Saturday 28 March 2020

App-solutely Fabulous – How Apps Make Local Lekker Again @HuaweiZA #HMS

Hi Friends,

Eish. A little nugget of a word that has become firmly entrenched in the South African vernacular. Originally a Khoi term used to express surprise, this utterance has become the mantra of lamenting South Africans: a cry of frustration at the latest round of load shedding, disappointment as the Proteas suffer a crushing defeat or annoyance as a taxi cuts us off on our way to the office. But the word has many other uses – an articulation of incredulity, excitement, gratitude … an almost endless list. 

The flexibility with which we wield our language is probably a good indication of our overall resilience and adaptability as a nation. When faced with a situation presenting unique challenges or opportunities, the ‘maak ‘n plan’ mentality usually kicks in.

Tech giant and smartphone manufacturer, Huawei, understands the importance of thinking on your feet better than most businesses. Landing in the center of a tussle between the US government and China that resulted in a trade ban, Huawei was forced to create their own Android experience without Google. 

“Our aim was to ensure that our users have a familiar and seamless experience when using their smartphones,” explains Vice President of Huawei Consumer Group, Middle East & Africa, Likun Zhao. “When we developed HUAWEI Mobile Services, our approach was to create an interface that users could immediately recognize and navigate.”

As part of Huawei’s efforts to empower users through familiarity and simplicity, the HUAWEI AppGallery – their official app distribution platform – provides intelligent recommendations of popular local and nearby apps. This enables users to access geographically relevant apps quickly and easily. HUAWEI has also added a ‘wishlist’ to its HUAWEI AppGallery to allow users to identify desired apps that are not currently offered. Once this app goes on-shelf, the user who submitted the request receives a notification.
App-solutely Fabulous – How Apps Make Local Lekker Again @HuaweiZA #HMS
So, how are we making use of local apps to address some of our distinctly South African challenges?

South Africa struggles with an under-resourced police force. The Namola app allows users to request police assistance at their GPS-calculated location, instead of simply phoning 10111 and requesting assistance via telephone.

This increases response time and efficiency in an emergency situation by ensuring that police from the closest station are dispatched. It also decreases the chance of misinformation and misunderstandings — a problem that can arise when information is passed telephonically.

Namola’s website data analytics allow police to identify crime hotspots and deploy resources accordingly. The app also allows citizens to rate police responses, and for police to rate citizen call-outs, ensuring there is a feedback loop.

Load Shedding Notifiers
Discussions around the various stages of load shedding have become as commonplace in South Africa as sunshine and braais. But now there are apps to help us to manage the inconvenience. 

Load Shedding Notifying apps such as EskomSePush and Load Shedding Notifier monitor the current Eskom load shedding status and notifies you if the power is scheduled to go off in your area.

JOOX Music
South African music is as rich and varied as its people. The JOOX app lets you listen to top South African hip-hop, kwaito, Afrikaans, pop, electronic, and rock songs, but also offers all the chart-topping international tracks across every popular music genre.

With the slogan ‘fast, reliable delivery to your door’, Takealot has brought convenience and choice to harried South African shoppers.

Gone are the days of driving across town from one mall to the other to find your color, size or specification – this app offers safety and security from the comfort of your home or office.

MiBlackBox is the perfect app for a witness, a victim or a bystander to record an event for future reference or proof. At a touch of a button, MiBlackBox records sounds, phone calls, and videos and uploads them to a cloud server. This means that whatever happens to the phone, the recordings will all be safe.

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