Just when Ebele Okobi, head of Facebook’s public policy for Africa had announced at the Mobile West Africa conference that the social networking giant will launch its internet.org platform in Nigeria come May 2015, MTN Nigeria beat Facebook to launch APPtitude, a similar platform just ahead of Facebook’s schedule.
Facebook’s internet.org aims at providing basic internet access to people who cannot afford internet all over the world. The service is already doing great in India and other countries across Asia and was recently launched on the Airtel network in Ghana, (a market that models after the Nigerian market). Other African countries where internet.org has been lunched include Zambia, Kenya and Tanzania.
Tech observers had earlier speculated that internet.org would be launched on the Airtel network in Nigeria , a move which MTN may have reacted to by swiftly launching its own Apptitude platform as revealed by Channels TV and the news agency of Nigeria. This may be in order to compete directly with Facebook.
How the battle unfolds will is still unknown but in my observation of the Nigerian consumer trends, the service with superior user experience will emerge the clear leader.
Do you think the move by MTN is justified? Let’s hear your opinion.