New App Launched For uMhlanga Rocks


uMhlanga Rocks has launched an area APP — a single, inclusive source of information on uMhlanga Rocks for residents, visitors, employees, Durban locals and tourists. Download the APP now and stand a chance of winning one of five jam-packed uMhlanga Rocks gift hampers.

All you have to do to win is download the APP free from iTunes or the Google Play Store, and feedback on your experience of using it on any of their social media channels using #umhlangarocksapp as the hashtag.

All feedback received will be entered into the magical hat and the prize draw will take place at midday on Thursday 20th July 2017. Winners will be announced via social media channels — so make sure you are following uMhlanga Rocks!

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The APP can also be downloaded by clicking on the link on the uMhlanga Rocks website

How easily can you find out what you need to know about uMhlanga Rocks?

Do you know what time the lifeguards go off duty, or where to buy a pair of shoes? How about which beaches are dog-friendly, or where to get your nails done?

While a few seconds on a search engine will give you reams of information on uMhlanga Rocks, what seems to be lacking is a central hub of information that is more than a business directory, but actually provides “insider-info” on the place. It is this lack of a single source of information that sparked the development of the uMhlanga Rocks APP.

Funded by the uMhlanga Rocks Place-Making Committee as part of its work to improve the experience of uMhlanga Rocks for all its’ users, the uMhlanga Rocks APP is user-friendly and intuitive with information captured under easily identifiable icons. “The APP is aimed at anyone from the Durban local looking for a wedding present, or a day visitor wanting to know about umbrella hire, to an uMhlanga Rocks employee on a lunch break or a tourist wanting evening entertainment, and as such we have grouped similar information together making it easier for people to access the exact information they need,” said Cara Reilly of the uMhlanga Rocks place-making management company UrbanPLACES.

So what information is available on the APP?

  • The Emergency button allows for instant dialing to a 24/7 manned security control room; The Report A Fault button allows users to report a problem / concern in public space via an email form with an option to take or load an image to send with the mail;
  • The News button directs users to the news section on the uMhlanga Rocks website;
  • The Area Info button provides general information on the area broken up into the
  • Promenade and Village, and tells you everything from the municipal clinics operating hours, to the history of the lighthouse and everything in between;
  • The Directory is a A-Z listing of all the businesses and services in uMhlanga Rocks broken down into searchable sub-categories;
  • Under Eat Here, users will find a categorised and searchable listing of all restaurants, bars, coffee shops and food outlets in uMhlanga Rocks;
  • Under Shop Here, the same type of structure lists all the places to shop in uMhlanga Rocks. The Stay Here button gives users information on all aspects of accommodation; and The Contacts button provides users with details of a range of important contacts, from the uMhlanga Urban Improvement Precinct (UIP) to emergency and municipal contacts.
  • One of the great features of this APP is the Line-Up function, which links users to everything happening in Durban, from major events to a live sports screening at the local pub.

“Understanding that uMhlanga Rocks is part of the greater Durban offering, we have linked with the Vibe Durban APP and the Durban Routes group, who both provide a diverse range of event based information for Durban,” said Cara. Local businesses are encouraged to send through information on their upcoming events for inclusion in this section of the APP.

Additional features of the APP include a link to a stunning video that captures the essence of uMhlanga Rocks; a link to the UIP website; a link to the uMhlanga Tourism website; a link to a form for business and or event listings, as well as a map of the area.

But why the need for an APP when uMhlanga Rocks has a website; Facebook page and Instagram account?

According to international Statistics Portal Statista, some 2.3 billion people worldwide own a smartphone, with South Africa accounting for 16.1 million of those users. And for most of those people their Smartphones have become an inseparable part of our daily lives — almost a physical appendage from the moment your phone’s alarm wakes you up in the morning! In this way, providing simple access to information via mobile phone is becoming more of a necessity than a nice to have, with a recent Forbes article going as far as saying that ” …a mobile app is a standard component of any business in the future.”

While businesses in uMhlanga Rocks are listed on the APP and thus gain a level of exposure, this APP is primarily about access to information and ensuring that the experience users in uMhlanga Rocks have is as easy and enjoyable as possible.

Asked if all the bases were covered, uMhlanga Rocks Place-Making Committee Chair Shantelle Walters noted that the team, including APP developer Geoff Austin and APP Fabulous, had been working on the APP for some months now but that once in use, they would look at any necessary updates to improve functionality. “From creating the structure of the APP, to loading relevant content, we have tried to be as comprehensive and inclusive as possible, but that is not to say that we haven’t missed anything or anyone, so please if you have a business or service located in uMhlanga Rocks that is not listed on the APP you must let us know,” she said.


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