17 January 2013

Africa: Here Is Africa's 'First' Tablet

Ladies and gentlemen, put your hands together for the first African designed tablet, according to its maker VMK, a technology company based in Congo Brazzaville.

The seven-inch Way-C was launched in 2012 alongside a smartphone by Congolese inventor and CEO VMK, Verone Mankou. He hopes to become Africa's Steve Jobs. After six years of research, the tablet was designed and released in Congo but produced in China.

But before you write it off, most Apple products are designed in America and produced in China. And Nigeria received a lot of buzz in early 2012 by announcing a similar product but it turned out to be an OEM (product manufactured in great quantity, but with no brand, and then sold by several distributors under many different labels).

Way-C was made to give Apple and Samsung a run for their money, especially on the African market. Its partnership with Airtel is paying off already as it has so far sold a number in Congo, central Africa and some online stores in France.

The tablet, whose name means 'light of the stars' in Lingalaa, a Congolese language, is the answer to the iPad and Samsung Galaxy given its low price starting from $ 300. Its high resolution (800x480) multi-touch screen and Flash player technology are suitable for HD movies and 3D games.

With its 1.2 GHz Processor running on Android Gingerbread 2.3.3 as its Operating System, you can indulge yourself in many applications available on the Android platform. It also boasts of 4GB internal memory, 512 RAM, Wi-Fi support and six-hour battery life. The memory can be increased to a maximum of 32GB using a memory card via the MicroSDHC slot.

"Apple is huge in the US, Samsung is huge in Asia, and we want VMK to be huge in Africa," Mankou said during the Tech4Africa conference in Johannesburg last December, according to the BBC website.

VMK also launched an Android-based smartphone called Elikia. Watch out for its review next week.

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