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Why Huawei Sued Samsung

On May 25, 2016, Huawei filed lawsuits for patent infringement against Samsung in the United States and China, including District Court for the Northern District of California and Shenzhen Intermediate People's Court.

In these lawsuits, Huawei seeks compensation for Samsung’s infringement of Huawei’s intellectual property, including valuable patents relating to cellular communications technology and software used by Samsung's mobile phones.

As a major holder of standard essential patents relating to cellular networks, Huawei is committed to licensing these patents on fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory terms, but it believes that it is entitled to reasonable compensation from firms that use its technology without such a license.

Ding Jianxing, President of Huawei's Intellectual Property Rights Department said that Huawei believes that industry players should work together to push the industry forward through open, joint innovation.

“We have seen a large number of patent cross-licensing agreements signed in the industry to ensure legitimate use of technologies, as this is the basis for the healthy development of the smartphone industry. With such a belief, we have actively negotiated with other patent holders in the industry for cross-licensing over the years. Thus far, we have signed cross-licensing agreements with dozens of our competitors." Ding said.

He added, "We hope Samsung will respect Huawei's R&D investment and patents, stop infringing our patents and get the necessary license from Huawei, and work together with Huawei to jointly drive the industry forward." As a leading ICT solutions and smart device provider and patent owner, Huawei invests heavily in research and development.

In 2015 alone, Huawei invested CNY59.6 billion (US$9.2 billion), or 15% of its annual revenue, in the research and development of new technologies, new products, and wireless communications standards.Huawei’s substantial investment in R&D over the years has resulted in a large number of high-value patents.

According to the statistics published by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), in 2015 Huawei topped the list of international patent filers for the second consecutive year with 3,898 published PCT applications, or an additional 456 applications over the previous year. As of December 31, 2015, Huawei has been granted 50,377 patents around the world. These patents relate to LTE, operating systems, and user interface, which are highly valuable to smartphones.

MTN Secures $114m Syndicated Infrastructure Credit Facility

MTN Uganda last week announced the successful closure of a $114m syndicated credit facility which will be used towards the development of telecommunication infrastructure in the country. This is the second substantial credit facility of this nature that MTN Uganda has secured in the past seven years.

Stanbic Bank Uganda acted as Global Co-ordinator, arranging the syndication between themselves and three other international banks with significant local presence; Citi Bank, Standard Chartered Bank and Barclays Bank. The credit facility consisted of a dual-currency Medium Term Loan and Revolving Credit Facility, raised in both local currency (Uganda shilling equivalent of USD74m) and foreign currency (USD40m).

Due to extensive appetite from the commercial banks participating, the syndication was oversubscribed by 1.2 times and financial closure was attained only 3 months after launching, in spite of lacklustre market conditions and limited Uganda shilling liquidity. Announcing the transaction in Kampala, MTN Uganda Chief Executive, Brian Gouldie, said the facility, was, “a measure of the MTN Group’s commitment to Uganda.” 

“By end of last year, MTN Uganda had repaid all the loans arranged under the 2009 syndication, and we were completely debt free. This placed us in an ideal position to fund our continued aggressive network roll-out of high speed data capacity across Uganda. Subscribers have noticed intensive competition in the industry and are demanding for both quality voice and data products,” Gouldie said. 

MTN Uganda has also invested in acquiring a permanent home by purchasing the former BAT offices on Jinja Road as the new headquarters.  The company’s capital investment for 2016 is planned at UGX 283.3 billion. In 2017 the company plans to invest USD79.9 million UGX 299 billion.

According to Gouldie, the credit facility is an indication of the confidence that banks have in MTN Uganda and also reflects the confidence that the financial sector has in the Ugandan economy and the prospects of the Ugandan telecommunication sector. 

Patrick Mweheire, Stanbic Bank’s Chief Executive said, “The successful and expeditious execution of a five year, multi-currency, USD114m syndicated credit facility is a testament to the market’s confidence in MTN Uganda’s plans to improve the country’s telecommunications industry.” 

“Stanbic Bank is delighted to have played a lead role in arranging this facility. We believe this has proven that Ugandan banks have the capacity to co-ordinate and deliver debt solutions that enable large corporates to realize their ambitions,” he added.  

Africell Unveils May Mother’s Month Promotion

May is the month dedicated to mothers. Last Sunday Mother’s Day was celebrated worldwide with media awash of happy Mother’s Day messages. As a reward for being nation builders, Africell has launched the May Mothers promotion together with Vision group that will see Africell subscribers call into all Vision group radio stations across the country to win money for themselves. Africell will then double the amount won as a reward for the winners mother.

The Africell May Mama promotion which kicked off at the start of the month will have a total of over 100 million up for grabs. Speaking at the launch, Africell Uganda’s commercial director Milad Khairallah said Africell recognizes the role mothers play in society and therefore found it fit to have them rewarded in the month that celebrates them.

He said “We want Mother’s Day celebrated in style. Our mothers are the reason we celebrate mother’s day. It’s important that we show them the love and gratitude that they deserve. As Africell, we will always give our subscribers and their relations the best of what our network offers. We encourage everyone to buy an Africell simcard, participate in the Double Dimes promotion that will have them win money for themselves and their mothers”

Africell have always led the way with promotions that are customer centric and rewarding for their growing number of subscribers. The telecom company has strongly put emphasis on the need for affordable telecom services to enhance growth of communication for business and development.

Africell Commercial Director Milad Khairallah insists their offers will change the scope of telephony in Uganda. He says “At Africell, we still consider our customers as our biggest asset and as such we will continue to give them the best and most affordable rates of any network. Our range of cheap services will continue to flow as we grow”.

 

Africell Unveils May Mother’s Month Promotion

May is the month dedicated to mothers. Last Sunday Mother’s Day was celebrated worldwide with media awash of happy Mother’s Day messages. As a reward for being nation builders, Africell has launched the May Mothers promotion together with Vision group that will see Africell subscribers call into all Vision group radio stations across the country to win money for themselves. Africell will then double the amount won as a reward for the winners mother.

The Africell May Mama promotion which kicked off at the start of the month will have a total of over 100 million up for grabs. Speaking at the launch, Africell Uganda’s commercial director Milad Khairallah said Africell recognizes the role mothers play in society and therefore found it fit to have them rewarded in the month that celebrates them.

He said “We want Mother’s Day celebrated in style. Our mothers are the reason we celebrate mother’s day. It’s important that we show them the love and gratitude that they deserve. As Africell, we will always give our subscribers and their relations the best of what our network offers. We encourage everyone to buy an Africell simcard, participate in the Double Dimes promotion that will have them win money for themselves and their mothers”

Africell have always led the way with promotions that are customer centric and rewarding for their growing number of subscribers. The telecom company has strongly put emphasis on the need for affordable telecom services to enhance growth of communication for business and development.

Africell Commercial Director Milad Khairallah insists their offers will change the scope of telephony in Uganda. He says “At Africell, we still consider our customers as our biggest asset and as such we will continue to give them the best and most affordable rates of any network. Our range of cheap services will continue to flow as we grow”.

 

Ugandans Complete Huawei Seeds For The Future Training

Ugandan ICT talents sent to China to undertake a two weeks technological training known as Huawei Seeds for the Future in Beijing, the capital city of China, and Shenzhen, where the headquarters of Huawei technologies are located, have successful finished the training.

The 10 talents who concluded the training were selected by the Government of Uganda. These were trained in areas of telecom strategy, Cyber Security, Safe City, Smart City, ICT industry trends and newest technology and equipment.

This program was started globally in 2008 by Huawei to nurture professionals who are urgently needed to drive development of the ICT industry in countries where it operates.

Henry Ludigo, one of the 10 talents encouraged government to increase more of these trainings for more Ugandans, open up more specialized ICT training centers and deploy some of these technologies to cut crime, easy storage through cloud computing and employment opportunities. 

“We are delighted to have taken part in this training. We visited Beijing where we learnt Chinese language, way of life, calligraphy and writing and also learned the significance of various historical sites like Great Wall, Summer Palace, Forbidden City and Temple of Heaven”, said Ludigo at the training closing ceremony in Shenzhen on Friday 29th April, 2015. 

He added that, “We also had extensive training in latest technologies such as: Cyber security and Safe City where crime rate will be reduced if deployed in Kampala and I also learned the importance of cloud computing in relation to storing of large and sensitive data. We also toured around Song Shan Lake, Huawei’s core production plant where ICT solutions, components, equipment and mobile devices are manufactured.” 

According to Stanley Chyn, the Managing Director of Huawei Uganda, Huawei Technologies is to take 10 talents for this training program every year and also offer more training courses through internship as per the recent MOU signed with the government of Uganda.

MTN Business Support Center To Uplift Small Businesses

Small businesses will now get personalized customer support, discreet and confidential services from telecom services provider MTN Uganda at a new 24/7 business support center. The new business support center that will be fully dedicated to Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) is located at Nyonyi gardens, opposite Kololo Airstrip, in Kampala.

This has been done to further consolidate MTN’s effort to support and enable SMEs in Uganda. The innovative solution has been designed to help offer more value and control for business owners, while enabling them manage their costs with greater efficiency.

Brian Gouldie, the MTN’s CEO, stated that MTN continues to inspire and enable the growth of ‘our business customers in Uganda through integrated telecommunications solutions that ensure efficiency and productivity’

“Under MTN Business, MTN has always embraced technology to create innovative solutions that allow our customers to focus on their core businesses as we enable their technology and communication needs. Additionally, our commitment to entities is, whatever the business requirements, MTN Business has a solution.” he added. 

New bundles

MTN Business has also introduced two new bundle solutions, aimed at offering affordable value to its Business customers; the Kazi bundle targeting SMEs and the trader community and the Business Combo focusing on the unique needs of large corporations.

Details of the Kazi Bundle:

Kazi

Minutes

SMS

Data

Validity

Price

To MTN

Off-net

To MTN

Off-net

Small

800

400

800

100

3GB

30 days

160,000

Medium

1,500

500

800

100

5GB

30 days

229,000

Large

2,000

800

1,200

250

10GB

30 days

330,000

Extra Large

3,000

800

1,200

850

20GB

30 days

499,000

The Kazi bundle comprises of a combination of voice-call minutes, SMS’s to all networks, bundled with data designed in packages designed for multiple users to suit their varying communication needs. MTN Business customers using the Kazi bundle are able to customize their selected bundle according to their specific needs for voice calls, Data or SMS in varying combinations. Users of the Kazi bundles also get to make free calls within their groups as long as a bundle is active.

While speaking to the media and business partners at the home of MTN Business, Nyonyi Gardens in Kololo, MTN Business General Manager, Reginald Kafeero said organizations operate within planned budgets, and therefore, the introduction of the Business Combo ensures that corporations have More Value, More Choice and More Control over their financial and human resources.

 “Kazi bundles are designed for business owners who would like to manage a fixed communication budget, while still providing communication benefits for their employees, business partners or associates,” Kafeero further explained. 

In a move to meet the needs of its broader business custoners, MTN has also introduced The MTN Business Combo bundle, offering Voice, SMS, Data bundles, and International bundles which MTN’s corporate clients can assign to their employees in different package options to suit the role each employee serves in driving the organization’s business agenda.

What makes the MTN Business Combo even more ideal for organizations is that these packages the Business Combo bundles can be auto-renewed every month and activated centrally for all employees which ensures administrative efficiency.

Mr. Kafeero noted that SMEs create around 80% of the regions employment, with formal small and medium sized enterprises contributing up to 45% of the total employment and 33% of the national income (GDP) in emerging economies.

 

 

E-Commerce Giants Kaymu Rewards Customers To Celebrate Two Years Of Good Business

 

The e-commerce giant Kaymu is celebrating two years of business in Uganda. In return, they have rewarding customers who purchase from their online marketplace during the month of April. Some lucky Kaymu shoppers have already been rewarded as part of the promotion. 

Customers remain loyal where it benefits them, whether in terms of convenience, attractive prices or a generally satisfying experience – so when they receive an unexpected reward from a company, it’s a pleasant surprise. Rewards remind the customer that you’re aware of them, that you appreciate their purchases, and that you’re willing to go above and beyond to keep them happy - And Kaymu seems to know this very well. 

Kaymu, which is Uganda’s largest online marketplace, launched the ‘Lucky Dip’ giveaway promotion to celebrate two years of business - and to thank customers for their support. Kaymu Uganda’s Marketing Manager, Stacey Mwesezi said it’s all about giving back to customers.

"We recently celebrated Kaymu’s 2nd birthday, so we’re thanking our customers for embracing our platform and bringing us this far. We’re not able to give a gift to every single customer we have, but we’ll give every customer who places an order during this promotion, an equal chance of winning – that’s why it’s called a lucky dip." 

Considering how convenient Kaymu is for both buyers and sellers, its success in Uganda is unsurprising. “The option of paying cash on delivery makes our buyers comfortable. Having an office in downtown Kampala makes our sellers comfortable, since many of them are based here too. Kaymu's success comes from understanding exactly what makes our Ugandan buyers and sellers comfortable and then adapting our business accordingly” she asserts. 

The prizes offered to the lucky winners included Ushs500,000 cash, Hellofood vouchers, Bluetooth speakers, 5 gigabytes of data courtesy of MTN, CV checks and interview training courtesy of Everjobs, a camping chair and umbrella courtesy of Tusker Malt and one night stay for two people at the luxury Lake Victoria Serena Hotel, courtesy of Jovago.

Africell, Airtel In Internet Fibre Dispute

Airtel is being accused of diverting over 200km of internet fibre belonging to Africell to their lines. Airtel however doesn’t admit frustrating Africell. This dispute comes at a time when the telecom service providers are competing to be the leading internet solutions provider.

Industry sources say Africell discovered much of their expansive fiber cable in areas like Entebbe, Bwaise, Bugolobi, 6th street in Kampala, Jinja and some parts of Northern Uganda intentionally diverted by Airtel to their network leaving the owners Africell protesting and crying foul.

Africell team’s efforts to try solve the challenge amicably have been turned down by a bullying Airtel who continue to play dirty in the face of evidence. Africell Chief Operating Officer Mohammad Ghaddar says Airtel’s move is not only unprofessional but against the rules of fair play.

He asserted that “We believe in fair play as Africell. We are investing in telecom infrastructure to give our customers the best service. We are disappointed in the motives of our competition who are frustrating our efforts to deliver services”

In Uganda, when it comes time to choosing mobile internet service, there’s more to put into consideration than just price. Some mobile data networks offer data speeds that are demonstrably faster than others. This is what Africell has been doing over the past months-investing in their fibre –optic reach to serve their customers better.

However, incidences like these where Africell’s infrastructure growth plans are being hindered is regrettable. What remains to be seen now is whether unfair practices by the major players like Airtel against the growing brands like Africell won’t destabilize the telecom industry’s growth.

Already, other players continue to point fingers at the two leading telecoms who are not only kicking down the smaller players but also encroaching on their capacity to deliver credible services to their customers.

“We wish to clarify in the most unequivocal terms that the allegations levied by Africell Uganda against Airtel Uganda are unfounded. The allegations are full of falsehoods intended to injure the reputation of Airtel Uganda. We take exception to the allegations and shall explore all legal remedies available to protect our reputation and hold Africell Uganda liable to the full extent of the law,” reads in part a statement from Airtel.

 

Huawei Gets URA Customs Compliance Nod

 

Uganda Revenue Authority has awarded Huawei Uganda with an Authorized Economic Operator Certificate for its customs compliance practices. Huawei will now enjoy trade facilitation benefits of having its customs clearance done in eight hours prior to the previous four or five days. The result of this benefit will enable Huawei provide better services to local business customers and product end-users. 

The Authorized Economic Operator Program which is also a world Customs Organization Standard was started by Uganda Revenue Authority in an effort to facilitate and perform its numerous functions in the collection of government Revenue, protection of Society and award of compliant organization to the custom laws, regulations and procedures. It not only enhances government efficiency, helps enterprises improve the internal management, enjoy the trade facilitation measures, but also create more value for the East African Community 

“URA is happy to partner with the industry leading company like Huawei since it has global experience. Huawei is qualified as AEO in both China and Uganda, which makes business simplified and quality of services improved since there shall be importation with ease. We look at having customs clearance at a time below eight hours with AEO”, said Dicksons Kateshumbwa, the Acting Commissioner General of Uganda Revenue Authority. 

“Huawei is honored to be an Authorized Economic Operator, as a model company and industry leader with an international value chain, using global best practices. This is a very important recognition to Huawei Uganda as a local corporate citizen because we are now among the only five Huawei subsidiaries to achieve this status, among the 170 Huawei serving countries and regions in the World”, said Mr. Stanley Chyn, the Managing Director of Huawei. 

Chyn also noted that the AEO Certificate would benefit Huawei in reducing the cost of doing business such as delayed customs clearance days that have an average five days to be reduced to only eight hours, improve quality of service that places Huawei in a better position to offer better services to customers, being trustworthy and business compliant and improve internal control systems which means internal business risks are reduced hence business future guaranteed.

Tecno Boom J8: Made For Music Lovers

 

Every smartphone that is put on the market has its own strength. The latest addition in the smartphone market, the Tecno Boom J8, has been dubbed the music smart phone because of it music prowess.

The music smart phone which is an upgrade on predecessor Tecno Boom J7 boasts of a 5.5” HD IPS touch screen, 13MP auto-focus rear/ 5.0MP front camera with Dual LED flash, extra 16GB ROM  expandable to 128GB and powered by 2GB RAM.

Hudah Nakazinga, the senior products consultant at Tecno Mobile, speaking at the launch of the phone at Africell head office said that the selling point for the Tecno Boom J8 was what it can do in terms of music. She said the phone has been made to suit needs of music lovers.

The Tecno Boom J8 comes with free boom headphones, pre-installed boom player app and boom Max app, a music equalisation feature. The sound output of this slick but powerful phone is of quality.

The Tecno Boom J8 which was launched on the market by Africell Uganda and Tecno Mobile Thursday morning is now available in Africell stores. It will cost only Ushs499, 000 and comes with a free 4G LTE simcard plus 3.5GB of data valid for one month.

Tecno is set to unveil its own mobile Operating system, HiOS which comes with launch of new Tecno Boom J8. The new Tecno Boom J8 is Tecno’s first device to host the brand’s signature HiOS operating system.

Hong Ji, the Tecno Mobile Operator Sales Manager in Uganda said at the launch that the mobile giant maker has been working hard to create a signature experience on all its mobile devices that users easily identify and associate with.

“What HiOS has helped us achieve is a unique user experience, one like no other. TECNO users can now tell their favorite brand by merely interacting with its UI. HiOS feels different and acts different; a lot more intuitive than the android OS 5.1 which forms its backbone operating system,” Hong said.

Milad Khairallah, Africell’s Chief Commercial Officer said Africell was committed to giving their customers the best of the telecom service. “We will continue to unveil products, services and innovative give-aways for our subscribers who have made us the number one telecom network in Uganda. The launch of high-end brands like Tecno with our service is part of that belief and commitment.”

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