Standard Bank South Africa, Samsung and Microsoft have partnered to give Standard Bank South Africa customers first option on Samsung’s new Ativ tablets, running the brand new Microsoft Windows 8 operating system – prior to the availability of the device in the mainstream market.
The announcement coincides with the worldwide launch of the highly anticipated Windows 8 operating system. Launches were held in New York and South Africa on 25 October.
The Standard Bank banking app, launched earlier this year on Apple, Android and Blackberry platforms, is also South African’s first banking app in the Windows 8 app store.
Samsung’s Windows Ativ tablets are ultra-slim, lightweight, long battery power devices, and will be available to only Standard Bank customers in South Africa for a limited time, ahead of their launch into the market.
Itumeleng Monale, head of self service and payments innovation at Standard Bank South Africa, says: “Standard Bank customers will be among the first in the world to use Windows 8 on a portable ARM device. Standard Bank is also the first South African bank to give customers the choice to use its banking app on Windows 8 desktops, laptops and tablets.
“Our customers are becoming increasingly technologically savvy. Standard Bank is pleased to be offering them exclusive access to the latest technology,” she says.
Standard Bank is committed to providing customers with banking solutions that remain relevant to their evolving needs. “The fact that Standard Bank’s app is the first South African banking app in the Microsoft Windows 8 app store reflects this commitment,” Ms Monale says. Since it was launched in July this year, Standard Bank’s banking app has had more than 160 000 downloads.
Windows 8 is designed to provide a single, connected experience across all the devices people use in the modern connected world. It allows customers to use a tablet as a mobile device, then easily dock the device and have full keyboard and mouse support. Through its fast, fluid, and dynamic nature, it gives people a flexible and powerful experience to do their work.
“Our partnership with Standard Bank is testimony to the sheer scale of the Windows ecosystem, and the reach it will provide to banking customers on this platform,” says Microsoft South Africa managing director Mteto Nyati. “We expect to ship more than 2.5 million Windows devices in the next year, and its users will be looking to local apps like the Standard Bank banking app to bring their experiences to life.”
Says Craige Fleischer, director of Mobile Communications at Samsung South Africa: “At Samsung our focus is to bring the latest devices and operating systems to market and this offering is another way we are doing just that. We are proud to partner with Standard Bank and Microsoft through this offering and believe we are continuing to delivering exactly what our consumers expect of us – innovative, diverse technology solutions.”
The Samsung Windows Ativ tablet is designed for portability, with a width of just 8.9mm and weight of 570g. It has a 10.1″ HD display, 2GB RAM and microSD memory capability. Its USB port is a key differentiator among similar devices. With Dual Screen for split screen viewing, a massive battery life, and flexible user modes, the Ativ Windows Tablet allows for maximum multitasking, productivity and efficiency.
The tablets can be purchased on the Standard Bank South Africa website, by Standard Bank cheque or credit card holders. They will sell for R6695, below the usual retail price of R7999, and will come with a free cover. There are a limited number available. If customers choose to pay via their credit card they will be defaulted to the budget option at a 0% interest rate. Standard Bank is also offering customers an ADSL service at a 15% discount through Internet Solutions. This includes access to 500 MB of free wi-fi traffic at any “always-on” hot spot around the country, a 1GB mailbox and a fax-to-email account.