Bridging the mobile divide

Sunil Bodasing of Gijima tries out the new technology.

An integrated all-in-one platform for the development, implementation and full life cycle management of mobile applications, mobile users and mobile devices could well be the answer to our municipal service delivery issues.

MobileIT, a uniquely South African invention (launched by information technology company Gijima), is supported by all mobile phones, not just smart phones, and is set to bridge the digital divide in South Africa and other developing countries grappling with similar issues.

What makes MobileIT special is that the platform integrates to companies’ existing legacy systems.

“Providing employees with access to the necessary mobile business applications that will enable them to achieve their business objectives effectively, while at the same time implementing an efficient mobile device management strategy is what is required,” says Tony de Sousa, products executive at Gijima.

MobileIT was launched at the State Information Technology Agency's (Sita) seventh annual Govtech conference, where various public and private entities joined forces to discuss the role of ICT within government and how collaborations could benefit the public sector.

This single integrated platform will allow users to integrate mobile applications that would also cater for the development of applications for business-to-business, business-to-consumer and even business-to-employee needs.

Feature phones make up a large percentage of mobile phones in use in Africa.

By including feature phones, MobileIT provides compatibility to more devices and reaches a greater number of phones with a mobile business application solution.

“Moreover, we have developed MobileIT to serve the needs of the African market. We do not believe it is enough to create a mobility solution that only takes into account the requirements of smart phones.

“Therefore, our Gijima apps developer workbench has been created with a view to ensuring operation across all devices and multiple operating systems,” explains De Sousa.

The mobileIT platform also provides connectors that enable integration of data with enterprise resource planning, services desks and other back-end programmes which enables the monitoring and
management of mobile devices, users and applications.

The platform is an off-the-shelf product that companies can install independently to manage a mobility strategy or Gijima can provide help with deploying the platform.

Gijima has three basic models to accommodate the needs of organisations – an external consumer, internal enterprise and a combination of both models.

De Sousa adds that they have also included a ‘pay-as-you-go system’ that is priced based on the number of users and mobile applications.

MobileIT is designed to keep users up to date with the various changes made to operating systems.

“We have a three-year roadmap for the mobileIT platform that will be refined, prioritised and delivered on based on our customers needs. We will also continue to develop more enterprise mobile applications,” adds De Sousa.

The mobileIT platform was created by Gijima for Africa and the group maintains that Africa is one of the fastest moving mobile markets in the world.

“Mobility is Africa’s miracle, and through shear need, determination and proliferation of mobile phones, we will advance faster than other western countries on the mobility front. We have to, we don’t have a choice,” concludes De Sousa.

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Issue 68