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African Messaging App Ayoba Celebrates Second Birthday With 5.5m Users, Launches Voice and Video Calling as well as Web Access

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Ayoba (www.ayoba.me), the African messaging app, has announced the launch of a new version of its android app (0.38) which offers users access to voice and video calling. This comes as the app celebrates its second birthday on the 4th of May 2021 with a user base of 5.5 million monthly users and an award for Best Mobile application late last year. The updated app is already live and in use, and is quickly proving popular, with thousands of calls going out across the world every day.  

Voice and Video calling requested by users

Users have been asking us to support VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) calls pretty much since day one,’  says Nolan Wolff, Head of ayoba. ‘And we are extremely pleased to be able to answer their call with this new release. All that’s required is for both parties to upgrade to the latest version of the Android app. This is available immediately from the Google Play Store and our website at ayoba.me.

Web access with ayoba lite

Ayoba has also launched ‘ayoba lite’, allowing users to message contacts from within a standard web browser, either from their desktop or a compatible smartphone. Ayoba lite is designed as a ‘space saver’ for users who are short on memory space on their device and prefer not to download the app.  ‘Ayoba lite has been built as a progressive web app (PWA),’ explains Wolff.  ‘This allows us to provide much the same core functionality as our full-featured Android app but contained within a standard web browser. This makes ayoba accessible to a very broad audience and we expect to reach an entirely untapped market segment. The initial Beta version of the PWA is independent of the Android app but it will evolve to allow a user to easily switch between platforms.’  Ayoba lite can be accessed  on web.ayoba.me

A very happy 2nd birthday

5.5 million users is an immense milestone for a two year old application,’ says Olivier Prentout, Head of Consumer Marketing at ayoba.  ‘It’s crazy to think that two years have gone by since we launched in Cameroon as our first territory and initial partnership with MTN.  The app has changed so much, adding channels, music, games, micro-apps, MTN MoMo in some territories and more.  Localisation has been a key focus for us and we are very proud that users can access the app in 22 languages.’  Prentout continues,  ‘We have over 130 content channels in 7 languages including Arabic, Dari, Pashto, IsiZulu, English, Kinyarwanda and French to name a few.  There is something for everyone.  Help is available to all users with our in app How To channel or via our virtual assistant Aya’.

The two years have indeed been very busy, and also very rewarding, culminating in the achievement of the Africa Digital Award for Best Mobile Application in November 2020, in a voting process involving both industry judges and the public.   

The company recently reassured its users that it's not possible for messages in the app to be read by anyone, or shared to any third parties. The app features peer-to-peer private messaging which are end-to-end encrypted.  A user’s contacts and location are only available to other users if explicitly shared by the account owner. Users can feel confident that their private data will remain private, and is treated with the utmost care and respect. More information can be found in ayoba’s comprehensive Privacy Policy at ayoba.me/privacy-policy.

In partnership with MTN, MTN customers are automatically allocated free data to use ayoba features. Allowances range from 50MB daily to unlimited usage, depending on the country (with the exception of Benin).  Free data allocations can be used for all activities available in the app – including messaging, browsing, gaming and listening to music, and customers can also download the app data free at www.ayoba.me. Users are advised that voice and video calls are excluded from the free data provisions.  

Ayoba is enjoying a busy 2021, with many upgrades and additions planned to its extensive list of features, including exciting new content in Channels and local MicroApps from across Africa.  Its ayoba!

10 REASONS TO USE AYOBA:

1.     FREE TO USE: ayoba is free to use. You need data to send messages and files to your contacts, but if you are on the MTN network, you will get free data every day to use the app.

2.     CHAT AND CALL NOW: Instantly send and receive text and voice messages, voice notes, and voice and video calls with any of your contacts.

3.     SECURE: End-to-end encryption means that messages in a conversation cannot be read by anyone else.

4.     QUICK CONNECT: Use your existing address book to quickly and easily connect you with your contacts.

5.     CHAT WITH EVERYONE: Send SMS text messages with anyone in your contact list, regardless of whether they've installed ayoba or not.  If the friend you send to does not have the app, the message will be delivered by SMS.  They can respond by SMS and it will come back into your app.  This is a unique technology.

6.     GROUP CHAT: The more the merrier! Set up group chats to easily communicate with friends and family in a single chat.

7.     SHARING IS CARING: Share videos, images, audio, and other files with your contacts.

8.     LET’S MEET: Share your real-time location with your ayoba contacts.

9.     CHANNELS: Consume all content across various categories ranging from news, sports, fashion, music, education to entertainment and much more, all within the ayoba app.  All of our channels are Africa centric – such as the Black Star channel for Ghana, Scrolla Africa in IsiZulu, Pulse Channels for Nigeria and Ghana covering business news, current affairs and entertainment, and over 50 artist channels highlighting African musicians and many more. 

10.  LISTEN AND PLAY Our free music service allows users to listen to trending songs in our fantastic playlists, featuring the best of local and international music.  We have games that you can play as well, such as BattleShip, Pinball, Solitaire and more.  New content is added every day.

Distributed by APO Group on behalf of SIMFY Africa.

For more information please contact:
Olivier Prentout
Email address: pr@ayoba.me

About ayoba:
Since its launch in May 2019, ayoba has reached millions of users, with a current active user base over 5.5 monthly active users. It offers users free access to an ecosystem of digital and rich media services through channels, micro-apps and payment solutions, embedded within an African super-app.

Ayoba is highly localised and tailored for African and Middle East consumer needs, supporting 22 relevant languages. Users can send and receive encrypted messages, share photos, videos, files and voice notes and can also subscribe to live channels. Family friendly localised content is available through curated channels aimed at entertaining, educating and empowering communities as well as a range of games. Ayoba is available for Android users on the Google, Transsion, Huawei, Samsung and BeMobi stores as well as the ayoba website. The PWA can be accessed on web.ayoba.me.

Information at the Award can be found at www.AfricaDigitalAwards.com/


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