While the majority of enterprises in the Middle East and North Africa fall within the Small to Medium Enterprise (SME) segment, comprising 80-90% of total business in most countries, many are in need of finance in order to grow and expand. Mobibus, an innovation-led mobile technology start up, has launched the very first ‘Do-It-Yourself’ mobile app maker in the Middle East offering SMEs, entrepreneurs and individuals a new gateway to procure efficient mobile applications by breaking the barriers of cost, time and technological complexity.
Founded by Pierre Azzam, Mohammed Johmani and Hussam Abu Zaalan, whose vision is to ‘democratize’ app development, Mobibus empowers users to create, manage and publish their own professional looking iOS and Android apps on smartphones and tablets, without the need for any technical or programming knowledge.
“The very concept of ‘Do-It-Yourself’ is going to be a game-changer for the region,” said Azzam. “Numerous studies have established the growing smartphone penetration in the Middle East and our increasing reliance on mobile technology in both our professional and personal lives.
“Mobile technology is undoubtedly changing the way companies communicate with their audiences and conduct business. This drive for mobility means that, no matter what size your business, a mobile gateway that links you to your audience is essential. However, according to a study by the International Finance Corporation, 63% of SMEs in the MENA region do not have access to finance and so may not always be able to allocate marketing budgets to drive their business.”
“Until now, companies and individuals had to spend time and money to create a mobile app to market their businesses and interests,” added Johmani. “The Mobibus ‘Do-It-Yourself’ app maker is particularly suited to SMEs, entrepreneurs and marketers who have no experience with application programming, yet are looking for a quick, easy and cost-effective way to mobilize a business or campaign without having to compromise on design or functionality. The user interface and user experience is solid and will ensure a positive user experience.”
Pricing is moderate, transparent and flexible with either an annual ($125 per month) or quarterly ($150 per month) package fee, and the option of selecting add-ons to enhance user experience.
Abu Zaalan explained the users’ experience and steps of creating apps through Mobibus app maker: The user-friendly platform, with dual English and Arabic interface, allows companies or individuals to create a customized mobile app to suit their business or personal needs in just four easy steps:
Step one: Register
Register via www.mobibus.com. Upon registration, users will receive a username and password via email, which provides access to the app maker platform.
Step two: Design
Users can now start building a customized mobile app by selecting layouts and colors from a suite of pre-defined design templates. To further customize individual elements within the app, users can upload images, logos and assets, select fonts and specific colors.
Step three: Manage
The next step is to start uploading content. Mobibus’ proprietary content management system is unique in that it allows users to upload content in as many languages as they wish, delivering a single mobile app in multiple languages. A ‘default’ language needs to be selected, however once the app is downloaded the language settings are then interchangeable. Users can continuously update content online, with no additional charges or costs.
Step four: Preview and publish
By downloading the Mobibus ‘mobilizer’ from the App Store or Google Play, users are able to preview the app in real time as they build, on their very own smartphones. There is also a 14-day trial period available before they are required to publish and pay for it.
“With the increasing smartphone penetration across the region, coupled with the increasing reliance on mobile devices, businesses need to seriously consider mobile as a key touch point, not only to deliver information but to engage with their audiences and influence their decisions,” said Azzam.
“This is just the beginning for Mobibus,” concluded Johmani. “We will continuously develop and improve the platform to ensure it evolves alongside evolving technology trends and software.”