Does Africa have the Potential to be a Great Tech Hub or is it Already There?

Many technology hubs are popping up all across Africa. These hubs are the main supply of locally advanced applications.

There are around 90 tech hubs that are located around the continent. There are over half of the economies in Africa that have at least one tech hub. South Africa happened to be the one to first get into double figures. The other countries are not too far behind. There is the MEST hub in Ghana, and in Nigeria, there is the co-creation hub and iHub in Kenya. These are regarded as models, with the latter being named the most innovative company by the Fast Company. The Kenyan government was so impressed that they agreed to develop a tech hub in all of its 47 counties.

Are apps the future?

Something is clear, and that is the African app economy represents an opportunity for users and developers. Mobile phones are adding to the social development, to entertainment like the Beway app and of course to the economic side of Africa. 

A GSMA report showed that $214 billion would be contributed to the GDP from the mobile industry alone.The mobile phone industry utilized 1.3 million workers in 2015. For those local app creators, unfortunately, this opportunity hasn’t materialized yet. In order to get this done and to be successful, the developers and app agencies need to understand better how the ecosystem and the consumers are going to move forward – this was done perfectly with Betway’s app, as an example.

The rise of the expanding sources of IT engineering remains pretty well on course for Africa. The continent happens to be the quickest growing continent for global creators. This common trend has seen Microsoft wanting to work on the software engineering talent available in Africa. Over $100 millionis planned to be spent on development centers that will by 2023 have employed over 500 Africans.

As the tech ecosystems and start-ups mature around the continent, the local talent will grow and offer work opportunities. For example, South Africa and Nigeria have very advanced ecosystems with over 85 tech hubs that are active.
Kenya too is known as an integral part of Africa’s technology system – boasting over 50 active tech hubs.

Homemade is preferred

The key feature of the digital renaissance in Africa is that fact it is homemade. When you consider the other sectors in the economy like agribusiness or mining,there is imported knowledge and wealth extracted.

Africa’s 700 million mobile subscribers are happy to be using a service that is supplied locally. As a result, more applications are being downloaded that are also developed locally.

GSMA’s most recent report shows that over half the population of Africa has now subscribed to mobile services, and it is estimated to continue to grow significantly in the near future. The rise in the middle class and the growing population means developers have more opportunities.

Even in the most remote parts of Africa, there is plenty of cellphone use which puts the demand up higher for local apps.
By the looks of it now, Africa is on it’s clear path to becoming more and more attractive for tech developments.

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