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By 26 August 2011 | Categories: news

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Vodacom is diving headfirst into the app business, with the launch of its new App store from 1 September. The company elaborated that Vodacom Apps will host more than 140 000 apps, powered by Appia, which is one of the world’s largest open application marketplaces. The company added that the “launch marks the beginning of a new South African mobile application ecosystem, complete with the development of homegrown talent and revenue opportunities”.

The Vodacom app market will support Android, Blackberry, Symbian, Windows Mobile and Java mobile platforms, which Vodacom explained will make it relevant to the majority of cellphones and smartphones.  Apps will be sorted by categories, such as games, travel and entertainment, business and professional, work and school, and phone tools.Vodacom Apps users will be able to download free apps, for which standard data charges will apply. In the near future, the company intends to introduce paid-for apps which customers can pay for using their airtime account.  This would enable Vodacom customers to use the store without the need for a credit or debit card.  All Vodacom customers who wish to access Vodacom Apps can do so from 1 September by visiting http://vodacom.mobi/apps on their cellphones or from the Apps feature on Vodafone live!

 The company will also be launching its Vodacom Developer Programme, which will provide the developer community with technical and commercial support, including training, workshops and innovation incentives over the coming months. This will further stimulate the local development of apps by allowing developers to upload their own developed applications and generate an income. Further information will be available from 1 September at http://www.vodacom.co.za/developer.

“The launch of this app store is just the beginning. We’re building an entire community that will supply home-grown apps relevant to the South African environment,” enthused Pieter Uys, Vodacom chief executive officer. “With all the talent available in this country there’s no reason we can’t create our own application industry. The great part about this store is that it caters for so many users – in fact, more than ten million cellphones on our network can run at least Java apps,” he added.

 

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