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Chinese Firm Launches Mobile Phone in Kenya

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The Chinese telecommunications firm, Huawei, has partnered with Kenya's mobile phone firm Safaricom to launch the smartphone IDEOSTM U8150 into the local market.

The phone, currently the most affordable entry-level smartphone in Africa and across the world, will be distributed exclusively by Safaricom.

The device, a new generation and universal-type Android Internet Handset powered by the latest iteration of AndroidTM 2.2, is designed to target young fashionable and trendy people, has been developed by Huawei in cooperation with Google.

Speaking during the launch in Nairobi on Wednesday, Safaricom Chief Commercial Officer Peter Arina said Safaricom will continue partnering with handset manufacturers in efforts to drive down costs and increase data uptake in the Kenyan market. "This will help in our efforts to connect more people to the internet by availing cost effective gadgets to compliment our low priced data tariffs as we focus on driving data uptake. This goes to re-enforce our view that data has a critical role to play in our future business plans," Arina told journalists in Nairobi.

The ergonomically designed IDEOSTM U8150, provides a variety of ways to access the Internet, as it boasts downlink speeds of more than 7.2Mbps, offers WCDMA + WiFi dual network support, and offers ubiquitous mobile broadband services.

The device also doubles as a WiFi router for up to six devices at a time, making it an all-in-one solution for a range of wireless connectivity options.

Available in blue, black, yellow, and red, the IDEOSTM U8150, not only runs fast, but also supports functions such as voice dialing, voice navigation, social networking and the ability to run applications off the SD card.

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