Congolese company, VMK has unveiled its Africa inspired Elikia smartphone priced at $170. The smartphone has enjoyed generous international press including a feature on Engadget. VMK had released its budget Way C tablet in the African market earlier which it neatly dubbed “the African touchpad.”
Now what makes the Elikia smartphone any different from the many budget smartphones springing up on the continent?
VMK had earlier come under attack for erroneously insinuating that its Way C tablet was made in Congo. Like many tablets, marketed on the continent, it was not made in Congo but was “designed” in Congo which is why it has gone out of its way to wear the “designed in” badge loud and proud this time with the Elikia smartphone.
The phone while designed in Congo, was assembled in China. What we find interesting is how much the company has gone out of its way to justify this manufacturing decision. You can read all about it on the company’s website. The clarification is indeed quite welcome as many African companies often get pilloried internationally for insinuating that their mobile devices were made on African soil. The open secret which everyone ought to know is that they never are but does this matter? You be the judge.
The device has a 3.5 inch (and 480 x 320) display as well as 512MB of RAM, a 650MHz processor, 5 megapixel rear/front VGA cameras and FM radio. It also has its own app store and prepaid gift cards for app lovers. Through its hotspot wi-fi functionality, users can connect up to 5 wi-fi devices.
Elikia provides a budget smartphone option for Congolese and Africans alike.