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  • One quarter of mobile users will pay with NFC by 2017

    As a technology Near Field Communication (NFC) has been kicking around for a while now -- Nokia's 6131 was the first NFC-enabled phone and launched all the way back in 2006 -- but mass adoption has been slow. All that's about to change. According to a new report from tech analysis company Juniper Research, more than one in four mobile users in Western Europe and the US will make in-store payments using NFC by 2017. That's massive growth, considering that only two percent will do so this year. The company reckons that this is largely down to an increasing...

  • Orkut to be linked with Google+

    It was inevitable. Google is now letting Orkut users link to their Google+ profiles. This effectively means that people will be sharing their posts on both social networks. Except, the integration goes a little deeper than that. In an official blog post, the internet giant says: After you link your profiles, your Orkut profile photo and name will be the same as your Google+ photo and name. In addition, you will be able to share all your public Google+ posts with your Orkut friends. Your Google+ posts to limited audience or specific circles will remain on Google+ only...

  • Bit.ly redesign: now with added annoying bookmarking feature

    You may have heard that popular link-shortening service Bit.ly has had a bit of a redesign. Or maybe you were just made aware of that fact when you logged in to your account and everything was all over the place. Ok, so the old Bit.ly wasn't on my list of the top 10 most beautifully designed sites on the web, but it was functional. There was a nice big bar at the top where you pasted your link, it shrunk before your very eyes, you copied it to your clipboard and moved on with your life. When you got distracted...

  • Facebook IPO drama: conspiracy or mispricing?

    Everyone is suing everyone. Everyone is upset with everyone. Everyone is blaming everyone. Get over it. It’s history. The biggest IPO since Google has happened. Some made millions. Others lost even more. Someone got it wrong, and they’re to blame, right? It’s doubtful that this was some deep-rooted, intricate, secret conspiracy by investment banks to overprice Facebook stock. But the mispricing cost it. Morgan Stanley as lead underwriters (and the others) spent billions propping up the stock price to ensure that it closed above the IPO price of $38 on day one. That’s a simple cost to figure out. Beyond...

  • Trust and the web: A sociologist’s guide

    Trust. The word gets bandied about a lot when talking about the web today. We want people to trust our systems. Companies are supposedly building “trusted computing” and “designing for trust”. But, as sociologist Coye Cheshire, Professor at the School of Information at UC Berkeley will tell you, trust is a thing that happens between people not things. When we talk about trust in systems, we’re actually often talking about the related concepts of reliability or credibility. Designing for trustworthiness Take trustworthiness, for example. Trustworthiness is a characteristic that we infer based on other characteristics. It’s an assessment of a person’s future...

  • Bring your own device: Welcome to our sci-fi future

    For decades, the realm of science fiction has portrayed inconceivable concepts and technologies as innovations just within our grasp. From Jules Verne’s musings on lunar travel, a century prior to Neil Armstrong’s first steps on the moon, to Arthur C. Clarke’s orbital satellites in 1945; fanciful and fantastic literature has helped to prepare us for the technological revolutions we are currently experiencing. Today, this notion has particular relevance to the consumerisation of technology. For years, we imagined a world in which we could communicate with friends and family by video, access information wirelessly or instantly connect with thousands of...

  • How does shopper psychology apply to social commerce? [Infographic]

    No purchase decision happens by chance. Every thought leading up to why you need the product -- from the rational versus emotional arguments about what the product will offer to the intrinsic and extrinsic benefits -- are all weighed up and part of a very complicated decision-making process. It's all about questions Things like: "Do I need it? Why do I need it? Can I afford it? Can I get it cheaper? What will my friends think? What will my mom think? What will the bank think? How do I use it? When will I use it? Will I use it?"...

  • Tim Cook: Apple needs social, Siri updates are coming

    Apple CEO Tim Cook has given hints that the Cupertino-based tech giant wouldn't exactly be averse to scuppering its social effort Ping. Speaking at AllThingsD's D10 conference Cook said that while Apple understood the need to integrate social elements into its products, that doesn't necessarily mean it needs to has to "own a social network". Answering a question raised by ABC's Joanna Stern, the Apple CEO said: Apple doesn’t have to own a social network, if that’s the heart of your question. But does Apple need to be social? Yes. But the ways that we express that today...

  • Russia’s largest social network delays IPO following Facebook jitters

    The circus around Facebook's juddery IPO has rolled into Moscow. The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Russia's largest social network Vkontakte has postponed its IPO as a result of Facebook's less-than-brilliant market debut. The social network's founder and CEO Pavel Durov reportedly tweeted “The Facebook IPO damaged many private investors’ trust in social networks, and the IPO has been postponed indefinitely”. Durov is thought to own about 12% of the 119-million strong social network. Interestingly, one of the company's larger investors Mail.ru (formerly Digital Sky Technologies) also has a five percent stake in Facebook. That adds...

  • 7 things you might not know about YouTube

    There's a few things most of us know about YouTube. It's fairly common knowledge for instance turned seven this year and that it's the most popular video-sharing platform on Earth. Everybody of course knows that it's great for procrastinating, but there are probably a good few things you probably don't know about it. There may also be some things you really don't want to know about YouTube (especially when it comes to some of the content). These are not those things 1. Its social community is actually pretty big We tend to think of YouTube as social media, but would...

  • Win solar-powered jars with Flux Trend Review

    We like innovation and future trends -- especially when they're green -- and Flux Trend Review has a nice mix of both. The 7 June event will bring together thought leaders from different industries to share their thoughts on what the future holds in store for us all. In the run-up to the conference, Flux is giving away five solar-powered glass jars -- Consol's twist on the traditional bottles, which charge themselves through solar panels on the lid, and store the energy until you flick a switch. The jars, which can glow for up to six hours, are a minimalistic...

  • New Google report lets online publishers know what’s cracking in ads

    Without online advertising, there would be no Memeburn. In fact, pretty much anyone who publishes anything online relies on advertising for survival. And if you're going to keep food on the table, it helps to know the latest trends in display advertising are. Through its purchase Double Click, Google has released a new report detailing what's current in the world of display advertising. At first glance that might seem quite risky, given that Google's business model is built around advertising. As The Next Web notes however, by doing so Google is showing itself to be the market leader and...

  • Rocket Internet wants 5rooms to own SA furniture market

    We've mentioned online furniture sales outfit 5rooms previously. It's part of German startup incubator Rocket Internet's stable of South African ecommerce sites, but it hasn't had the same kind of exposure as the likes of shoe and fashion outlet Zando. That all looks set to change. Memeburn got its hands on site's pitch book, which claims that the company was "established to become the market leader among South African furniture retailers". It claims that its position within the Rocket Internet network, which comprises over 38 companies operating in 58 countries, will help it achieve this goal. Having several hundred million Euros...

  • Run a startup, travel the world, defy convention: Q&A with Chris Guillebeau

    Building a startup on-the-go while you travel the world may seem unlikely. The status quo would have us believe it borders on the impossible. Thing is, Chris Guillebeau has done just that. Oh and he also writes books and evangelically spreads his unconventional ideas on entrepreneurship and startup communities. The word "unconventional" is actually a pretty accurate description of Guillebeau. The American entrepreneur reckons you can build a startup for less than US$100 and even wrote a book explaining how. His popular blog, The Art of Non-Conformity, focuses on travel and personal development topics and meshes with his personal mission...

  • Want your social media campaign to be a success? Do your research

    There are thousands of social media channels available to us all. From blogging to Facebook, all of these channels are not created equally and for the same purpose. Just because a certain social media channel works well for some businesses, it doesn't necessarily mean that it will work for you. Everywhere you look online you will find videos, images and the latest infographics about all the various social media statistics regarding the best social media channels. Some facts about social media: Facebook isn't big... it is massive. The members on this popular social network is close to the third biggest country on earth. Twitter has over...