Baidu and France Telecom launch mobile browser tailored for Africa

cellThe Baidu and France Telecoms partnership is aimed at driving adoption of the mobile Internet in emerging markets. (Image source: sxc.hu)Chinese search engine Baidu has teamed up with France Telecom to develop a mobile browser tailored to suit the needs of customers in Africa and the Middle East

A Reuters report said the partnership, a global first for Baidu, was aimed to drive adoption of the mobile Internet in emerging markets by making browsing simpler and affordable.

The new browser, which was initially available in English and Arabic, was launched on Android smartphones by France Telecom’s Egyptian operator Mobinil on 14 January 2013.

Orange, France Telecom’s mobile division, said customers were steadily moving from basic phones to low cost smartphones as faster 3G networks were becoming available.

The shift has helped in increasing the amount of revenue it earned from its customer base of nearly 80mn in the region.

A statement from Baidu said the deal meant it could export the knowledge it had gained in developing products for China to the developing world.

Baidu International Business Unit general manager Hu Yong said, “We’re now bringing that experience to bear in other markets which are now enjoying rapid growth.”

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