According to recent studies, the use of apps is increasing in South Africa. The use of apps is single-handedly driving the mobile economy in South Africa.
A study conducted among the country’s mobile users has revealed an increase in the use of apps, with 51% of urban cell phone users using them. The use of apps has also seen an increase in the rural areas, with 27% of rural cell phone users utilising the technology.
According to the statistics, the use of apps saw an impressive rise, from 24% in mid-2012 to 43%, late last year (2013) of adult cell phone users in cities and towns using them. Dramatic growth was seen mostly in IMs, or instant messaging services. In SA, IM is mostly made up of WhatsApp; Facebook Chat; Mxit; BBM, amongst others. According to the numbers, WhatsApp saw the most dramatic increase; the use of the app rose from 26% to 53%. Followed by Facebook Chat, the app is used by 45% of the urban population surveyed. Mxit is also still a favourite, with 25% of the respondents, claiming to utilise this chatting application. Blackberry’s messaging service, BBM, also saw an increase from 17% to 21% of the respondents using the application.
The survey also highlights the continuous growth of Twitter; 20% of adults are now using Twitter, compared to mid 2012, when only 12% saw this application worthy of using. The growth is expected to continue into 2014, with projected growth figures ranging from 25% – 30%.
The top mobile apps for 2013, in no particular order, are:
– My Edit: An app that allows you to personalise your tablet’s newsfeed with content from top SA magazines, newspapers, websites and blog. You can choose from a wide range of categories to find something that appeals to you.
– Zite: a magazine that helps you discover what it is you truly enjoy reading. Learning what you like, Zite gets smarter with every time you use it. It skims the clutter and brings you the best from your favourite magazines, newspapers, authors, videos and blogs.
– Bookly: an e-reader that features a library, where users browse a library of books searching by genre, author for their favourites. It also sees a virtual bookshelf, where users can pick books from the library to add to their shelf. Page markers are also available to store content. A gamification and a like/dislike function is also available.
– Evernote: is an easy-to-use “vocal diary” for all your devices. Available for free download, it allows you to stay organised and improve your productivity by allowing you to save your ideas. Available whether you are at home, work or on the go.
– Snapscan: Recently named winner of the Best App of the Year award at the MTN Business App of the Year awards, Snapscan allows customers to pay for their bills, at independent retailers and big chain stores, via their mobile phones instead of using your credit or debit cards.