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“I feel like I haven’t always been this mature, calm and patient” says AKA

Supa Mega teams up with South Africa’s leading mobile operator Vodacom to launch the AKA World Beam mobile app

South African hip-hop sensation AKA,  real name Kiernan Forbes has taken matters into his own hands with the launch this week of his very own android app, enabling music fans not to only connect with him on a more personal level beyond the traditional social media sharing platforms but lets him take control of his own digital data, which he will ultimately turn a profit in on for years to come.

While it is common knowledge that the most personal voice a musician can have is via Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, the AKA World Beam mobile app will put the business back in the hands of its content creator: AKA – while enabling him to have an in-depth, direct communication with his fans than what a mere like or retweet can provide.

Developed in collaboration with Vodacom, the app will, or more positive note, enable Supa Mega, as he’s affectionately known, to monetize his brand and make a living at a time when the South African music industry relies heavily on streaming revenue, as physical music sales and downloads continue to decline. In 2017, physical sale fell by 5%,  accounting for 30% of the global market, while downloads revenues slipped by 21%, that’s according to IFPI (International Federation of the Phonographic Industry).

Speaking of how the AKA World Beam mobile app idea came about, he says: “Content is very important in this day and age, and is one of the reasons I started Beam Digital to take charge of my own content, where it ends up, how it monetizes and how it works for me.”

He adds: “Besides just my music, which is the most intimate thing in my life, I thought how can I find a way to connect with people like I do through my music, and I figured the best way to do that is for them to see what makes me do the kind of music that I make. I want people to see my interactions with my daughter, my family’s day crew members. I feel like I’m in a very positive and motivating place in my life. So right now, there’s never been a better time to take a look into my world and what happens in my life on a day-to-day basis. As you guys know my album, Touch My Blood, just came out. And don’t worry tonight if you want a picture, you don’t have to prove that you bought it. I will take a picture with you for free.”’

For those truly interested in his craft as a musician, they will get a front row seat into his fast-paced world as a musician, from recording to jam sessions, live shows streaming and tour/concert listings. Our personal favorite has to be AKA push-button, a perfect acronym for “Ask Kiernan Anything”, which he promises will be a no-holds-barred “ask me anything, I mean anything” insight into his fascinating life as a musician and family man. “When people ask me questions, my team normally try to send me the questions and they always say ‘uhmmm do you think you wanna answer this’ …and I never say no to anything. I always wanna answer people’s questions and connect with them,” he says.

How to get the AKA World Beam app
It’s easy. Get Yourself a Vodacom SIM card and download the app on your Android device at a cost of R3 a day (R90 a month) after a 7-day trial. The app will soon be available on iOS and iStore within the coming weeks.

Tankiso Komane
Tankiso Komane
A Tshwane University of Technology journalism graduate, Tankiso Komane has a vast experience in print & broadcast media business and has worked for some of the country’s biggest daily newspapers, including The Sowetan, The Citizen, The Times, and The New Age. Through her varied work as a journalist, notably as a copywriter for SABC1 (On-Air promotions) and as a publicist for Onyx Communications, she has developed an in-depth understanding of the nature of the media business and how to use it for the purpose of exposure. Her expertise in journalism across various disciplines, coupled with a good reputation, has laid the foundation of a new kind "trust in Journalism" as the media ecosystem continues to digitally evolve.
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