Dr Aminu Maida, the Executive Vice-Chairman, Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC) on Wednesday highlighted the importance of Technology as a Service (Taas) to the nation.
Maida highlighted this in his keynote presentation at the Africa Tech Alliance Forum 3.0 in Lagos.
He said that the deployment of infrastructure would form the backbone of effective Technology as a Service (Taas) that would benefit the economy.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Africa Tech Alliance Forum 3.0 had the theme: “Driving Technology as a Service through Infrastructure Deployment.”
Technology-as-a-Service (Taas) refers to a business model delivered to customers on subscriptions or pay-per-use, providing access to various technological resources, tools or services without need for ownership or significant upfront investment.
Maida, who was represented by the Director, Public Affairs, NCC, Mr Reuben Mouka, said that leveraging infrastructure deployment to drive Taas would propel into a future where technological barriers are minimised and possibilities are limitless.
He said that the Taas as an innovative approach carried with it multiple benefits, adding that it diminished the financial burden of businesses by transforming capital expenditure into operations costs.
According to him, this allows business redirect resources to innovation and growth, rather than fixed infrastructure expenses.
“The role of critical infrastructure in enabling Taas cannot be overemphasised.
“It is the goal of the commission to boost Nigeria’s broadband penetration rate to 70 per cent by the end of 2025 through the laying of 95,000km of fibre optic cables across the country.
“Similarly and in line with vision of the ministry, we are targeting the provision of coverage for at least 80 per cent of the country’s population, especially the underserved and unserved population by the end of 2027,’’ Maida said.
He noted that the convergence of Taas and infrastructure deployment marked a new era in technological advancements.
The NCC boss noted that the Taas and infrastructure deployment convergence was a paradigm that not only fostered innovation and growth, but also democratised access to cutting edge solution for businesses of all sizes.
Speaking during the panel discussion, Mr Jide Awe, Founder, Jidaw Systems, said that one of the great benefits of Taas was that when one wanted to invest in technology, cost would be reduced.
Awe added that it would create job opportunities as well as improve quality of lives in Nigeria.
He, however, said that there was the need for advocacy, sensitisation and awareness on Taas, because most people do not know about it.
Also speaking at the occasion, the Country Manager, Zoho Nigeria, Mr Kehinde Ogundare, said that Taas helped businesses to scale.
He said that selecting the right task was the pathway for businesses to scale and Zoho had the platform and software for businesses to scale.
On his part, the Managing director, Palmpay, Chika Nwosu, said that Palmpay had 30 million customers in four years, adding that the reason for this was because it married security with good customer experience and a user-friendly platform.
Nwosu, who was represented by Temitayo Oduwole, an official with Palmpay, said the reason for people being defrauded was lack of security awareness, lack of knowledge and patronising fake sites and social media pages.
In his goodwill message, Chief Executive Officer, Internet Exchange Point of Nigeria (IXPN), Mr Muhammed Rudman, appreciated the media for the work of advocacy on the importance of the internet.
Rudman said that there was a need to support the media, because it had been at the forefront of digital transformation through their reportage.
The Convener, AfriTech Alliance Forum, Mr Peter Oluka, in his welcome address, said that the boundary between hardware and software was beginning to blur.
Oluka said that software was infiltrating more and more technology products that used to function only by mechanical rules and analog signals.
He said that different models of driverless cars are navigating themselves with sensors and software, and the trend was not stopping.
“Hardware-based technology companies often find themselves falling behind their innovative software counterparts in identifying new value for customers.
“Software is threatening to replace hardware-based networking.
“The ‘commoditisation trap’ for hardware seems impossible to escape without a product strategy backed by software innovation.
“Hence, over 70 per cent of the world economy has become services, and this percentage continues to grow worldwide.
‘’As of 2020, the United States produced 79 per cent of its GDP in services.
‘’Majority of the companies in Africa are strategising to compete primarily on a service basis,” Oluka said.
According to him, this approach is referred to as Technology-as-a-Service (TaaS), which is the rising future for technology sectors, and will be discussed at AfriTECH 3.0.
The highlight of the event was the Africa Tech Alliance Excellence Award with 11 categories, with the AfriTech Corporate CEO Award being won by Mr Kehinde Ogundare.
The AfriTech Man of the Year award was won by Engr Ikechukwu Nnamani, while AfriTech Cybersecurity Icon of the Decade was awarded to Dr Peter Obadare, among others.