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  • How M-Pesa disrupts entire economies

    Back in 2011, I was asked to give my thoughts on what I thought would trend in mobile within between then and 2020. One of my predictions was that: “Mobile money will shift economies on a large-scale and across borders.” It came as an interesting discovery to learn therefore that according to recent Africa Development Bank (AfDB) research, increased uptake of M-Pesa, which is the literal mother of mobile money, is said to be contributing to inflation in Kenya. Inflation was a major problem in the Kenyan economy in 2011, having hit a high of 19.7% towards the end of...

  • How do 11 of the most popular athletes on Twitter rank on Klout?

    It makes sense for athletes to be social media-savvy. After all, they’re constantly in the public eye and can go from being treated like deities to dirt in an instant. Platforms such as Twitter and Facebook allow them to interact with the public on a more human level. It’s hardly surprising, therefore, that sports people are among the most followed on Twitter and most well-liked on Facebook. It’s well and good having loads of fans, but how well does that translate into online influence? In an attempt to see how influential the most popular sports people out there are one social...

  • Facebook Messenger for Windows goes live

    The Facebook Messenger app is now available for your Windows desktop. The social network claims that the app allows people “stay in touch anytime, no matter what you’re doing” and without clicking away from anything else they might have open. The app includes a window that moves all your chats to your desktop, provides you with instant notifications, and “an active stream of posts and activity from your friends”. “Millions of people log into Facebook every day to keep up with friends. They also browse other websites and run computer programs, so it’s easy to miss important stuff. Maybe...

  • Driving with Siri [Comic]

    I was browsing through The Joy of Tech, a popular webcomic site, earlier when I came across this hilarious comic. Siri's abilities have amazed us since Apple introduced her to us last year. She can do almost anything and if she is unable to do it, she will find a way to get it done. She's a dream, she doesn't argue too much and you don't really feel the need to argue with her because Siri knows best. She could never get on your nerves, she might unnerve you a bit with her abilities but hey it's a small...

  • How your desk job is killing you [Infographic]

    “Each hour you spend watching TV increases your risk of death by 11%.” The average person has a 100% chance of dying, so if you watch an hour of TV after work today, you’ll increase that to a 111% chance. Watch out, your flatscreen is deadly! This is just one of the shocking statistics in a recently released infographic. It’s pink, it’s an infographic, it has meat cleavers scattered throughout... what’s not to like? It also contains some pretty scary statistics -- they confirm that as a result of all the automation and improvements in technology, jobs now require more...

  • Is China really set for an online advertising boom?

    China’s has the largest online population on the planet, over 500-million people by most estimates. Add in 300-million people with accounts on its various microblogging sites (called weibos) and you can see why advertisers might be clamouring to go online. That drive for online advertising is only being fuelled by the fact that authorities are placing restrictions on broadcast advertising. According to online research company eMarketer, the Chinese government is making it increasingly difficult for companies to buy prime time advertising from broadcasters like CCTV. It also put a halt to commercial breaks during dramas and cut back on...

  • TV watching on tablets to hit three hours a month by 2014

    So you have a tablet. It’s great right? You can do all sorts of cool stuff on it. But could it ever hope to replace your TV when it comes to viewing video content. I mean sure, it’s great for the odd YouTube clip, and it’ll just about do for series when nothing else is available, but serious viewing needs a serious screen. Right? Think again. Tech research company Juniper Research reckons we’re increasingly falling in love with mobile TV. So much so that we’ll spend three hours a month watching TV on our tablets by 2014. Juniper Research...

  • Win tickets to Social Media Bootcamp 2012

    This competition is now closed and the winners are... cohensarah, CopyWriterCPT and calvyndutoit. Congrats! Social media is one of the primary reasons people spend time on the web. Even in an emerging market country like South Africa, 80% of all people have an active Facebook account which is visited twice daily. Social media is a form of instant communication, so would it not make sense that you understood it better? The Social Media Bootcamp is your answer. This course, which will run in Cape Town, Durban and Johannesburg hopes to clear up any misconceptions people may have regarding social media and the...

  • How your company’s attitude to social media is changing

    There was a time, not so long ago, when social media was viewed as a productivity killer. Companies banned their employees from visiting the likes of Facebook and Twitter, fearing that they would spend hours on these social media sites instead of working. But that attitude is rapidly changing. More companies are starting to see the value in giving their staff access to social networks. In fact, tech research company Gartner reckons that only 30% of large organisations will block employee access to social media sites by 2014, compared with 50% in 2010. Andrew Walls, research vice...

  • Man kills vendor over fake iPhone

    Police have arrested a man in Zhengzhou, China, for attacking a group of cellphone vendors after being sold a fake iPhone. Identified only as “Mr Feng”, the 29 year old killed one vendor and put another in the hospital. Photos of the attack, murder weapon and fake iPhone surfaced on Chinese microblogging site Sina Weibo and online community QQ soon afterwards. Feng said he was approached by a vendor while shopping at the city’s 27 Plaza, who offered to sell him an iPhone for 2000 Yuan (US$317). After Feng agreed to buy it, the vendor left to fetch him a “new...

  • Apple App Store hits 25bn downloads

    Another day, another Apple record broken. Today the 25-billionth app was downloaded from the Apple app store. The 25 billionth app downloaded, Where's My Water? Free, was downloaded by Chunli Fu of Qingdao, China. The company reckons that apps are downloaded by some 315-million, iPhone, iPad and iPod touch devices worldwide. Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services thanked all of Apple’s customers for downloading so prolifically before commenting on how rapidly the store had grown: “When we launched the App Store less than four years ago, we never imagined that mobile...

  • Syrian government blocks access to WhatsApp

    The latest mobile tool to suffer at the hands of a dictatorial regime isn’t a social network, or even an inflammatory mobile site. It’s SMS killer WhatsApp. The instant messaging service sent out a Tweet from its official account, stating that it had been banned in Syria: We are told that WhatsApp is now being blocked in Syria. A blow to free speech and open communications everywhere. Sad day for freedom.— WhatsApp Inc. (@WhatsApp) March 5, 2012 According to TheNextWeb, killing WhatsApp is the latest in a series of measures aimed at putting down widespread protests in Syria. The government...

  • Google’s privacy policy: ‘This stuff matters’

    Google's new privacy policy is probably pretty old news to you by now. After all, for every search that you do, you get a nice notification from Google that its privacy policy is changing and that "This stuff matters...". If you've bothered to read it, you will know that Google intends to amalgamate all of the data that they collect about you into a single account profile. Unsurprisingly, the new policy has divided reception across the internet. Google fans can't see any wrong in what Google is up to, while people on the other side of the fence are pretty...

  • What does Foursquare have in common with Harry Potter?

    Dennis Crowley’s vision for Foursquare may have something in common with the Marauder’s Map from the Harry Potter series. Crowley recently told Memeburn that he wants to develop Foursquare so that users will be able to pinpoint the exact whereabouts of their friends, family and other social network contacts. The Marauder’s Map allows its user to find out where anyone is on the Hogwarts grounds. Sound familiar? Thing is, to use the map, you have to utter the words “I solemnly swear I’m up to no good”. All you have to do to use Foursquare is tap an icon on your phone. Why...

  • The Vodafone Smart Tab 10: have we seen it all before?

    Ah man, the sense the excitement in the Vodafone boardroom when its latest product was unveiled must have been palpable. A tablet! And a 10-inch one at that! At least one person, caught up in a state of self-congratulatory revelry, must have dared to think: “Look out Apple, here we come”. Good news, Tim Cook and co. The Vodafone Smart Tab isn’t the device that’ll knock your company back to the nightmare days of the late 90s. It’s a decent tablet, but iPad killer it most certainly ain’t. Let me explain: Overall Design Look, there’s only so much creativity you can...