#SMWLagos is set to trend again in 2015 with the upcoming conference already slated for February next year. The theme is an interesting one! It goes a step further from last year’s ‘A connected Africa‘ to ‘The Rise of A Connected Africa‘ this time focusing on the upwardly mobile. This infers that only the upwardly mobile get to surf the rising wave of the connected continent. However, how true is this?
It’s now become common knowledge that Africa is indeed a mobile continent with more than 80% mobile phone penetration – be it smart or feature phone. It even gets more interesting when we take a look at internet penetration credited to mobile technology. Smartphones are increasingly getting cheaper with time, Android leading the way with brands like Samsung and LG. Recently, Tecno, a Chinese company, opened an Android manufacturing plant in Lagos, to serve the African market.
Government with policies and a competitive environment for telecoms have now seen innovative ways of getting Africa connected – including affordable and variation in data plans, up to contract that come with free devices. So how far have we come and how far do we have to go in order to become a truly connected Africa? Perhaps a more pressing question for now is what has come of the level of connectedness that we have achieved?
The Upward Mobile series
In an attempt to answer this, I reached out to a number of people who understand and have benefited from a connected Africa having decided to be upward mobile and will be sharing their responses over the weeks and months leading to Social Media Week 2015. You too can get involved by tweeting your own take, experience, and insight on the theme – Upwardly Mobile: The Rise of A Connected Africa. Tweet at @NubiKay and @SMWLagos with hash tags #smw15 #ConnectedAfrica.