Gearbox, a tech community for hardware innovation had the opportunity to host the Baringo Senator, Gideon Moi. He toured the space and heard impact stories of local companies that build solutions for local problems.
Over the years, Kenya has become the global technology hub of choice when it comes to attracting the strategic business activities of ICT companies in emerging markets.Innovators have ventured into a range of industries, identifying problems and offering viable solutions.
The Executive Director Dr.Kamau Gachigi conducted the tour through the fabrication labs capturing the imagination of technological progress by makers, students, and the hosted companies.
The Baringo senator, who is also the chair of ICT in the Senate, got to interact with companies that employ technological infrastructure through hardware and future systems to build human centered solutions.
He was introduced to Mary Mwangi, whose company is using digital tech to automate trust in transactions for SMEs. Integrated Data solutions has incorporated an end to end payment solution system that digitizes payments and resources around payments. This modern computing promotes integrity and overall sustainable growth of small business.
He also met, June Arunga CEO Usafi Comfort a company that gives waste water treatment solutions for industrial and commercial installation. She explained that the centralized systems help make water sanitation decisions like waste water problems curbing increase of water borne diseases and the database can give predictive maintenance and proactive water management systems.
Currently, ICT and digital technologies are being used to improve efficiency and productivity in various industries. ICT technologies and vertical domains are converged in IoT to provide new levels of functionalities and services to users.
Dr. Kamau led him to Lectrotel Microsystems a company that designs IOT solutions for local problems. They talked to Douglas who described his innovation of a smart solar water pump controlled by a smart phone. The water pump is affordable and easy to use for people in the arid areas is being used as an irrigation system that ensures food security.
In addition to connecting objects equipped with digital information with sensing, processing and communication capabilities,IOT has also greatly expanded the digital footprint to connecting people, organizations and information resources
This ubiquitous infrastructure is generating abundant data that can be utilized to achieve efficiency gains in the production and distribution of goods and services, and to improve human life in innovative ways.
Gideon met Bonface Sato, founder of Pregmum, a company that has developed a digital foetus monitor for continuous pregnancy monitoring. The device can access cloud storage from which the vital data is recorded and stored for analysis and future reference. Sato explained that the device helps in early detection and response to pregnancy emergency reducing maternal mortality and still births.
The head of ICT in senate also met with Nick Quatong from PayGo, a company that makes smart metering system for LPG gas. The system provides affordable energy solutions to people in the low income areas by removing cost barriers to clean cooking fuel, and allowing customers to purchase gas on a pay-as-you-go basis.
Lastly, in the transport sector, Gideon had a chat with Nick Kimali, an electrical engineer who designs and makes digital dynamics smart speed limiters that give GPS based speed limiting. These speed meters ensure speed limits on specific roads is maintained by public vehicles.
This is a clear indication that a revolution will unfold over the coming decades with opportunities, challenges, and implications that are not yet fully known. To harness these benefits, Africa will need to create conditions supportive to the deployment of next-generation network and service infrastructures. They will also have to adopt policies that are conducive to experimentation and innovation, while mitigating potential risks to information security, privacy, and employment.