AG Mobile, MediaTek and the Nelson Mandela Long Walk to Freedom Education Project have partnered to launch the #Freedom2Learn campaign.
The campaign will see a range of affordable “Freedom” smart devices hit South Africa markets, promoting Madiba’s legacy and the spread of education.
AG was chosen by the Long Walk to Freedom Education Project to be its exclusive partner to roll out its mobile strategy, to support their vision of “Easy Access to Education via Technology for all”.
AG Mobile and the Long Walk to Freedom Education Project have partnered with mobile agency Silverstone Solutions to create a #Freedom2Learn mobile app. The app will contain information on all of the AG Mobile products, exclusive Mandela content and a chance to take part in 67 #Freedom2Learn challenges, with prizes available. The app also provides access to participate in a massive drive to donate one million AG Freedom smart devices to children in Africa.
According to AG Mobile’s CEO, Anthony Goodman, AG Mobile wants to enable access to the internet via their smartphones and tablets, as well as encourage learning and education, the cornerstone of the Nelson Mandela Long Walk to Freedom Education Project.
#Freedom2Learn will also promote access to education through the build and placement of Library containers in communities throughout South Africa and eventually into Africa. These Library containers will be fully equipped with learning materials, WI-FI connectivity and study facilities, further promoting access to education and learning among disadvantaged youths.
“A percentage of profits made on the sale of all AG Mobile Freedom devices will go to the Long Walk to Freedom Library Project, thus giving longevity to Nelson Mandela’s legacy on education”, says Goodman.
Corporate donations are encouraged through the #Freedom2Learn CauseWRX platform and individual donations are encouraged through the #Freedom2Learn Generosity crowdfunding platform accessible via www.freedom2learn.org.
Robert Coutts, CEO and spokesperson for the Long Walk to Freedom Education Project, says: “Literacy is the key to all education. We are looking towards the future where technology will play an increasingly important part of our literacy campaign, not to mention the fact that access to technology often accelerates the learning process.
“We may not be able to help every child but we have a responsibility to give each child the tools to help themselves. The Freedom phones and tablets will be loaded with learning and education apps to help integrate children, adults and teachers into our digital world, a necessary component of an economically active citizen.”
The mobile devices range from a feature phone, very affordable 4-inch smartphones, a 4.5-inch LTE device and a more highly specified 5-inch offering as well as tablets. All devices will feature exclusive educational content and approved never seen before Nelson Mandela content in the form of pictures, wallpapers, quotes and more. The Khan Academy App and Madiba’s Journey App are two of the apps to be made available on the AG Freedom phones and tablets.
The Khan Academy is an educational tool that enables the user to download over 10,000 educational videos and content which can be used for learning even when offline.
Users will also be able to explore Nelson Mandela’s inspiring journey through the Madiba’s Journey App. By finding key locations on the phone’s mapping system, users can follow directions and immerse themselves in narratives from poignant moments throughout South African history. Users will be able to create a customised itinerary before embarking on their journey into Nelson Mandela’s inspiring life.
There are also exciting galleries displaying sneak peeks of what sites and stories await and users will be able to ‘check in’ at each site through the App and their experiences.
The partners involved in this initiative believe that providing a mobile-first approach to education will pave the way to promoting and spreading education among learners in South Africa, and ultimately success later on in life.
“MediaTek is very pleased to be supporting AG Mobile in this incredibly worthwhile partnership with the Long Walk to Freedom Education Project to bring greater access to education and learning,” said Chet Babla, Senior Director Corporate Sales EMEA at MediaTek. “Making great technology and the mobile internet accessible to everyone is at the core of MediaTek’s vision, and this is embodied in the Freedom range of devices powered by MediaTek.”
The first Freedom Access (4 inch) smartphones will be available in Truworths stores nationwide on the MTN network. The Freedom mobile devices and tablets can also be pre-ordered at www.freedom2learn.org.
In addition to these 2 channels, we expect multiple new retailers to stock the Freedom range in the near future.
Deezer to host Hotstix’s Mandela tribute playlist
Deezer is celebrating Nelson Mandela on the centenary of his birthday by hosting a tribute playlist created by music legend Sipho “Hotstix” Mabuse.
Mabuse, a legendary figure in African music, first rose to prominence in the 1970s with his band Harari and later developed a name for himself as a solo artist. One of his best known songs was the global hit BurnOut in the 1980s.
The playlist takes the listener on a captivating musical journey through the life of Nelson Mandela. It was compiled by Mabuse, who consulted with Mandela’s family and friends to ensure that the music would be relevant and accurate. The playlist also features commentary by Mabuse, which was recorded in his Soweto home.
“I have tried to tell the story of the music that Madiba loved,” says Mabuse. “The Playlist excludes the time in prison obviously, as Madiba would not have had exposure to music in that time. We have focused on the music we know he loved before and after that period. This recording was really an emotional journey for me, but an incredible opportunity to document these memories.”
The playlist features the music the young Mandela loved, such as The Manhattan Brothers, Solomon Linda, Brenda Fassie and Miriam Makeba. It includes struggle songs from Chicco, Johnny Clegg, Hugh Masekela and Yvonne Chaka Chaka. The playlist also includes Mandela by Zahara, one of the younger artists who caught Madiba’s ear.
Mabuse also offers stories of his own songs, such as Shikisha, a song greatly beloved by the former President.
“I was delighted to share my thoughts and hope the listeners enjoyed the musical journey,” says Mabuse. “Madiba did enjoy music immensely and we all have a purpose wherever we are in the world to celebrate culture and to learn from different cultures and music forms and styles.”
This playlist was inspired by the Nelson Mandela 100 campaign, calling on corporates and individuals to act as sources of inspiration and engage in conversation and action.
Sports streaming takes off
Live streaming of sports is coming of age as a mainstream method of viewing big games, as the latest FIFA World Cup figures from the UK show. Africa isn’t yet at the same level when it comes to the adoption of sports streaming, but usage is clearly moving in the right direction.
England’s World Cup quarter-final against Sweden was watched by just under 20 million viewers in the UK via BBC One. While this traditional broadcast audience was huge, it was streaming that broke records: the game was the BBC’s most popular online-viewed live programme ever, with 3.8 million views. In Africa, the absolute numbers are lower but the trend towards streaming major sports events on the continent is also well under way.
According to DStv, live streaming of sports dominates the usage figures for its live and recorded TV streaming app, DStv Now. The number of people using the app in June was five times higher than a year ago, with concurrent views peaking during major football and rugby games.
Since the start of the World Cup, average weekday usage of DStv Now is up 60%. The absolute peak in concurrent usage for one event was reached on 26 June, during the Nigeria vs Argentina game. The app’s biggest ever test was on 16 June with both Springbok Rugby and World Cup Football under way at the same time, resulting in concurrent in-app views seven times higher than the peaks seen in June last year.
The World Cup has also been a major reason for new users to download and try out the app. First-time app user volumes have tripled on Android and doubled on iOS since the start of the tournament.
“While we expected live sports streaming to take off, it’s also been pleasing to see that the app is really popular for watching shows on Catch Up,” says MultiChoice South Africa Chief Operating Officer Mark Rayner. “Interestingly, some of the most popular Catch Up shows are local, with Isibaya, Binnelanders, The Queen and The River all getting a significant number of views.”
With respect to app usage, the web and Android apps are the most popular way to watch DStv Now, with Android outpacing iOS by a factor of 2:1.
“We’re continuing to develop DStv Now, with 4k streaming in testing and smart TV and Apple TV apps on their way shortly,” says Rayner. “The other key priority for us is working with the telcos to deliver mobile data propositions that make watching online painless and worry-free for our customers.”
The DStv Now app is free to all 10 million DStv customers in Africa. The app streams DStv live channels as well as supplying an extended Catch Up library. Two separate streams can be watched on different devices simultaneously, and content can also be downloaded to smartphones and tablets. The content available on the app varies according to the DStv package subscribed to.