MTN Uganda partners with ayoba; Africa’s own SuperApp
- ayoba is an instant messaging app developed by SIMFY AFRICA
- Paving the way to a SuperApp, ayoba has unique features such as chat, gaming, channels as well as communication with feature phone users via SMS and local language options in Luganda & Swahili. These are the first of many other features to come.
- The app is free to use up to 1GB worth of data for every MTN customer, every month.
MTN Uganda has in partnership with SIMFY AFRICA, launched a SuperApp called ‘ayoba’ that will enable customers to access more affordable communication. ayoba is an instant messaging app available for now for Android devices and soon for iOS and works with any network. What makes it different from other messaging apps is that you can still chat (app to SMS and SMS to app) with anyone regardless of whether they have the ayoba app or not. MTN customers can reply to these messages on SMS even when they don’t have the app. ayoba lets you securely send and receive text messages, voice messages, videos, images, audio and other files with any of your contacts, using your mobile internet connection. MTN customers will however not need any data (MBs) to use the service. They can use it free of charge up to 1GB of data, every month.
ayoba is a Pan African messaging platform, built by Africans for Africans. It speaks to the uniqueness and diversity of Africa as it is built with lots of features not available on any other instant messaging platforms. The app is available in some African languages, such as Swahili, Luganda, Hausa, isiXhosa, and Yoruba. It has end-to-end encryption to keep users’ data safe and ensure their privacy as they chat with their contacts regardless of their device or network. ayoba also has channels on sports, fashion, cooking, health, and games.
In addition to texting, customers can also initiate voice calls with their contacts, from within the ayoba app. The call will be charged as a standard voice call using the customers’ available airtime or minutes.
“We are keen to see Africa actively participate in the global digital revolution that is now being further accelerated by the Covid-19 situation. Innovation and the connectivity that goes with it, are particularly key to our digital proposition. They are both crucial in our contribution to the social and economic transformation of our country, said Wim Vanhelleputte, MTN Uganda’s Chief Executive Officer.
“ayoba is not just a new platform for people to chat with each other, it is a one of a kind digital platform that elevates the concept of instant messaging to a whole new level of instant and integrated connecting”, Wim he added.
This innovation, underscores MTN’s leadership ambitions in innovation as it helps Africa claim its place in the IM evolution.
Speaking about this partnership, David Gilarranz CEO of SIMFY AFRICA, “We are delighted to partner with MTN in Uganda and to offer its customers the ability to use the app with no data costs. In the coming weeks, our app will surely become a super app as we will be adding more features, like mobile money and music, as well as allowing other apps to co-exist in ayoba. We would like to take this opportunity to thank MTN Uganda for trusting our journey”.
Key features of the ayoba app include:
- Local languages: ayoba is available in the top local languages in the markets where the offering has launched.
- Chat now: Users can instantly send and receive text and voice messages with any of their contacts regardless of device type or network.
- Security: End-to-end encryption means that messages in a conversation cannot be read by anyone else.
- Chat with everyone: Users can send SMS text messages with anyone in their contact list, regardless of whether they have ayoba installed or not.
- Channels: Users can subscribe to channels for locally relevant content across various categories.
- Gaming: Users can play with a large selection of games
- FREE to use: It is free to use by MTN customers for up to 1GB every month, for every user.