TheeAfrican.com          
Top 5 Mobile Phone Apps Made in Africa
By: The Editor   On: 16th Aug 2017

 

Africa is home to multiple breakthrough technologies. By leapfrogging directly to cutting-edge technologies, Africa has always bypassed the industrial phase in which developed countries invested in cumbersome technological infrastructure. In this list we rank some the continent’s game changing Apps. This App ranking is based on the impact the technology has had on the lives of everyday Africans, NOT on the App’s download numbers nor the amount of revenues generated by the App in the Google Play store or the App Store. Originality of concept is also considered; e-commerce shopping apps or food delivery apps were not considered during the ranking. Neither did we consider gaming apps or social networking apps; except if they added an economic or social value to the African citizenry.

M-Pesa, Kenya: An award-winning mobile money transfer service, M-Pesa was first launched by the Kenyan mobile network operator Safaricom, an affiliate of Vodafone, in March 2007. It quickly captured a significant market share for cash transfers, and grew astoundingly quickly, capturing 6.5 million subscribers by May 2009 with 2 million daily transactions in Kenya alone. The innovation was quickly replicated by other leading African telecom companies. Mobile Money Transfers have since clocked $1.3 Trillion dollars per year; yes $1.3 Trillion USD according to the World Bank. The service is now used by over 800 million people all across Africa.

BarefootLaw, Uganda: BarefootLaw is an online platform that provides the public with free legal information using innovative approaches. Gerald Abila, a Ugandan Attorney and a former law student at Kampala International University, is the founder of BareFootLaw. The organization uses technology, audio- visual tools and traditional means of legal aid such as seminars and clinics to promote women’s knowledge of the law. The organization equips women with information regarding their rights to property.

Ushahidi, Kenya: Ushahidi, which translates to 'testimony' in Swahili, was developed to map reports of violence in Kenya after the post-election violence in 2008. Since then, thousands have used the organization's crowdsourcing tools to raise their voice. Headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya, Ushahidi is a global leader in crisis response software design.

iRokoTV, Nigeria: Call iRokoTV the ’Netflix of Africa.’ iRokoTV is a web platform that provides paid-for Nigerian films on-demand. It is one of Africa’s first mainstream online movie steaming websites, giving instant access to over 5,000 Nollywood film titles. The company’s online video streaming service has revolutionized Africa’s movie and entertainment industry.

M-Farm, Kenya: M-Farm allows local Kenyan farmers to get up-to-date information on crop prices and farming-related matters. Getting accurate food prices is a valuable asset on the African continent. Users are also able to request prices for five major towns in Kenya. Being SMS-based is also a big selling-point, as not a lot of farmers have access to reliable internet connections.

Honorable Mention

MAMA, South Africa: MAMA stands for Mobile Alliance for Maternal Action (MAMA). The app works with low-income and at-risk mothers and families in countries with high populations of mobile phone users - to provide vital health information through SMS text messaging and simple voice messages. MAMA provides pregnant women and new mothers with targeted health information and care tips using SMS and voice calls. The system allows expectant women to register with their due date for free or affordable information on antenatal care and delivery services timed to their precise stage of pregnancy. The expectant mothers are also advised on birth plans and childcare, including breastfeeding. The Mobile Alliance for Maternal Action is a global movement that seeks to use mobile technologies to improve the health and lives of mothers in developing nations. The Initiative was launched by U.S cosmetics company ’Johnson & Johnson’ in partnership with the United Nations.


Related Stories
AI start-up 1aim set to expand into Africa German-born tech entrepreneur Torben Friehe is the CEO of 1aim, an AI building platform that is helping businesses use and manage their commercial spaces more...
10 Most Destructive Computer Viruses Ever Created In this list we tally some of the most lethal and malicious pieces of computer software code ever designed. The ranking is based on the revenue losses caused...
We review the New Samsung S8 We review the Samsung S8, a new smartphone from South Korean phone manufacturer Samsung. Samsung Galaxy S8 smartphone was launched in March 2017. The phone...
Vodacom buys 34% stake in Safaricom for $2.6 B South African telecom giant Vodacom has successfully purchased a 34% stake in Kenya’s Safaricom in a deal valued at $2.6 Billion. After obtaining the...
South Africa leads Africa in App downloads According to a 2015 report titled 'The Sub-Saharan African Mobile End-user Trends', mobile phone penetration in sub-Saharan Africa is expected to increase from...
Safaricom’s M-Pesa gets own Debit Card Kenya’s mobile money giant M-Pesa is getting its own Debit Card to compete with traditional banks. The card will allow users to withdraw cash in any currency...
Restaurant Food delivery App Hello Food Hellofood (Jumia Food), is a global online food delivery platform. In 2015, U.S financial giant Goldman Sachs invested $100 million into the service. Earlier...
Uganda’s BareFootLaw App offers free Legal Aid BarefootLaw is an online platform that provides the public with free legal information using innovative approaches. Gerald Abila, a Ugandan Attorney and a...
Kenya’s EatOut raises $500,000 investment Craft Silicon, a Kenyan fintech (financial technology) firm has invested $500,000 USD into Nairobi-based restaurant discovery and payment platform EatOut to...
10 African start-ups to watch in 2018 Africa is one of the toughest and least forgiving environments for launching a technology start-up. In this list we tally some of the continent’s most...
African start-ups raised $367 million in 2016 In 2016, African or Africa-focused startups raised between $129 million and $367 million, according to reports from Disrupt Africa and Partech Ventures. The...
Your iPhone may be fueling conflict in Africa According to Amnesty International, major electronics brands, including Apple, Samsung and Sony, are failing to do basic checks to ensure that cobalt mined by...
Kiira Motors wants to be the ‘Tesla of Africa’ In mid-November 2014, Kiira Motors Corporation unveiled a prototype of its sedan hybrid electric vehicle dubbed the Kiira EV SMACK. The five-seater sedan was...
Election Monitoring App Ushahidi Ushahidi, which translates to 'testimony' in Swahili, was developed to map reports of violence in Kenya after the post-election violence in 2008. Since then,...
The Top 5 Car Makers in Africa In this list we rank the top 5 vehicle brands designed and manufactured in Africa. These African car manufacturers are ranked based on volume of vehicles sold...