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Mobile apps

  • Skype’s new preview beta adds a touch of Snapchat

    Remember Skype? The video conferencing tool is a product we haven't covered in a while, and that's largely because its feature set hasn't changed radically since Microsoft bought it from eBay in 2011. But that's about to change, at least judging by this week's news. Skype's mobile app, available on Android and iOS, is set to receive a number of updates to bring it in line with the other instant messaging apps of this world. Skype Chat will now boast a "Find Panel" which will allow users to "easily find and share links, news, sports results, restaurants, the weather, videos and more...

  • 15 must-have Android apps under 15MB [Tech Savvy SA]

    Tech Savvy SA is a series of articles on Gearburn and Memeburn that aim to deliver useful, locally relevant advice to the average South African. Mobile data isn't super cheap in South Africa, but that doesn't mean you should skimp out on quality app downloads though. We've sifted through the Google Play Store, delivering 15 useful Android apps that weigh in at 15MBs or under. Pocket Weighing in at roughly 12MBs, Pocket (formerly Read It later) is arguably the best solution of its kind on the Google Play Store. The app allows users to save articles for later reading, delivering offline reading functionality in the process....

  • UberEATS expands to five more Cape Town suburbs

    UberEATS, after launching in Cape Town's central business district and surrounds in late January, has now announced its expansion into the city's Southern Suburbs. Initially serving only the Atlantic Seaboard, the city centre and the city's eastern edge, the company will today expand into five new suburbs. Newlands, Rondebosch, Claremont, Bishopscourt and Mowbray will now be serviced by UberEATS, the company revealed in a newsletter. This is obviously a welcome move for both Uber and its potential customers in this area, as it can also now be regarded as a Mr D Food and OrderIn competitor. Mr D Food, which also relaunched in...

  • UberEATS review: an amuse-bouche, or complete flop?

    When I was younger, my parents would resist ordering in food unless it was a very special occasion. Nowadays, it seems that everyone in Cape Town does it at least once a week. And you know what, that's okay. The main problem with ordering in though, are the ordering systems themselves. UberEATS wants to simplify both the ordering and delivering process from places that don't have these structures in place. That means you can now grab grub from your favourite Cape Town pub, or late-night haunt without visiting them personally. But while it's great to see companies like Uber experiment with food...

  • UberEATS Cape Town: 4 things you should know

    UberEATS launched in Cape Town on Thursday, bringing another food delivery service to the city. The service hopes to service a "foodie" niche by teaming up with trendy eateries and restaurants to offer food delivery. At R20 for delivery (there's no minimum spend either, the firm claims), it seems rather reasonably priced, but what else should you know about the service? Here are a few things to keep in mind. Supported areas The service is currently available in the CBD, Atlantic Seaboard, Woodstock and Observatory, but UberEATS's David Kitley says that they are looking to expand. In fact, Kitley told Memeburn that the...

  • UberEATS finally launches in Cape Town

    UberEATS has been available in Johannesburg for a while now, bringing a Mr Delivery-style food service to smartphone users. Now, Capetonians can see what all the fuss is about as the service hits the city. "Cape Town couldn't be a better place for us to bring UberEATS with over 100 of the best local restaurants in the city partnering with Uber to deliver their food to you faster, and more reliably than ever before," the company wrote on its website. The service, which launches today (26 January), is available on Android and iOS. UberEATS originally launched in Johannesburg in September, with Cape Town launching today Partners...

  • Bidvest’s Snappdrive app will let you rent, drive its cars without keys

    South African car rental company Bidvest has announced the launch of its first keyless car rental service, Snappdrive. The app allows users to locate, gain access to, and even start Bidvest vehicles, negating the need for physical car keys. "Most often, car rental happens at the end of an arduous travel process," explains Bidvest CEO Paulette McGhee. "With Snappdrive, we eliminate any further hassle or waiting, with the traveller’s phone leading them straight to their waiting vehicle." Bidvest's Snappdrive eliminates the need for key collection or keys to start rental vehicles The company is also able to track its vehicles through the app system,...

  • Think twice before grabbing popular photo app Meitu

    Meitu, an app which allows users to gussy up their faces in an anime style, has quickly gone viral, but reports suggest that it represents a privacy threat. The app allows users to beautify their faces, delivering larger irises, smoother skin and a host of other changes. But several reports found that the app (especially the Android version), like many, requires a notable privacy trade-off. For starters, its Google Play Store listing reveals permissions such as location, running at startup, device and phone ID, and viewing WiFi connections. Not super crazy, but definitely concerning -- especially the ability to access your device/phone IDs...

  • 6 alternative YouTube apps you should check out

    The YouTube Android app has come a long way since the dismal app of the Froyo days. It's not perfect now, but it definitely gets the job done well enough. In any event, for those wanting something a little different, here are a few alternative YouTube apps worth looking at. TubeMate One of the most popular apps not available on the Play Store, TubeMate is effectively a wrapper for the mobile website. Hardly a reason to download the app, then. But its best feature is the ability to download videos via the app, with the ability to choose from various quality options. Yes, YouTube does...

  • This novel Russian app wants to be the Uber of the afterlife

    If you didn't know how to market your startup in 2016, there's an easy formula to use. Define your target market, and call your business the Uber of said market. It works, and often gets quoted hundreds of times by us journalists and investors. But an incoming Russian app might've taken this marketing quip a little too far. Named Umer, this app aims to be the Uber of funerals. According to a Russian website, Umer (which literally means "died") will allow people to seamlessly and easily organise funeral arrangements on the fly -- all from the comfort of an app. To...

  • Going to the beach? Download these apps first

    We're pretty much in the thick of it as far as summer holiday madness goes. And if you live on the coast, chances are good that you'll be visiting the beach at least once. But before you make your way to Clifton or Muizenberg, you might want to download a few of these apps... Shark Spotters (free - Android, iOS) Sure, there is a flag system in place at major beaches, courtesy of the Shark Spotters team, but they have an app as well. The Shark Spotters app delivers updates on shark sightings (as well as a recent history of shark sightings) for a number of...

  • Gboard: Google’s new keyboard finally hits Android

    Earlier this year, Google revealed Gboard, being a rather cool virtual keyboard for smartphones. In a rather bizarre twist, the keyboard was released as an iOS-exclusive. Fortunately, Google has come to its senses, releasing the app on Android over the weekend. Or rather, it's updated the existing Google Keyboard to become Gboard. "Gboard has all the things you love about your old Google Keyboard -- speed and accuracy, Glide Typing and voice typing..." the company wrote in a blog post. What makes the keyboard stand out though, is its support for integrated Google search functionality. This allows you to search and send results...

  • Watch video ads to get train ticket in Dusseldorf

    Mobile gamers are accustomed to the experience of watching video ads in exchange for lives. Now, a new app in a German city allows people to earn a train or bus ticket by watching video ads. According to The Local, the Welect app in Dusseldorf allows users to watch four promotional videos, each being 20 seconds long. Users can choose their desired ads as well. The app's team predicted that only 1000 tickets would be redeemed by the end of the year, but over 20 000 people have downloaded the app already. In fact, a test run of the app saw...

  • This Cape Town startup wants to help send your laugh to space

    A new iOS app, called Laugh, could send your chuckle into space. The app was designed in conjunction with NASA's Made in Space division, developer Platoon, 3D artist Eyal Gever, Knut Studios and Cape Town startup Gravity Ideas . "NASA recently (space)shipped the first zero-gravity 3D printer to the International Space Station. Although its main function is to help astronauts build tools and spare parts in case of emergencies, NASA's Made in Space team seized the opportunity to do something pretty special," said David Perrott, Gravity's co-founder. Working with Eyal Gever, the company helped to create an easy-to-use app which allows people from...

  • Google’s Trusted Contacts is the app parents will love

    Once upon a time, you could keep track of your friends' and family's whereabouts using Google Plus. But that was the complicated past. Today, Google debuted a new Android app that aims to simplify keeping tabs on loved ones. Called Google Trusted Contacts, the app lets the most important people in your life request your location data from the app. If you fail to respond to the request, the app will automatically ping your loved one with your last recorded location. It's effectively Google's emergency location app. Trusted Contacts seems to pose a boat load of security problems. For one, your...