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Airtel & Nokia Partner For Life Tools, Browser, App Store Billing In Africa

Nokia and Airtel have partnered to provide Nokia Life Services, Xpress Browser and Nokia Store Operator Billing to Airtel customers in Africa, starting with Nigeria and Kenya. Nokia Life Services is a SMS based service providing information on education, agriculture, healthcare, livelihood and spirituality. This service is already available in Nigeria, and is now being extended to the East African market starting with Kenya. Since its launch in India, Nokia claims to now provide this service in 18 local languages across several countries, covering more than 95 million people. Nokia Xpress Browser essentially provides Internet access with low data consumption on feature phones, largely targeting Nokia Asha phone customers in Nigeria and Kenya who may be using internet for the first time on their devices. Note that at the end of the quarter ending on December 31, 2012, Airtel had announced the launch of 3G in 13 African countries. Nokia Store Operator Billing: With the launch of this service, Airtel customers in Nigeria and Kenya will be able to download local and global application from Nokia's store and pay for it as part of their monthly post-paid bill or deduct it from their pre-paid credit balance in local currency. Currently, customers can only use their credit cards to buy apps which are chargeable in international currency, and with the integration of telco billing, Nokia will help developers monetize better (because of ease of transaction), and hence create a situation wherein developers will be encouraged to create apps specifically for local markets. Bharti Airtel currently…

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