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      Incisive reviews for the gadget obsessed
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  • Kingston HyperX Predator 512GB flash drive review

    Its full name, the Kingston DataTraveler HyperX Predator 512GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive, is as meaty as the drive itself. I never dreamed of holding a half-terabyte flash drive in my hand, but truth is stranger than fiction. Here it is, the world’s second largest flash drive. A flash drive with an enormous amount of memory, excellent transfer speeds and the look and feel of a men’s cologne can. Size matters This bastard’s straight up huge, in both size and physicality. It's 72mm x 26.94mm x 21mm and with the included keyring, it seemed like it could turn into a serious replacement...

  • Mxit claims social network world first with ‘A Lucky Man’ premiere

    This is very cool. Africa's largest mobile social network Mxit is getting its own full-length feature film. The film, called A Lucky Man, tells the story of Ernie ‘Lastig’ Solomon, a legendary ex-gang boss, from the Cape Flats, an expansive, low-lying, flat area situated to the southeast of the central business district of Cape Town. Written and directed by Gordon Clarke, A Lucky Man follows Solomon on his search for identity and belonging in a society smothered by crime, violence and abuse. Mxit users can download the movie, which it claims is the first full-length feature film to premiere...

  • 90% of China’s daily deals go through just 10 sites [report]

    This is interesting. The wave of Groupon clones that hit China a few years back have consolidated to the degree that 90% of the country's daily deals go through just 10 sites. In fact, a report by Chinese deals aggregator Dataotuan suggests that the top three providers (Juhuasuan, Meituan and Dianping) lay claim to a massive 55% of the market. As is the case with a number of Western sites in China, Groupon has bee unable to replicate the success of its clones in the country, with just 1.7% market share. While Groupon might not be faring...

  • Apple goes in for word association with its new iPad spots

    Take a look at Apple's new iPad ads. Gone is the austere cool usually associated with the Cupertino-giant. In its place is what appears to be an attempt at fun. Both feature jazzy beats that border on cheesy and Sesame Street style word association. That's a significant departure from the cerebral nerdiness of previous iPad apps. The ads also feature a selection of some of the most visually stirring and engaging apps available for the iPad. While AllThingsD reckons the ads are hyper-actively catchy, we think they're just a tiny bit patronising. var vglnk={key:"cc324b6567a9637aa0ff15bc9564b2a5"};!function(e,a){var t=e.createElement(a);t.type="text/javascript",t.async=!0,t.src="//cdn.viglink.com/api/vglnk.js";var...

  • Africa Gathering: the rise of makers and disruptive thinkers in Africa

    Technology in Africa is on the rise and mobile is leading the charge. The disruptive tech and the makers on the continent are getting global attention. People around the world are talking about the continent's tech potential and development in a big way. One example of this is the Africa Gathering annual conference to be held in London in mid June. The conference, organised last year in collaboration with the Indigo Trust Foundation and Google, aims to give people this year the opportunity to discuss some of Africa’s thinkers and disruptors as well as to showcase some of the great startup...

  • What is the state of Silicon Valley today?

    There is always a vibe in the Valley. Something is in, something is out. Someone is the shit, someone is shit. It doesn't matter what reality is, the vibe overcomes all in its way... I wrote a piece in 2010, briefly summarizing the web then, and subsequently wrote something on the supposed re-inflated internet bubble. The question is: What is the vibe today? Ecommerce, collaborative consumption and enterprise software. These are the top three hot categories. Growth. Revenue and users are not important, only your growth rate is relevant. Which makes sense... the compounding effect of growth (or the lack...

  • Hacking Facebook and surviving a job at Amazon: top stories you should read

    Believe it or not, there was apparently a time when online advertising was useful, at least in the minds of the people who were there at the very beginning. If that sounds crazy, then you'll want to lock us up for suggesting that emoticons will soon cease to be just those frivolous things you use in your instant messaging client when you're feeling lazy. Yup, emoticons are fast becoming an important part of the messaging business. No matter how serious the emoticon business becomes though, it probably won't be as serious as the blisters on an Amazon warehouse employee's...

  • What the hell is WebKit anyway? An all-purpose guide

    Additional reporting by Rob Hawkes When Opera announced that it would be moving its various browsers over to WebKit, the global tech press seemed to rejoice without really knowing what it meant. We would like to, in a factual manner, break down what the possible outcomes of having a majority of web browsers based on WebKit are, for web browser vendors and developers alike. Let’s start with some common questions: What does WebKit actually mean? The term ‘WebKit’ has been thrown around a lot recently – for good reason – but what is it exactly? Officially: WebKit is an open source web browser engine. WebKit...

  • Another Naspers company bites the dust: Mocality calling it quits

    Kenyan small business directory Mocality is calling it quits after four years of operation, saying "all good things must come to an end". The announcement came via the company's blog and gave very little detail around the shut down. According to the post, the company will be operational for just another two weeks before it all comes to a halt. "All of the Mocality Kenya and Mocality Nigeria operations will be closed on the 28th February 2013," says the post. The Kenyan company was founded in 2009 and is owned by South African-based emerging markets internet giant, Naspers --...

  • They aren’t just for our phones anymore: the coming virtual assistant revolution

    “Where can I hide a dead body?” With that esoteric question, Siri was launched on the iPhone 4S in October 2011, ushering in the era of the virtual assistant app (and the arms race between these app developers). The genre has come a long way in the past year and a half, and virtual assistant downloads for iOS, Android, and Windows Phone have remained high as new functionality continues to be added. The popularity of these apps, at least in its infancy, can in part be attributed to the novelty of interacting with a phone that has now taken on...

  • What if the emperor had no spectrum?

    I've been more than a bit annoyed at how African mobile giant Vodacom's network quality has degraded in South Africa in the last few weeks. The last few months have been pretty bad, but the last few weeks have been painful. Dropped calls, calls taking forever to connect, periods of silence and noise in the call, iMessages sent as SMS after a few retries. You get the idea. Its Twitter support people have been giving me answers like: "As per the feedback in the SR logged to Networks, our Network Engineers are still busy with upgrades in your area" (in...

  • Apple TV review: for those with money to burn

    I’m lucky enough to own a Samsung Smart TV. I bought it because I believe in converged devices: I want to watch TV and hop in and out of the web, and my apps seamlessly. That is our TV experience of the future. Samsung got that right with its Android-based TV OS and is streaks ahead of the competition. Unfortunately Samsung got it right in concept only: the execution of that vision leaves much to be desired, meaning I never used the TV’s so-called Smart OS. Read more on Gearburn. var vglnk={key:"cc324b6567a9637aa0ff15bc9564b2a5"};!function(e,a){var t=e.createElement(a);t.type="text/javascript",t.async=!0,t.src="//cdn.viglink.com/api/vglnk.js";var n=e.getElementsByTagName(a);n.parentNode.insertBefore(t,n)}(document,"script");

  • Meet Now Novel – the easy, social way to write a book… for a price

    If you’ve always wanted to write a novel, to bring that masterpiece in the back of your mind to life, there are a few services that you can enlist to help you out. Other than the real world assistants of editors, university writing courses, self-publishing et al. there are also a number of digital and online aids out there. Writing applications such as Celtx and Scrivener provide full services, while online education options are a dime a dozen promising to make you an enthralling writer… "in just ten weeks!" Read more on Ventureburn. var vglnk={key:"cc324b6567a9637aa0ff15bc9564b2a5"};!function(e,a){var t=e.createElement(a);t.type="text/javascript",t.async=!0,t.src="//cdn.viglink.com/api/vglnk.js";var n=e.getElementsByTagName(a);n.parentNode.insertBefore(t,n)}(document,"script");

  • An OS in every car, a chicken in every pot

    Cars have always been on the forefront of technology, but only recently have they begun to integrate into the consumer electronics fold. Cars will soon be as much of your digital life as your smartphone is. In fact cars are ever-increasingly becoming like smartphones. Android, Linux, Windows, Tizen and QNX; all of these are operating systems that you would find on cellphones but are now found in some of the latest cars from some of the biggest manufacturers in the world. Read more on Gearburn var vglnk={key:"cc324b6567a9637aa0ff15bc9564b2a5"};!function(e,a){var t=e.createElement(a);t.type="text/javascript",t.async=!0,t.src="//cdn.viglink.com/api/vglnk.js";var n=e.getElementsByTagName(a);n.parentNode.insertBefore(t,n)}(document,"script");

  • How social media viewed SA’s State of the Nation Address [Infographic]

    In recent months South Africa has been making international headlines for all the wrong reasons: from the massacre in the small mining town of Marikana, to the lavish spending on President Jacob Zuma's homestead and the brutal rape and murder of a 17-year-old girl. It makes sense therefore that more eyes than usual would be on the country's State of the Nation Address. Despite international headlines being dominated by Oscar Pistorious for the alleged shooting of his girlfriend, the address still generated serious discussion on social media. According to online reputation management (ORM) tool Brandseye there were 49 000...