Vodacom has revealed a new 3G tablet designed specifically for the South African market. Called the Vodacom Smart Tab 3G, the 7-inch tablet will run on the Android 4.4 KitKat operating system.
The Smart Tab 3G weighs in at just 275g and features a 7-inch 960×540 TFT capacitive touch screen display. Additionally the device features a 2 megapixel rear-facing camera for pictures and video, a 0.3 megapixel front-facing camera for video calls and selfies, 4GB of memory which is expandable up to 32GB via micro-SD card, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and Zulu language support.
Vodacom’s Chief Commercial Officer, Phil Patel said: “Just over a year ago we stepped back and looked at the devices currently in the market in South Africa and realised there was a massive gap. The smartphones and tablets on offer were either prohibitively expensive or cheap and had lower level specs. We sketched out what we thought the ideal specifications were for South Africa, and using the purchasing power of Vodafone’s global device team, we were able to have the device manufactured at a price point that works out at R2 per day.”
Speaking about Vodacom’s overall strategy to bridge the digital divide in South Africa, Phil Patel said: “Introducing high-quality, low-priced devices is just one leg of our three-part strategy to connect South Africa. The first leg is the network itself – we’re investing R9 billion across South Africa this year to expand both the reach and quality of our coverage. This means making sure that we have 3G coverage everywhere we have 2G and beefing up our systems to handle the huge data growth we see in the cities and townships.
“Next, we’ve been working hard to make data more affordable, and on average our data prices is down 30% on last year, which is a big achievement given the increase things like electricity and fuel which are also our input costs. Finally, there’s the devices themselves. The Smart Kicka and now the Smart Tab 3G are specifically designed to bridge the affordability gap with the right mix of full-functionality and low cost.”
According to Vodacom, the device will be available for R59 per month on a 500MB 24 month price plan. This includes 500MB to use any time and an additional 500MB of data between midnight & 5am. The device will also be available on pre-paid for R999. The prepaid device comes with 100MB of data each month for the first three months.