Africa: a tech adopter or innovator?

Bill Buckle, strategic director and functional consultant/analyst at Dac Systems, writes in this article that "In terms of the capacity to use IT, Africa cannot be looked at as a single homogenous region – some areas are still under-developed and some are far along the development path. Most developing regions (and Africa is no exception) abound in examples of systems that are not used for lack of basic ICT education, a lack of secondary equipment, reliable power supply or adequate communications infrastructure.

Standard commercial PCs and IT equipment require "normal office conditions" to function effectively – reasonably temperature-controlled, relatively dust-free environments with stable power supplies. In rural areas, which constitute the greater part of Africa, these conditions simply do not prevail and do not suit the use of the typical, inexpensive, off-the-shelf PC.

Infrastructure to maintain this equipment is rare outside of the main towns or even major cities.

To date, hard selling from manufacturers and vendors, perceptions that the latest technology will somehow solve problems, donations from well-meaning organisations, political self-interest and pressure from computer professionals ("push") have done more to spread computing in Africa than user demand because real problems are being solved ("pull").

The full article can be read here

Sub-Saharan Africa to accelerate mobile broadband ...
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