Mi-Fone and Opera in harmony over Africa

Mi-Fone and Opera Software sign handset deal to bring the best mobile browsing experience to Africa

Johannesburg, South Africa – August 29, 2011

Mi-Fone and Opera Software have partnered to bring customers in Africa the ultimate mobile browsing experience. This agreement will see all data capable Mi-Fones preinstalled with the Opera Mini browser.

Mi-Fone is one of Africa’s fastest growing mobile device brands. In only three years, more than one million of the company’s handsets have been sold. Mi-Fone has developed strategic partnerships with respected distributors and GSM carriers to ensure continent-wide availability of its devices. Already, selected handsets with Opera Mini preloaded have been distributed into key markets including Nigeria, South Africa, Ghana and Kenya. Mi-Fone is planning to increase the availability of its devices during the December and January holidays in all key markets.

Leading carriers and manufacturers that want to deliver the best web experience to their customers select Opera Mini.

“This arrangement is in line with Mi-Fone’s commitment to servicing and empowering the average consumer. We are delighted with this partnership and believe it will assist us in leading the market for low-cost handsets in Africa. Fixed-line infrastructure in Africa is not the preferred means of accessing the Internet, so being able to provide this solution, combined with our high value and low-cost handsets, will be a significant market differentiator,” says Alpesh Patel CEO of Mi-Fone.

Already, 115 million people have discovered how Opera Mini can revolutionize their mobile web experience. Not only does Opera Mini deliver the Web faster to almost any phone, it also cuts data costs by shrinking the pages down before they are delivered, while retaining all the functionality of a normal webpage.

According to Lars Boilesen, CEO of Opera Software, “Africa is a booming market for us, and this deal with Mi-Fone will bring the best Internet experience possible to millions of people clamouring for mobile Internet access. Opera believes that Internet access is a universal right, and being part of bringing that to Africa is key for us. Opera Software has always striven to develop the fastest and technologically most advanced browsers. As a result, the Opera browser is the choice of some of the world’s most demanding and knowledgeable users.”

A key reason for the success of Opera in Africa is its speed: loading Facebook just once on a handheld device will use up more than 200 KB worth of data. With a browser like Opera Mini, which shrinks data down to a fraction of its original size, users can view Facebook 8.5 times using that same 200 KB. At the same time, when the powerful compression technology in the full browser is applied to the Opera Mini browser, the Web is accessible on even the simplest handsets, including those with small screens and limited memory.

Opera Mini also includes Opera Link, a free service that synchronizes bookmarks, Speed Dials and personal bars across all Opera installations on a user’s device.

About Mi-Fone

‘Mi” is an innovative mobile devices lifestyle brand established to focus on the growing needs of the mass-market sector within emerging and frontier markets. The Mi-Fone headquarters is in Hong Kong with regional offices in Dubai and authorised service centres in Nairobi, Mauritius, Accra and Johannesburg. The team combines over 20 years of telecom experience in markets such as Africa, Middle East and Asia. For more info on products and interviews, please contact Joanne Doyle on +27829267829 or by email.