Startimes

Africa Cities hold the Future of Tech, not Silicon valley

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According to an optimistic observer, Silicon Valley’s days may be slowly coming an end as the future of technology seems to lie further beyond San Francisco’s atmosphere.  According to Andela’s founder and CEO, Jeremy Johnson, the future of tech will be written in Lagos, Nairobi, Kampala, and cities across Africa, “We believe that Africa is going to emerge as a very significant player in the global tech scene,” he was confident.

Andela is a global engineering organization which connects top 2% of Africa’s best developers with other global companies.

Currently, Africa has 300 tech hubs across 42 countries and 93 cities, a very significant development since there was none just ten years ago. Kenya and Nigeria are among the innovations hubs which are growing the fastest, being the centre of start-up activities. With increased globalization, companies are comfortable with widely distributed teams for human capital, an advantage which the tech industry has. African harbor this kind of human resources and this is making people really interested in the continent.

The organization has about 400 developers participating in its immersion program which goes for 6 months. Andela carries out its operations in Lagos and Kenya and has now opened new offices in Kampala, Uganda. The organization has played a crucial role in providing software developers with opportunities for employment, which is usually challenging for graduates.

About 78% of Kenyans have internet access. This resource, coupled with mass urbanization, internet penetration, smartphone adoption and quick population growth have all contributed to the attractiveness that Africa has attained to investors.

In addition to mobile banking and e-commerce leading, Africa’s agriculture, solar technology, and tech race are significant sectors as well. Innovators in this sectors are being embraced positively and being applied to sell real-life problems. For instance, in Ghana, A start-up by the name Ignitia has developed a weather model which helps farmers predict the availability of water, which in turn helps them manage daily activities, boost food production and increase production.

Despite the development, challenges still exist. For example, funding is not available across the various sectors and attracting funding and international awareness is often quite difficult.

The continent, however, is experiencing the obstacle of keeping up and adapting with the dynamic and quick-paced adoption and innovation of technology. Team players, however, are confident that Africa will reach the great heights that it is promising; and once there, technology will be a tool tell its tale.

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Melissa Daniels
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