My good pal, Jon M Bishop recently presented at Digital Surrey last Thursday, on how mobile is changing our world. He delivered an engaging talk and described a number of excellent examples on how mobile phones are enabling mobile transactions in Africa. Here are some key statistics from Jon’s talk:
- There are around 6 million Internet users in South Africa. Only 750k are on fixed line broadband
- South Africa’s MXit also created the most engaged social network in the world and it all on mobile, despite only being launched in 2003!
- The M-Pesa service allows South Africans to make mobile payments for items such music tickets, food and taxi payments
- Safaricom is now the biggest bank in East Africa, despite being a communications company.
- Google estimates that $3.3 billion in mobile ads will be spent this year, $1 billion will be with Google alone
Jon, then went to discuss a real life case study of his friend Shame, who has shunned the Apple iPhone platform in favour of Blackberry devices. In particular, Share enjoys the BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) service with his friends to stay in contact and be informed. Jon also noted that the BBM service was also a key technology that helped to keep ah hoc gangs of youth to stay connected during the London riots.
Learn more about Jon’s talk by reading his slide deck above.