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, ...


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", ...


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 ...


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, ...


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 ...

Startup news

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 ...


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 ...






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