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  • 3 instances of ecommerce becoming ‘enabling’ commerce

    If there’s one thing that nearly every economy in the world has in common today, it’s the love of shopping. Shopping drives our consumerist society. With online shopping, a full-fledged consumerist lifestyle is just a click of a button away. Online retail is all set to touch US$1.3-trillion in worldwide sales this year. From meagre single digit market shares just a few years ago, ecommerce now boasts more than 15% of the total retail market share in the UK and a 12.7% share in the US. Ease of shopping, secure payments infrastructure, improved shipping and delivery, and most importantly, the...

  • Who will win the battle of Nigeria’s online classifieds?

    First it was ecommerce with Jumia and Konga fighting neck-to-neck, then the attention went to the online marketplace space with the likes of Kaymu, this is followed by learning -- remember PrepClass, Tuteria, Tutor.ng, NearTutors. It now appears that the latest space that foreign-founded companies are eyeing in Nigeria is the classified ads. In other words, the battle to create Nigeria’s Craigslist is on. Classified ads are not entirely new in Nigeria thanks to the popularity of Craigslist in the country -- especially among the early internet savvy demographic. Read more on Ventureburn.

  • MoneyGram, Vodacom give Tanzanians a new way to receive funds directly into mobile accounts

    MoneyGram, a global provider of innovative money transfer and payment services, and Vodacom, an African mobile communications company, have announced that Vodacom subscribers in Tanzania will now receive money directly into their M-Pesa accounts through MoneyGram’s money transfer services. As part of the partnership between the two companies, M-Pesa subscribers in Tanzania will now be able to receive funds from MoneyGram directly into their mobile accounts. This money can be sent from more than 120 countries, all around the clock. Customers in the United States can send funds to M-Pesa accounts quickly and securely from a MoneyGram location or through...

  • Microsoft’s Cortana now available on Android in public beta

    First announced in May this year, Microsoft has finally launched Cortana for Android devices in public beta. Some of the digital assistant's features include searching the web by voice command, setting reminders and alarms, making calls by voice and voice texting. Similar to Apple's Siri and Google Now, Cortana also gets to know the user over time by keeping track of their interests and providing them with relevant content. Read more: Microsoft’s Cortana whips Apple’s Siri in this new Windows Phone ad Microsoft says that since it launched the closed beta, it has made several improvements. Some of these include the ability to...

  • India’s ecommerce giant Flipkart introduces social network feature

    India’s ecommerce company Flipkart has introduced a social network component to its app. The social network component is called Ping and it allows users to have a real time conversations with friends and help each other on what to buy. Ping allows users to drag and drop drag and drop products or offers directly into conversations, share their screen so that you can browse together, ask friends what they think and get instant feedback and share products directly from your cart, wishlist, camera and gallery. Using Ping, users can share pages of the items they want to buy with friends. Read...

  • Why South Africa really needs to embrace the Maker Movement

    "More so than any other time, we are able to make things that can actually make a difference," Steve Sherman, the CEO of Living Maths and self-proclaimed maker said at the recent Cape Town Maker Conference. Thanks to the internet, people today have access to more information than ever before. And thanks to things like micro computers, 3D printers, and accessible programming languages people can make more, experiment more and become more self-sufficient. Concepts like crowdfunding, for instance, enable people to finance and share their passions more easily. More than 200 000 people recently pledged nearly US$9-million to bring a...

  • #StrongerthantheRand: 19 tweets that accurately describe South Africa’s falling currency

    The strength of South Africa’s Rand has become a hot topic of late -- more so than usual. Over the weekend the ZAR weakened to over R20 to the UK pound. Right now it costs South Africans over R13 to the US dollar and R15 to the Euro. It might not be the right time to plan that overseas vacation. Twitter is a unique entity: it allows a number of people to not only rant and rave about problems in the country, but also some together and comment on them in real-time.  In true South African fashion, someone has created the hashtag...

  • Uber partners with Bharti Airtel to allow Airtel Money payments in India

    Uber is making serious moves in India. After recently introducing cash payments, it's now partnering with Bharti Airtel to allow users to make payments for trips with Airtel’s mobile wallet, Airtel Money. The partnership between Bharti Airtel, the largest wireless carrier in India and third largest wireless carrier in the world, and Uber, the ride hailing service, is meant to allow for hassle free payments. Users in India can already pay with credit card and cash and now those with Airtel Money will have a third option. The partnership also extends further than payments for rides. Additionally, Mumbaikars, Uber says,...

  • Creativity unlocks the power of technology

    Today the bar for creativity is extremely high. It starts with people. Anyone can use the phone in their pocket to shoot and edit high quality video - something that would have been unthinkable even ten years ago. Anyone with a mobile phone has a computer in their pocket -- from shooting and editing video on a smartphone to banking on a feature phone. Small businesses can shoot a video of their product, market it and accept payment all online. Brands and consumers now exist side to side, and often face to face, in a vast digital landscape. The...

  • Blend content marketing and SEO to reach more customers than ever before

    Great content helps you earn links that increase domain authority, improving your search rankings. It also helps you earn familiarity with your audience, building trust and connections. SEO gets your content noticed so that it can work on your behalf. Let’s take a look at how to get the most from content marketing and SEO by doing both at the same time. Analyse your audience If you haven’t put together buyer personas for your business, do it now. Buyer personas take into account both demographic and psychographic characteristics of your typical customer, creating profiles describing the people who make purchases...

  • What do you need to know about unlocking the power of social authority?

    Social authority online is not a nice to have anymore, but a must have. It's important to your own digital footprint, target audience, current customers, Google, the other top search engines and your personal and business brand. Your name is a brand and you should treat it as such. Before I purchase a new book, laptop or basically anything new, I visit my favourite online shop and other top quality channels where I read and review all the comments regarding the product or service that I'm interested in. My decision on purchasing the product or service is purely based...

  • Cracking the nut: An indie game startup’s mission to balance passion and profit

    Starting your own video game startup is a tough nut to crack. Given South Africa's relatively small online community and few investors looking at games as a potential gold mine, the nut is even tougher. These obstacles however aren't stopping game developers from starting their own ventures, and finding creative ways to help keep them afloat. One of these companies is Stellenbosch-based Clockwork Acorn. Ventureburn sat down with one of the founders, Francois van Niekerk (pictured middle), to share the startup's journey so far. Read more on Ventureburn.

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 5: Sammy proves it has no idea what it’s doing anymore

    At the turn of the decade, Samsung made a bold move of launching a large screened smartphone just at the world woke with a thirst for pixels. Brilliant idea. It beat Apple to it. Hell, it practically built the "phablet" sub-genre by hand and owned it for many years after that. Roll on to 2015 and practically every smartphone above the R1500 price range has a screen larger than 5.0-inches. Naturally, screens are getting bigger and processing power increases, networking technology more shrewd and consumers media appetite larger. Read more on Gearburn.

  • Mobile, online transactions to reach 125bn annually by 2018

    The world is set to see an explosion in the number of mobile and online transactions, growing to 125-billion in 2018, an increase of 60% from this year's total. That's according to a new report from Juniper Research, which says that medium term growth would be driven by a variety of factors including a rise in “commuter commerce” (on-the-go purchases) which would itself be fuelled by greater deployments of Wi-Fi and 4G connectivity on public transport. The report also observed that digital transaction volumes would be further bolstered with the continued transition from physical formats (such as DVDs and...

  • Google trying out tool that’ll marry your foodporn with Maps

    Google wants your food photos. According to a report on Android Police, the internet giant is testing out a feature that will allow you to upload your foodporn to Google Maps. The feature will reportedly detect when photos are taken at restaurants and other places where food is served and offer to attach them to the establishment's location. Right now the feature is only available to "Level 3" and above Local Guides -- meaning people who've contributed more than 50 reviews as part of the Local Guides programme. The feature appears to borrow extensively from an experimental food photography...