Startup in SA launches a photo-filtering app on Mxit called MxPix

South Africa-based mobile social networking startup the Motribe launched its second Mxit app called MxPix in “stealth mode” on the South African social network Mxit last week Tuesday. In just a week, the growth has since been impressive, notes the HumanIPO.

On its first 6 days the MxPix has signed up 56,000 users, has more than 32,000 photos uploaded and at the moment, 80,000 photos have been liked. The app’s average user age is 22 years or older, and already has more than 500,000 daily average page views.

The app, that creates a new way for Mxit users to meet each other, makes photo sharing and filtering possible for people with feature phones is the second app inside of Mxit, the first was a photo-rating app called JudgeMe which reached a million users in just 42 days following the launching.

Vincent Maher, the CTO and Nicholas Haralambous Operations and Business development, founded the app.

“Our specialty is building mobile communities and Mxit is a great platform to do this because of its developer APIs and large user base,” said Maher.

HumanIPO quoted Maher saying: “The goal when we started working on MxPix was to make the kind of photo-filtering you normally only get on smart phones available to an African audience using feature phones. Africa is a massive mobile market and is almost always overlooked by Silicon Valley, so we decided to take the initiative as an African company to build a solution that works for us.”

He said: “The problem we solve is that it is normally quite difficult to upload a photo from your mobile phone and apply complex enhancement filters and frames using a feature phone in Africa. By embedding this service as a feature inside the already widely adopted Mxit platform we can now make this feature available to a large number of people in Africa.”

Maher says their short-term roadmap is to continue making the service better and more accessible. This will mean hooks that are more social, provide faster photo access and better social interaction around the photos.

Users add the MxPix contact in Mxit and then click on Upload Photo. They pick a photo from their gallery or the camera and then choose a filter. The filters add stunning picture frames and do some dramatic colour enhancements to make the photos look amazing. The user can afterwards share the photo with their friends.

The MxPix service is a built using some of the newest technologies for high-scale cloud applications: MongoDB (the NoSQL database), Node.js (the non-blocking Javascript server) and standard technologies like the Apache web server and PHP.

It uses Amazon S3 for storage and is built on an auto-scaling pool of virtual servers in the Amazon Cloud.

The big marketing push is planned for next week and we’re hoping to better our record to close to one million users in our first 42 days, says Haralambous.

Headquartered in Cape Town, South Africa, Motribe is a platform enabling users, brands, agencies and publishers across the world to build and manage their own mobile social communities.

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