Have you ever had the feeling that even though you spend hours wading through vast swathes of information online, you’re missing out on the good stuff or the stuff that you’d really want to see? It’s hard not to feel that way when you watch that ceaseless ticker tape of links and updates, pins and tweets. After all, in social media it’s less a case of here today, gone tomorrow, and more a matter of here for the next 15 minutes, gone forever.
If you’re a brand investing in social media, this should worry you. Your team might be uploading great content, but how many of the users you really want to reach are seeing it? And how often are they receiving your communication when they actually want to look at it?
This is where Mygeni comes in. Now in beta, Mygeni is a new social network based on common interests rather than just social connections, it takes all of this chaos and simplifies it into one platform organized around the content that matters to you, when you want it.
Along with eleven other South African startups in a total listing of 40 finalists from around Africa that presented at Demo Africa 2012 in Kenya, is Cape Town based startup evly.
We first featured evly on Bandwidth Blog back in 2010, as the first crowdsourcing Social Network from South Africa but for those of you who only took notice of this growing startup more recently with its appearance at DEMO Africa, here’s some background information for you as well as some feedback from evly’s exciting experience in Kenya.
evly is a social media marketing suite for brands and agencies to better engage their fans, customers and ideal target audience. evly builds template driven iFrame applications that can be placed on Facebook or across the web to improve fan engagement and interaction, support audience conversations and harvest business value and market research.
Current clients include Virgin Active SA, The Famous Grousse, Groupon and Men’s Health.
evly first emerged when its founder Eric Edelstein was looking to create a new improved way for organisations to engage, entertain, grow and crowdsource business value for their social media fan bases and website communities. While evly initially aimed to be the first crowdsourcing social network in SA, the company pivoted to its current model in December 2011.
A game-changing shift in Africa’s digital communications market crowns data and the customer as King and Queen in this equation.
Africa’s digital communications market is evolving at a tremendous and highly competitive pace. Markets across the continent are demonstrating innovative power and this has far reaching consequences for the traditional telecoms and media players who run the risk of stagnating if they do not adapt. While the mobile data and enterprise markets offer huge opportunities for the creation of new services and revenue generation, the market for basic services is now crowded. Also, customers are less loyal to their network brand than they may once have been. The bottom line is that customer retention is now critical to business models.
What do my customers want?
While it may seem like a simple question, it is unnerving how many operators don’t really have a clear picture. Traditional telcos are still focused on the technology – on bringing down the cost per bit and delivering the fastest speeds. A clue into customer usage habits, needs and wants (and what telcos should be focusing on) comes from the fact that Africa’s mobile data revenues increased by an estimated 25.7% year-on-year to US$7.1 billion in 2011, while voice revenues grew by approximately 6% to US$51.5 billion Informa Telecoms Media (ITM) estimates that annual mobile data revenues will be US$18.6 billion, 22% of the total service revenues, by 2016.
Vodacom has tripled the number of LTE enabled base stations in its network from just under 70 at launch a month ago to over 200 in Johannesburg and testing has begun in Cape Town.
LTE, which stands for Long Term Evolution, is a new generation of mobile technology with the capability to operate at speeds up to 3 times faster than 3G.
Zunaid Dinath, Vodacom’s Chief Officer Sales and Distribution said that “LTE represents a step change in mobile capabilities. Thanks to faster speeds, we’re able to unlock the true potential of smartphones, tablets and other mobile devices. LTE has the ability to deliver stutter-free video and almost instantaneous music and picture downloads; and because it’s mobile, we can deliver this experience whether you’re at your office, on the move, or at home.”
In addition to the wider network coverage, Vodacom now has LTE devices on sale at Vodacom World in Midrand and selected Vodacom outlets across Gauteng. Customers can now buy the Samsung Galaxy S III LTE, Vodafone K5006 and Alcatel One Touch L100V LTE dongle modems on the following contracts:
Lilian van Zyl from Moneysmart made this great infographic showing the current cost differences in SA when it comes to mobile broadband. South Africa’s current explosion of mobile phone use have led to massive increases in the amount of data we use. In fact, we are pretty sure that for some some users, the data bundle attached to a contract is of greater concern than the talk time.
Moneysmart‘s infographic focusses on prepaid data rates, and show some very clear differences in price. The current smaller cellular operators are obviously heading for price war in the data sector, which we feel is a lot more relevant than the recent international call decreases. But enough with the chat, see the infographic below:
Project management platform Basecamp, is now available for mobile phones and tablets allowing users to access all of their projects from where they are that include catching up on project progress, adding comments and viewing discussions, to-do lists, documents and files.
To view emails received from Bascamp on a mobile phone, users just need to tap the “View in Basecamp” link to read the entire conversation, view attachments, and reply with comments with discussions automatically optimized to view on your mobile device.
No app or installation is required to access the service which is available for all popular phone and tablet devices running iOS, Android and Windows 7.
According to The Verge, Microsoft is building a gaming tablet called the Xbox Surface.
According to the report the production of the 7-inch tablet will be kept tightly under wraps with it likely being manufactured under the same secret production process at the factory that produced the Surface.
This will separate the new tablet from the partners that traditionally manufacture Microsoft’s Xbox consoles.
The company has also gone so far as to limit employee access to its Interactive Entertainment Business division.
Features of the Xbox Surface are likely to include a custom ARM processor and high-bandwidth RAM that is designed specifically for gaming tasks and rather than run a full version of Windows, it will run a custom Windows kernel.
Startup Knight, a competition aimed at South African software based tech startups, was launched on 1 October. Numerous applications were received and the Startup Knight team had the challenging task of narrowing down the entries to compose the shortlist of fifteen finalists. The fifteen finalists were announced on 26 October following the close of online entries.
On Saturday 3 November the finalists were required to pitch their idea to the panel of judges at the Byte Orbit offices. Prior to their pitching session each startup was interviewed to get an insight of what their general thoughts were about the tech scene in South Africa. The interviews were recorded and Byte Orbit will be publishing the video on their YouTube channel as soon as it is back from editing.
The fifteen enthusiastic entrepreneurs presented their innovative ideas to the panel of judges and the competition was tough. After an entire day of inspiring ideas, the judges had finally come to the conclusion and everyone had a short break to freshen up for the Startup Knight Cocktail Evening at the Radisson Blu Hotel in Granger Bay.
Guests were welcomed with a glass of sherry and delicious combinations of snacks were served at the beautiful venue while everybody took the opportunity to network until the winner announcement. The event was very well attended with over 100 guests, which consisted of industry personalities, sponsors, finalists, press and judges.
At 7:30pm Amit Ramdath CEO of Byte Orbit took to the stage to introduce Byte Orbit and talk about his vision for Startup Knight. Prior to the announcement of the winner two startups Virtual Firehouse and Karma Footprint were singled out as runner ups for the competition.