The iPhone is not exactly a niche product anymore, and especially not in SA. While not close to the popularity of Blackberry, SA developers are not ignoring iPhone. There is clearly a market to develop for South African iPhone users, and there has been a lot of apps released in recent times. We thought it might be time to list our favourite “Made in South Africa / for South Africans” apps. It should be pointed out that many of these apps are available on other smartphone platforms as well.
News 24: Yeah, we are not starting off with the little guy. News24’s app has been out almost ever since the first iPhones appeared on our shores, and the app has had quite a few updates. While sometimes buggy, it is still one of the first apps to recommend to someone fresh to iPhone. It is versatile as well – you do not have to only read news – it can be customized to have your favorite sections of the 24.com empire right within one touch. For example – I like having Fin24 and Wheels24 links on the bottom of my News24 install.
Powertime: We have sung the praises of Powertime here before. Powertime is essentially a tool to buy prepaid electricity with, which is linked to your credit card. Simple enough, and similiar solutions exist, yes. But nothing comes close to the elegance in which Powertime does it. One particular feature we enjoy is that Powertime analyzes your electricity spending patterns, then gives you push notification warnings when it reckons your electricity might be running low.
DStv Drifta Mobile Decoder: Watching TV on your phone might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but the usefulness of the DStv Drifta for travelers cannot be denied. If you already have a DStv subscription, its as easy as buying the Drifta mobile decoder, and signing up for the Drifta package (which is free for Premium subscribers and R36 a month for everyone else), and then using it within its quite broad reception area, which is in most major city areas in SA. While it is available for iPhone, it is of course even better on the iPad with its larger screen. The channel selection is somewhat limited right now – but the good ones are there. My tip – get one before the Rugby World Cup if you are not always close to a TV…
FNB Banking: Released only a short while ago, FNB has created quite a storm with its innovative app which is available on other platforms as well. Kobus did a very thorough review on it, and its pretty clear that FNB’s app might be a clear differentiator in the banking sector. It is actually quite amazing that FNB is the only bank in SA to have jumped at this opportunity. Once again FNB proves that they are the technically innovative bank in SA. You other banks have some catching up to do…
Private Property: We all know house hunting is a tedious task of searching through endless websites and dealing with many, many housing agents. But Private Property’s latest iPhone app seems to help quite a bit. Using some smart geo-location features it makes it easy to quickly search for available houses close to where you might be right now, or wherever you might be interested in. It might not sound super exciting – but it works very well. You simply enter your price range, housing preferences and then it finds the private property listed areas in your interested area. Then you can browse the results and look at many photos of most houses. Found something good? Contact the seller right on the spot. Great.
Update: SuperSport have released an update of their popular iPad application. The previous version was downloaded over 27000 times on iTunes.
If you want to be able download Apps, Music, Movies, TV Series etc from the US iTunes store, even if you live in SA, here is how to do it.