyim, Secretary to the Government of the Federation, who made the statement said "This is to ease the flow of traffic within the city and enable participants carry out their assigned roles and participate actively at the World Economic Forum Africa".

FCC to impose Fine against Telco
for infringement on service to the deaf

May 3, 2014 - The US Federal Communications Commission FCC, has shown anger on a matter of improper use of a government fund meant to provide privilege service to the deaf. 

A California-based company, Purple Communications, is one of several companies authorized by the government to provide government-supported services for the community of the deaf by way of the telecommunications relay Service, TRS, Fund. This fund reimburses companies that provide transcription services and other services to the deaf. 

However FCC in a Commission Document last Thursday said it found that Purple was reimbursed for providing some of its services to "customers with names that were so clearly false that they could not have been the actual names of eligible users." These names included "sdfsdf cicwcicw," "Myname Yourname," and "Lot$a Money," 

Purple has therefore been fined $11.9million for the infringement. 

Purple's actions, in FCC's estimation, have threatened the integrity of a fund that is designed to help persons with hearing and speech disabilities make phone calls.



Court Ruling: Both Apple and Samsung are copycats of one another 

May 3, 2014 - The Apple versus Samsung Smartphone infringement war may not be about money but about who will outsmart the other in the market place. The two year long contest in the law court has not named a clear winner. They both win and they both loose at every judgment day because the Courts seem to be saying both Smartphone makers are copycats of one another.  

A jury in California yesterday ordered Samsung to pay Apple $119.6 million for infringing some of its patents, while Apple would pay Samsung $158,400 for infringing one of Samsung's patents. 

Apple had asked for $2.2billion in damages while Samsung had asked for $6.2million.

2 Years of AfICTA 

May 1, 2014 - The Africa ICT Alliance, AfICTA, a private sector led organisation, established in 2012 marked its second anniversary recently and reviewed its goals and achievements in a memo circulated among its members.

Over this period, the Association's brand respectability and value grew considerably going by its regional and global engagement activities at the AU, UNECA, UN CSTD, IGF, WSIS, and ICANN. Its membership grew from 5 to 13 and it participated actively in the recent Netmundial in Brasil. It held its first Summit in Lagos in June 2013 and the 2nd comes up in Cairo September 23-25, 2014 with hosting and support by the Government of Egypt and EITESAL. 

The Association hopes to grow its membership to 46 by 2015.


Londoners go gay as dot London Domain takes off 

April 29, 2014 - Mayor of London Boris Johnson is reported to have lead an obviously proud team of campaigners for the popular adoption of the new dot London domain. And the domain is in bright display at the Trafalgar Square early today. 

In a message of invitation to popular patronage of the domain, the campaigners wrote "For the first time in a generation, London businesses have an opportunity to claim a web address that associates them with London, one of the greatest cities on earth, and make their web address more relevant and memorable. It is hard to imagine that 25 years ago few of us had heard of the internet. Now we take it for granted." 

As far as Mayor Boris Johnson is concerned, "London leads the world in technology and our businesses are among the most dynamic and innovative anywhere so it is no surprise that so many see Dot London for the great opportunity it presents them."

US, UK advise users to

April 29, 2014 - The US Computer Emergency Readiness Team, US-CERT said on Monday that it is aware of active exploitation of a use-after-free vulnerability in Microsoft Internet Explorer (IE). This vulnerability affects IE versions 6 through 11 and could allow unauthorized remote code execution. It has therefore advised users to stop using Internet Explorer until Microsoft can fix it. 

The UK-CERT also made similar recommendation in its announcement which specifically advised user that 'to mitigate this vulnerability for machines running Windows XP, users should consider downloading Microsoft's Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET) 4.1, which in its default configuration should help to mitigate this vulnerability. Further detail on this and other mitigation measures are available on the Microsoft website. Users should also consider using alternative browsers, such as Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox; and ensure that their antivirus software is current and regularly updated.' 

This is an unusual alarm coming as it did from government agencies. Both agencies agree that Microsoft Internet Explorer contains a use-after-free vulnerability, which can allow a remote, unauthenticated attacker to execute arbitrary code on a vulnerable system.  

Although it is not strange that Computer Emergency Readiness Teams in UK and the US regularly issue announcement and advices on browsers, this is one of the few times that the CERT teams have recommended that people avoid using a specific browser.

Phase3 Telecom named Best Fibre Infrastructure Provider 

April 28, 2014 - Leading telecommunications infrastructure company, Phase3 Telecom, was named the National Fibre Infrastructure Provider at this years Beacon of ICT (BoICT) Awards last weekend in Lagos.  

The BoICT Awards is organised by Communication Week Media Limited publishers of Nigeria CommunicationsWeek magazine as a platform to acknowledge and celebrate key success stories in the Nigerian Communication Technology industry.  

Mr. Ken Nwogbo, Editor in-chief, CommunicationsWeek said the emergence of Phase3 Telecom as the Best Fibre infrastructure Provider in this year's award attests the hard work and commitment the firm is known for in the industry. 'They are currently the most reliable fibre infrastructure company in Nigeria and that must be applauded and celebrated. The honour is a testament of Phase3's talent, innovation, contribution and commitment to the growth of the CommTech industry and we are happy that Nigerians have recognized their hard work, sincerity and dedication towards the development of the sector'.

 CEO, Phase3 Telecom, Mr. Stanley Jegede,  expressed his delight at Phase3 being recognised for the modest efforts they have invested in using the best technology to build a strong, secure, quality network to ensure the connectivity of all Nigerians and the West African sub-region with the rest of the world.   

He said 'At Phase3 Telecom, ours is an uncompromising vision to always provide the most reliable, unparalleled and world-class broadband services to our clients and it is with humility that we thank everyone who voted for us and acknowledge the BoICT award.  We hope to continue to deliver on the promises that we have made to our customers, partners and the industry'. 

Finally, Microsoft has now acquired Nokia 

April 26, 2014 - Nokia with all its Smartphone paraphernalia finally went into the belly of Microsoft yesterday for a deal which is put at $7.2billion and which has taken 38 months to consummate from start to finish. 

Microsoft CEO, Satya Nadella, said Friday morning "Today we welcome the Nokia Devices and Services business to our family. The mobile capabilities and assets they bring will advance our transformation. Together with our partners, we remain focused on delivering innovation more rapidly in our mobile-first, cloud-first world."

With this, Microsoft now owns all Nokia Smartphone and mobile phone businesses, the assembly plants, design apparatus including all sales and marketing support. It will therefore start to sell Android phones. 

April 29, 2014 - Reuters reported that Nokia has floated the idea to return $3.1billion to shareholders and appoint Rajeev Suri, formerly Head of Nokia Networks as new CEO of Nokia.

NCC strengthens to enforce Compliance 

April 22, 2014 - The Nigerian Communications Commission NCC said in a late March report of its Compliance Monitoring Enforcement that it has strengthened to monitor all significant matters relating to the performance of all licensed telecoms service providers as specified in Section 89 of the Nigerian Communication Act 2003.  

In an end of 2014 report, the Compliance Monitoring Enforcement Department listed six enforcement items on which the Commission gave approval for implementation.  They include SIM registration, frequency interference, illegal operation, promotion and lottery, telephone billing, and cybercafe operation. 

An Interference on Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas Ltd, NLNGL, assigned radio frequency was traced to a microwave link deployed by INTELS Nigeria Ltd. The Commission therefore directed INTELS to shut down the offending equipment failing which appropriate enforcement action would be considered against the Company. 

INTELS is an integrated logistics solution provider in the Port Harcourt area and it is common knowledge that it is owned by Atiku Abubakar, a former Vice President of Nigeria. NLNGL also operates in the Port Harcourt and Bonny axis for its major operations. 

Illegal Operator gets a slap on the wrist 

April 22, 2014 - NCC says in its Compliance Monitoring Enforcement report for Quarter4, 2013 it discovered that Space Multimedia Telecoms Ltd was involved in the provision of certain telecoms services including Vehicular Tracking Services, Internet Services, Sales and Installation of telecoms equipment without the necessary authorisation from the Commission.   

Consequently, the Commission directed Space Multimedia Telecom to discontinue the provision/advertisement or sale of all telecoms services and equipment until regulatory certifications have been obtained.

W.TEC, WITIN partner with CommTech Ministry
 on Technology Club for girls

April 16. 2014 - The Federal Ministry of Communication Technology has harnessed the resources of Women's Technology Empowerment Centre - W.TEC and Women In Technology In Nigeria, WITIN, to implement a pilot scheme that sets to bridge the gender gap in the technology space and improve the IT proficiency of girls by establishing a Technology Club in schools.

The pilot program commenced at Federal Girls College Bwari, Abuja, with the training of teachers of computer from select Federal Government Girls Colleges on the courses they will be teaching their students via a three term online portal curriculum.

Minister of Communication Technology, Mrs Omobola Johnson, while launching the Club, identified 'the need to empowering our girls because they lag far behind their male counterparts in the Technology space'. She said the resulting gap is a big cost to the Economy in terms of earnings and talent loss and commended the hard work and commitment of two very intelligent women: Oreoluwa Somolu of W.TEC and Martha Alade of WITIN who had worked tirelessly to set up of the club's curriculum and other tools.


Abuja to host Internet Governance Forum July 10

April 16, 2014 - Nigeria will host the 3rd African Internet Governance Forum, AfIGF, in Abuja from July 10 to 12 to consider and adopt best ways to improve internet services and access in the continent. 

The forum is part of a global 10-year review of the World Summit on the Information Society. Other UNECA Programs include:

United Nations Regional Workshop on Data Dissemination and Communication

May 13 - May 15

High Level Panel Dialogue on Science, Technology and Innovation and the African transformation Agenda

May 19 - May 20 in Abuja, Nigeria
Review of Guideline "Policy Legal and Technical Requirements for Open Government in Africa" June 5 - June 6 in Pretoria, South Africa
Review of Methodological Framework for Undertaking and Preparing Country Science, Technology and Innovation Readiness Reports / Country STI Profiles June 17 - June 18
Review of Report "Assessing the Contribution of ICTs to Africa's Recent Economic Growth Performance" June 25 - June 26
For enquires, visit

Click here



Google buys Drone-maker Titan Aerospace to boost Access 

April 15, 2014 - Drones may have presented as sure solution to universal access medium to the internet. Google, two weeks after Facebook bought Acentia, has also bought Drone maker Titan Aerospace to raise the prospects of its world wide internet spread to unreached areas. 

A few weeks ago, Facebook announced it was acquiring British firm Ascenta. Google which has the Loon Project as on going did not name the price at which it is buying Titan Aerospace. The Loon Project is to use giant helium filled balloons as transport for signals that will guarantee access to remote areas of the world. 

Both Google and Titan Aerospace said on Monday that 'Titan Aerospace and Google share a profound optimism about the potential for technology to improve the world. It's still early days, but atmospheric satellites could help bring Internet access to millions of people, and help solve other problems, including disaster relief and environmental damage like deforestation'

Message from CEO MainOne 

April 14, 2014 - How time flies. Q1 is already over and it seems 2014 has just started. We are getting into our busy season of the year - a few important events for us - West Africa Connect in Dakar taking place April 16 & 17, and ITW in Chicago May 11-14. We hope to meet a lot of our regional and international partners at these venues to catch up on developments over the past year and to explore new opportunities going forward. 

For us, the past year has been about infrastructure growth, particularly metro fiber across Lagos, Nigeria and our new data center. The data center is targeted for completion by the end of Q2 and we are literally working round the clock. The good news is that most of the really difficult parts have been completed and our contractors are committed to timely completion. Already, there is a buzz in Lagos and MainOne is delighted to be at the top of the innovation curve again in our market. 

Kindly stop by to say hello if you plan to be in Dakar or Chicago or better, plan to visit the data center if you are in Lagos.

Nigeria's low ICT rating and its amazing transformation powers

April 13, 2014 - The founders of digital technology, the internet, cell technology and, for that matter, mobile applications, must be getting amazed at how distant they were at forecasting that what is called social media today would turn things around so hugely. Yes, they aimed to influence the way business was done and how peoples of the world lived, played, and prayed but they never thought of the giant leap it would make in the lives of Nigerians the way things are today. Ask many of them. They are still alive.

 Amazing isn't it! Nigerians are now asking questions! People who, only two decades ago, would hand over everything to God and looked the other way as those who governed destroyed everything around simply because they had been told to turn the other face if one side was slapped, are now asking questions. Now Nigerians are showing that they may no longer take more of the nonsense that constitutes government (in)actions. 

Less than 20 years ago, a telephone exchange in Ikeja got razed in the hands of its handlers and one Minister of Communications, a soldier, compelled subscribers of the Exchange to contribute what it cost to restore it to service. No apology. No compensation. Such impunity!.

Many who got dazed and pieced off enough to ask questions found out that Nigerians had paid almost all the bills before questions could even be asked. No fingers lifted! Some guys complained about paucity of bold lawyers to take government to court and one barrister took up the challenge. Three weeks into the case, the report was that the litigant had withdrawn the case from court and when pressed for why he did, he confessed that his family prevailed on him to do so.

But last week a guy who twitted photos of the jailbreak of the Department of State Security was detained in Abuja and a group of concerned Nigerians were promptly on the road in Lagos asking the security agents to account. 

That's a good turn around and a born again story for Nigeria all because information technology is influencing life and living. 

Senior officials of Government took a Sunday evening to attempt a whitewash of their inaction as they told Nigerians that they were rebasing economic indices after sleeping on duty for so long. They ended up proving that Nigeria is the largest economy with the largest population of the poor, the largest economy with the largest population of unemployed, the largest economy with the largest population of citizens living in darkness, and the largest economy with the worst infrastructure as rightly interpreted by critical Nigerians.  

There must be light at the end of the bad and dark tunnel if only Nigerians will continue to use ICT and ask questions!.

Drop Dropbox Campaign rises against Rice's appointment

April 11, 2014 - Many users of Dropbox have expressed anger and opposition to the inclusion of Condoleezza Rice on the Board of Dropbox. Many claimed that Rice's past record of involvement in the Iraqi war, torture policies of the Bush administration, unsubstantiated allegation of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and authorization of warrantless wiretaps make Rice unfit to sit on such important Board as Dropbox's. 

The popular cloud storage service provider announced the appointment of former US Secretary of State Ms Condoleezza Rice to its Board on Wednesday and almost immediately several users twitted their anger asking that Dropbox either drops Rice or users would drop Dropbox. 

Coming at a time when issues of wiretaps and fear of an unsafe internet were gaining ground, there is a basis to take the appointment as harmful to business. But Drop box argues that Condoleezza Rice would 'boost its international presence'. 

One of the concerned statements reads: "Rice not only spoke in favour of the Bush administration's warrantless wiretap program and expansive domestic surveillance program, she authorized the warrantless wiretap of UN Security Council members. Given everything we now know about the US's warrantless surveillance program, and Rice's role in it, why on earth would we want someone like her involved with Dropbox, an organization we are trusting with our most important business and personal data?" 

Condoleezza Rice is one controversial politician who is passionately admired by some just as she is passionately hated by others. 

Rumble in Trade as US makes move to police the world
Worries over Nigeria's planned local content measures

April 9, 2014 - The Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) in its 2014 report has raised concerns over Nigeria's local content measures in oil and gas and the fact that Nigeria has failed to respond to written questions. Ironically, Nigerian officials and legislature have made no progress in seeing a Petroleum Industry Bill, which contains the measures, through after several years. 

The report also features a Notorious Markets List which identifies select online and physical marketplaces that reportedly engage in and facilitate substantial piracy and counterfeiting and intellectual property rights (IPR) infringements. 'Sometime they may also pose health and safety risks to consumers as well as provide inadequate safeguards for consumer privacy and security' according to the US description of such offending markets. 

The Notorious Markets List does not purport to reflect findings of legal violations, nor does it reflect the United States Government's analysis of the general IPR protection and enforcement climate in the country concerned.  Many of the websites listed are in Asia.

FG appoints Peter Jack as DG-NITDA 

April 9, 2014 - The Federal Government has appointed Mr Peter Jack as Director General of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA).

Peter Jack held the position of Director of Training in the Agency. He took time away from 2007 to 2010 to study  Information Technology Policy at the International Information Technology Policy Programme, College of Engineering, Seoul National University, South Korea.

Cuba protests US sponsorship of Twitter service

 April 4, 2014 - Cuba has protested a US initiative which practically created a twitter-like service in the country calling it a 'subversive campaign by the US Government'. Cuba charged yesterday that the US is promoting 'destabilizing situations in the country in order to provoke changes in our political order, to which the government of the United States continues to dedicate budgets of millions of dollars every year'. 

US government admitted creating a service similar to twitter to promote democracy in Cuba. Officials say it is nothing secret nor covert under the U.S. government's definitions of those terms, but a mere 'democracy promotion' program. 

The Associated Press (AP) revealed that the US Government has invested $1.2m in the project and went about it clandestinely using subcontractors and foreign banks. 
















May 25, 2014 in Abuja Nigeria

Alex Badeh

"The good news for the girls is that we know where they are but we cannot tell you, we cannot come and tell you military secrets here. Just leave us alone, we are working, we would get the girls back."

"If we go with force, what will happen? (they will kill them). So nobody should come and say the Nigerian military does not know what it is doing. We know what we are doing, we can't go and kill our girls in the name of trying to get them back. So we are working.

 . . . . . . . . . .Air Marshal Alex Badeh

Air Marshal Alex Badeh is Nigeria's Chief of Defence Staff


Friday, June 27, 2014 at The Pentagon, USA 

John Kirby

Question: There was a report about the reduction of ISR flights over Nigeria today. I wondered if you could characterize or tell us if it's accurate for us to characterize if that was a separate policy decision or was it related to the need for more ISR over Iraq currently? 

Answer: REAR ADM. KIRBY: Let me start from a higher level point, which is we continue to support aggressive efforts to try to find these girls that were kidnapped from Nigeria by Boko Haram. Since the initial surge of effort, we have been joined by more coalition partners in that effort. And those capabilities have now been integrated to a much higher degree than they were before. And so I think the burden-sharing has more leveled out now. So are we flying exactly as many flights as we were at the outset? No. But the same level of effort is being sustained now internationally by everybody. So the same effort is being applied, same eyes are over. We don't have any better idea today than we did before about where these girls are, but there's been no letup of the effort itself

Question: But that being said, like, is it at all accurate or fair to draw a connection between the significantly increased demand over Iraq for ISR and the decreased -- you know, this announced decrease... 

Answer: REAR ADM. KIRBY: I'm not aware of any -- no. 

Question: (OFF-MIC) ISR flights? 

Answer: REAR ADM. KIRBY: No. The reason why -- the reason why the U.S.-specific effort in Nigeria or in that -- out of Chad has changed is more because we've been able to integrate the capabilities of other nations and, quite frankly, and you know this, Gordon -- I mean, ISR is at a premium in Africa, too. And some of those resources had to be taken off of other missions in Africa to assist in this effort, so it has allowed us to free up some of those resources for other missions in Africa. I'm not aware of any connection or link or tie to the efforts with Iraq and Nigeria. Does that answer your question?. 

Rear Admiral John Kirby is Press Secretary at the Pentagon, USA



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