Cheryl Hunter (shelflife at marklives.com)’s weekly pick of all things new in retail — consumer products launches, retail news and FMCG campaigns!
- Ewaste creates opportunity
- Quickademy graduates
- App out
weFix launches new range as demand grows
Affordability and environmental consciousness are driving a relatively new trend in South Africa as a staggering 50m tons of electronic waste (mostly computers and smartphones, according to Statista) finds its way to African and Asian landfills annually.
According to, Grant Webster, weFix COO, says SA is a massive contributor to this waste, generating about 300 000 tonnes of electronic waste each year — about 5.7kg per citizen. “South Africans are increasingly calling for refurbished or reconditioned products that exist within a new ‘circular economy’ that rejects the ‘take, make and dispose’ industrial model.”
While consumers may have the desire to buy devices new, weFix says its newly launched range of i2 refurbished iPhones enables consumers to enjoy one of the world’s most-popular mobile devices without breaking the bank, and contributes to the new economy. He points out that some consumers upgrade their smartphones every 18—24 months as their voice and data contracts expire and asks what happens to the old devices: “Mobile devices may be refurbished for a number of reasons. Most are ‘pre-loved’ or second-hand, but others are damaged during shipment, demo units that have been shop-soiled, or new devices that have a fault upon opening. weFix replaces damaged parts with new parts, bringing an otherwise-intact unit back to life.”
There are currently three devices in the range, from the i2 iPhone 5S 32GB to the i2 iPhone 6 64GB model, each packaged with earphones and a screen protector. In line with the weFix philosophy of “repair rather than replace”, a one-year protection plan from insurance partner, Click2Sure, is an optional addition to each package, meaning that devices are insured from the moment consumers leave the store.
“When purchasing an i2 device, consumers have peace of mind knowing that they have a genuine high-end smartphone restored to full working condition and appearance by credible technicians who offer a one-year warranty on their work,” says Grant.
Supa Quick empowering drivers
Online research has shown that drivers desire much more information on vital information about basic vehicle maintenance, from tyres, shock absorbers and batteries to exhausts and brakes. This has prompted Supa Quick to launch Quickademy.
This online resource of how-to videos and blogs is designed to provide consumers with more information about their vehicles in an entertaining format, presented by two familiar faces: Lunga Shabalala of Top Billing and Man Cave fame, and actress Shannon Ezra.
Search results from Google and YouTube show that, in a typical month, 4.4m South Africans search for content on tyres, 2.24m on batteries, 246 000 on brakes and 90 500 on shock absorbers. Typical searches include how to change a tyre, how to determine the correct tyre pressure, and how to disconnect a battery.
Desiree van Niekerk, Supa Quick brand manager, says Quickademy is responding to a clear market need: “We believe that the more-knowledgeable consumers are about their vehicles, the better and safer their driving and ownership experience will be. Informed consumers make better choices and have a better customer experience, and we are on a mission to empower consumers and improve their driving lives through easy access to reliable, easy-to-understand information.”
Consumers who join the Supa Quick Quickademy will be able to confirm their new knowledge by answering a few quick questions — and make themselves eligible to win a BMW Advanced Driving Experience.
Geo-location makes Eat Out app
One of SA’s most-recognised restaurant guides, Eat Out, has launched a new app which gives users the ability to find, book and review more than 6 000 restaurants across South Africa.
The app/bookings system is a collaboration between Naspers and New Media, a division of Media24. It has been developed to find restaurants using geolocation technology; users may search by area, for a specific cuisine type, or by using the restaurant’s name. Developed by a team of software developers from Naspers led by Evan Person, features include the ability to bookmark favourite restaurants, view restaurant menus, view specials in the area, and share reservation details with dining companions.
According to Person, the app delivers the power of SA’s largest and most-comprehensive restaurant directory to mobile: “Apart from the incredible user experience, the app also offers diners the ability to book instantly. This is not only of value to consumers but it’s also of great value to restaurants. It is also the first of several new features we will be bringing to the food space in SA over the coming months.”
Cheryl Hunter (@cherylhunter) has written for the South African media, marketing and advertising industries for more than 15 years. A former editor of M&M in Independent Newspapers and contributor to Bizcommunity, AdFocus, AdReview and the Ad Annual, she has also produced for various television networks and currently consults on communication strategy and media liaison.
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