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Disqus hits 1 billion uniques, shares insights to celebrate

Published by on May 16th, 2013, No Comments

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Disqus has reached a significant milestone having hit 1 billion monthly unique visitors.

Other data also reveals 7 billion pageviews, 100 million user profiles and 1 million WordPress plug-in downloads.

To celebrate Disqus has launched a new product called called AudienceSync that “enables users to port their profile information to their favorite sites’ registration systems” and is useful for publishers who want to access the largest audience of commenters online.

In addition, Disqus’s engineers dug a little deeper into its 1 million monthly visitors to get a better understanding of comments and the community dialogues they make up. They published this information on the Disqus blog to share some of the results:

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Recon Jet integrates HUD and sunglasses for sport

Published by on May 16th, 2013, 2 Comments

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Google Glass is getting some competition with the Recon Jet HUD (Heads Up Display) Sunglasses. The device, similar to that of Google Glass that runs a forked version of Android, is aimed specifically at the sporting crowd.

The Jet, announced just before the Google I/O keynote, is powered by a dual-core processor and features Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, ANT+ and an HD camera. It also comes with a dedicated GPU.

With incorporated sunglasses and a sportier look, the Jet is not quite as sleek as the transparent Google Glass. However it still doesn’t block your vision much with the display positioned below rather than above the right eye. It is controlled by tapping and swiping the optical sensor on the side of the headset and when you’re not using it, it sits “out of the way” in your peripheral vision so can be used while running, cycling and other activities although motorized sports are not recommended.

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Google brings messaging together in new Hangouts

Published by on May 16th, 2013, 1 Comment

Google’s messaging systems have quickly become a mess – with the launch of Google Chat a decade ago they had a pretty decent headstart. But they quickly branched out into different channels with the launch of Google Voice, and later the Hangouts feature in Google+.

Google Talk was luckily built on the Jabber standard until now, meaning that you could quite easily integrate it with many different clients across many platforms. But Google never launched an official Google Chat client outside Android – until now. The new Google Hangouts app is meant to bring Talk, Hangouts video chat and Google Voice together into one product.

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New Google Maps sign-up page leaks online

Published by on May 15th, 2013, No Comments

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Last week, ahead of the 2013 Google I/O that kicks off today in San Francisco, a Google Maps redesign leaked online  - the first redesign in quite some time.

At the time it was unclear whether the redesign included new features or if it was simply getting a fresh look. With the approach of Google I/O it was expected that the rumours would be put to rest and that if the redesign was indeed confirmed, all the details would be revealed.

However, more about the redesign has emerged. Just yesterday, one day before Google’s annual event, a sign-up page for the new version of Google Maps for desktop appeared online briefly and was spotted by Droid Life. 

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Then and Now: iPhone camera comparisons

Published by on May 15th, 2013, No Comments

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These days, the iPhone is one of the most popular cameras in the world – but it’s hard to think that it launched with a relatively terrible camera back in 2007. The original iPhone launched with a fixed focus 2MP camera, which did not even have a flash.

The camera has been steadily upgraded, and has been a big focus for Apple since the iPhone 3GS, which was the first iPhone with a decent auto focus lens system.

The camera interface has not changed much though. Despite the massive upgrades in lens and photo quality, the actual UI of the camera is as simple as ever.

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Procrastination hampers telecoms uptake – Nashua

Published by on May 15th, 2013, No Comments

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Universal access to the internet in South Africa is no longer being held back by high prices or a lack of education, but by government and regulatory inefficiency. Smartphones and mobile computing devices are getting cheaper and broadband far more affordable. But the spectrum needed to deliver high-speed bandwidth is still clogged up by the government’s frustrating delay in switching TV broadcasts from analogue to more efficient digital signals, says Mark Taylor, CEO for Nashua Mobile.

“We are at a juncture where technology developments have outpaced our regulations. The freeing up of spectrum through the digitisation of TV signals is lagging behind, and has serious implications for our operators remaining on the forefront of offering the latest technologies to South Africa.” Network operators are introducing the latest LTE wireless technology for high-speed, high-capacity data, but they cannot set up national LTE networks because spectrum is not available. “It’s critical that we see the delivery of additional spectrum quickly to remain globally competitive, otherwise South Africa will fall further behind in the broadband divide,” Taylor warns. “Universal access to broadband is starting to border on a human right. We can’t deliver that because TV channels are still using the spectrum, so digital migration must be finalised.” (more…)

TAKEALOT.com rolls out SAVEALOT Daily Deals

Published by on May 15th, 2013, No Comments

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After the recent launch of its new mobile shopping app for Android and iOS, TAKEALOT.com has now introduced a new initiative offering customers  savings on selected products on a daily, first-come-first-serve basis with SAVEALOT Daily Deals.

SAVEALOT Daily Deals delivers two new deals every weekday (9am – 9pm) with up to 70% savings on a variety of items across all 14 of TAKEALOT.com’s departments, including Electronics, Home and Kitchen, Sports, Pet Supplies and more.

The deals page is currently available on desktop with the mobi-site version to follow.

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Stock drops as BlackBerry announces BBM for iOS and Android

Published by on May 15th, 2013, 9 Comments

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According to Bloomberg, BlackBerry has fallen the most in a week as stock dropped 4%. This comes after the recent announcements of the BlackBerry Q5 for select markets and now the company’s plan to make BlackBerry’s messaging service (BBM) available to iOS and Android devices.

While shares of the Ontario based company have increased to 28% in 2013, BlackBerry’s decision to ‘share’ its free messaging service, similar to that of WhatsApp, will mean losing control of one of its most exclusive and valuable services, that arguably made BlackBerry such a popular and appealing device when it first emerged.

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