The recently published (July 2011) report by Balancing Act “Mobile apps for Africa: Strategies to make sense of free and paid apps” analyses the nascent apps ecosystem in Africa while providing an analytical framework that will allow African mobile operators, content providers, apps developers and handset manufacturers to decide on what strategy to adopt regarding mobile apps.
The 131 pages report is divided into three parts: Part 1: The users, the device and the usage; Part 2: The developers and the content; Part 3: Distribution platforms and distribution strategies. It also contains 15 illustrated boxes, 26 tables, 39 charts and 2 maps.
With over 50 different countries, the African continent is incredibly varied when it comes to mobile markets. The report assesses which African countries have the best potentials for mobile apps. With several million mobile data users and a smartphone penetration rate above 10%, South Africa obviously takes the lead but other African countries are following in its path. The report establishes the factors conductive to the development of mobile apps and thus provides a methodology to evaluate each individual African mobile market for handset manufacturers, white label apps store vendors, international apps stores, applications developers or mobile operators.
Smartphones drive the consumption of mobile apps and more African mobile users will have a smartphone in their pocket in the near future, The handsets pyramid which currently is made up of over 80% basic phones in some African countries will be shifting in the next years and the changes will be top-down with a larger representation of smartphones and feature-rich phones. To evaluate this shift, the report provides smartphone penetration forecasts for different markets.
Increasing non-voice activities among African mobile users are confirmed through several countries surveys. The results detailed in the report show that infotainement is what African mobile users are looking for: so, what does it mean when looking for the “killer apps”?
The report provides further insights on what type of mobile apps are more likely to make money in Africa as well as recommendations on how to optimise the revenue that they can expect to be making from the various apps stores that are available today to them. For African apps developers and content providers, there are informed choices to make in order to maximise the monetisation of mobile apps. The report analyses the routes to market: local and international and the various revenue streams available.
Balancing Act’s report “Mobile apps for Africa: Strategies to make sense of free and paid apps” is unique in terms of insights that it provides on the mobile apps ecosystem and the perspectives it offers on how mobile apps will spread and unfold in Africa. This is a “must buy” report because there is a wealth of strategic information in it to keep players ahead of the coming competition in the mobile content sphere.