EskomSePush app - 'We do it to help people feel a little happier'
In the midst of the loadshedding crisis, have you been making use of the EskomsePush notification app?
It's proved a hit with South Africans - on Stage-6-Monday it reached 1-million users.
Dan Wells co-founded the app with partner Herman Maritz. He says they both work full-time in the e-commerce industry and ventured into this demanding sideline as a service to their fellow-citizens.
We do it for fun and hopefully to make people feel a little bit happier about the situation.Dan Wells, Co-founder - EskomSePush
Not surprisingly, the pair have been particularly busy since Eskom's shock announcement of Stage 6 power cuts on Monday afternoon.
We've been working quite a lot to get the new Stage 5-8 loaded and the schedules loaded.Dan Wells, Co-founder - EskomSePush
Wells says they're grateful to the volunteers they roped in to help capture schedules from municipalities. All in all, it's a mammoth job.
We've got almost 50,000 suburbs that we monitor and I can't even recall the amount of municipalities we loaded in the different schedules from all over South Africa.Dan Wells, Co-founder - EskomSePush
The only money they earn for their effort is from a "little advert" in the app which helps to lower the hosting costs, he says.
Wells acknowledges that sometimes information capture mistakes do slip in, with users actively involved in communicating with them. They added a chat function so that people can help each other out within communities.
What happens is that sometimes our users will email us and they'll say 'our power didn't go off at 2 o' clock like you told us' and they'll email again ten minutes later and say 'sorry, it did go off'.Dan Wells, Co-founder - EskomSePush
That's why we added the chat function into the app. We called it ESP Chat and it's a nearby-based GPS location chat so you can talk to people within approximately two kilometres around you.Dan Wells, Co-founder - EskomSePush
John asks whether the app will automatically refresh to include the new load shedding stages or if it must be downloaded again?
You'll need to keep an eye on out for an update on either the App Store or the Google Play Store for an update. The app release is rolling out now so in the next couple of hours that app version should be available on Google Play Store and the App Store usually takes a day or two longer.Dan Wells, Co-founder - EskomSePush
You can also check your load shedding schedule on CapeTalk, here.
For more on the challenges of running EskomSePush, take a listen:
Thumbnail image: @EskomSePush on Twitter
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