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Strong growth for SA wireless application service providers

Strong growth for SA wireless application service providers.

Market forecast to grow to $656.9 million in 2018, says Frost & Sullivan.

South Africa’s wireless application service providers (WASPs) market is expected to grow from $282.3 million in 2013 to $656.9 million in 2018.

This is according to a Frost & Sullivan study regarding the role of WASPs in enterprise communication in South Africa.

The study covers the service segments of short messaging system (SMS), multimedia messaging system, interactive voice response, location-based services, premium rate SMS, and event-based billing.

“With over 65% of South Africa’s population having access to mobile services, enterprises are leveraging the immediacy of wireless application services to effectively communicate with their customers and employees,” said Frost & Sullivan information and communication technologies research analyst Lehlohonolo Mokenela in a press statement.

“Enterprises in customer-centric sectors such as financial services, retail, and media and entertainment are among the leading adopters of wireless application services and are expected to play a central role in driving the market,” says Mokenela.

But Frost & Sullivan has cautioned that a data privacy law in the country could slow down the WASPs market.

“The growth of WASPs’ revenues from enterprise mobile advertising is likely to be slowed by the enforcement of the Protection of Personal Information Act (POPI), which safeguards citizens’ rights to privacy of personal information,” says the research firm in a statement.

“In addition, rogue WASPs illegally signing up mobile subscribers without their consent has reduced consumer faith in WASPs. To address this issue, operators are being forced by the Wireless Application Service Providers’ Association to introduce double opt-in systems that will give mobile subscribers the option to accept or reject subscription to wireless application services,” adds Frost & Sullivan.

Nevertheless, Frost & Sullivan notes the future for WASPs could lie in leveraging mobile applications more.

“Market participants need to consider integrating mobile applications into their service offering to provide a wholesome customer experience,” stated Mokenela.

“WASPs could offer other customer value additions, such as the secure delivery of codes or coupons, by employing SMS-based, in-app messaging services.”

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