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All posts by Myolisi Sikupela: Staff Reporter

  • Weekly Round Up #68: Instagram’s milestone, Tencent buys Supercell & more

    Welcome to Weekly Roundup, our podcast discussing the latest tech trends, innovation, and news from the last few days. This week Stuart Thomas talks to Graham, Hadlee and Andy. The team discusses Instagram's milestone of reaching 500-million monthly users, Twitter's new Engage app designed to keep celebrities away from the plebs. The new OnePlus 3 smartphone also gets a mention, while the heartbreak that was this year's Le Mans 24 Hours is also briefly revisited. But the biggest news of the week (prior to #Brexit): Tencent's acquisition of the majority stake in Supercell -- the Clash of Clans game developer. What are we...

  • Instagram debuts algorithmic video suggestion feature ‘Picked For You’

    Instagram will soon display video content based on the topics that its users most like. Like its image feeds, the new video channels will be algorithmically generated and curated by Instagram. The news come shortly after Instagram reached 500-million monthly users and its in-app language translation announcement. "As video continues to grow, we’re adding new channels to Explore to make it easier for you to discover videos you’ll enjoy," the company said. The feature dubbed...

  • Dropbox’s new productivity tools foster simplicity, collaboration and data safety

    Dropbox has introduced a number of new productivity tools which include simplifying workflows, creating unified workspaces and improving data security. According to the company, the new productivity tools are a response to its 500-million users' requests for better collaboration tools within teams. With its simplifying workflows, Dropbox wants to bring a lot of features which include scanning documents, creating Microsoft office documents on mobile devices and managing photos from desktop computers. To manage the photos from a desktop computer, Dropbox Basic users need to connect a computer to their Dropbox account, allowing for easier access, organising and removing the photos. On iOS,...

  • Twitter Engage: its new app for celebs and influencers

    Twitter has launched a new app for famous, influencial people. Dubbed Twitter Engage, the new app is available on iOS, but only available in the US. It gives celebrities and popular figures a better way to connect to their fans and get insights into their interactions. Twitter claims that the app will give famous people insights into their Twitter activities, allowing them to never miss a conversation that matters, get more insights about what’s happening in their network, track their tweets and keep abreast with updates. Read more: Instagram reaches 500m user milestone, posts celebratory video Twitter Engage offers real time data...

  • Facebook introduces SMS within Messenger on Android

    Facebook is again trying its hand at SMS. Its Messenger platform has introduced SMS support on Android devices. The feature is not available for Apple users because iOS doesn't support app permissions for accessing text messages/SMS, according to Facebook. This is not the first time that Messenger has experimented with SMS but the company claims it has become much easier to support text messages within Messenger on Android. Facebook says that the feature is an attempt to integrate friends sending GIFs on Messenger with parents only using SMS. The SMS feature will support standard text, images, videos, and audio. Facebook promises that it will...

  • Uber launches in Accra, Ghana, its 13th city in Africa

    Uber's march across the African continent continues at a serious pace, with the ride-sharing app officially launching in Accra, Ghana's capital and largest city. Accra has an estimated urban population of 2.27-million as of 2012. Accra takes Uber's footprint in Africa to 13 cities . The service will be officially operational from 11 June 2016. “We see Accra as a natural fit, because its people are willing to embrace innovation and technology and love products that are cool, exclusive and offer a new experience," said Alon Lits, General Manager for Uber Sub-Saharan Africa at a press conference. "We are able...

  • Uber introduces waiting fees, instant payments and more

    Uber has detailed new features that it's introducing for drivers. The changes include paying drivers for waiting over two minutes, showing ride requests going in the same direction as you are when changing shifts, instant pay, pausing requests and a new website dedicated to drivers. The company says that its reasons for introducing the changes include improving the driver's trip experience. Uber is introducing in-person assistance in over 250 locations around the world, making its communication process with drivers a lot more immediate. Read more: Smirnoff tries to lure people to app with free Uber rides One of the new features will enable...

  • Google’s Now on Tap gets text, image search updates on Android Marshmallow

    Google's Now On Tap has received a massive update that now supports text select and image search. Now On Tap itself, only released to Android Marshmallow devices, came as an improvement to Google Now and allows users to search from within apps. According to the company, users can now use the exact word or phrase to perform a search about images. "If you use Now on Tap in an app, email, chat, or news article with a lot of text, sometimes the results aren’t as precise as you’d like. Starting today, you can give Google a nudge by selecting exactly what...

  • Canon EOS 80D vs Canon EOS 70D: a worthwhile improvement?

    The Canon EOS 70D was an impressive camera and naturally its updated version, the EOS 80D had a lot to live up to. The EOS 70D capabilities, with its Dual Pixel CMOS AF and touch screen, allows one to simply tap the screen and move focus to a different point in the frame, were not gimmicks but important features. And now comes the EOS 80D, a camera that looks identical to its predecessor which itself looked similar to the 60D. The 80D has kept all the good features of the 70D and has added a few of its own, but...

  • All-Madrid Champions League final draws 27m interactions on Facebook

    The UEFA Champions league final was arguably the biggest sporting event on earth on Saturday, and definitely on Facebook too. The football match saw Real Madrid emerge as the winner, beating Atlético Madrid as they did in 2014, to win its 11th European Cup in Milan, Italy. According to Facebook, the match saw 27-million interactions across the globe with 1.4-million interactions in Spain alone. Read more: Man United’s Jose Mourinho gains 200k Instagram followers on debut The most number of conversations came from Brazil with 2.9-million users driving 6.8-million interactions, followed by Mexico with 2.7-million users driving 7.5 million interactions, and third...

  • Skype for Android tablets see a Material Design update

    Skype has released an update that brings a Material Design refresh to its Android tablet app. Android phones have been enjoying their Material Design updates since 2015. Skype users on tablets can now enjoy Android's new design language with all its vivid colours and bold shapes. The new UI for tablets has a floating button that Skype is claiming makes it easier to send messages and start voice and video calls. The design, according to the company, is optimised for multitasking, with its multi-pane view in landscape orientation. This allows users to send messages, files and check latest conversations whilst on a...

  • Facebook acquires VR company Two Big Ears, introduces 360 Spatial Workstation

    If you think Facebook's VR game was a joke then you were dead wrong. The company has announced the acquisition of Scottish VR company Two Big Ears. The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed The company specialises in immersive audio products based on solutions for both cinematic VR and gaming, and Facebook has not wasted any time putting the company's expertise to good use. Alongside the announcement, it also introduced 360 Spatial Workstation, a software suite for designing spatial audio for 360 video and cinematic VR. The Facebook 360 Spatial Workstation has plugins for popular audio workstations, including a time...

  • Facebook reworks Trending Topics after ‘allegations of political bias’

    Facebook, in a bid to expel the allegations that it favours a conservative stance with its Trending Topics, is making changes to the product. The company claims that the changes are to make the process more rigorous and transparent. "Suppressing political content or preventing people from seeing what matters most to them is directly contrary to our mission. We are proud of the platform and community we have created, and it is important to us that Facebook continues to be a platform for all ideas," Colin Stretch, Facebook General Counsel, said in a blog post. Read more: 5 tips to spot a...

  • Mr Robot season 2 trailer drops with Barack Obama cameo

    Mr Robot, the hit television show of 2015 focusing on black hat hackers and starring Rami Malek, has finally got a second season trailer, and it looks pretty damn good. The first season of the TV series Mr Robot debuted on 24 June 2015 on USA Network and received critical acclaim from a number of sources. Based on the trailer, not much has changed in the second season. Elliot (Rami Malek) still wears a black hoodie, has his usual delusions and panic attacks, while Mr Robot is still as elusive a character as he ever was. Read more: Mr Robot wins big...

  • Facebook partners with Airtel to launch Free Basics in Nigeria

    Bharti Airtel Africa, a leading telecommunications service provider, has announced that it has partnered with Facebook and to launch Free Basics in Nigeria. In 2015, Facebook promised to bring Free Basics to 17 African countries. Free Basics is a service that gives users free access to a number of platforms where users can access information about health, education, jobs, communications and local content services at no cost. Facebook estimates that it has, through the project, brought more than 25 million people online. Chris Daniels, Vice President of Internet.org at Facebook, said: “Bharti Airtel Africa has been an important partner in...