Data prices too high? Good thing Google Go just launched in South Africa

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Google today launched Google Go in Sub-Saharan Africa (which includes South Africa, in case you were wondering), a service which will provide users with a ‘lighter’ way to search.

Specifically aimed at users who do not own flagship smartphones or people who just want to watch their data usage, Google Go is a search engine — basically like the conventional Google search found in most Android devices — but it has been optimised to use less data, device memory and also to run basic processes faster.

There is an emerging market in African of users acquiring feature devices, or smart devices, for the first time and Google Go has been designed to make their browsing experience streamlined and easy to understand. Not only that, but any person who struggles to afford data (we all know those data prices are hella high here in SA), will have access to Google Go and will be able to set the service as their default search engine.

Google Go has previously been available in other countries, but this is the first time it will be available in South Africa. Google Africa Chief Marketing Officer Mzamo Masito says that Google Go is designed help individuals stay connected and to provide an easy-to-understand interface irrespective of what device or network they are on.

The interface is the other impressive feature here. Google has really created an understandable, clean interface that reacts quick as a whip. It’s a complete joy to navigate the app, which really aids in the ‘first time user’ space. You can seamlessly search for Mark Zuckerburg’s trial before the Senate or see what’s trending in your country.

Users can find a meme or a GIF to show to colleagues, or discover places nearby with directions to that place, and even watch videos on YouTube. This all with a 5 MB app, that takes up a small amount of space on your phone (precious memory, though) while also using the latest version of Google’s advanced compression algorithm that uses up to 40% less data to display search results.

You can download the app today through the Google Play Store on devices that run on Android v4.3 (Jelly Bean) and later. It will also be the stock search app on all future Android Oreo (Go edition) devices.

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Deputy Editor at Stuff. Nevermind the fancy title, I like writing about things that are cool. Like games, gadgets and sometimes even software. Depending on how cool it is.

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