MTN Uganda has today in partnership with SIMFY AFRICA, launched a simple, secure, and seamless messaging service called ‘ayoba’, that will enable customers to access more affordable communication. Ayoba takes on a form of 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.
With the app, you can also 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.
According to Wim Vanhelleputte, MTN Uganda’s Chief Executive Officer, this innovation underscores MTN’s leadership ambitions in innovation as it helps Africa claim its place in the IM evolution.
“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.
“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,” 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, CEO of SIMFY AFRICA, David Gilarranz said: “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”.
The Ayoba is Free to use and here’s a summary of the Key Features it comes along with it:
Local languages: Being a Pan African messaging platform, built by Africans for Africans. Ayoba comes with several African languages in it such as Swahili, Luganda, Hausa, isiXhosa, and Yoruba.
Chat now: Users can instantly send and receive text, voice messages, share videos, images, audio, and other files with any of their contacts regardless of device type or network.
Secure: Ayoba uses the End-to-end encryption technology meaning 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.
Group chat: The more the merrier! With the Ayoba messaging app, you are allowed to set up group chats to easily communicate with friends and family in a single chat.
Channels: Users can subscribe to channels for locally relevant content across various categories; from gaming to news and sports.
Gaming: Users can play with a large selection of games that are at their disposal.
Quick connect: Use your existing address book to quickly and easily connect you with your contacts.
A Money transfers transfer feature too might be in the works. Make and receive payments via Mobile Money. (Coming soon)
How to get Ayoba:
Step 1: Visit the MyMTN app or in case you do not have it, download here: Once you are through with installing, launch (open/launch the app [MyMTN]) and select Ayoba. Simple as that.
Step 2: Select your preferred download option and click on “Download Now”
Step 3: When prompted to, select “allow from this source” and install app.
Step 4: Open the app and sign up to start chatting for FREE
Do remember the Ayoba app is only available for download on the Google Play store, and the developers do promise to have it on iOS too, soon. You have an Android phone? This is your call to a one stop enjoyment for an app experience. 🎉
Watch MTN Uganda’s Senior Manager Digital and online Services Manager; Susan Kayemba take you through the Ayoba app and what it has in store for you.
Recall the days of Waptrick? 🌚 Well, this is an improved version as it is an all in one fun app to definitely look out. Chat the data free way by downloading the Ayoba app here:
Got any questions about Ayoba? Check out the FAQ on MTN Uganda’s website.