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All posts by Hadlee Simons

Hadlee Simons
Terrible puns make Hadlee Simons difficult to work with, but he brings over seven years of tech journalism experience to the table. When he's not at work or watching motorsport, he's in the foetal position on a jiu jitsu mat.
  • LinkedIn Lite joins the lite app bandwagon

    We've seen quite a few "Lite" versions of popular social networking apps in recent years, now it's time for LinkedIn to jump on the bandwagon with LinkedIn Lite. Yep, the professional network has released LinkedIn Lite for Android in India, TechCrunch reports. So what's actually "lite" about it? The publication says that the new app is 1MB in size, making it ideal for low-end smartphones that have a tiny amount of storage. It's also claimed that the app is optimised for slower connections, with pages loading in under five seconds, "even on a 2G network". That doesn't mean that you've got significantly...

  • Western Cape Free WiFi: can we expect more data, better caps?

    The Western Cape Free WiFi Project is arguably less impressive than the Tshwane Free WiFi Project from a bandwidth perspective, but it's still a pretty solid achievement in terms of coverage. Starting with 50 hotspots across the province, the access points have steadily spread out since the launch in March 2016, now hitting the 178 mark, the provincial government told Memeburn. But that doesn't mean there isn't room for improvement. Could we expect the rolling over of unused data, for starters? "Currently, because of the active nature of our users, there is not currently a demand for rolling over unused data purchased...

  • Amazon, WhatsApp score poorly in EFF’s annual privacy report

    When you sign up for the world's biggest services/apps, you're giving loads of information to these firms. But who can be trusted with your data? The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) has released its annual "Who Has Your Back" report to answer this very question. The report grades some of the biggest companies in five categories, namely whether they follow best practices, tell users about government data requests, have a pro-user public policy, stand up to gag orders and promise not to sell out users. The worst offenders? US networks AT&T, Comcast, T-Mobile and Verizon all scored one star out of five -- a...

  • #DataMustFall: ISPA refutes claim it will lead to higher costs for some

    The #DataMustFall campaign has been one of the biggest SA stories in the past 12 months, as social media users call on mobile networks and service providers to reduce the cost to connect in the country. Although it's been embraced by most, the non-profit Free Market Foundation has (predictably) spoken out against the movement in recent months. The organisation has issued numerous press releases, claiming that the #DataMustFall campaign was cherry-picking information, for starters. The organisation also said that connectivity provided by a company was "not a basic human right" and that reduced pricing would lead to more expensive data costs for...

  • 6+ news services using WhatsApp in useful ways

    WeChat is one of the most popular instant messaging platforms in the world, in no small part due to its wide range of uses beyond mere messaging. The platform makes extensive use of bots, QR codes and other features, enabling everything from payments to alerts. What about WhatsApp though? The Facebook-owned service is much less complex in this regard, but that hasn't stopped news outlets from stepping up anyway. We take a look at a few publications that offer WhatsApp functionality. Eyewitness News South Africa's own Eyewitness News offers news stories via WhatsApp, giving you another avenue to consume articles. And the signup...

  • Google Home breaks up domestic abuse by calling police

    Smart speakers are arguably the hottest thing in consumer tech right now, as the likes of Amazon, Google and Apple all tussle it out. Now, Google Home has strengthened its case after it broke up a domestic violence incident. It seems like an amazing tech miracle, but it was more of a fluke than anything, upon closer inspection. According to ABC News, Eduardo Barros was house-sitting with his girlfriend and her child in New Mexico when they got into an argument that became physical. It's alleged that Barros had a gun and threatened to kill her. "Did you call the sheriffs?" he then asked her. The...

  • 10 South Africans to know in the cryptocurrency and blockchain space [Digital All Stars]

    Digital All Stars is a series of articles which aims to celebrate the best of South African digital. The articles, which will appear on Memeburn and Ventureburn, recognise and celebrate South Africa’s best digital entrepreneurs, business people, advertisers, and media professionals among others. Cryptocurrency and blockchain are two much hyped technologies, but their impact on society can't be understated. From making profits to serving up land claims, the two technologies are inextricably linked. Who are the South Africans making waves in the scene though? Who are the people contributing to the cryptocurrency and Blockchain landscape? We take a look. Riccardo Spagni (Monero) Who says...

  • Here’s how to fight harassment on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat

    It's tough to argue that kids have it better when it comes to bullying these days. The always-connected lifestyle means that the abuse doesn't necessarily stop when the child gets home. Between Facebook, Twitter and other social media services, there are loads of avenues that play host to cyber-abuse. But these platforms also give you a few ways to fight back -- we take a look at these solutions. Twitter The micro-blog came under plenty of criticism as a haven for online abuse, but we've seen the service take loads of steps since then. For starters, Twitter lets you protect your tweets (settings>privacy...

  • MWEB, WebAfrica hop on LTE-Advanced bandwagon

    A few months ago, we saw Rain (formerly known as WBS) launch its own LTE-Advanced network, delivering faster speeds and better ping. Now, MWEB and WebAfrica have revealed LTE-A products using Rain's network. Interestingly enough, the two ISPs are offering identical prices and data allocations, starting off at 55GBs for R549 per month. Need a little more than that? Then you can get 85GBs for R799 a month. The top-end options from both ISPs see you paying R999 a month for 120GB of data. The packages are month-to-month deals as well, allowing you to upgrade or downgrade as you see fit. The...

  • Call for nominations: Digital All Stars’ top cryptocurrency personalities

    Here at Burn Media, we regularly feature the best South African people and companies as part of our Digital All Stars series. Now, for our latest addition to the series, we're looking at South Africans making waves in the cryptocurrency scene. Whether they've founded businesses that use cryptocurrency, exchanges or contributed in general, we're on the hunt for candidates. Know any South Africans that fit the bill? Now is your chance to nominate them! Simply email editor@memeburn.com with the subject "Digital All Stars cryptocurrency nomination". The email should include the full name of the nominee and a brief 'CV' outlining their accomplishments and...

  • Uber CEO Travis Kalanick resigns – report

    Travis Kalanick has resigned as CEO of Uber due to pressure from investors, it has been reported. The Uber CEO resigned after five of the firm's key investors demanded he do so, the New York Times reported, citing "two people with knowledge of the situation". It's claimed that several investors sent a letter to Kalanick in Chicago, demanding that he step down. The Uber CEO had been on an indefinite leave of absence after the death of his mother in a boating accident last month. "I love Uber more than anything in the world and at this difficult moment in my personal life...

  • 5 oddly fascinating and serene YouTube food channels

    No matter your hobby or obsession, you're bound to find a YouTube channel that caters to you. Me? I like ASMR and food. But what happens when you combine the two of them? Why, you might get these strangely fascinating and maybe even relaxing YouTube food channels. Food Surgeon One of the more popular channels on the list, the Food Surgeon, as the name implies, conducts surgery on... food. These procedures include transferring the insides of a peanut butter cup onto an Oreo, extracting seeds off a strawberry (and injecting Nutella into said fruit) and repairing a clogged liquorice artery. All of these videos...

  • Interview: Botpress’ Justin Watson explains ‘the WordPress of bots’

    The second Botcon Africa conference took place last month in Cape Town, delivering a number of insightful talks from leaders in the field of bots, AI and more. One of the more interesting companies was Botpress, which joins the likes of Chatfuel as being an emerging bot development platform. We interviewed founder Justin Watson, covering comparisons to Wordpress, what's missing from bot development and more. During his talk at the event, Watson touched on a variety of features/functions missing from today's bot systems. "There's probably not enough integration of the graphical elements," Watson told Memeburn, adding that more graphically rich interfaces are...

  • Watch: US successfully shoots down ICBM in ambitious test

    North Korea is stepping up its nuclear weapons programme, testing ballistic missiles as it seeks to develop a reliable long-range launch carrier. But the United States is making progress in the defense department, having successfully shot down an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) this week. The live-fire test saw the USA's Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD) system used to detect and intercept the missile. "During the test, an ICBM-class target was launched from the Reagan Test Site on Kwajalein Atoll in the Republic of the Marshall Islands. Multiple sensors provided target acquisition and tracking data to the Command, Control, Battle Management and Communication (C2BMC) system. The...

  • Mobile in SA Report 2017: Vodacom, Samsung have handy lead

    Tracking firm Effective Measure has released its Mobile in South Africa Report for 2017, having surveyed 4993 mobile internet users from November 2016 to January 2017. For starters, the company found that almost 70% of South African users were browsing the web from their phone, representing a 15% increase from 2015. Who/what reigns supreme? In the network department, Vodacom sat pretty with 53% of the pie, followed by MTN (30%), Cell C (12%) and then Telkom Mobile (4%). It's not immediately clear if Telkom Mobile grew significantly, in light of last year's attractive FreeMe packages. Although a 2016 MoneyWeb report claims that the...