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  • Attempts to revive PlayStation Network stumble

    It’s coming on a month now, and with hacktivism group Anonymous even being drawn in as a player in this farce, or Shakespearean tragedy depending on your view; the saga of Sony’s Playstation network continues. This comes after Sony’s efforts to revive its PlayStation Network have stumbled after the firm discovered a flaw hackers could exploit when it came to resetting passwords. Sony temporarily disabled its PlayStation Network and Qriocity music streaming password reset pages to fix a vulnerability in a system that was just regaining its footing after a cyber-attack that resulted in it being shut down for...

  • Private investors set to profit big time with LinkedIn’s IPO

    Private investors in LinkedIn, the social network for business professionals, stand to make a hefty 46% profit in just two months, following the company’s IPO this week. The underwriters for LinkedIn increased the initial price by 30 percent, which would value the company at more than US$4-billion. But if they price the deal too high it could dampen the crucial first day pop in share price and affect other IPOs. Clare Baldwin and Alina Selyukh at Reuters, reported: LinkedIn now plans to sell shares at US$42 to US$45 each, up from a previous range of US$32 to US$35. At the middle of...

  • Facebook moves closer to Microsoft with Bing deal

    In a move which shows the growing partnership between the two online giants, Microsoft has begun letting Bing search results reflect “likes” of people’s Facebook friends as the social network and software company grew closer. Ever since Microsoft bought a 1.6% share in Facebook in 2007 for more than $200-million there has been low-level co-operation and general cosying between the two companies. The Bing deal has just made things a whole lot cosier. As the company’s press release announcing the deal states, “According to a recent survey conducted by Bing and Impulse Research, 90 percent of people surveyed seek advice from...

  • Lady Gaga racks up record 10 million followers on Twitter

    As much as we may scoff and scorn, it seems nothing will hold back pop diva Lady Gaga. Adding yet another social-networking accolade to her mantle, Gaga has become the first person with more than 10-million followers on Twitter. Gaga is more than a popstar, she is now a one-person media company — with similar broadcasting power to many media companies around the world. Lady Gaga (@ladygaga) was also the first person to ever reach 10-million fans on Facebook, and reach one-billion views on YouTube for her last original piece of work, her smash-hit single Born This Way. The most followed...

  • Nokia and Samsung rule supreme in Africa, RIM on the rise – InMobi

    InMobi, which claims to be the world’s largest independent mobile advertising network, on Tuesday provided a snapshot of mobile advertising trends on the African continent, showing that 8 out of 10 mobile adverts in Africa are delivered on either Nokia or Samsung devices. The company notes that when it comes to smartphones in Africa, RIM reigns supreme, although RIM/iPhone OS/Android collectively only represent 4.1% of the total Africa ecosystem. In fact, in just two months, RIM has grown 2,5% share points while Nokia, which owns the majority market share (in total number of handsets, rather than just smartphones), has...

  • 12 emerging market startups to watch

    Emerging market startups are coming into their own and increasingly appearing on the radar of mainstream venture capitalists in established markets. Skype recently announced its interest in investing in Chinese startups. The VoIP service is not the only player seeking a slice of the emerging markets pie – the list of startups grows everyday. Here are 12 of the many companies staking their claim in up and coming emerging markets: DianDian, China DianDian which means “bit by bit” was founded by Chinese business man Jack Xu. Prior to starting this venture, he was managing RenRen and Kaixin, two Chinese Facebook clones,...

  • South Africa votes: The online ‘chatter’ [statistics]

    The general consesus emerging amongst the chattering classes is that tomorrow’s elections in South Africa will become known as “The Toilet Elections of 2011.” However, had that matter not so spectacularly erupted in the face of both major political parties, the Democratic Alliance (DA) and the African National Congress (ANC), this election could have very well become known as South Africa’s Social Media Elections of 2011. Just as electioneering has stormed through social networks across the world in other countries — mostly since Barack Obama utilised it in such a spectacular fashion in his run for President in 2008 -–...

  • China bans time travel

    The Chinese government recently announced its latest contraband: time travel. Or at least time travel as it’s depicted in fictional enterprises such as films and television. The State Administration of Radio, Film and Television (SARFT) cautioned filmmakers and producers that movies with time-travel thematics tend to “casually make up myths, have monstrous and weird plots, use absurd tactics, and even promote feudalism, superstition, fatalism and reincarnation.” Although China has not issued an outright ban as yet, its firm censorship laws in almost all areas of public consumption likely means a practical prohibition for all intents and purposes. From the reports...

  • Iraq to bring banks to the masses — by mobile

    When one thinks of Iraq, the last thing on one’s mind is innovation in the tech sphere, however that is just what is happening. Following in the footsteps of the very successful M-Pesa of East Africa, Baghdad is hoping to close the gap by getting people to open accounts, make payments and transfer cash — all via mobile, as only one-fifth of Iraqis have bank accounts, but 70 percent have mobile phones. In a country that is one of the most corrupt and violent in the world, the initiative is aimed at securing Iraqis’ funds, and strengthening the banking sector...

  • Nokia ditches Ovi label

    Four years ago, in what was widely seen as a ill-conceived move, Finnish mobile giant, Nokia, announced the launch of Ovi. Finally, after sticking with the venture for what many feel has been way longer than necessary, Nokia has decided to move on… well sort of… Ovi was seen as Nokia’s answer to Apple’s wildly popular iTunes and as such was the brand under which Nokia sold music, games and apps for its mobile phones. Although initially Ovi was slated, by 2011 it has grown substantially to the point of having its user base downloading an average of 5 million...

  • China’s online population rises to 477 million

    China’s spiralling online numbers have turned the internet into a forum for citizens to express their opinions, albeit covertly. The number of internet users in China, already the world’s largest online market, hit 477 million at the end of March, a senior government official was quoted by state media as saying on Monday. The growing strength and influence of the web population has prompted concern in Beijing about the internet’s potential as a tool for generating social unrest, and authorities have stepped up surveillance in recent years. The government blocks web content that it deems politically sensitive in a vast system dubbed...

  • Live TV on my iPad: Hands-on with the Drifta

    The idea of being able to watch live satellite TV on my iPad, iPhone and laptop sounded just too good to be true. So it wasn’t long before I had the Drifta, DSTV’s much-publicised DVB-H mobile TV decoder, in my hands. It’s an amazing little innovation, designed locally, that brings nine selected DSTV channels like SuperSport, ENews and others to your laptop, iPhone, iPad or selected Nokia phones. There are also future plans to bring the broadcast to Android phones and … Read full story on Gearburn.com

  • iPaid 2 much for this damn thing so of course it’s great

    On a recent trip to LA, once hotel check-in and bag-dumping was done, some colleagues and I went downstairs for a beer. Just the one, because by then the taxi was outside, and it was off to the nearest Best Buy. Not one, not two, but three grown men of otherwise thoughtful and pragmatic disposition were literally gagging to get their hands on an iPad 2. And they were not the only ones, because there was a waiting list at the Apple Store, and even the Best Buy store clerks needed a good brow-beating to get them to hand one...

  • Crowdsourcing: A new kind of social media marketing campaign

    Adam Skikne recently noted in a column, that social media marketing tools are not really like “the intrusive, traditional forms of advertising that have continuously interrupted our daily lives since the 1950’s”. He contends that they are “permission marketing,” in that, be it by “Liking” a brand’s Facebook page or by “following” it on Twitter, you allow it to “interrupt” your daily life. However, a social media marketing campaign, when properly executed can and should be something far more interactive than these more passive examples. We all know of T-Mobile’s “Life Is For Sharing” campaign as an example...

  • How to do market and competitor research that wins investment

    Regardless of whether it’s an angel investor or venture capitalist you are approaching, every funder will narrow things down to one major question: “Who is your target market and who are you competing against?” This is the warning of Alex Fraser, who drives home the fact that preparing a market and competitor analysis is a vital part of any business plan or pitch deck. Fraser is based at at InvenFin, an early stage capital company. She says she often receives business plans with no competitor analysis, leading her to request one from entrepreneurs with the need for more information. It’s...