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  • Analytics without borders: why SA businesses need to share data

    Analytics (or rather deriving insights from data) is an emerging field in South Africa. Due to differing strategic views, lack of infrastructure, or lack of skilled resources, few companies have fully capitalised on the information available in their local markets, much less so in subsidiary markets. Given both the emergence of the field, the first stab at getting analytics to grow would be to simultaneously ensure infrastructure is in place and hiring/retaining the skilled professional. Secondly, businesses need to start thinking with numbers in mind – ensuring that reasoning, figures and insights play a significant part in the...

  • Rise of the consumer — is South Africa’s Private Shopper in the pound seat?

    Taking your business else-where can have some negative connotations, unless of course you are talking about taking it online, in which case you are possibly going to make a whole lot of money these days. That's especially true for some of the world's online shops. Ecommerce is making a big entrance all around the world. If you didn't know this, meet Instacart, a brand that has a style that resembles a stiff cocktail of companies, combining the convenience and flexibility of Uber, with a splash of Amazon and a hint of entrepreneurial intuition to make it a long island on-demand ice...

  • Why are children driving touch screen sales?

    Renowned educator, Maria Montessori once said, “The hands are the instruments of a man’s intelligence.” Given that she lived around the turn of the 20th Century, it’s safe to assume she wasn’t referring to using one’s hands as the instruments with which to operate touch screens. However, as touch technology becomes increasingly ubiquitous in our lives, and even more so in the lives of our children, it is worth exploring why children are so drawn to it and the impact it has on their intelligence – both academic and social – as well as their safety. We've seen big growth...

  • Pornhub is crowdfunding its bid to shoot a space porno

    As the Wikipedia page on the topic notes, sex in space would be difficult at best and incredibly dangerous at worst. None of that however was enough of a deterrent to stop Pornhub, one of the internet's largest adult content sites, from setting up a crowdfunding campaign to shoot a porno in space. The Indiegogo campaign, which aims to send actors Eva Lovia and Johnny Sins to space, is looking to raise US$3.4-million. The campaign doesn't provide much in the way of details when it comes to logistics (we're guessing the company knows its audience better than that), although...

  • Weekly Round Up #25: Apple special, is Apple innovating or stealing from others?

    Welcome to Weekly Roundup, our podcast discussing the tech trends, innovation and news from the last few days. This week on BurnCast, Andy Walker, Jacques Coetzee, Lethabo Mokgatle and Christopher Wilton chat about Apple’s WWDC 2015 event. Today’s podcast is a special, focusing on a single event, dissecting and weighing the software that Apple launched. The event was, as all Apple events are, highly anticipated. A day before the event a Sony executives let slip that Apple Music was going to be launched. And launch it did, roping in some of the most experienced music deejays around the world. The team...

  • Don’t know which Android you should have? Google thinks it does

    Buying a new smartphone can be difficult. Even if you buy something low-end, you're likely to be outlaying a fairly significant amount of capital. Google has attempted to take a little pain out of the process with the launch of Which Android, a tool which aims to help you decide which Android device you should buy. The site starts off by getting you to select a number of categories for what you're likely to use your phone for, including music, fitness, being productive, social media and gaming. From there, you're asked to get a little more specific around those...

  • Instagram opens feed to businesses to increase revenues

    Instagram has expanded its ad product offering as it looks become a financially viable entity. The Facebook-owned company announced on its blog that it is making advertising available to businesses of all shapes and sizes. Instagram’s announcement comes at a time of significant growth at the company. Instagram has expanded the offering to eight countries around the globe, and the social networking site is one of the most popular for brand marketing today. This system enables businesses to target marketing at their direct user base. This also means that users who want to get in touch with small, medium...

  • 3 Productivity apps even app haters will love

    Maybe you treat your phone as nothing more than a classic telephone that also happens to have the ability to send texts and emails. Maybe, to you, apps are at best clutter and at worst interfere with your phone’s basic functions more than the iPhone’s pull-down stock widget. (Average use of that widget: “Let me just find that address real quick…well, the Dow is up.”) If you’re one of those app-adverse people, that’s okay; this list is for you. These apps make the three core functions of your phone easier to use and if you try them out and...

  • This is why I won’t run another startup

    Earlier this year, I closed my startup. So now I get to reflect on what I’d have done differently. Hindsight is unfair and inaccurate, but I still enjoy its lessons. This is one, a note to my future self: "Don’t call your projects ‘startups’". It’s a semantic trick, but a really important one. Here’s why. Startups have become a commodity in an industry of startup conferences, websites, courses and competitions. As founders of young organisations, we struggle to distinguish genuine guidance and support from the distracting pizzazz of the startup industry, where we’re just the product, not the customer. Lured...

  • Another fabulous day in Wellington Wells: ‘We Happy Few’ launches on Kickstarter

    Last week Canadian-based indie developer, Compulsion Games, launched its Kickstarter campaign for We Happy Few, a pleasingly twisted horror survival game set in a “1960’s dystopian world” where everyone is on happy drugs. Imagine Tim Burton and Ken Levine did acid and decided to make game and you will have a pretty good idea of what We Happy Few is all about. I can’t wait. Their current goal is to raise CA$250 000 for the development of the game that is set to be released on Windows PC somewhere in 2016. If their endeavour proves to be successful it will...

  • Hot hatch top trumps: Honda Civic Type R versus Ford Focus RS

    It’s a battle as inevitable as death and CO2 taxes. And one that – for the time being, anyway – can take place only on paper. Yes, we’re talking about the mouth-watering matchup between two of the most keenly anticipated hot hatches of recent years. One from Japan and another from America. Sort of. In the red (and sometimes white) corner, we have the Honda Civic Type R, which has just enjoyed its international launch. And in the blue corner? None other than the Ford Focus RS, which we can expect to roar into showrooms around the world in 2016....

  • Why you should consider replacing airtime giveaways with sponsored call marketing

    Many brands are finding that instant airtime giveaways are a fantastic marketing product to drive engagement with consumers. It’s an instant reward that the majority of consumers consider rather valuable – much more valuable than coupons that they may or may not redeem before they expire. Now there’s an even more effective mobile marketing tool on the market. It’s called sponsored call marketing – and it’s much more powerful than its predecessor. Sponsored call marketing enables brands to give away the same amount of free talk time, but with some powerful additional benefits to the brand. Tell your brand story before their...

  • What does Apple News mean for SA publishers?

    Apple introduced its latest app, Apple News on Monday 8 June 2015, in California, however it will officially launch with iOS 9 later this year. In the same breath it has said farewell to its Newsstand app, which was fraught with issues from the start. The new app is an aggregated app, which will launch with a number of big media partners such as The New York Times and ESPN. It will pull content from a number of sites globally and present content to the reader in a magazine-style format. Users can also select topics or specific publications to...

  • Facebook takes on Pinterest’s buyable pins, expands beta test for ‘buy’ button on Shopify

    Today, Facebook announced that it is inviting Shopify merchants to a beta test of its ‘buy’ feature. The feature allows users to buy things within Facebook without having to leave to click on another site. Over the last year, Facebook has been working on a solution for Shopify merchants to advertise and sell their products from within Facebook. The company explains that the ‘buy’ feature will enable consumers to purchase products they discover in their News Feed or on Pages without having to leave Facebook. Shopify merchants have in fact been posting products with buy buttons but Facebook is...

  • Augmented Reality: a marketing primer

    “When you think of any aspect of life or work, augmented reality is completely going to change how we do it.” – Ori Inbar Augmented Reality (AR) is a technology platform wherein real life objects or “triggers” are scanned by a digital device in order to return information, a website or other digital media. The technology can also superimpose a computer-generated image on a user's view of the real world, thus providing a composite view. The technology is hardly new, although you might not have heard about it yet because technologists, marketers and CTOs are still trying to figure out use...