Kenya is set to debut its first batch of locally-assembled affordable smartphones. The government-back smartphones will be available to buy on October 30, 2023, as the East African country seeks to boost its connectivity.
The phones would be sold at a suggested retail price of $40 cedis, according to the Cabinet Secretary for Information, Communication and the Digital Economy, Eliud Owalo.
“Yes, the release date is on October 30; that’s all for now,” Owalo told Business Daily. “We will release the rest of the details at the launch.”
The initial schedule for the release of the smartphones was August. However, Owalo said in July that the government had just completed a feasibility study for the devices. He further added that the government wants to make smartphones available and affordable to everyone.
According to RT.com, the initiative is part of a government project to boost Kenya’s connectivity and access to digital devices. The phone is being assembled by a three-member consortium including Chinese wholesaler Shenzhen TeleOne Technology and Kenyan providers Safaricom and Jamii Telecommunications.
Currently, the specifics of the phone’s features and the quantity of the initial batch of phones have not been made public. Also, there are few details available about the phone like brand name and how last-mile retail stores would be identified, according to Business Insider.