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All posts by Hadlee Simons

  • F35 fighter jet still has ‘significant’ tech issues

    The Lockheed Martin F35's troubles have been well-documented, ranging from major software issues to a horrendous price tag. But is one of the most advanced military jets in history making good progress? According to a Secretary of Defense memo, spotted by Bloomberg and the Project for Government Oversight, the F35 is "on a path toward failing" to deliver the full capabilities for the programme by 2018. The memo added that the Department of Defense was paying US$400-billion for the programme. The memo noted that the military jet would be unable to perform close air support operations as effectively as the older F16,...

  • Telkom Mobile revises uncapped LTE throttling policy

    Telkom Mobile has announced a revised fair usage policy (FUP) for uncapped LTE users, following negative publicity on social media. Users who had allegedly fallen foul of Telkom Mobile's FUP expressed frustration after being throttled to extremely slow speeds. Now, the network has announced an overhaul of its policy for uncapped users, giving them an extra 100GB of full-speed data before throttling comes into effect. "This means that customers would have to use in excess of 300GB of data per month before Telkom's FUP will be applied. Telkom has also included an additional 50GB data allocation for peer-to- peer services such as BitTorrent and...

  • Google Trips is Google’s nifty dedicated travel app

    Google Now already delivers a bunch of features for travellers, but the Mountain View company is upping the ante in a big way with the launch of Google Trips. The new app serves as a hub for travel information, offering trip details from your Gmail account and taking the form of Google Now style cards. So that means you have a card dedicated to your upcoming Johannesburg trip, for instance. Tap the card and you'll get a ton more details to check out, such as reservations, things to do, saved places from Google Maps, day plan options, food and drink choices and...

  • Huffington Post, Media24 team up for HuffPost SA

    A South African edition of the Huffington Post will be coming later this year, courtesy of a deal between the publisher and Media24. HuffPost SA will be the 17th edition and the first one for sub-Saharan Africa, the duo announced in a press statement. "South Africa is an extremely exciting market for the company as internet users there are expected to grow to 35.4 million by 2018, digital video is expected to grow by more than 29%, and overall mobile phone users to 41.5 million," said Jared Grusd, CEO of The Huffington Post in the statement. "On a personal level, I'm particularly...

  • US woman sues after smart vibrator transmits her data

    A Chicago woman is suing adult sex toy manufacturer Standard Innovation, claiming that its We-Vibe smart vibrator transmitted user data back to the firm. The class-action lawsuit alleges that data was collected without consent, violating privacy and fraud laws in the process, the Chicago Tribune reported. The suit claimed the woman used the We-Vibe "several times", but didn't know it was sending her "personally identifiable" information to the manufacturer and monitoring her activity. News of the legal action comes just over a month after two hackers from New Zealand revealed that the smart vibrator was phoning home. The duo claimed the device was sending...

  • BREAKING: Daily Maverick gets R12m funding round

    The holding company for local online news publication the Daily Maverick has announced the conclusion of a R12-million funding round. The round comes in the form of private investments for a minority stake in the business, the company announced in a press release. The funds would be used to support the Daily Maverick's editorial operations and to "spin off businesses and operations in content production, eventing and digital advertising," the company added. More specifically, the round will enable the publication to redesign its website, "bolster" the commercial team and expand into areas such as business, investigations and different languages. The Daily Maverick funding round will see...

  • Fast internet for all, 5G everywhere by 2025 – EU

    The European Commission has announced a few rather ambitious connectivity targets for 2025. Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said that the internet connectivity proposals will encourage funding in high-speed networks and improve public access to WiFi. "We need to be connected. Our economy needs it. People need it. And we have to invest in that connectivity now," Junker said during his State of the Union Address. The EU is calling for fast public WiFi and 5G along transport routes The first proposal calls for all "socio/economic drivers" to have access to 1Gbps internet connectivity. So this means schools, universities, transport hubs and public service providers are...

  • Is your brand getting on the SA eSports bandwagon?

    A new summit at rAge 2016 aims to educate brands about the burgeoning SA eSports scene. The eSports Branding Summit, a partnership between rAge and Global Assembly Marketing eSports (GAMeS), will "explore opportunities esports presents to South African business and how it can capitalise on the eSports phenomenon". GAMeS cited worldwide figures for eSports, saying that the worldwide esports market will reach US$910-million in 2016. The organisation also pointed to The International 6 Dota 2 tournament, which had a record-breaking US$20.7-million prize pool. "Despite these impressive figures, for many, eSports remains the biggest thing most people have never heard of," says Mlondi Mashinini, GAMeS summit programme...

  • Stream ripping now a bigger issue than illegal downloads

    Torrent groups and downloads have traditionally been the biggest thorn in the music industry's side, but it looks like stream-ripping is the industry's new arch-nemesis According to the Music Consumer Insight Report 2016, over a third of internet users (35%) access unlicensed content on the internet. The report, which was conducted by Ipsos on behalf of the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI), found that traditional illegal downloads were waning in favour of stream-ripping. Who needs torrent sites when stream ripping is a thing? "Infringement is changing, with half (49%) of 16 to 24 year olds stream ripping from sites like YouTube," read an excerpt of...

  • Blue Origin reveals rival to SpaceX Falcon rockets

    Private space firm Blue Origin has announced the New Glenn rocket, towering above the SpaceX Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy rockets. The rocket was announced in a newsletter by Blue Origin and Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, the Washington Post reported, adding that it would be ready to launch "by the end of the decade". New Glenn, named after the USA's first astronaut John Glenn, would have 3.85 million pounds of thrust at sea level. By comparison, the Falcon Heavy is expected to have 5.5 million pounds of thrust. The new rocket will come in two stage and three stage flavours, giving more flexibility with payloads and...

  • Apple dropping 3.5mm audio jack a ‘revenue move’

    To the surprise of almost no-one, Apple revealed that the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus would ditch earphone jacks in favour of the Lightning connector and wireless functionality. The company revealed wired earphones that connect via Lightning as well as "AirPod" wireless earphones that implement their new Apple W1 wireless chip. This new bit of silicon facilitates easy pairing with Apple devices. However, IHS Technology senior analyst Paul Erickson says Apple is merely trying to migrate users from established standards to their own standard, for the sake of revenue. Apple is trying to muscle in on the accessories market by opting for...

  • Rosetta space probe spots Philae lander on comet

    November 2014 saw the Rosetta space probe orbiting a comet, dubbed Comet 67P Churmukov Gerasimenko, then dropping a tiny lander on it in a landmark moment. The lander, dubbed Philae, endured a tough landing, bouncing several times before finally coming to rest on the celestial object. Now, Rosetta has managed to snap another image of the comet and, if you look very closely in the shadow on the right-hand side, you'll find the Philae lander resting on it. Still don't see it? The European Space Agency (ESA) zoomed in on the snap... "The images were taken on 2 September by the OSIRIS narrow-angle camera as the...

  • Instagram, LinkedIn strong performers in SA – survey

    Instagram and LinkedIn are showing strong growth in South Africa, despite claims of "social media fatigue" by some, a new survey has revealed. The Social Media Landscape 2017 Survey has revealed some interesting preliminary insights ahead of its full reveal later this month, starting with Instagram. The Facebook-owned platform "Instagram has experienced a massive increase in SA users, although not quite in the triple digits like the year before," said Ornico research consultant Michal Wronski. The survey suggested that the network was growing up as well. "The top 25 most followed people are similar to the year before, indicating a maturing of the network as audiences have consolidated." LinkedIn taking the...

  • First Apollo computer discovered by South African

    The first Apollo computer has been tracked down and "unboxed" by a South African computer engineer. According to Gadget.co.za, Tshwane computer engineer Francois Rautenbach managed to track down the first Guidance and Navigation Control computer, used for a test flight of the Saturn 1B rocket in 1966. Gadget reported that this was the same computer model used on Apollo 11. "On 25th August 1966, a very special computer was launched into space onboard (sic) Apollo flight AS-202," reads the intro for the first video. "This was the first computer to use integrated circuits and the first release of the computer that took the astronauts...

  • It’s not just SpaceX: 6 more crazy rocket explosions

    The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket "anomaly" isn't the first time we've seen a rocket explosion. Be it on the launchpad or in flight, these incidents have happened before. From China to the USA, we looked at six prominent examples of RUD involving rockets over the years. China's Long March explosion One of the most controversial space incidents, a Chinese Long March rocket veered off-course during a 1996 launch, crashing into a village in the process. The 2014 Antares explosion Orbital ATK's Antares rocket and Cygnus capsule exploded less than 30 seconds after launch in October 2014. Russia's catastrophic Proton rocket failure in 2013 The July 2013 failure of a Proton rocket a...