Pedestrians pass an MTN store at the Clearwater Mall in Johannesburg, South Africa, on Thursday, Aug. 3. 2017. Photographer: Waldo Swiegers/Bloomberg

MTN-Rwanda Partnership With Facebook to Increase Digital Penetration

Telecommunications company MTN Rwanda has announced its partnership deal with an American social network company – Facebook, to roll-out a service that allows MTN subscribers to access Facebook for free.

Dubbed, Facebook Flex, this is a parallel launch to the partnership between Facebook and Tigo Rwanda last year, where the latter launched the service for its customers as well.

In February this year, MTN Cameroon announced the launch of its new digital proposition, Facebook Flex customised for MTN prepaid and postpaid subscribers with any type of phone (2G,3G and 4G).

MTN Cameroon’s Chief Marketing Officer, Linda Kouam said, “MTN is committed to providing its customers with simple, affordable and accessible digital solutions to make their lives a whole lot brighter.

Consequently, as a key driver of the development of the local digital economy, MTNC contributes to bridging the digital divide by providing its subscribers with Facebook Flex to enable them to stay connected with their friends and family at all times.”

Using ‘Free Mode’ version on Facebook Flex the subscribers can connect to Facebook for free, exchange with friends, read, comment, share and send messages to friends and family without any charges on their main account or their internet bundle. The offer also enables clients to follow news and stay connected with their partners free of charge.

How to Access free Facebook

To access and view photos and videos, however, one needs to shift to ‘Data Mode’ which will start incurring standard data charges per their plan. The new digital proposition is useful in saving data while accessing and sharing vital information and staying on top of text-based newsfeed updates.

Commenting on the partnership, Kojo Boakye, Head of Connectivity and Access for Africa said, “We are excited to be announcing this partnership with MTN Rwanda on the launch of Facebook Flex. This is an important step forward in Facebook’s mission to give people the power to build community and bring the world closer together.”

MTN’s Chief Marketing Officer Richard Acheampong, Facebook Flex said the aim is to further increase access to digital services in Rwanda.

Internet penetration in Africa as of December 2017 was 35.2 per cent according to Internet World Stats. The report recorded an estimated 453 million internet users in Africa and 4 billion internet users in the world.

The Africa 2018 Population and Internet Users Statistics recorded that out of an estimated 13 million population in Rwanda, internet users as per December last year stood at around 3 million recording a 74,393 per cent internet growth between 2000 – 2017. Facebook users as of December last year was 490,000.

The social media platform has gained grounds worldwide that keeps friends and families as well as businesses in contact whenever and wherever they are.

Digital skills are vehicles to open new opportunities especially to curb unemployment among the Rwanda youth currently at 2.1 per cent and reduce the poverty level.

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