When it comes to mobile, Africa is at the forefront of a revolution. It’s young and dynamic population is quickly adapting to this medium and building amazing businesses around mobile. Six out of the world’s 10 fastest growing economies are in Africa, and Mobile is playing a big role in driving these economies.
Mobile Apps leading the wave. All an innovative youngster needs is an aptitude to develop mobile apps and solve the need of fellow Africans. It requires a niche skill set, but mobile app development is fast becoming the order of the day as demand increases. Nokia has played a big role in enabling and empowering the app ecosystem through their developer program across the continent. Agatha Gikunda, Head of Services, Applications & Content – Nokia, East Africa elaborates, “Mobile technology has leveled the playing field for entrepreneurship across the world by creating a new breed of entrepreneurs: the App Entrepreneurs. The only thing these App Entrepreneurs need is a great idea, a solution using the mobile ecosystem. The African pioneers of this App Entrepreneur ecosystem are developers like Abdu Sekalala, Nisile Kaswaga, Andrew Mainga & Denis Pichan who have set up successful enterprises and are pushing the ecosystem forward at a rapid pace. Companies like Vserv.mobi & their innovative AppWrapper technologies act as enablers and catalysts for these App Entrepreneurs and allow them to focus on their products without worrying about their monetization models and integration issues.”
Unlike the West, where mobile innovation is largely technology led, in Africa addressing the geographic, economic and cultural constraints of users is more imperative. Ideas like the ‘torch phone’ are a lifesaver for users who live in areas with little or no regular light. Even apps developed here have a direct positive impact on sectors like banking, healthcare, education etc. A classic example is the M-Pesa service in Kenya, which allows users to bank through their phone and has become a revelation amongst millions of Kenyans without bank accounts.
With low barriers to entry and massive growth envisaged in the coming years, we raise a toast to the App developers across Africa for daring to dream and making an entire continent proud.
For more such inspiring developers stories from Africa & the Rest Of The World stay tuned to our weekly ‘Developer of The Week’ blog series.