Mobile operator Safaricom, has announced that it’s testing its new social messaging app Bonga. The application will provide linkage to its mobile money M-Pesa. Introduced this week, the platform will enable users to communicate whilst having the freedom to send money to one another – making it seem like a social networking platform.
“We think there’s an intrinsic relationship between conversations and transactions, and that fundamental principle is what we wanted to build a platform around,” Kamal Bhattacharya, Safaricom’s Chief innovation officer.
Introduced by Alpha (Safaricom’s incubation hub), the new app will be launched in three phases with each phase appealing to a certain market.
The first phase will involve Bonga Sasa. This will enable users to chat in addition to sending, receiving and requesting for money.
To be launched within May 2018, Bonga Baraza will make it easy for funds collection that arise from harambees (fundraisers).
Lastly, Bonga Biashara will exploit the network’s features to leverage it for e-commerce where users will have the option to come up with business profiles and sell their products.
A snapshot of the Bonga beta website
The unveiling of Bonga is in line with the company’s plan to grow its revenue while adding value to its consumers away from its offerings of voice calls, mobile money and text messages.
Our future is to become a platform that enables business in Kenya as well as our consumers to do their work in a different way.” Bhattacharya said.