South Africa’s is booming, surpassing all forecasts in the past year. And Pep Stores is leading the pack. The retail chain sold a recordbreaking 6.7 million prepaid phones last year – accounting for half of all phones sold on a prepaid basis in South Africa.
This makes Pep the leading retailer of handsets in South Africa.
Writing for marklives.com, authoritative techie Arthur Goldstuck says Pep’s figures reveal a picture of “radical transformation in the phonebuying habits of the low- and middleincome segments of South Africa’s population”.
According to Goldstuck, the uptake of smartphones is “happening faster than anyone could have imagined just a few months ago”.
Pep Stores cellular executive John Edwards says that in the previous year, smartphones only accounted for 1% of all prepaid deals, but have now skyrocketed to 13%.
He says the spike in smartphone deals can be attributed to special offers and new low-cost handsets like the MTN Steppa and Huawei Ascend Y220, as well as a significant uptake of instant messaging service WhatsApp.
WhatsApp has become so popular that Pep has introduced a WhatsAppspecific feature phone, the AG WhutzZappa. At R399, it’s captured the imagination of the low-income segment. South Africa is now the fastest-growing market for smartphones in Africa.
– Siyabonga Sithole