Last week was AfricaCom 2019 in Cape Town, and as always the event featured a number of announcements from companies in the telecoms/ICT space. Having been a key part of AfricaCom in recent years, Huawei was also in attendance and announced a rather interesting initiative in the form of a local developer programme called Shining Star.

The developer space is one where Huawei is investing heavily, with the Chinese company noting that it has earmarked an estimated $1 billion to create a developer ecosystem, a portion of which has been dedicated to the Shining Star programme.

“HMS (HUAWEI Mobile Services) already has more than 570 million global users, including more than 15 million in Africa, with our business covering more than 170 countries. We provide a trusted, device-centric and inter-connected eco-system that improves the user experience, helping them to discover quality content while ensuring security and privacy,” explains Likun Zhao, VP of HUAWEI Consumer Business Group for Middle East & Africa.

Huawei also acknowledges the importance of South Africa as far as mobile services are concerned, with them being utilised at an increasingly significant rate locally. Added to this is the firm’s own app ambitions, which has been one of the issues that has surrounded its recent issues with Google services as a result with ongoing struggles Stateside.

As such Huawei has laid out its ambitions to help South African developers create bespoke mobile applications that tackle unique local problems, and potentially ones across the continent too.

“We are committed to working on empowering local app developers by offering them some much-needed infrastructure, guidance, skills and support to grow local talent,” adds Zhao.

“Our focus is to provide an open platform for developers that they can use to launch and market their apps, as well as give them extensive support in the form of technical development, testing, and legal and marketing tools,” he concludes.

With Huawei set to hold a Developer Day launch later this week, we’ll be on hand to find out more about the programme, and potentially the firm’s plans for a larger app ecosystem moving forward.