Huawei and Microsoft have announced a new Windows Phone for the African continent, called the Huawei 4Afrika.  The last year has seen a significant shift in the mobile landscape. There is a battle at the top (Samsung and Apple) and one  in the middle of the market (Huawei and Nokia). Cellphone sales is a key indicator of success for cellphone manufacturers. Huawei offering a cellphone in South Africa is interesting as they have attacked the Kenyan market. The Huawei 4Afrika is interesting as it features Windows Phone as the operating system.

The 4Afrika contains the following specifications:

  • a 4.0 inch, 800 x 480 resolution LCD screen,
  • dual-core, 1.2GHz processor,
  • 512MB of RAM,
  • 4GB internal memory with microSD card slot,
  • 5 megapixel cameras with 720p video recording
  • front facing VGA camera.

“We are thrilled to be partnering with Microsoft to ensure that more people have access to leading technology, communications and information services,” said Mr Peter Hu, Managing Director of Huawei Device, Eastern & Southern Africa.  “By launching the Huawei 4Afrika we will be bringing leading technology within reach for more people in Africa, thereby giving them access to a world of new opportunities.”

Is Huawei starting a new vertical? Well, not many other manufacturers have built a device specifically for Africa. Mobile phone sales in Africa is an industry filled with potential and not many companies have created a candidate that is cost effective and highly functional.  Huawei has tried a similar strategy with their IDEOS line of phones (which is powered by Android).

The choice of Windows as the operating system is also worth noting as at the moment only Nokia has used it to power their cellphones. Huawei 4Afrika is a beautiful phone and looks to be disruptive.  Will the Huawei 4Afrika also drive app development in Africa?

The Huawei 4Afrika will be available from Huawei in Egypt, Nigeria, Kenya, Ivory Coast, Angola, Morocco and South Africa towards the later part of the 1st Quarter 2013.