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Cell C launches new ad campaign – power to the hashtagers

Published by on Jan 7th, 2013, No Comments

Cell C’s latest ad, “Power To”, premiered in cinemas nationwide. Ogilvy & Mather (O&M) Johannesburg’s Creative Group Head Andrew Pearson talks about producing the network’s first brand ad in years.

What are you hoping to achieve with the ad?

It’s Cell C’s first official, non-retail, non-product brand ad in years. Its aim is to celebrate not just the way cellphone technology connects all of us in inextricable ways and the role that connectivity plays in our lives, but also the people that are on Cell C’s network.

This ad aims to showcase the way in which all our lives are richer because of the way we can now connect or unplug, anywhere, any time, and share those moments with whomever we choose.

Tell us about the filming process.

The ad was produced by Picture Tree and directed by JH Beetge, the same director who shot the M-Net’s “My Life As a Movie” ad.


Bid4Africa takes online auctions a few steps further

Published by on Jan 7th, 2013, No Comments

Many of us have come across penny auction websites, and almost all of them follow the same line of thought: buy credits and bid, win the item and it’s yours. Bid4Africa is following two key trends, and has one or two twists in how they operate, which in my mind give the site far more potential.

The first is that to buy bids, you send an SMS. The SMS costs you R10, and you in turn buy 100 credits (worth R10). While many readers may think this is only for the lower LSM market, they would be wrong: all of us have SMS capabilities on our phones. However, not all of us have credit cards, or at least cards that can be used online. For those of us with a prepaid cellphone package and no bank account, this website is an option. For those of us with a contract package, it is just as simple. The only drawback here might be that the only denomination is R10, and some bidders may wish to buy 1000 credits, or more, and not send so many SMSes.


Lenovo debuts IdeaCentre Horizon Table PC

Published by on Jan 7th, 2013, No Comments

Lenovo has recently launched a brand new touch screen PC at this year’s CES in Las Vegas.

The IdeaCentre Horizon, that Lenovo calls a Table PC, has a 27-inch screen and a thickness measuring just 1.1-inches.

While Lenovo’s “interpersonal PC”, which it claims is a world first can function as a regular desktop, with an optional built in stand, it has the ability to collapse into a table top mode than can be shared among multiple users, for gaming for example that includes joysticks and an e-dice for just this purpose.


Living with the iPhone 5 – Should you Upgrade?

Published by on Jan 7th, 2013, 28 Comments

The iPhone is always a difficult phone to review, because by the time it reaches South Africa, interested people have already read everything they need to know about the phone. This time around South Africa got the iPhone quite late compared to previous years, and we were all too pleased when an iPhone 5 finally got delivered to us on launch day by Vodacom. First off, we did not want to rush a quick review of the device. We basically wanted to know one thing – is it still the gold standard in the smartphone world? And that meant spending a few weeks with it. (more…)

What’s up with WhatsApp lately?

Published by on Jan 4th, 2013, 18 Comments

There are many apps on the different platforms that are downloaded in their millions. Once an app gets a foothold it can and most probably will spread like wildfire. The trouble is, though, that the momentum stops relatively quickly and the market gets saturated after the initial demand was met. For example, when Instagram was launched on Android after becoming popular on iOS, it immediately shot to the top of the Most Downloaded list, downloaded millions of times in a couple of days. But ever since then, downloads have been trickling in at a snail’s pace.

WhatsApp is an exception. Ever since launching in 2009, it has had a constant stream of downloads. It is rarely seen on any platform available today for an app to stay relevant for so long. More impressively, it is an app that people use more regularly than almost anything else. On January 2nd 2013, WhatsApp tweeted that it had reached another milestone: 7 billion messages sent in a single day!

What makes this even more astonishing is that only about 5 months ago in August 2012, they reached 4 billion messages a day. That’s a 75% increase in a matter of months. Why has their momentum not only endured, but sped up over the last 3 years? WhatsApp is available across ALL the major platforms and can communicate between all of them. You will find it on iOS, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Phone and Symbian, and it will be released on new mobile platforms to follow in 2013 as well. Yes, BBM is essentially the same kind of app, but you can only communicate with BlackBerry users.

Having a reliable cross-platform messaging app with no ads is certainly working. Yes, it’s not entirely free. Depending on your geographic location around the world, you will either pay $0.99 per year for it or download it for free and pay $0.99 after a year’s use and then the same yearly rate. But that is a small price to pay for the ability to communicate with anyone on any device, and for no cost whatsoever (except the data of course).

Is there another messaging app you would suggest? If you aren’t using WhatsApp, what is the reason? Let us know in the comments below.

Source: Forbes

Is Apple already testing a new iPhone?

Published by on Jan 3rd, 2013, No Comments

Of course it was to be expected that we would see another iteration of the vastly popular smartphone this year, but the iPhone 5 is barely out of its diapers. Is Apple pushing their development cycles faster lately in reaction to Samsung’s quick turnaround time? Only time will tell, but for now, we seem to have evidence that it is already entering testing phase.

The Next Web has reported that one iOS developer has discovered the testing of a device named ‘iPhone 6,1’ which is running iOS7. The developer picked it up when the device was making requests from an IP address within Apple’s campus in Cupertino.

The interesting thing is that the current iPhone 5 has the identifiers ‘iPhone5,1’ and ‘iPhone5,2’ depending on the model of the handset and on which 4G bands it operates. This would imply that we might be seeing an iPhone 6 sometime in the middle of the year, and not an iPhone 5S as is widely expected.

We know Apple has promised to up the secrecy on any new devices as we pretty much knew everything there was to know about the newest iPhone and iPad Mini before it was launched. So it could be that it’s a hoax and someone got a hold of an Apple IP address. Or, it could really be the testing of the iPhone 6, and it is only earmarked for a 2014 release. We do know Apple tests their devices years before it is released or details are leaked.

Whatever the case may be, it would be great if Apple just made a whole new device and revamped the interface and features of iOS. My one criticism of iOS is that it is starting to feel a bit stale. Do you think Apple will release an iPhone 5S (or whatever it will be called) or the iPhone 6 next? Let us know in the comments below.

Tizen: The newest mobile OS launching in 2013

Published by on Jan 2nd, 2013, 1 Comment

According to an article in Japan’s Daily Yomiuri, we finally have confirmation of a developing program that has been whispered on the internet known as project “Tizen”. It comes from Japan’s largest mobile communication company, NTT Docomo Inc., and is being developed to compete against the all dominant Android and iOS platforms.

The first Tizen devices will come to market some time in 2013, most likely near year-end. Docomo is developing the Linux-based and Intel-backed OS with its partners, hoping to take a bigger slice of the market in years to come. Of the three major telecoms companies in Japan, Docomo is the only one that does not sell iPhones. Reportedly, the first devices will be launched in Japan “and other countries around the same time”.

Interesting, we already know which company is jumping on the Tizen bandwagon first to release its own devices with the newest OS. Would you care to hazard a guess? Yes, it’s Samsung, who is also helping in the development of Tizen.

I don’t know about you, but I can’t help but get excited about the mobile device market in the year to come. Other than Android and iOS, we also have Windows Phone 8 starting to show its metal and the long-awaited BlackBerry 10 is to launch within the month. Throw another player into the mix, and we sure are in for a topsy-turvy ride this year. Let’s enjoy!

Sony Finally Stops Production of PlayStation 2

Published by on Jan 2nd, 2013, No Comments

After more than 12 years, the best selling games console of all time is finally calling it quits. After 150 million sold units, and the PlayStation 4 apparently already in the works, you really have to commend Sony for somehow still convincing people to keep buying them until now.

The PlayStation 2 got launched in March 2000 with then very high end hardware, and even included a DVD drive, which was still a rare find. The later Blu-Ray equipped PlayStation 3 was much improved, but its high price meant that the PlayStation 2 actually still outsold it for a further three years. The games ecosystem for the Playstation 2 is also without equal – there is more than 10,000 titles available for the console, and game development houses still keep on developing Playstation 2 versions of high end games, despite it having much worse hardware compared to later consoles.

But now that the Playstation 2 will no longer be produced, Sony can start putting those manufacturing resources towards the new PlayStation 4. There is no confirmation of specs or pricing yet, and Sony is not divulging any info on it yet.

Source: BBC