Forget the feature phone, the smartphone revolution is here
Between December 2013 and June 2014, there was a 13% increase in the numberÂ of smartphones sold by PEP stores, one of SA’s leading cellphone retailers. Â RAâ€™EESA PATHER found out why Capetonians are snapping up smartphones.
Ashley Hulley, 39, electrician, Strandfontein
You can do everything with [a smartphone]. I use it to send emails, for downloading, and for WiFi connection, and all that. You canâ€™t use a normal phone to do this stuff. Itâ€™s important to have, because it improves your life. Dataâ€™s not so expensive, if you use Cell C, you get free data every time you buy airtime.
Louis October, 36, technician, Athlone
You can do a lot of stuff with [a smartphone]: WhatsApp and social media, and all that stuff. In my work if I have a problem with something I need to fix, I can take a picture and send it to the office. Expenses arenâ€™t too badÂ -Â the apps are free when you download itÂ – but when you use it, it takes data. I buy 30MB for a week, and I pay about R29.
Andiswa Quotyi, 30, waitress, Samora township
It makes life easier. I use it mostly for Internet. My phone is a computer as well – I’ve got CVs here, I’ve got important documents that I need. I donâ€™t need a computer because I have this phone. I pay R377 per month for 250MB. I mainly use WhatsApp and Facebook. It helps me getÂ connected with everyone.
Thandie Melani, 35, Philippi
Itâ€™s good for everything, youâ€™ve got a computer in your hand. It is expensive. I canâ€™t afford a better house than what I have in Philippi, but I can afford a smartphone. It makes me reach where I want to reach. I donâ€™t have access to the Internet orÂ a computer at home, but with my smartphone, I can do everything I want to do. I pay R399 per month, but Iâ€™ve budgeted for it so it doesnâ€™t give me a hard time. Per month I only use R100’s [worth of] data. I mainly use WhatsApp.
Hilda Williams, 53, domestic worker, Delft South
I like to be connected. I like this phone, I like to use a touchscreen. I have two phones like this Samsung. I bought it cash. I spend a lot of money on WhatsApp and Facebook, about R300 or R400 per month. For me, itâ€™s my money and this is the way I spoil myself.