Android One ships to Africa

ANDROIDGoogle has introduced its Android One smartphone program for countries in Africa.

The device was launched in India last September and has been rolled-out in 10 other emerging markets including Pakistan, Indonesia, Turkey and Philippines.

Dubbed Hot 2, the Android One device available in Africa was made by Hong Kong-based Infinix and is on sale for US$88. It can be found online from Jumia in Egypt, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Kenya, and Morocco and several African stores.

Google has targeted Android One at OEMs that make phones for emerging markets. Google controls the development, design, and marketing of the devices, while leaving the building of the phones to partner manufacturers.

The phone has the latest version of Android and will get the Android Marshmallow release after release.

Writing in his bog Google VP of product management, Caesar Sengupta, said that the goal is to provide a consistent and uncompromising smartphone experience, for everyone.”

The Infinix Hot 2 has a quad-core MediaTek processor, dual SIM slots, front and rear-facing cameras, an FM radio tuner, and 16GB internal memory for movies and music, according to Google. Its standard version, with 1GB memory, is available in four colours and the premium version (with 2GB memory) is available in gold, Google said.

Hot 2 provides up to 2x better performance and extended battery features compared to prior versions, Google said.

Google will release a new offline feature within the YouTube app later this year, Sengupta added. This feature will make it possible for people to take videos offline to watch later during short periods of low or no Internet connectivity, he said. Users will be able to add videos for offline viewing for up to 48 hours without an Internet connection.