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  • 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. var vglnk={key:"cc324b6567a9637aa0ff15bc9564b2a5"};!function(e,a){var t=e.createElement(a);t.type="text/javascript",t.async=!0,t.src="//cdn.viglink.com/api/vglnk.js";var n=e.getElementsByTagName(a);n.parentNode.insertBefore(t,n)}(document,"script");

  • 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", thinks is key. Rolfe is a former CEO of Virgin Active South Africa, and has previous digital media experience as...

  • 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 browsers or low bandwidth networks can now do all the same things on Twitter as people using smartphones and...

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

    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, but is now available as an update on the Google Play store for Android devices. The update appears to...

  • Google+ Hangouts on Air now available to all

    Google Plus introduced Hangouts On Air last year to a limited number of broadcasters, which allowed them to "hangout" with many of their fans for all the world to see. The internet giant is now extending Hangouts On Air to everyone, according to a blog post by Google's Engineering Director, Chee Chew. "Today we're excited to launch Hangouts On Air to Google+ users worldwide. So if you have something to say—as an aspiring artist, a global celebrity, or a concerned citizen—you can now go live in front of a global audience," says Chew. The normal hangout feature on Google Plus only...

  • The Cameroon Startup Challenge: Is the next global company in Cameroon?

    Sanaga Ventures and VC4Africa are turning their sights to Cameroon to uncover the most innovative web, mobile or hardware-based startups. The Cameroon Startup Challenge offers a cash prize of US$5 000 and an opportunity to receive mentorship and incubation at ActivSpaces, Cameroon’s leading technology hub. “Innovation can come from anywhere in the world, and the next global company might very well be from Cameroon. We want to do what we can to make that happen”, says Ben White, founder of VC4Africa, the large online community of venture capitalists, angels and entrepreneurs that concentrate on developing businesses in Africa. Entries...

  • Facebook’s Yahoo! dodge: The best move in tech history?

    When Facebook's IPO goes into full swing next week, the company is expected to be valued at around US$100-billion. Founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg meanwhile is set to walk away with a valuation of around US$25-billion. That's a large number, but it could've been a lot smaller if Facebook hadn't made what may turn out to be one of the best dodge's in tech history. Back in 2006, Yahoo! tried to buy the company for US$1-billion. Today Yahoo! is valued at around US$18.5-billion. Yup that's right, in a week's time Zuckerberg will be worth more than Yahoo!. When Facebook's...

  • MPesa: What does Kenya’s mobile darling look like five years on?

    When MPesa launched five years ago, only the most optimistic would’ve thought that it would turn into the economic force of nature it is today. Today the mobile money service has around 15-million users and about a third of the Kenyan GDP passes through it. Some think that MPesa has disrupted entire economies and others that it is the only real economic disruptor of the 21st-Century. The numbers bear that kind of thought out too. People can deposit money into MPesa accounts from 70 countries around the globe, 25 banks are connected to the service and KSH 1.8-billion (US$22-million) is...

  • They’re watching you: Non-members of social networks are still products

    A few people I know have removed their Facebook profiles, in the interest of gaining back some sense of privacy. In fact, I even know a couple of people who have never signed up to a social network in the first place. Sometimes I envy these people, just because they are taking a stand against a growing phenomenon that is rapidly turning personal data into a commercial product. Still, I have often wondered how much of a difference it makes if you choose not to belong to something as ubiquitous as Facebook or Google+. Now, a group of boffins...

  • Five minutes with 22seven founder ahead of Net Prophet talk

    Online money management system 22seven blew into our collective consciousness at the beginning of this year under a controversial storm. Most of that controversy centered around the fact that the service allowed third-party applications to access users' banking details. The innovative startup is the brainchild of 20Twenty founder Christo Davel, and is billed as an "intelligent money-saving tool" that plugs directly and securely into users' personal bank accounts and then delivers analysis on spending habits. It’s one of the sexiest startups to launch on the African continent, with funds from multiple unnamed investors. Davel is a serial entrepreneur with a wealth...

  • Does Google Auto-Translate spell trouble for your email campaign?

    Last week Google launched its auto-translate feature for Gmail, in theory making email a lot simpler for people who don't speak the same language. The automatic message translation (AMT) tool, which started as an experiment in Gmail Labs during 2009, has finally graduated to full inbox operating status. AMT works by providing you with an automatically prompted translate button for any message that Google recognises to be in your non-default language. So, if your default is set to Russian, Gmail will assume that's what you want everything to be translated to. However, you can still switch it to any other...

  • Logitech Tablet Keyboard [Review]

    Was typing ever an issue on the iPad? For some, yeah it's a pain in the ass. The lack of tactile feedback leads to spelling errors, frustrations and eye rollings as you scream at the gods saying, "Why Apple, why?". So let's say that you fall into one of these camps. In this instance you need the Logitech Tablet Keyboard, an incredibly fancy piece of tech which connects via Bluetooth to an iPad, or an iPhone if you're mad enough. var vglnk={key:"cc324b6567a9637aa0ff15bc9564b2a5"};!function(e,a){var t=e.createElement(a);t.type="text/javascript",t.async=!0,t.src="//cdn.viglink.com/api/vglnk.js";var n=e.getElementsByTagName(a);n.parentNode.insertBefore(t,n)}(document,"script");

  • Rocket Internet to launch price-comparison clone across SE Asia

    Rocket Internet is set to launch a price comparison site in South East Asia called PricePanda. The German-headquartered startup incubator has made something of a global empire for itself from cloning successful ecommerce business models. In fact, a recent article from GigaOm pegged the number of companies owned by Rocket Internet at around 38, operating in 58 countries. As is the case with most competing sites, PricePanda will allow people to see the prices of products across a number of ecommerce sites. The actual buying happens away from the site. According to The Next Web, the...

  • Evernote to build data centre, expand Chinese presence

    Evernote wants to expand its Chinese presence in a bid to crack what chief executive Phil Libin calls "the hardest" market. The company behind the note-taking and archiving software says it is preparing to build a data centre in China. The move will improve the company's service in the country but will also make its more than 1.1-million users in the country more vulnerable to government censorship. Indeed, the company may need to self-censor information on the service. Even Chinese giants such as Sina Weibo have faced stern warnings from the government for failing to stop its users from...

  • Win Star Wars: Kinect with Gearburn!

    Let's give away a copy of Star Wars: Kinect! Entry details are below. How to enter: Tweet @gearburn your favourite Star Wars quote. That's it! The most memorable one wins a copy of Star Wars: Kinect for Xbox 360. Please include the hashtag #gearburngiveaway. Tweet OR Leave your answer in the comments below. The competition will run from 7-14 May 2012. var vglnk={key:"cc324b6567a9637aa0ff15bc9564b2a5"};!function(e,a){var t=e.createElement(a);t.type="text/javascript",t.async=!0,t.src="//cdn.viglink.com/api/vglnk.js";var n=e.getElementsByTagName(a);n.parentNode.insertBefore(t,n)}(document,"script");