Huawei launches own app store with the Huawei P20


Huawei is a giant in the smartphone world. They are in the same conversation as Samsung and Apple in terms of sales and market share. One thing Apple and Samsung have that Huawei doesn’t is a proprietary app store. Apple, of course, has the App Store and Samsung has the Galaxy Apps store. Huawei is launching their own app store called AppGallery and it will be on the Huawei P20.

appgallery1                   appgallery2

AppGallery will be available to all existing Huawei smartphones, but the Huawei P20 and P20 Pro will be the first to have it pre-installed. The app store is primarily geared towards the Asian markets with apps like Amap and WeChat. Common apps like Facebook and YouTube will also be available. The store is organized into five tabs: Featured, Category, Top, Manager, and Me. Users can rate and leave reviews in the store as well.

If you own a Huawei device, you can download AppGallery right now. Make sure you have 3rd-party app downloads enabled and visit this page on your phone. The app store will automatically start downloading. The app store should be a great addition to Huawei devices, especially those in the Asian market. Users in some areas of the world don’t have access to nearly as many apps on the Play Store. The AppGallery can help to fill that gap.

Source: xda Forum

Facebook CEO Zuckerberg decries data breach

Mark Zuckerberg Attends Mobile World Congress 2016
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg (pictured) lamented a “breach of trust” which allowed data mining company Cambridge Analytica to access hordes of user information for political gain.

Addressing the issue for the first time on Wednesday (21 March), Zuckerberg acknowledged in a post the social media company has a “responsibility to protect your data”. He noted actions taken years ago would prevent a similar occurrence from happening today, but added “there’s more we need to do” to keep user data safe.

Specifically, Zuckerberg outlined a new three-part plan which includes reducing the amount of user data collected by apps and revoking developer access to user data if an app hasn’t been used in three months. He also said Facebook will investigate all apps which had access to large amounts of data in the past and ban any developer that does not agree to a full audit.

Additionally, he revealed plans to roll out a tool at the top of users’ News Feed enabling them to see what apps have access to their data and revoke those permissions at will.

How it all started
Late last week, The New York Times and The Guardian reported Cambridge Analytica obtained information on as many as 50 million Facebook users, which was used to target voters ahead of the 2016 US election. The news prompted backlash not only from Facebook users themselves, but also lawmakers in Washington DC.

Zuckerberg confirmed University of Cambridge professor Aleksandr Kogan gathered the data via a platform app in 2013. He said Facebook learned Kogan had passed it on to the analytics company in violation of its terms of service in 2015.

The Facebook chief demanded Cambridge Analytica “formally certify they had deleted all improperly acquired data”. He conceded reports indicate Cambridge Analytica “may not have deleted the data as they had certified”, but said Facebook has hired a forensic audit company to investigate.

Zuckerberg added changes made in 2014 would “prevent any app like Kogan’s from being able to access so much data today”.

He concluded: “I started Facebook, and at the end of the day I’m responsible for what happens on our platform. I’m serious about doing what it takes to protect our community. While this specific issue involving Cambridge Analytica should no longer happen with new apps today, that doesn’t change what happened in the past. We will learn from this experience to secure our platform further and make our community safer for everyone going forward.”

Source: Mobile World Live, Facebook

MTN Ghana contributes ¢1.2bn to GoG Tax Net in 2017

MTN Logo

Telecoms Giant, MTN Ghana has posted a 68% increase in total taxes paid to Government of Ghana in 2017 as compared to the previous year. The company’s total revenue soared to GH₵3.4 billion in 2017, as against the GH₵2.77 billion revenue recorded in 2016.

Speaking at a media forum to present the company’s financial performance, Vice-President for Southern and East Africa and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of MTN Ghana, Ebenezer Twum-Asante announced the company retained profits of GH₵238 million last year, and had earmarked a ¢663m spend on capital expenditure for 2018.

Tax Breakdown
The mobile operator highlighted, in the face of a tough macro economic environment and a relatively stable regulatory environment, the company has had to accelerate new revenue streams to significantly contribute to National Development.

Efficient cost control to support their EBITDA was also key, but MTN’s clearly defined KPIs to ensure delivery with focus on customer experience, technology excellence, growing the data and digital agenda while igniting their commercial performance is clearly aiding the company’s remarkable performance.

Total payments to the Ghana Revenue Authority in 2017 was ¢1.06bn which translates into Communication Service Tax (CST), VAT, Duties, Corporate Taxes, PAYE, National Fiscal Stabilization Levy (NFSL) and Withholding Taxes (WHT) on Suppliers and Dividends.

The remaining ¢160m went to the Regulator (NCA) and Ghana Investment Fund for Electronic Communications (GFIEC) as payments for Regulatory fees and Surcharge on International Incoming Traffic (SIIT).

MTN Ghana alone contributed to 3% of Ghana’s total tax revenue collected in 2017.

Job Creation
MTN Ghana’s commitment to employment both directly and indirectly is spiraling close to 600k. These are jobs created on the back of MTN’s ecosystem of partnerships and suppliers (500k), and through the business drive to go digital using mobile financial services as the payment backbone (90k+).

MTN Mobile Money
The mobile money (MoMo) business has an active subscriber base of 8.3m with direct relationship to 16 commercial banks. The company paid ¢71m to its subscribers as interests for using mobile money in 2017. Currently the MoMo business has an active agent base of 90k people who earned an average monthly commission of ¢89m cedis in 2017.

Ebenezer Asante, CEO of MTN Ghana, Vice-President for MTN Southern and East Africa

Capital Expenditure
Ebenezer announced, that MTN plans to spend ¢663m as its 2018 capital expenditure. This outlay would go into 695km fibre rollout, 1,100 new sites on its 3G network to improve population coverage by 27%. 230 new sites for coverage extension and capacity under LTE rollout and 300 new sites for coverage extension and capacity for the 2G networks.

He further stated, that the company has expanded its network to underserved areas from 44.5% to 70% between 2016 and 2017 and is looking forward to reach 400 additional communities at the end of 2018 by building another 200 of these rural sites for coverage extension.

At the forum, the Chief Technical Officer of MTN, Mohammed Rufai, bemoaned the state of fibre cuts to be one of their biggest challenges today, with over 1,200 cuts to their cables within the year 2017.

Corporate Social Responsibility
MTN Ghana Foundation, the CSR arm of the mobile operator, has over the last decade executed over 142 projects at a cost of about ¢60 million which has directly and indirectly impacted over 4million Ghanaians.

In 2018, the company will be building the New Juaben SHS library and ICT Centre, Nhyiaeso Basic 6 Classroom Block, Telecoms Lab in GIMPA, Juaso Palm Oil Production Unit and completing the Tema General Hospital Maternity Block and many others.

In his brief remarks, CEO of the Ghana Chamber of Telecommunications, Ing. Kenneth Ashigbey commended MTN for a great financial performance within a challenging economic environment while providing jobs and scholarships to Ghanaians. He also lauded MTN on the several innovations that have under pinned their business, especially the SMART and cost effective rural telephony systems that won a global award at the just ended Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

Derek B. Laryea
(Head of Communications at the Telecoms Chamber)


UK pumps £25M into specialist 5G schemes

The UK government is set to invest £25 million across six 5G projects as it pursues an aim of being a “world leader” in businesses based around the new technology.


Each project will receive between £2 million and £5 million in grants and will also be part funded by private companies. The six programmes have a remit to explore 5G rollout or applications deemed beneficial to the country, including smart farming with drones, IoT applications for healthcare in the home, and new manufacturing technology.

Margot James, UK minister of state for Digital and the Creative industries, said: “The ground-breaking projects announced today will help to unlock 5G and ensure the benefits of this new technology are felt across the economy and wider society.”

The six chosen projects are: rural initiatives the 5G RuralFirst Partnership and 5G Rural Integrated Testbed; 5G Smart Tourism – centred on the leisure industry; trial and testbed group the Worcestershire 5G Consortium; public sector research group Liverpool 5G Testbed; and AutoAir: 5G Testbed for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles.

Digital strategy
The funding is part of the UK’s wide-reaching digital strategy, announced by the government in March 2017. The plan includes an aim to generate £1 billion in private and public sector funds to accelerate deployment of next generation digital infrastructure, and create new business opportunities based around 5G.

The UK government’s Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport said the progress made so far on its strategy had ensured the country remaing “the number one location for tech investment in Europe.”

Despite the new investment and ongoing schemes, gaining a global leadership in 5G technologies will prove a tough task, with other countries making rapid progress towards developing and harnessing the technology.

Several operators and regulators around the world are projecting 5G launches in 2018 or 2019, with tough competition even within Europe as countries across the continent talk-up their prospects.

Source: Mobile World Live