BlackBerry in Nigeria part 2 – productivity, iPhone and bandwidth

26 Comments

[ED NOTE: The following has been submitted by our BlackBerry Cool correspondent in Nigeria, Temitope Smolaso Olufoye. The article is an update from his first article regarding BlackBerry in Nigeria.]

The BlackBerry device I use here in Nigeria is the BlackBerry 8100. Owning a BlackBerry in Nigeria gives me an incredible advantage. Although other phones have better cameras than the BlackBerry, I find the 8100 camera very useful. The company I work for is called Begro Geological Consultants, and we often need to attach pictures to our reports. Since I am using 8100, I can take pictures with my 8100 and attach them easily to reports. This is just one example of how owning a BlackBerry in Nigeria has helped me.

My company also benefits from my BlackBerry ownership because we often gets requests for proposals, and we don’t have a laptop. Life isn’t easy here in Nigeria and things don’t come easily, but we maximize everything that comes our way. When we get a proposal request, we immediately start writing all of our ideas on our BlackBerry, before transferring to a PC. I’m not saying other handhelds can’t do this, but it is both cheaper and easier for me to do it on a BlackBerry.

In my last article, BlackBerryCool.com reader Paul, asked me if Nigerians are talking about the iPhone. Now, the iPhone is definitely a great phone with its good looking browser and a giant screen. The problem with it, is that it’s just too expensive to get a good iPhone data plan. You pay three times what your pay for a BlackBerry data plan. Why should I pay more for iPhone when I can pay less for BlackBerry and get more from my phone. Also, with the BlackBerry Storm, I don’t think I need an iPhone. The truth is, iPhone is not as celebrated in Nigeria as much as the BlackBerry. There aren’t many service providers advertising devices other than the BlackBerry, which gets a lot of advertisements on Nigerian networks.

Another great question from my last article came from African Boy. After discussing data plan costs, African Boy asked “What is the data through-put allowed per month?”

I don’t believe it’s possible to measure throughput on a BlackBerry in Nigeria. The reason being is that the BlackBerry does not show you network data while transferring a file. I think Google is putting something together that will allow us to take these measurements. Here in Nigeria, when you reach a place where they say they have broadband, the throughput you get is only 7kbps; hardly broadband.

MTN, a GSM cellular network operator delivering service in South Africa and other African countries, has started 3.5G in about three cities and EDGE is springing up too. Considering many countries are dealing with 4.8 mbps, I’m beginning to think our money is being wasted on useless ventures.

Recently, I went into a cyber cafe and tried to download a 10MB file. After 50 minutes I checked my download and I had only downloaded 0.22bytes. This is a typical “broadband” experience here. I felt exasperated to say the least.

We’re just now starting to see fiber optic cables being laid and we’re moving forward, albeit slowly. Until then, the crawling continues.

For more information about network throughput and bandwidth tests, see the Wikipedia entry.

[ED NOTE: As I was editing this article I was using BlackBerry Messenger to chat with Temitope in Nigeria. The ability to chat with someone instantly from Canada to Africa is both an incredible feeling and a sign of the times.]

  • http://avtoii.ru/ Dimmka

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  • http://avtoii.ru Dimmka

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  • http://www.nigeriamusicmovement.com/ Nigeria Music

    Hey,

    Just curious if you can download applications from the network onto your Blackberry phone and if some are free while some are paid for?

    Similar to the apple app store

    Thanks

  • http://www.nigeriamusicmovement.com/ Nigeria Music

    Hey,

    Just curious if you can download applications from the network onto your Blackberry phone and if some are free while some are paid for?

    Similar to the apple app store

    Thanks

  • http://www.nigeriamusicmovement.com/ Nigeria Music

    Hey,

    Just curious if you can download applications from the network onto your Blackberry phone and if some are free while some are paid for?

    Similar to the apple app store

    Thanks

  • http://www.nigeriamusicmovement.com Nigeria Music

    Hey,

    Just curious if you can download applications from the network onto your Blackberry phone and if some are free while some are paid for?

    Similar to the apple app store

    Thanks

  • Ibrahim

    Hi I’m Ibrahim from Nigeria I jost got BB Curve 8320 n I use MTNNigeria d bis is good buh sumtymz my credit gets deducted…eways I’d like to know if I can get help in using my bb as a modem n connecting my laptop and I also need friends on bbm holla at me 25672a5e

  • Ibrahim

    Hi I’m Ibrahim from Nigeria I jost got BB Curve 8320 n I use MTNNigeria d bis is good buh sumtymz my credit gets deducted…eways I’d like to know if I can get help in using my bb as a modem n connecting my laptop and I also need friends on bbm holla at me 25672a5e

  • Agada James

    I have used an iPhone in Nigeria since ver 1.0. I am currently trying out the BB Storm2 and I am totally disappointed. No way RIM is going to stay in this business.

  • Agada James

    I have used an iPhone in Nigeria since ver 1.0. I am currently trying out the BB Storm2 and I am totally disappointed. No way RIM is going to stay in this business.

  • Agada James

    I have used an iPhone in Nigeria since ver 1.0. I am currently trying out the BB Storm2 and I am totally disappointed. No way RIM is going to stay in this business.

  • Agada James

    I have used an iPhone in Nigeria since ver 1.0. I am currently trying out the BB Storm2 and I am totally disappointed. No way RIM is going to stay in this business.

  • http://www.omafones.com/ Reggie Adaka

    Blackberry in Nigeria, try http://www.omafones.com

    RIM as with many other multi national organisations still don’t think Africa is worthy of a consumer market, with the notable exception of Nokia, some Sony products & Samsung, the likes of Apple, HTC, Acer and many other manufacturers & marketers don’t seem to have any kind of dedicated sales team pointing at Sub-Saharan Africa.

    This just encourages the grey market, as blackberry cool states happens in China.

    I believe there are loads of entrepreneurs like me who don’t need much support from these companies apart from trade prices, we don’t even ask for credit terms, are these companies missing a trick?

  • http://www.omafones.com Reggie Adaka

    Blackberry in Nigeria, try http://www.omafones.com

    RIM as with many other multi national organisations still don’t think Africa is worthy of a consumer market, with the notable exception of Nokia, some Sony products & Samsung, the likes of Apple, HTC, Acer and many other manufacturers & marketers don’t seem to have any kind of dedicated sales team pointing at Sub-Saharan Africa.

    This just encourages the grey market, as blackberry cool states happens in China.

    I believe there are loads of entrepreneurs like me who don’t need much support from these companies apart from trade prices, we don’t even ask for credit terms, are these companies missing a trick?

  • http://www.nigeriamusicmovement.com/ Nigeria Music

    Hey Reggie,

    Do you also have any Android phones? Did not see any on the omafones website.

  • http://www.nigeriamusicmovement.com Nigeria Music

    Hey Reggie,

    Do you also have any Android phones? Did not see any on the omafones website.

  • http://www.omafones.com/ Reggie Adaka

    We have some HTC phones, I believe some of them run on android.

    contact us by email and we can see what we can do.

  • http://www.omafones.com Reggie Adaka

    We have some HTC phones, I believe some of them run on android.

    contact us by email and we can see what we can do.

  • Olukunle Alabetutu

    Thank you so much for this article. I am in Nigeria Lagos specifically. All the things said by the writer are correct. I have just acquired a Blackberry Bold and I am with MTN Nigeria network. The only area that i do not understand is their charges. If I have to pay 15 kobo per KB of data use age i will be paying One dollar Fifty cent 1.5$ dollar for 1MB. Whereas the same network offer an internet bundle 50MB for like three dollars the only limit is the 24 hour cap.
    Other challenges I have is that jar and sis format that were working fine on my Sony Ericsson P990i was not compatible with BB.

  • oladimeji

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  • CB

    Your observations regarding the BlackBerry family are on target. I represent a North American wireless firm (also a RIM partner) expanding in Nigeria and would be interested to chat more info@iphocus.com.

  • SandraMillhouse

    BalckBerrys have been used throughout Europe by all companies and businesses. These devices are very helpful in the sales department. They're used to keep client lists and add notes about deliveries and other things. As for the broadband problem, we have VPS unlimited bandwidth at home, Nigeria doesn't even have that in large companies. They really need an update.

  • Justwritins

    I would like to buy some of your htc phones so long as their prices are very reasonable. also do you have laptops too with reasonable prices? if yes pls get back to me. my email is: justwritins@yahoo.com and 08033299377.
    Waiting your quick response.

  • Lanre

    I’m a Diaspora Nigerian,planning to set up a bussiness in Nigeria.I have read about the BB small business solution.Will it work in Nigeria.I hope to remain in Canada but work with pofessionals in nigeria.Any body with a solution can contact me through this post. 

  • Lanre

    I’m a Diaspora Nigerian,planning to set up a bussiness in Nigeria.I have read about the BB small business solution.Will it work in Nigeria.I hope to remain in Canada but work with pofessionals in nigeria.Any body with a solution can contact me through this post.