The Android Developer Community in Kenya Is Thriving: DroidconKe 2019 Proved It


DroidconKe 2019 ended this past week. The two-day developer conference provided a forum for new, upcoming and expert developers to share their knowledge, learn new techniques and also announce apps and products they are working on or launching. And just like last year’s DroidconKE, the event attracted lots of people from not just Kenya and Africa but also the rest of the world.

As a developer conference, attendees not only got technical content but also network with other developers dealing with some of the challenges as them. DroidconKE 2019 offered developers a great place to broaden their technical horizons but expand on other technical roles.

The event organised by Android254 and the iHub in partnership with Kotlin user group, kraft gigital, apps:lab, Tiskos Kenya, Sophiebot and Early Camp.

There were codelabs and workshops presented with the focus on Android development. DroidconKE had multiple speakers from different companies including Twiga Foods, Andela, Delight, Yandex, Lyft, Google, eLimu among others. Individual developers also presented their talks such as Community on a Global Scale, USSD Automation for developers, Git workflows and CI/CD, Material Design Components with Flutter, Coroutines Flow and Experimentation at scale among others.

Other talks included how to enter the tech industry from a non-tech background, the right way to launch your app for the African market and employers perspective in the software engineers to the power of x talk.

My favourite sessions of the two-day event were the community slots which got the attention of lots of developers as developers got to chat about interesting topics such as development tools, burn out, imposter syndrome and challenges as an android developer.

It is worth noting that DroidconKe attracted not only a commendable number of women in tech as an audience, it also featured female developers thriving in their fields of android programming.

We had Maurine Josephine talk about Material Design with Flutter, Monica Oyugi with her talk on Health Technology, Julie Kivuva’s talk on Pragmatism and minimalism in software design, Moyinoluwa Adeyemi with her talk on App modularization, Naamini Yonazi on Beyond Android’s Room.

We also had Maggie Mwaura on Analytics and phone messaging with Firebase, Omolara Adejuwon on Diving into Android app bundles plus Mercy Orangi’s who hosted Andela’s fireside chat with Carol Warugongo.

Somet Kipchillat from Microsoft talked about AI for Good and how the Redmond-based tech giant is giving grants to startups to support its AI for Good themes including AI for accessibility, AI for Earth, AI for humanitarian action and AI for cultural heritage.

Another interesting talk was from Stephen Ebichondo who talked about the importance of having a local tech community and how it can help developers grow together. He shared his experience of establishing and growing the.NET developer community.

During the Showcase session, young developers from Agha Khan School and Alliance High School talked to their mentor, Irving about the tech solutions they’re building, the technology behind it and the challenges they faced. They also shared their main takeaways from DroidconKE that they’ll use to better their products.

The teens from Alliance are building Tunzwa that sends text messages immunization reminders. It is a Toto Health clone build using Python and Africa’s Talking Library and Firebase. The Aga Khan teens are building a student monitoring system to help parents and teachers track academic progress for kids.

The two groups had won on Innovate Kenya Challenge last April and December last year. They were the finalists and their prize was that they got to be mentored by Irving and that’s why they showcased their tech solutions at DroidconKE 19.

From Right:Imran Abdallah, George Okello, Aisha Hamoud Daniel Nakolah, Irving Amukasa, Ahmed Lukman, Eric Ogollah, Derrick Mwathi.

To close off the event, there was a panel discussion from the speakers who held a Q and A session with the audience and revolved around multiple topics and raising interesting points that developers should note.

In conclusion, the DroidconKE 2019 event went well and satisfied the needs of most developers who attended it. One caveat was that the event organizers didn’t curate the speaker’s slides for easy access for attendees to go check out after the session especially for talks they didn’t attend.

The slides can be found on the speaker’s online profiles( or using this hashtag)but it would have been better if the resources shared by them could have been aggregated in one place so that attendees can access them even after the event ended.

The next DroidconKE is happening next year from 6th August to 8th August. Get your tickets here(limited 60% discount).