Speaking of development and progress in Africa, technology has played a big role, just like the rest of the world. But it is experiencing a meteoric rise with an indicator of the proliferation of startups which as a preferred area of ICT. These ICTs, known as information and communication technologies, enable young entrepreneurs to create a better future for themselves. “ICTs offer tremendous opportunities” to African youth, says Ahmed Alfi, managing director of Sawari Ventures, an Egyptian venture capital firm focused on new technologies.
“Software development is the only sector where an investment of one thousand dollars can bring in a million. ” Over the past five years, the installation of fiber-optic and infrastructure cables has allowed an unprecedented degree of connection to the African continent. Internet access costs have declined and new markets have opened up for content, software, mobile applications, and social networks. From Namibia to Ghana, from Dar es Salaam to Dakar, from Cape Town to Cairo, African youth are using ICT to stimulate growth, create businesses and forge a future.
For tools related to ICT Africa is a huge market as it is one of the six of the ten fastest growing economies in the world. It is the second largest market in the world for mobile telephones “smartphones” which are sold four times more than computers. According to the IC Works blog, between August 2011 and February 2012 the number of Facebook users in Africa increased by 165%. This growth of technology synchronizes because the country or countries such as Ghana or Senegal are experiencing a boom for internet use of countries like Somalia barely having 1% of their population connected.
To these are added the demonization of the Internet which is accused of being a means of perdition for the youth. Even if the polemic of the relevance of the Internet persists and even if the progression of technology has been welcomed by young people, adults adhere more and more to it and it manifests itself in the fact that 7 adults in Senegal out of 10 communicates through the social network such as WhatsApp, Facebook, and Viber. I think that even if Africa still has to travel a huge distance to access real technology development, it is already launched with an excellent start. And if according to economists Africa would be the next continent to reach the rails of the technology development locomotive.
CREDIT: Youssoupha Diop (Give1Project Kaolack)