• BURN MEDIA
    • Motorburn
      Because cars are gadgets
    • Gearburn
      Incisive reviews for the gadget obsessed
    • Ventureburn
      Startup news for emerging markets
    • Jobsburn
      Digital industry jobs for the anti 9 to 5!

Mobile apps

  • 3 Productivity apps even app haters will love

    Maybe you treat your phone as nothing more than a classic telephone that also happens to have the ability to send texts and emails. Maybe, to you, apps are at best clutter and at worst interfere with your phone’s basic functions more than the iPhone’s pull-down stock widget. (Average use of that widget: “Let me just find that address real quick…well, the Dow is up.”) If you’re one of those app-adverse people, that’s okay; this list is for you. These apps make the three core functions of your phone easier to use and if you try them out and...

  • Your move Apple Music: Spotify completes new funding round

    Spotify just closed its latest financing round, a day after Apple launched Apple Music. TeliaSonera, a Swedish mobile network operator company, had bought a stake in Spotify. The compnay has announced that it it is investing US$115-million for a 1.4% stake. This round values Spotify at around US$8.2-billion. “We’ve set-out to create a New Generation Telco where innovation is key to our success. Spotify is a great company, loved by customers and with a world class take on innovation I’m excited to join Spotify’s journey as investor and key partner”, says Johan Dennelind, President and CEO, TeliaSonera. Read more: Apple...

  • Uber is testing a cash payment option in Nairobi

    Uber has launched a cash payment system in Nairobi, Kenya. Uber has been operating with a credit card-based system, a strategy that made sense in the US and other mature markets. But the moment the private driver hailing app started operating in emerging markets, it needed to adopt a different strategy. It is for this reason that the company has adjusted it payment options. Uber’s cash payment began in India and now has branched into Kenya. Launching in Nairobi is a move into the unbankable African market. Last week, Uber announced its plans about its cash payment option, stating that...

  • Microsoft acquires Wunderlist for around $200m

    Microsoft has acquired Wunderlist, a to-do list app based in Berlin. Under Satya Nadella, Microsoft has not only made more inroads towards being more mobile friendly but also has begun making acquisitions that makes the company a major player in mobile apps. The other thing the company has done well is to make its apps work across platforms and devices and not confine them to mobile devices that run Windows. This has led many to refer to Microsoft as the company that is beginning to be cool. There has been rumours of this for sometime but no statements from both...

  • Pinterest introduces ‘buyable pins’, making it possible to make purchases within the app

    Pinterest has revealed a new feature that will see users buying things from without leaving the platform. The feature, ‘buyable pins’, will launch in the coming weeks in the US, and to Android in the future. The feature works by showing a blue pin button next to the normal option to pin. This buyable pin allows users to make purchases of items they like. Furthermore, users have the option to search for buyable pins and make use of the price filter to choose a specific price range for items. Users can choose to see what they want to buy in...

  • Put your phone on a data diet with Opera Max, cuts up to 50% usage

    Student life is a tough one. Life is expensive and income is practically non-existent because you're a student. Ironically it usually comes at a time when you have to start paying for things and cutting costs. Norwegian software giant Opera has stepped up its game and optimization seems to be the catch term; trimming the fat and getting the biggest supernova out of your buck for data is where Opera Max app is leading the technology. The app's latest update compresses videos, photos and media on apps or websites on your mobile (both mobile internet and Wi-Fi), which means you're putting your...

  • Live video streaming for everyone as Periscope finally comes to Android

    It has taken two months for Periscope to arrive on Android but it is finally here. The Twitter-owned live video streaming app has had an incredible run with iOS users, trying to dethrone Meerkat of its title as king of live video streaming. Meerkat came out of beta a few weeks ago and now its nemesis has followed it to the Android operating system. “When we started Periscope, we wanted to build the closest thing to teleportation -- by providing users with the best way to start or watch a live video broadcast. As a small startup, our initial launch was limited to...

  • 4 common UX mistakes in brand apps (and how to fix them)

    A flawless user experience is a fairytale. Users’ needs are always in flux, and there’s a constant push and pull between mobile designers as to which type of design is best. Yet the UX has the power to make or break a brand’s app. Brands have to consider design, content, performance, and overall usability when building apps to ensure users have the best possible experience. However, it seems like the UX gets compromised in the process. Add in a marketing team that confuses buyer personas with behavioral personas, and you’re left with a negotiated UX. This negotiated UX is often...

  • Spotify introduces adaptable songs for runners, videos and audio clips

    Spotify has introduced its coolest feature yet. From now on, runners can listen to music that adapts to the speed of their running. Spotify Running, according to the company, allows runners never to miss a beat. This feature is one of the many that Spotify introduced yesterday. “We want Spotify to help soundtrack your life by offering an even wider world of entertainment with an awesome mix of the best music, podcasts and video delivered to you throughout your day” the company said. To make up the product, Spotify, says that it teamed up DJs and composers to create music...

  • Sunrise calendar introduces Meet, the fastest way to schedule a one-to-one

    Gone are the days of diaries and scheduling things with a pen. Let's face it, a calendar that sends you a notification when your event is close is better than one that does not. Sunrise, the calendar app acquired by Microsoft in early February, has released a new feature called Meet. Meet is a keyboard for Android and iOS that lets users select available time slots in their Sunrise calendar without leaving the app they are in. After setting an event, users can email the link to someone else. Meet is a fast way to schedule one-to-one meetings. Meet is meant...

  • Uber’s $3bn bid for Nokia’s Here Maps is the one you want to be successful

    According to the New York Times, Uber is rumoured to have put a bid for Here, Nokia’s mapping product. This is great news, not just for Uber but for the Uber user. Amongst its shortcomings, Uber’s mapping is shoddy at best. Often Uber drivers wonder off into the wild, heading in the wrong direction, when the pickup location had been clear and showed the right location on the user’s mobile device. Going up against Uber though is a consortium including German carmakers such as BMW, Mercedes-Benz, and Audi and Baidu, China's biggest search engine. Facebook announced a partnership with...

  • Facebook introduces a way to share less personal data with third-party apps

    Facebook, the biggest miner of people’s data, introduced a year ago, a way to limit how much personal data third-party apps have access to. Apps then had until 30 April 2015 to change to the new settings. The new version of Facebook login has better privacy controls. It allows users to choose which information they want to share. Signing into an app via Facebook is convenient until one becomes cognizant that third-party apps are not pointlessly asking access to one’s Facebook but are actually digging through the minefield of data and obtaining it for whatever reason. It is no...

  • Evernote introduces more affordable premium plans

    Online workspace provider Evernote has rolled out a new pricing plan. The new plans are Basic, Evernote Plus and Evernote Premium. Basic is free, and the company says that though it is free and has limitations, it is nothing that would slow an early user. Evernote Plus is one of the new plans and costs US$2.99 per month US$24.99 per year. The tier has 1GB monthly uploads, allows for offline access to notes on mobile, passcode lock, and has the ability to automatically turn emails into notes in Evernote. The other new tier is Evernote Premium which has unlimited uploads and is...

  • Instagram launches official community called @Music

    Instagram has launched a new official community called @music. The community is aimed at music lovers, dedicated to exploring music around the globe, from both the musicians and the listeners. The tech company says that the community is a place where people across the musical spectrum come to share stories, reveal their creativity and connect directly with fans. The service appears to be a pseudo-publishing platform more than anything else. Instagram is a publisher of narratives in photos and videos but with the new community layout it wishes to transcend this and embrace text. There has already been such moves...

  • Human app data gives insight on how we move in cities

    Almost every mobile phone, including smart wearables, possesses capabilities to track one’s movement. There has however been no clever way of using this data to provide clues about people’s movements. The companies have held on to it and have done nothing. The users have simply been pleased with themselves for reaching their daily goals and moved on to the next day. The Human app, an all-day activity and calorie tracker that inspires you to move 30 minutes or more every day, has just mapped the total duration for human activities in 30 cities. Human an iOS app, runs in...