Blackberry Adds Voice Chat to BBM : Upgrade Now Available

BlackBerry users will be able to make free voice calls over a Wi-Fi network using the popular BBM messaging service.

Research In Motion Ltd. announced Wednesday that it’s adding the feature to BBM. Users will be able to switch back and forth from a text chat to a voice call. A split-screen option will let them talk and text at the same time.

The new feature is a free update for existing customers and comes months before RIM introduces its new BlackBerry 10 smartphones, which are seen critical to RIM’s survival.

RIM said the BBM voice update is currently available for BlackBerry smartphones running the BlackBerry 6 operating system or higher, with plans for BlackBerry 5 later. RIM’s latest phones run the 7 operating system. The next version, BlackBerry 10, will come soon after a Jan. 30 launch event

RIM surprised analysts in September when it announced that the number of BlackBerry subscribers grew, thanks in part to emerging markets and its popular BBM service. It’s struggling in North America as customers migrate to flashier iPhones and Android phone.

RIM stopped short of offering the BBM voice feature over wireless carriers’ own cellular networks. Doing so would have potentially created more congestion on cellular data networks and deprive carriers of revenue for voice calls. With the new feature, the free calls are limited to times and places where Wi-Fi is available.

The Canadian company said the BBM voice feature is especially attractive for developing markets. Unlike regular texts, BBM messages are not charged on a per-text basis.

Although RIM is struggling in North America, the BlackBerry continues to sell well in such markets as South Africa, Nigeria and Indonesia.

Source: HuffingtonPost

Happy 52nd Independence Day Nigeria

image: bellanaija

Nigeria is 52 and just like yesterday, It looks like we are back to Oct 1 , 1960 when the real Independence day was celebrated. Today over 250 Million Nigerians celebrate, or cry around the world today for the most populous black country in the world. i say 250M, over 170M in house and the rest in diaspora, trust me that number is real.

Actually if i want to talk about what is not working in Nigeria, How your leaders have been short-sighted How they have neglected the role of Government in taking care of the people, How they have rubbished the vision of the country, How we have chased the wrong dreams as a country, made the wrong friends, believed in the wrong things, chose the wrong leaders, or even what we all do not to make it what we want, i could write a full book but i have decided to talk about the good things about Nigeria today.

Nigeria, my country. That’s one place to grow, u get to learn to be tough, understand survival and have a sharp mind. You are awake if you are a Nigeria (Never dulling)…is it what the environment teaches, maybe but you live up that is for sure. On Naija, we sabi party oo, gele and things and everything is a ceremony even if you buy a television (e no easy).

In Naija, we want to be like everybody (who doesnt like good things), we want to do everything (as a badt guy), and we are always ready to go the extra mile. You should know, we are friendly, scary and the best pals you can have. Never mind what the entire world thinks, they tell us all the world scam is from Nigeria, i say why are all the dense people outside Nigeria (lolz). They say we are all niggaz but when they come and see us, they realize we are not what they think, we are just trying to live and be that best that we are.

52 today, If America, England, Canada, Japan took more than 100 years to be what they are, I guess its safe to say we are growing too, when we are old with beard like them , we will be structured, Corruption free, more people-oriented and have a society that lives for its people and not one for itself.

Arise O Compatriots, Nigeria call obey – Naija for Life

I talk am again – Vote me for Presidency come 2027 (Advancement 2027)


Gmail without Internet connection; on your phone as SMS

The search giant Google came in to Africa and in West Africa, It is trying to roll out some services that can make usage easier. One of such is the free google search partnered with by the Operators and now is the Gmail Services via SMS. This is peculiar to some countries – I guess its a test run drive …. the following is how tos etup your Gmail for SMS sending and delivery.

Gmail lets you use email on any cell phone, even basic phones that only support voice and SMS. You’ll receive, reply, and send emails as SMS messages, regardless of whether you have a data connection like wifi or 3G.

Getting started

Here’s how to start auto-forwarding new email messages to your phone:

  1. Go to Gmail.
  2. Click your profile photo at the top of any Gmail page and click Account.
  3. Click Open SMS settings in the “Phone and SMS” section.
  4. Add or edit your phone number to receive Gmail to that number.
  5. Verify your phone number by entering the verification code that we sent as SMS to your phone.
  6. Check the box for email forwarding to your phone.

Once you start auto-forwarding, you can also reply to emails and compose new emails as SMS.

Here’s a few details about this feature:

Mobile operator charges: Receiving SMS is free of charge, but your standard rate charge applies to each SMS sent from your phone, be it a reply or any command.

Mobile operators supported:

  • Ghana – Airtel, MTN, Tigo, and Vodafone
  • Kenya – Airtel, Orange, Safaricom, and Yu
  • Nigeria – Airtel, Etisalat, Glo, MTN, Starcomms, and Visafone

Note that if you switch a mobile operator without changing your mobile number, Gmail auto-forwarding will discontinue.

Will Facebook Open an Office in Africa or Nigeria to be Precise?

When the Search Giant Google opened up its Office in Nigeria, It was a welcome idea to the ICT world and professionals, At least we can enjoy more benefits of the Internet Integral Solution to our uptake in IT while Google extends its Ad services within the business of the country, It could be a Win-win situation for the Search Giant as the Nigeria Internet usage keeps exploding and businesses are getting the edge of using the Internet as part of Business even Government.

But along the side i ask, Where is Facebook? Will the Social Giant also consider an office in Nigeria or yet Africa? Maybe its a bad time to ask the Question due to the ever falling stock prices which is at $20 today and our boy Mark falling short of over $423 Million dollars in the past months. However, It might also be a question that can answer the need for expansion and what can better the lot later on.

Okay, Google sells search and business Addons, What does Facebook sell? Advertisement? is that just it, well am still thinking. But with South Africa and Nigeria leading the Usage in Africa with 5,133,620 and 5,022,540 respectively, Isnt it not just fair that there is no Facebook Africa/Nigeria? Check Facebook Country Demographics here

Facebook International offices include: Amsterdam, Auckland, Brussels, Dublin, Hamburg, Hong Kong, Hyderabad, London, Madrid, Milan, Paris, Selangor, Sao Paulo, Singapore, Stockholm, Sydney, Tokyo, and Toronto according with no Africa … hmmm

Okay, I know the question on your mind like “What will Facebook gain if it comes down?“, Well, If they don’t come down they wont see what to do more, One thing is sure that we know, They have a saturated market in the US North and South America and with increasing Internet and Mobile Penetration in Africa, they might no get the Auto Usage they may hope for if they don’t get on ground and do some work.

I just feel there is a Win-Win Solution for Facebook and Africa/Nigeria anyway, even in a Global market, Physical presence go a long way to build loyalty and strengthen business.

Its just a thot …. What ya’ll think?

National Summit on Freedom of Information Act Begins in Abuja

National Summit on Freedom of Information Act Begins in Abuja

Follow the Events on its Media Site:

ABUJA, Sunday, June 17, 2012:  A two-day National Summit on the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act begins in Abuja tomorrow, June 18, 2012.  The goal of the Summit is to assess the current status of the Act and agree on a broad framework for improving its implementation.

Organized by Media Rights Agenda (MRA) with support from Pact Nigeria, the Summit will be declared open by the Minister of Information and Communication, Mr. Labaran Maku, while the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Mohammed Bello Adoke (SAN) will deliver the Keynote Address.  Bishop Matthew Hassan Kukah, the Catholic Bishop of the Sokoto Archdiocese, will chair the opening session of the Summit while the closing ceremony will be chaired by the Senate Majority Leader, Senator Victor Ndoma-Egba (SAN).

The Summit will bring together over 100 participants from different parts of the country and representing various sectors of society to discuss the implementation of the FOI Act from various perspectives.
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Finally, after long years of ICT related divergence Ministries, bodies, laws, policy and efforts in various directions, there is a move to work through one focal point which I think for once is very good.

Download the Draft here from the Ministry of Communications Technology Website

I read Gbenga Sesan’s view on this draft and i share some of his thots as do the following.

Firstly, Section 6 which mentioned naming the ministry “Ministry of Communications and Information Technology” and bringing other related ICT agencies under its purview should be embraced. While name doesn’t depicts the Ministry’s actions, there is a need to pursue this vision under the right naming convention cos everything ICT is not inside Communications Technology and even down the Draft, the term ICT was used through out stating the ministry of CT left as an important I missing from its name.

Android Developer Challenge — Sub-Saharan Africa: Finalists

The Android Developer Challenge is designed to encourage the creation of cool and innovative Android mobile apps built by developers in Sub-Saharan Africa. Invent apps that delight users and you stand a chance to win an Android phone and $25,000 USD. The finalists of the Android Developer Challenge for Sub-Saharan Africa have been announced. The finalists were chosen from the Category … Continue reading “Android Developer Challenge — Sub-Saharan Africa: Finalists”

A world of 2.09 Billion Journalists

Yes! Our world can lay claim to over 2.09 billion journalists covering everything from everything. And yes that includes you and I using the Internet, Ha ha you get my point, Whatever you do on the Internet today as long as you give your feedback online you have joined the news train. Years ago, the Web was all about static pages where we just read from but today thanks to feedback systems and flexible web systems we all write to and for the Web.

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G-Nigeria 2011: Google vs 9ja Software Developers

We at Google are excited to meet with Nigeria’s software developers, tech businesses and digital marketeers. With a successful G-Nigeria 2010, we look forward to demonstrating the Google web and mobile tools that are driving technological and business innovation here in Africa and across the globe.

May 3-4, 2011 @ Ozumba Mbadiwe Avenue, Opposite 1004,Victoria Island, Lagos


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Nigeria, 7th largest Country in the world

Well at least that’s what Wikipedia told me … Nigeria is 7th behind the likes of China, India, USA and surprisingly Brazil (I bet Nigerians in Brazil are like 30 Million). However, I stumbled on a page that estimates Nigeria’s 2050 population to be approximately 304 Million. What do you think?

Seriously, I think Nigeria (Home + Abroad) is around 350,000,000, Prove me wrong? Check the full country list by Population from Wikipedia.
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