Bridging the Digital Divide: How MediaTek is Boosting 4G and 5G Connectivity in Kenya

Kenya, known as the Silicon Savannah , is rapidly embracing the digital age. But bridging the digital divide requires more than just high-speed internet. It necessitates affordable devices and accessible infrastructure, paving the way for everyone to reap the benefits of connectivity.

This is where MediaTek, a leading global semiconductor company, steps in. Through strategic partnerships with Kenyan OEMs and network operators, MediaTek is playing a pivotal role in expanding 4G and 5G coverage across the country.


Making Smartphones Accessible for All

One of MediaTek’s key priorities is to make smartphones more accessible and affordable for Kenyans. By collaborating with local manufacturers, they are driving the development of budget-friendly devices equipped with powerful processors and advanced features. This not only empowers individuals but also fuels economic growth and innovation.

We had a chat with Rami Osman, Director for Business Development, MediaTek Middle East and Africa.  In this interview, we talked  more about MediaTek‚Äôs vision, strategy, and achievements in the African market, where the company is working closely with local partners to deliver affordable and accessible 5G devices and services. We will also explore the features and benefits of MediaTek‚Äôs latest flagship 5G chipset, the Dimensity 9000, which promises to bring a new level of performance and efficiency to 5G smartphones.

Kachwanya: How is MediaTek working with Kenya OEMs and network operators to boost 4G and 5G coverage?

Rami Osman: We are collaborating with Kenya’s network operators and original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) on two major fronts. The first is making smartphones more accessible and affordable, so that everyone can enjoy the benefits of fast mobile connectivity. The second major opportunity is 5G, both for smartphones and fixed wireless access, with FWA 5G emerging as the technology of choice for closing the remaining digital divide in Africa.

Leading operators are using platforms such as the MediaTek T750 and MediaTek T830 to create dedicated 5G FWA consumer premises equipment (CPE). The MediaTek T830 is a premium CPE platform featuring an integrated 5G modem with sub-6GHz connectivity, a powerful quad-core CPU, hardware-based network acceleration engine (MediaTek NPU), and options of Wi-Fi 6/6E/7. 

Kachwanya: What are the features and benefits of MediaTek’s Dimensity 9000 chipset launched in Kenya?

Rami: MediaTek Dimensity 9000 is our top-of-the-line 5G smartphone chipset, designed to make the next generation of flagship 5G smartphones even more powerful and efficient. The Dimensity 9000 is MediaTek’s most powerful and energy-efficient chip to date, with features that include a suite of top-tier AI, gaming, multimedia, imaging and connectivity features.

A flagship 18-bit HDR-ISP design gives users the first opportunity to capture 4K HDR video on three cameras simultaneously. Meanwhile, our AI processing unit (APU) delivers maximum performance for AI-multimedia, -gaming, -camera, and social video experiences. The Dimensity 9000 integrates the only 5G smartphone modem with 3GPP Release-16 technology into the chip to go faster than ever before.

Kachwanya: What are the challenges and opportunities for MediaTek in the African smartphone market?

Rami: The smartphone market in Africa has enormous growth potential, and we see a big opportunity in working with local OEMs and operators to create locally assembled devices that have an invaluable role to play in making smartphones more accessible and affordable. 

The network operators are forward-thinking and dynamic, so we are making inroads on this strategy. What’s more, the speed of technology advancement means that we can offer better products to the entry-level market. However, exchange rate fluctuations, import duties and slow economic growth are challenges we need to address in our quest to make smartphones affordable to the masses.

Kachwanya: What types of investments has MediaTek made in Africa, if any?

Rami: Sub-Saharan Africa is a priority market for MediaTek, with major collaboration with OEMs and network operators across the continent. We empower our collaborators through innovative technology solutions. As a hardware platform provider, our role is to help OEMs and network operators in Africa to offer reliable, affordable and innovative products.

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