There is a global increase in smartphone usage, as they become more efficient and can be used in all aspects of our everyday lives. Businesses and technologists alike realise the importance of having their app in a smartphone, whether it is the Apple iPhone or Android phones.
In the African continent, South Africa is one of the biggest nations where there is an increasing number of smartphones used. As of 2016, anywhere between 37% to 45% is the percentage of increase of smartphone usage.
The increase in smartphone usage means, more apps should be available. There may be millions of apps in the Google play store or Apple store that appeal to people on a global level, but not every country has the same needs and different apps may be more important to people. depending on how they operate on a daily basis.
Technically an increase in smartphone usage means that there are more opportunities for mobile app developers, as businesses increasingly incorporate apps into their business and new businesses operate entirely off an app, there is significant opportunity to introduce an app. However, there is also a huge amount of competition as more and more apps are constantly introduced into the market. We look at whether there has been an increase in mobile app development specifically in South Africa.
To know for sure, we need to compare numbers from two different periods of time and see for ourselves whether there is an increase in mobile applications development in South Africa. Let’s look at some key numbers and help us figure if there has been an increase in mobile applications development in South Africa.
In 2014, 9.7 million people were using smartphones in South Africa. It has grown to 16.1 million in 2017. On the rise, it is expected that by 2021, this number is going to increase to 21.9 million users. If you see the trend, usage of smartphones is on the rise in South Africa.
But how are the South African population using smartphones? What I mean is, the number of people who use smartphones to access the internet, we need to see where that number is heading.
In January 2015, mobile internet users in South Africa was around 24.9 million, and the same has increased to 26.8 million in January 2016. This reveals that the internet usage on mobile is only increasing.
How many South Africans are downloading apps. A survey conducted in South Africa during 2016 to understand people’s mobile usage reports that more than 60% of the people who use smartphones, use it to download apps. 84% said that they access the internet using their smartphones.
Key numbers to understand, in order to see if there is any surge in app development in South Africa, denotes the surge in smartphone access, using it to access the internet and more and more are downloading apps on their smartphones.
1. Does South Africa have enough mobile app developers?
2. How are some of the apps developed in South Africa?
These two questions will answer the other side of the spectrum. That is, on the one hand, smartphone growth is immense, but those users can download and access through internet content and apps that were developed outside South Africa, right?
Does South Africa have enough mobile app developers?
The salary offered as median salary for an app developer suggests that there is a real demand for app developers. More and more companies are training developers to develop, specifically for mobile, there is a thriving developer community and more and more are joining the force every day.
2. What Apps are developed in South Africa?
Some great apps are developed in South Africa, which shows that there is a thriving app development community. Some of the apps developed in South Africa include:
South Africa has a fast-growing smartphone user base. Most of them use their smartphones to access the internet and download apps, they have many good app development companies and a large mobile developer base, that has developed awesome apps, used by millions and finally, South African companies have started their mobile phone, tablet manufacturing companies. South Africa is leading the way when it comes to mobile application development, and apps usage in the African continent and this is only increasing.