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    Kenyan regulator prepares to disconnect fake phone

    Kenyans are counting days before the Communications Commission of Kenya (CCK) switches off counterfeit phones at the end of September. According to the CCK, close to three million mobile phones in the Kenyan market are counterfeit - 10% of all the active mobile devices in the country.

    In accordance with Regulation 24 of the Kenya Information and Communications (Importation, Type Approval and Distribution of Communications Equipment) Regulations 2010, requires all mobile phones to be type approved. Contravention of this statute attracts a fine not exceeding three hundred thousand shillings or imprisonment for a term not exceeding three years or both.

    Infringing on intellectual property rights

    Counterfeits not only infringe on the manufacturers intellectual property rights, but also deny the government revenue in the form of tax as well as posing a health risk to the consumers.

    Following the notice, Samsung Electronics East Africa has launched a dual-SIM handset - the Samsung Chief Hero handset (E1500) targeting phone users with two telephone lines. The Smart Dual SIM technology allows both SIM cards to be active.

    Speaking in Nairobi after the launch of the Samsung Chief Hero handset, Robert Ngeru, Samsung Electronics East Africa Business Leader said the new internet enabled handset has been customised for local conditions to boost the uptake of genuine handsets and support CCK's anti counterfeit phones campaign.

    The phone is pre-loaded with a Kiswahili language option and features a free 2GB memory card. This strategy is part of the phone maker's agenda to get into the low-cost mobile phone market.

    The phone also supports an additional 13 languages including Yoruba and Igbo - languages spoken in West Africa.

    About Carole Kimutai: @CaroleKimutai

    Carole Kimutai is a writer and editor based in Nairobi, Kenya. She is currently an MA student in New Media at the University of Leicester, UK. Follow her on Twitter at @CaroleKimutai.
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