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ZunguZ brings US iTunes to SA with Facebook

Published by on Jun 27th, 2012, 19 Comments

ZunguZ, a Facebook-based payments platform that lets users transfer money between one another, announced that it has made US iTunes vouchers available to South Africans.

Due to the lack of music, games, and other content in the South African iTunes store, many SA iPod, iPad, and iPhone owners choose a different country for their iTunes accounts.

To work around this limitation, users create iTunes accounts with the location set to countries such as the UK or US. However, these stores don’t accept South African credit cards.

Apple iTunes gift cards allow users to circumvent this restriction, but stores offering digital iTunes vouchers for the US store outside the United States typically mark up the price.


Google to continue iOS support for Maps?

Published by on Jun 27th, 2012, No Comments

A while ago we reported that Apple is to drop Maps from iOS in favour of their own in-house mapping solution. This is of course an attempt to squeeze Google out of the Apple experience as much as possible, being they are at war, competing for supremacy on many fronts.

Ensuing conversations were about the capabilities of Apple’s solution, being that Google has superior data to offer this service. Apple did start to “show off” what it can do, after which Apple users around the world started to cry foul. The reason for this is that the Apple maps simply do not have enough detail to justify the switch from Google Maps.


Nokia and Springleap Team Up for “Pimp our Devs” Contest – and we are giving away a Lumia 800

Published by on Jun 26th, 2012, 1 Comment

Springleap.com and Nokia South Africa is launching an exciting design contest to source a fun, creative t-shirt design that will appeal to the Nokia Developer community and take inspiration from the recently launched Nokia Lumia with Windows Phone range. The contest invites designers from across the globe to illustrate what it means to be an app developer, offering a total of $2700 (R20 000) in cash prizes for the top 3 designs.

“The Nokia Lumia launch in South Africa has created a great deal of positive buzz. The phones are attracting attention from innovative developers who appreciate the Windows Phone technology blended with the design appeal of the Metro user interface,” says Derrick Kotze, Nokia’s Developer Marketing Manager. “We are eager to see this merging of innovation and design creativity in the winning t-shirt design.”


5rooms.com launches online magazine

Published by on Jun 26th, 2012, No Comments

5Rooms.com, South Africa’s premium online furniture, decor and interior store recently launched its very own online magazine, “The Roommate”. The new magazine offers readers up-to-the-minute tips, trends and exclusive interviews from industry experts.

Each week, The Roommate aims to deliver exciting commentary on the latest furniture and design developments as well as provide inspiration for purchases. In addition to providing furniture and design information The Roommate will also be presenting lifestyle articles that are relevant to and engaging for the website’s community as it strives to provide content that takes a special interest in the South African creative industry.


Local mobile payment app Gust released in Beta

Published by on Jun 26th, 2012, No Comments

Gust, South Africa’s first geo-fenced mobile payments system has now released a Beta version of its mobile payment application as well as expanded its footprint to Cape Town.

GustPay is a Stellenbosch startup which is part of the World of Avatar group and closely linked to TrustFabric.

“One of our goals with Gust was to create the fastest in-shop mobile payment system. Where a standard card payment can take two minutes, we can complete a full payment experience in under 10 seconds, ” says Joe Botha, founder of GustPay.

The Beta version of Gust runs on iPhone, iPod Touch and iPads and the app should be available in the Apple App Store in the next few days. An Android app is under development and a BlackBerry version is in planning stages.

“We’ve been pleasantly surprised by the support from the local representatives of big industry players such as Apple, LG and BlackBerry-maker Research In Motion, sending us development hardware for each of their platforms,” says Botha.


Microsoft to acquire Yammer

Published by on Jun 26th, 2012, No Comments

Microsoft Corp. has announced in a press release on its website that it has entered into an agreement with Yammer Inc. to purchase the enterprise social network for $1.2 billion in cash.

Yammer, launched in 2008 with more than 5 million corporate users, will join the Microsoft Office Division, and continue to report to current CEO David Sacks.

Steve Ballmer, CEO, Microsoft said that “The acquisition of Yammer underscores our commitment to deliver technology that businesses need and people love. Yammer adds a best-in-class enterprise social networking service to Microsoft’s growing portfolio of complementary cloud services.”

The official press release reads that “Yammer will continue to develop its standalone service and maintain its commitment to simplicity, innovation and cross-platform experiences. Moving forward, Microsoft plans to accelerate Yammer’s adoption alongside complementary offerings from Microsoft SharePoint, Office 365, Microsoft Dynamics and Skype.”

Sacks said that the acquisition that enables them to access Microsoft’s expertise and resources, will allow Yammer to accelerate their vision of how social networking can influence and change the way they work.

Infographic: (more…)

Meet freethegreenmonster.com: Creating an online presence for small retailers

Published by on Jun 25th, 2012, No Comments

This is freethegreenmonster.com (FTGM), a website that helps small to medium sized brick and mortar retailers to create an online commerce presence, with their own commerce enabled mini website in a few simple steps.

Bandwidth Blog chatted to co-founder Richard Lemkus about the motivation behind this innovative concept, the challenges involved and the state of the online retail space in South Africa.

1. What was the motivation behind freethegreenmonster.com?

We saw the real world, not online, retail space as divided like a pyramid into a few large retailers, a selection of medium sized businesses and then at the bottom of that pyramid there is a whole host of small businesses and people that are just starting brands or just finding something to sell and earning a little bit of money. So, the kind of people that have stalls at the multiple marketplaces you see popping up around Joburg and Cape Town.

We saw that the large corporates and the more innovative medium sized businesses were gearing themselves up for the inevitable wave that is the online revolution (watching The States take to retail online) but the cost of web development along with the costs of actually then trying to market that website and the complexities surrounding taking your business online; web maintenance, trying to figure out what SEO stood for and trying to market their products online, we felt would prove to be prohibitive to these literally thousands of smaller retailers.


Flipboard for Android released

Published by on Jun 25th, 2012, No Comments

Flipboard for Android is now out of Beta and has officially been launched in the Google Play store. The popular news reading app, that has been available for iOs for over a year now, is compatible with Android 2.2 and higher.

Flipboard for Android was previously available exclusively for the Samsung Galaxy S3 for just one day but now the app is available for all Android powered device users to enjoy for free.

The Android version’s interface is similar to that of the iOS version and has a few new features including virtual up-navigational buttons in the top left and the removal of the menu button support as well as the Gingerbread UI elements. The app now also features Google+ and YouTube support.

Flipboard has also launched more regional support, adding support for 5 new countries including Germany, Korea, Italy, Spain and The Netherlands.

You can download Flipboard for Android here. 

Source: The Ultra Linx