Startups

Eight startup sins and how to avoid committing them [Net Prophet]

Starting a business baby, starting a business. It can be a wild ride. Sylvia Gruber co-Founder and CEO of Rubybox broke down her experiences with Rubybox into eight, bite-sized tips for burgeoning startups. Gruber is big on keeping things basic and personal, simplicity is key -- often the most difficult and the most important aspect to get right. Rubybox is a monthly beauty box subscription service that provides its subscribers with beauty product samples. The service allows for business-to-business opportunities by ...

Mobile

240m people to watch TV on smartphones by 2014 [Report]

For large numbers of people, watching TV still entails having a fairly large piece of furniture in their living room. In the next few years though, it could just mean having a smartphone. According to UK-based tech analysis company Juniper Research, around 240-million people are set to watch TV on their smart devices by 2014. The company reckons that this growth will largely be driven by a combination of both increased smartphone penetration and, critically, an increasing usage of live ...

Ecommerce, News

MXit launches its own geo-fenced payment system

Think First National Bank's Geo-payments is cool? Well it's not the first. Apparently MXit has been doing it for a while. According to the Stellenbosch-based startup, its staff has been using a "geo-fenced mobile payment" system since early April. The application is called Gust and a Beta version is expected to be ready in June. MXit earlier this year announced its mobile payment system, dubbed M2, which it rolled out to restaurants, allowing users to pay for meals using the platform. MXit’s ...

Social media, Social networking

Could paid connections be the future of social networking? [Net Prophet]

robynscott_netprophet Social networking hasn't quite lived up to its promise. It was supposed to flatten hierarchies and democratise networking. Theoretically, I'm just a few clicks and an email away from Richard Branson, so I should be able to have a conversation with him and do business. How hopelessly naive. The reality is that social networks mirror life and it's difficult to get the attention of busy, important people. Why? Because well-known and successful people have limited time and can't possibly give attention ...

Emerging Markets, Venture capital

4 reasons big-time VCs are investing in emerging markets

Venture Capital With technological advancements in developing nations speeding the growth rate of high impact tech start-ups, many American venture capital firms are now looking further afield to expand their investment portfolios. But what is driving this trend? 1. Lack of local funding There’s certainly no shortage of innovative ideas coming out of emerging market countries. Africa, China, Russia and many others are growing steadily, and are producing an ever-increasing number of tech success stories, many with an extensive global reach. However, the potential for ...

Social networking

Social? The web’s always been social

Social networks Long ago, before Facebook and Twitter; before MySpace even, there were simple html-rendered pages and IRC, and forums devoted to everything from discussing the finer points of Klingon grammar, to the very first pro-ana boards. Long ago, people were talking. They were having multiple, myriad, overlapping and multidimensional conversations about the things they loved to talk about. With people who understood them. And even better, wanted to hear what they had to say. Every misfit, freak, and geek, ...

Conferences

Net Prophet 2012 [Live blog]

Net Prophet is a platform for ambitious, creative entrepreneurs and thought leaders to share their ideas and experiences with innovators in web-based businesses. Speakers at this year's event include CEO of Mobilitrix, Chris Rolfe, Christo Davel (CEO of 22seven) and social entrepreneur and co-founder of Oneleap Robyn Scott.

Interviews, Mobile

Mobilitrix boss talks mobile rewards ahead of Net Prophet

More and more people are opting for mobile coupons. Although vouchers are already very popular online, the overflow into mobile has now grown rapidly. This is in part due to mobile’s convenience and the global recession’s after-effects but mostly because everyone loves a bargain. Rewarding consumers via a mobile coupons or vouchers is gradually gaining in popularity. Something Chris Rolfe the CEO of Mobilitrix, a mobile marketing company that claims to "deliver intelligent mobile marketing solutions that quite simply reward loyalty", ...

News

Twitter brings mobile web version up to scratch

Most of us are now used to the 'new new Twitter' which launched late last year. Anyone who accesses the social network from a feature phone is about to deal with the same adjustment. Twitter today announced that it has updated its mobile web site in what it says is an "effort to give every person on the planet a consistent Twitter experience". So, if the social network is to be believed, anyone using a feature phone or working on older ...

News

FNB adds Geo-payments to mobile app, ignores NFC for now

First_National_Bank_Logo copy South African banking giant FNB has added a new feature to its app that allows users to make and receive payments when they're in close proximity without having to know each other's banking details. It may sound like voodoo, but it's actually pretty simple. The process, called Geo-banking, uses the GPS units built into all modern mobile devices to determine how close people are to each other and the app itself as authentication. At first Geo-payments was only available on iDevices, ...

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