Blackberry rules South Africa’s Twitterland with 2 in every 5 mentions

The latest World Wide Worx report indicates that there are now more than 8 million South Africans on the Internet. The report further stated that growth in Mzansi‘s Internet penetration , now at 17%, was driven by mobile phones with Internet access capability. A prediction is that 2013 will see 20% Internet penetration, or 10 million users.

Related post: Mobile data usage to ramp up in South Africa in 2012… with provisos

The latest Internet penetration report inspired this post. The key question I am answering is what devices were used to tweet about 50 randomly sampled South African brands, based on archived tweets. The only criterion for inclusion of a brand in this analysis was that there must be a minimum of  300 tweet mentions about it at the time of drawing the data, using TheArchivist app.

Some quick stats:

  • The 50 brands that made it onto my analysis list came from 31 categories (based on my definition); including entertainment events, celebrities, airlines, professional soccer clubs, radio stations, TV soapies, retail chains, print publications, politicians and provinces.
  • The category with largest number of brands (6)  was Celebrities , and it included Bonang_M and Steve_Hofmeyr.
  • The sum of tweet mentions from all the 50 participating brands came to 524 665.
  • Brands with most and least tweet mentions were Nandos (331 545) and WitsUniversity (305) respectively.
  • Analysis of tweeting devices was based on the following Source of Tweet report by The Archivist:
Vodacom archived tweet mentions ast at 11 May 2012
Vodacom archived tweet mentions as at 11 May 2012

Key insights

  • Half of all the analysed tweets about the selected 50 brands were posted using mobile operating systems, lead by RIM.
  • 2 in every 5 tweets were posted from Blackberry devices. I predict that the smartphone landscape is going to change by 2013, given aggressive marketing and growing penetration of Samsung smartphones, followed by iPhone and tablets.
  • There are exceptions and unique insights worth mentioning:
    • With brands that incorporate social networking in their marketing programs, e.g. 5FM, a sizable portion of tweeting activity came from the companies themselves, as shown by 1 out of 2 tweets being posted from a desktop device.
    • 2 out of every 5 tweet mentions about print publications were about content, mostly news, that was shared from the company sites, using the Tweet Button app.
    • iPhone’s overall contribution to tweeting traffic of the selected brands was 0.75 in 10. However, the top 3 iPhone brands were – SAA (3 in every 10 tweets), Nandos (1 in every 4) and MTN (1,5 in every 10).
    • The only brand with discernible iPad tweeting activity was Gareth Cliff (1,7 in every 10 tweets). A possible explanation is that Gareth, who tweets on average 10 times a day, and whose 40% of Twitter activity is made up of retweeting, uses mainly the iPad for this purpose.

PLEASE NOTE: Accuracy of the report cannot be guaranteed, as it was based solely on The Archivist as the source, see their disclaimer in the image above.


  • Nuffdotty – where thoughts on the subject of education, mostly relating to South Africa, are shared
  • Diski4Life – a blog about development of South African soccer post World Cup 2010



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