8 Jun 2013



Developer(s) Flag of South Africa.svg Mxit Lifestyle (Pty) Ltd.
Initial release 2007
Stable release See → Current versions
Development status Active
Operating system Microsoft Windows, Windows Mobile, Mac OS X, Android, iOS, Java ME, Linux, BlackBerry OS
Type Instant Messenger
License Freeware
Website www.mxit.com
Mxit (pronounced "mix it") is a free instant messaging application developed by Mxit Lifestyle (Pty) Ltd. in South Africa that runs on multiple mobile and computing platforms. Along with its own standard protocol, it can connect to Yahoo, ICQ, Google Talk, Facebook, AIM, or Windows Live Messenger contacts as well. According to a 2011 study by consultancy World Wide Worx, Mxit currently has about 10 million active subscribers, making it the largest mobile social network in Africa.


Mxit originates from Stellenbosch, a university town in South Africa. In 1997, Herman Heunis established Swist Group Technologies and focused primarily on the mobile telecommunications industry, developing software and providing system support to large Telco's. In 2000 Clockspeed Mobile, a research and development division of Swist Group Technologies, developed a Massive Multiplayer Mobile game named Alaya. The game was SMS based and was not successful due to the high cost of SMS since GPRS was still not widely implemented. In 2003 the game was reassessed and the MXit concept was conceived by Herman that same year, MXit has evolved to become a major IM player in the South African arena thereafter. In April 2004 Clockspeed Mobile became independent and on 1 July 2006 became MXit Lifestyle (Pty) Ltd. In January 2007, media giant Naspers acquired a 30% stake in the company for an undisclosed amount. In September 2011, Mxit was acquired by South African investment group, World of Avatar.


Mxit allows users to send and receive one-on-one text and multimedia messages to and from other users, and in general chat rooms. MXit also supports gateways to other instant messaging platforms such as MSN Messenger, ICQ and Google Talk. MXit does not charge for one-on-one messages though mobile operators may charge for data usage. There are also a number of pay-services, including chatrooms.
Mxit was first released as a mobile phone IM client. Available on a variety of phones, Mxit requires Java and internet connectivity via CSD, GPRS, 3G or wifi to run. Tailored versions have also been released for the Apple iPhone (via the iTunes App Store), Android, BlackBerry OS and Windows Mobile devices. MXit Lifestyle have also released a Windows client, MXit EVO PC.
Mxit features some of the standard functions of a modern instant messaging client, such as a contact list, file transfers and photo sharing via a cellphone's built-in camera. MXit also supports profile photos, tabbed conversations and message formatting. Contacts are added by entering their cellphone number and, as of recently, a username. Users are able to change their presence and mood via a menu on the client. Further features include support for themes, emoticons, and group chat, called MultiMX.
On 1 April 2009, Mxit released an open-source plug-in for the libPurple library.This allows applications using the libPurple library such as Pidgin and Adium to connect to the Mxit network. This coincided with the release of the MXit Developer Zone web-site and documentation on the Mxit client protocol. Mxit has been included as a standard protocol in Pidgin since version 2.6.4
Mxit now has a function where you can upload and create home movies.

MXit is available on a variety of mobile and Computing platforms, each independently developed for the platform. These are:

Current versions

Platform Current version Release date Third party
Java ME 6.3.0 1 July 2011 No
BlackBerry 6.3.0 24 June 2011 No
iPhone 1.6 4 March 2011 No
Android 6.4.2 10 June 2011 No
Windows Mobile 1.4.1 5 November 2010 No
Windows Phone 7 25 May 2012 No
Linux 2.9.0, Pidgin 23 June 2011 Yes, Pidgin only,
bundled plugin
Microsoft Windows 2.9.0, Pidgin
2.0.1, MXit Evo
23 June 2011
13 December 2010
Yes, Pidgin,
bundled plugin
Mac OS X 1.0 31 August 2009 Yes, Adium only,
separate plugin

International presence

Mxit operates in many international markets. Mxit is officially supported in Malaysia, India, Indonesia, United Kingdom, United States, Nigeria, Brazil, France, Germany, Italy, Portugal and Spain. In August 2007 Mxit commissioned their European Data Centre located in Frankfurt, Germany. The purpose of this server farm is to take over most of the international traffic from the South African servers.In September 2010, Mxit launched in Kenya, making it the first country outside of South Africa to have access to the full range of features.




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