Uganda starts making solar smartphones

Tuesday December 29 2020
commodity01pix

Racheal Nakiyingi, a sales representative displays the solar charged smartphone at the Jinja Road outlet. PHOTO/STEPHEN OTAGE.

By Stephen Otage

Simi Mobile, the company assembling laptops, smart and feature phones in Namanve industrial park, has started manufacturing solar charged smartphones, to cater for clients outside the electricity grid.

Speaking at their first anniversary celebrations last week, David Beecham Okware, the executive director said they introduced the solar charged phone to address the plight of 60 per cent of the population which is living outside the electricity grid. They also want to make it cheap and user friendly for government services.

“60 per cent of Uganda does not have power and this phone is coming to answer that question. The phone costs Shs35,000 and we are asking government to make it cheaper so that it can be used for disseminating government information,” he said.

Ms Evelyne Anite, the State Minister of Finance for Investment , said last November when the investors who set up the factory approached her with the proposal to start assembling the phones, she was quite skeptical. 

“This is the company which has taken the name of Uganda to the world of IT manufacturing. We are very proud that you are selling to Morocco and Hungary and created over 400 jobs,” she said.

Dr Hatwib Mugasa, the executive Director National Information Technology Authority, said they have been working with Simi Mobile to develop temperature guns which have been in high demand since the Coronavirus broke out. As a result, NITA-U has acquired the capacity enabling it now to certify all IT equipment in the country to ensure quality of service.
sotage@ug.nationmedia.com

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