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Jun 13 2014

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8 new and emerging Caribbean apps

Brief profiles of eight software applications showcased at the launch of the Caribbean Mobile Innovation Programme on 10 June 2014.

App Store,  Cristiano Betta (flickr)On Tuesday, 10 June, the World Bank’s infoDev team launched the Caribbean Mobile Innovation Programme (CMIP) in Kingston, Jamaica. The programme, which is part of the Entrepreneurship Program for Innovation in the Caribbean (EPIC), seeks to recruit and nurture the next generation of talented mobile/cellular entrepreneurs in the Caribbean by providing startup and incubation support.

The main focus of the CMIP launch event was to showcase eight new and emerging apps developed created by Caribbean teams, and are presented below. Some of the apps are available for public download, while others are still in beta testing.

AgroCentral

AgroCentralAgro Central logo (Source Facebook) is Jamaica’s first digital agricultural clearinghouse using Web to SMS/SMS to Web technology to connect small farmers and businesses. Businesses will have the ability to source large amounts of crops directly from farmers, who will be able to sell their available produce directly to businesses. The solution aids small farmers who have trouble locating markets by connecting them to larger businesses. Unlike services that help them to find markets for their products, AgroCentral removes the middleman who drives up prices and cuts farmers out of their share of the profits.

Country of development: Jamaica

Status: Launched 2013

Availability: SMS; Website

Best Daily fx Rates

Rates Central logo (Source Facebook)Most days, it’s difficult to determine which bank will offer the best value in exchange rates. This leaves individuals with the frustration of searching for local banks by scanning websites or running around to find the best fx rates.

Best Daily fx Rates will give these users an innovative mobile/web-based app and a convenient way to find local banks and browse their rates. Today, most foreign exchange apps provide users with the ability to browse foreign exchange rates for every world currency vs. the US dollar.

With Best Daily fx Rates, users can browse foreign exchange rates for world currencies, and conveniently access the best rates from local banks on one screen:

  • access and compare the local rates of banks near their location
  • real time (24-hour) trading rates will be provided for the top traded currencies (USD, CAN, GBP and EURO)
  • daily rates updates will occur via Wi-Fi once potential partners update their trading rates.

Country of development: Jamaica

Start date: Launched December 2013

Availability: to come…

CariOla

Cariola (Source infoDev)The CariOla Digital Mobile Player is the only one of its kind offering exclusive Caribbean music and video content. The platform is designed and developed to take full advantage of current digital and technological opportunities available worldwide and to present Caribbean creativity and entertainment to an international market.

Country of development: Saint Kitts and Nevis

Status: Launched July 2012

Availability: Website

CrimeBot

CrimeBot (Source Facebook)This award winning crime-fighting app was developed to involve the public in alerting incidences of crime and identifying crime hotspot areas. CrimeBot focuses on anonymous reporting along with user confirmation feedback to verify incoming reports. In so doing, it maps crime hotspots around any specific community or country. With this information, users can view crime directly around them as well as report crimes and search other locations for crimes.

Country of development: Jamaica

Status: Launched 2013

Availability: Android only; other platforms to come

ezLearner

EZLearner Inc.ezlearner logo (Source Facebook) is a provider of educational technology solutions for students in the English-speaking Caribbean. In 2011, the corporation commercialized the design, development and online distribution of educational web apps and premium content for children between 8 to 12 years old.

EZLearner has created an award-winning learning platform comprising four integrated learning apps, Composer, Comprehend, Compute and StoryVille. The apps feature gamified activities that are compliant with national curriculum standards.

The learning content showcases relevant Caribbean culture and values. The mobile app, StoryVille, is a digital storytelling social feed that motivates students through peer recognition and acquires customers for the other apps on the platform.

Other apps for entrepreneurship, science and social studies are planned for 2015 and 2016.

Country of development: Barbados

Status: Launched 2011

Availability: BlackBerry; Website

M.A.D.E.

M.A.D.E (My App for Disasters and Emergencies)M.A.D.E. logo (Source Facebook) gives users actionable and location-specific information on what to do before, during and after hurricanes earthquakes, flooding, wildfires and other disasters in the Caribbean. M.A.D.E keeps loved ones connected and helps reduce the overall cost of recovery after a disaster or emergency.

The app has 3 components:

  • M.A.D.E – Early Warning System; Disaster Response Plans and Interactive Checklists; Family Circle; Offline Access
  • M.A.D.E Biz-Integrated Insurance – Identical to M.A.D.E but with a secure link dedicated to insurance services
  • M.A.D.E DRM – Online Disaster Risk Management training

Country of development: Trinidad and Tobago

Status: Launched May 2014

Availability: to come…

meAgo

meago logo  (Source Facebook)In Jamaica alone, there are approximately one hundred events attracting over 50,000 attendees each month. This number is significantly greater when extended to the Caribbean. Unfortunately, for anyone to get tickets for these events, they must first, identify places where they can buy tickets, then get there within business hours. However, when they get there, there is no absolute guarantee that they will get the tickets they want.

meAgo is a one-stop shop for getting tickets for the events you want to attend, and is open 24/7, every day of the year, right at your fingertips. With meAgo, you can always get information on events tickets and availability.

Country of development: Jamaica

Start date: Soft launch in the works for Summer 2014

Availability: to come…

MediRevu

MediRevumedi revu logo (Source Facebook) is a mobile health app that empowers physicians and caretakers to easily manage patients by tracking compliance with doctor instructions regarding diet, exercise and medication. Patients download the free mobile app to access diagnosis, treatment instructions and automatic reminders for helping them stay on track. Subscribers pay a monthly fee to access the MediRevu online dashboard to track and monitor the patients’ compliance as well as an analysis of their response to prescribed medications. This allows doctors to adjust patients’ medication, plan, and/or re-diagnose the patient as needed.

Country of development: Barbados

Status: Trial launch, June 2014

Availability: iPhone; Android

 

Image credits:  Cristiano Betta (flickr);  Facebook,  infoDev

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About the author

Michele Marius

Michele Marius has a wealth of experience in the telecoms and ICT space, which has been gained in the Caribbean, Southeast Asia and the South Pacific, and in the public and private sectors. She is the Editor and Publisher of ICT Pulse.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.ict-pulse.com/2014/06/8-emerging-caribbean-apps/

1 comment

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  1. Kamutula

    One of the many good things to come out of information technology and the Internet is access to markets.

    While big businesses have had the upper hand before and after the advent, information technology, esp. the mobile technology has allowed small-scale farmers, ( in Africa peasant farmers even ), to have direct access to the markets.

    Development of such apps as the one highlighted above, AgroCentral, make such access even more possible.

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