Business News of Wednesday, 30 May 2012
Alltel Limited’s flagship product, K-Pad tablet, which is said to becoming an African preferred device, is gaining worldwide attention due to its increased patronage, affordability and locally developed free web applications for users.
The product, which many believe have come to take away worries of many Ghanaians and Africans over high prices of tablet devices, is now a preferred product for many on the continent. It runs on Google’s Android operating system as well as Microsoft’s Windows 7 and 8.
The ‘K’ in ‘K-Pad’ is for Kludgeson. Kofi Kludgeson, the Executive Chairman of Alltel Limited, a Ghanaian IT company in an interview with journalists in Accra on Tuesday, said “After five years of technical development, we have come out with a product that is a major breakthrough in the world of technology.
“We have come out with a K-Pad and in three months the product has hit the world market in a mighty way.”
The product, which comes in 7, 8, 9.7 and 10.1-inch variants, allows people to enjoy many free web applications like never before, most of which are local content developed to suit the Ghanaian and African environment.
Users of the product can enjoy high definition videos, precise touch screen technology, camera with high images, downloadable softwares, e-learning materials, advanced picture quality and the latest blue tooth application.
“Our focus on K-Pad is to look at the rural communities because there they have problems with data. In the health sector for instance, we want nurses to use K-Pad to record the basic data requirement for patients in order to make healthcare more accessible and efficient,” Mr. Kludjeson said.
He said K-Pad has transformed into an African project and the goal of Alltel is to target only five per cent of each economy’s population.
“In the last few months, we have had a lot of the international press, some from Belgium Television, Reuters and BBC wanting to know more about Alltel and its products, especially the K-Pad.”
One major advantage K-Pad has is that, it is an open system device with USB. “From generation to revelation, we have factored all on the K-Pad. We have negotiated for the right to have free web applications for our customers because in our part of the world affordability is a major concern.”
Another innovation Alltel is going to introduce in the next two weeks, is a product called “K-Phone”. K-Phone, is a mobile phone with an Android operating system and dual SIM that will give 24/7 internet service to users. In addition, Alltel hopes to develop a 4G network in Ghana, he said.
Alltel's mission, Mr. Kludjeson noted, is to develop a lot of the Ghanaian youths into web application development so that they can be self-sustaining and create jobs for themselves and other people through the devices they develop.
“In the next three years, we should be able to create and empower skills development for about one million youths in Ghana. The country is growing currently at 15% and a lot is happening and if we do not take advantage of the knowledge and technology gap, a time will come foreigners will do that for us.”
Alltel intends to list on the Ghana Stock Exchange in the next 12 months, where it aims at giving about 100,000 people the right to become part owners of the company.**