This Week in Tech: M-PESA May be Separated from Safaricom and More Weekly Updates


    In case you have been grinding so hard that you have no idea what has been cooking in the tech world, this is for you.

    Of course, the Safaricom-Mpesa story tops the list of trending weekly updates. I mean, it’s that big.

    The weekly tech trends:

    1. M-PESA may be separated from Safaricom

    The struggle to reduce Safaricom’s dominance continues especially after Analysys Mason, an Independent International Consultant, tabled a report suggesting that M-Pesa should be separated from Safaricom.

    As expected, Uncle Bob did not take this kindly and argued that such a step would only confine Kenyan companies to fight small battles and that competition is global, not local.

    He rubbished the arguments that Safaricom is too big and termed this as “small minded arguments” while talking to Sofia Wanuna on her morning show on KTN.

    This is definitely a story worth following up on.

    2. A refurbished Galaxy Note 7? 

    News of Samsung planning to refurbish and sell Samsung Galaxy Note 7 spread fast.

    Turns out that these were mere allegations.

    Samsung India termed such reports as “incorrect.” Still on this, kindly take a second to take part in a poll on the page. Yes? Thanks.

    3. Bamba Group raises Ksh. 110 million 

    Bamba Group, a Kenyan technology start-up, has raised Ksh. 110 million in the first round of investment with the aim of expanding operations in the region.

    The firm was launched two years ago and it provides data collection and analysis services for companies.

    This funding comes after the company landed a Ksh. 25,000,000 investment deal with Darshan Chandaria on the Lion’s Den last year. Go Bamba! Way to go!

    4. Yahoo and Verizon finally agree

    Yahoo and Verizon have finally agreed on a price tag for buying the former’s internet core business.

    Yahoo Inc. will pocket $4.48 billion. The closing price is $350 million lower than the initially agreed price.

    Why is this?

    The acquisition price was revised because of massive cyber-attacks at Yahoo: the internet company recently disclosed that it had faced massive security breaches that affected over a billion users.

    5. Samsung holds the 8th annual African forum in South Africa

    The forum kicked off on the 23rd February and ends on the 25th of February 2017.

    The main agenda was roll out Samsung’s agenda for Africa for the year 2017.

    Jung Hyun Park, Samsung MD for East Africa, pointed out that Kenyans demand the best tech and that they have “sophisticated taste”.

    6. Huawei unveils GR5 2017 into the Kenyan market

    GR5 2017 comes with a 5.5-inch screen, 2.1octa-core processor, 12MP primary camera, 3340mAH battery, and runs on Android Marshmallow v6.0.

    This comes at a time when the tech company unveiled The Honor V9 smartphone with 5.7-inch screen, a Kirin 960, Nougat, 6GB RAM, and a QHD display in China.

    7. Tala raises $30 million

    Tala has announced that it raised $30 million to expand into new markets, build its internal team, and speed up product development processes.

    The financing was dubbed Series B and it was spearheaded by IVP and Ribbit Capital.

    Other participants included Lowercase Capital, Data Collective, Collaborative Fund, and Female Founders Fund (F3).

    Currently, the mobile app loan service operates in East Africa and Southeast Asia.

    8. “Not so fast” High Court to GOK

    The High Court suspends the government’s plans to tap our phones.

    The court stopped the Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) from implementing the controversial mobile spying system.

    CA has maintained that the process will not include accessing the SIM toolkits since it would be relying on electronic interchange register to detect illegal devices.

    Most people are not buying this, as expected. Are you?

    9. iOS 10 high compatibility 

    iOS 10 is the latest OS by Apple.

    iOS 10 is the latest version and can be installed in 79% of devices while its predecessor, iOS 9 only accommodated 16%.

    Definitely a move in the right direction.

    10. Post more snaps with Instagram Galleries 

    Instagram Galleries now allows you to post 10 photos and videos at a go.

    You no longer have to depend on photo apps such as Layout and PhotoGrid. Good news right there for instagramers.

    Have yourself an informed last weekend of February.

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