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Tech News & Podcast | Africa

Vodafone and Microsoft announce a new partnership to provide cloud computing, and generative AI to customers

Vodafone and Microsoft recently launched a 10-year strategic alliance aimed at providing over 300 million organisations and consumers in Europe and Africa with access to digital services, cloud computing, and generative AI. The partnership intends to develop new digital and financial services for businesses, particularly SMEs across Europe and Africa, and revamp Vodafone’s global data centre cloud strategy.

It also aims to leverage Microsoft’s generative AI, hyperscale Vodafone’s leading managed IoT connectivity platform, to transform Vodafone’s customer experience. Over the next ten years, Vodafone plans to invest $1.5 billion in cloud and customer-focused AI services created in partnership with Microsoft.

Microsoft will also make advantage of the fixed and mobile connectivity services provided by Vodafone. Microsoft also wants to put money into Vodafone’s managed IoT connectivity platform, which by April 2024 will be operating on its own. The new business will draw in more partners and clients, spurring the development of apps and broadening the platform’s ability to link more machines, cars, and other devices.

Utilising the most recent advancements in generative AI technology, the digital services produced by this new alliance will offer a highly customised and unique consumer experience across a variety of channels. Under Vodafone’s established framework for responsible AI, they will be based on impartial and moral privacy and security regulations.

How Microsoft’s generative AI will be used to transform Vodafone’s customer experience.

Microsoft’s generative AI will be used to transform Vodafone’s customer experience by delivering frictionless, real-time, proactive, and hyper-personalized experiences across all Vodafone customer touchpoints, including its digital assistant (available in 13 countries).

The partnership’s generative AI element will open up a tonne of new and enormous prospects for businesses worldwide. With the use of cutting-edge generative AI technology, the new alliance will provide digital services that offer a highly customised and unique user experience across a variety of channels. They will be based on Vodafone’s well-established framework for responsible AI, which includes impartial and moral privacy and security regulations.

How Vodafone plans to leverage Microsoft’s resources to scale its premier managed IoT connection technology.

Microsoft’s resources will be utilised to expand Vodafone’s premier managed IoT connection platform, which now links 175 million devices and platforms globally. Microsoft plans to invest in Vodafone’s new, independent global connection platform that is managed by the Internet of Things (IoT). Vodafone also intends to integrate into the Azure environment, opening up the IoT platform through open APIs to a large developer and third-party community. The new business will draw in new clients and partners, spurring the development of apps and broadening the platform’s ability to link more machines, cars, and other devices.

Digital and financial services that will be developed for businesses, particularly SMEs across Europe and Africa.

Vodafone and Microsoft will collaborate to provide new financial and digital services for businesses, especially SMEs in Europe and Africa 1. Utilising cutting-edge generative AI technology, the new partnership’s digital offerings will offer a highly customised and unique consumer experience across a variety of channels. 1. They will be based on Vodafone’s defined framework for responsible AI, which includes impartial and moral privacy and security standards 1. Additionally, the collaboration will grow M-Pesa to enhance financial inclusion throughout Africa 1. Users of M-Pesa can deposit, withdraw, transfer, and pay for products and services using this mobile phone-based lending, microfinancing, and money transfer service 2. With new Microsoft services for small businesses, Vodafone will expand its enterprise business.

Vodafone’s global data center cloud strategy will be overhauled using Microsoft’s cloud resources.

Microsoft’s cloud computing resources will be used to revamp Vodafone’s worldwide data centre cloud strategy. Vodafone plans to modernise its data centres on Microsoft Azure in order to expedite its cloud shift. This will simplify and lower the operational costs of its IT estate while enhancing its responsiveness to clients. Vodafone staff members may increase digital efficiency and productivity by utilising Microsoft Copilot.

$1.5 billion investment made by Vodafone over the next 10 years in cloud and customer-focused AI services developed in conjunction with Microsoft.

Over the next ten years, Vodafone plans to invest $1.5 billion in cloud and customer-focused AI services created in partnership with Microsoft. Vodafone intends to utilise the investment to modernise its data centres on Microsoft Azure, thus expediting the company’s cloud shift. This will simplify and lower the operational costs of its IT estate while enhancing its responsiveness to clients.

Additionally, the investment will be utilised to create new financial and digital services for companies, especially SMEs in Europe and Africa. With the use of cutting-edge generative AI technology, the new alliance will provide digital services that offer a highly customised and unique user experience across a variety of channels. They will be based on Vodafone’s well-established framework for responsible AI, which includes impartial and moral privacy and security regulations.

Key points of the partnership and its potential impact on businesses and consumers across Europe and Africa.

As part of the partnership, Microsoft intends to invest in Vodafone’s managed IoT connectivity platform, which will become a separate, standalone business by April 2024. The new company will attract new partners and customers, driving growth in applications and expanding the platform to connect more devices, vehicles, and machines. By deeply integrating with Microsoft’s Azure cloud and AI platform, Vodafone aims to boost its IoT services, making Vodafone’s IoT platform available through open APIs on Azure. This will enable Vodafone to scale its new standalone IoT business and enhance its IoT capabilities.

Furthermore, Vodafone aims to expand M-Pesa, its mobile money transfer service, to improve financial inclusion across Africa. M-Pesa is a mobile-based financial service that allows users to send and receive money, pay bills, and access other financial services using their mobile phones. By leveraging Microsoft’s generative AI and cloud services, Vodafone aims to enhance M-Pesa’s capabilities and reach more people in Africa, particularly those who are unbanked or underbanked. This partnership has the potential to transform the financial landscape of Africa by providing access to financial services to millions of people who were previously excluded from the formal banking system.

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