First introduced in 2009, the upgraded portal caters for a range of mobile handsets and operating systems, from very basic models to today's most advanced smartphones and tablets. Key improvements
The new look MTN Play is much more than a digital portal for music, says Christian De Faria, MTN Group chief commercial officer. Key improvements include better usability, a fresher and more appealing look, easier site navigation, better content categorisation, end user customisation and flexible payment options.
De Faria says the recent success of the MTN branded Opera Mini browser, along with customer insights, points to an MTN footprint that's poised for exponential growth in data usage.
"This has necessitated MTN's renewed focus on MTN Play as a key product."
He says MTN wanted to come up with a full-fledged digital platform that would be the emerging markets' foremost repository of home grown content, apps and digital services.
"I believe we have achieved that with MTN Play, which is truly a one-stop shop that represents the very best of what's available locally and abroad. This means for MTN customers, it becomes just as easy to download the very latest song from an international artist as it is to get the latest local hit song," says De Faria. Focusing on digitisation
De Faria says the upgrading of MTN Play is in keeping with MTN's affirmation that a strong focus on digitisation will usher in a new world order for emerging markets, where access to education, financial services and entertainment content is merely at a click of button.
Accordingly, MTN launched a multi-channel global brand campaign this week, which pronounces its bold views on the potential of emerging markets. The campaign is largely premised on the digitisation of the ICT industry in these markets.
Titled "Welcome to the New World," the campaign articulates MTN's belief that emerging markets are on the verge of a brand new world. A world where the distinction between the first and third world no longer exists, thanks to digitisation.Instant access to social media platforms
There's no greater sign of the new digital world than the explosion of social media, which is primarily accessed via mobile devices. To this end, MTN Play offers customers instant access to various social media platforms.
"Users on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and/or Google+ will be able to link all accounts onto their social site on MTN Play and view updates from all these social media sites in one place," says De Faria.
MTN Play users will also be able to update any or all social accounts directly from MTN Play in one go. This is in addition to being able to 'like' and 'share' content on MTN Play, and also buy it for friends and family.
Powered by IMImobile's Da Vinci Content Management System (CMS), the new MTN Play portal reduces time to market for new services, keeping MTN at the forefront of innovative digital products and services.MTN Play in Africa
With most of MTN's markets in Africa largely still unbanked, MTN Play users do not need a credit or debit card to purchase content on the site. Users can make payments via MTN Mobile Money, e-vouchers, loyalty points or airtime.
"We listened to our customers, ensuring that the revamped MTN Play spans all access channels and content genres. We intend to continue in this vein with our digital products and services by pro-actively pursuing relevancy, immediacy and simplicity", concludes De Faria.
The revamped MTN Play portal is now live in Rwanda, Uganda, Ghana and Zambia, with other MTN markets to follow.