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Technology & Communications News

Telecommunications industry loses billions of rands on the back of regulatory uncertainty

By: Natasha Odendaal     18th October 2018 The South African telecommunications industry needs regulatory certainty or it will continue to lose billions of rands in investment, Vodacom Group CEO Shameel Joosub warned on Thursday. Speaking during a question and answer panel at the MyBroadband conference, in Midrand, he explained that the... 

Liquid eyes further expansion as Cape to Cairo links up

By: Natasha Odendaal     18th October 2018 Pan-African telecommunications group Liquid Telecom is eyeing further expansion across the African continent after completing its Phase 1 decade-long project of connecting a 60 000 km network from Cape Town, South Africa, to Cairo, Egypt. The group on Thursday reported that, following the... 

Africans fear trend towards levies on data, services

By: Reuters     18th October 2018 The brisk business Julius Kirya did from his cash transfer kiosk in the Ugandan capital has slowed right down with a new tax on mobile money. Many of his customers have returned to sending banknotes by hand, in some cases via motorbike taxi. How to tax digital revenues, from fintech to social... 

Nigeria central bank, MTN getting closer to settlement – Minister

By: Reuters     18th October 2018 Nigeria's central bank and South African telecommunications firm MTN could soon strike a deal in their dispute over the repatriation of $8.1-billion, Nigeria's information minister said on Wednesday. The central bank says MTN transferred $8.1-billion of funds out of Nigeria in breach of... 

African countries can leapfrog technologies, if they understand the requirements

By: Rebecca Campbell     17th October 2018 The world, in trade and industrial terms, is being disrupted by both technological and political developments, providing opportunities but also posing risks to African countries. So highlighted University of Cape Town Mandela School of Public Governance Professor Carlos Lopes. On the... 

Poverty comes with a data premium – Competition Commission hears 

By: Natasha Odendaal     17th October 2018 Just over a year since initiating a market inquiry into data services, the Competition Commission on Wednesday kicked off its three-day public hearings to obtain a clear understanding of what is causing or leading to high data prices, along with the current state of competition, in South Africa.... 

MeerKAT telescope described as 'a quantum leap forward'

By: Kim Cloete     16th October 2018 The launch of Ghana’s Kutunse radio telescope, as well as South Africa’s 64-dish MeerKAT telescope have been lauded as examples of what can be achieved when African countries work together in the interests of science and technology. South African Science and Technology Minister Mmamoloko... 

MeerKAT telescope described as 'a quantum leap forward'
Photo by Dylan Slater
MeerKAT

CSIR, Sansa renew MoU to advance space research, tech development

By: Marleny Arnoldi     16th October 2018 The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and the South African National Space Agency (Sansa) have renewed their memorandum of understanding (MoU). The first MoU between the organisations was signed in November 2013.  

CSIR, Sansa renew MoU to advance space research, tech development

Digital-enabled creativity, tech solutions and interaction at Italian innovation fair

By: Creamer Media Reporter      15th October 2018 The circular economy, robotics, artificial intelligence (AI) and space exploration were among the main topics that were showcased at this year’s Maker Faire Rome, which took place at the Rome Exhibition Centre in Rome, Italy, from October 12 to 15,  2018. The largest European innovation event –... 

Telcos embracing once-feared OTTs

By: Natasha Odendaal     15th October 2018 South Africa’s mobile operators are seemingly starting to embrace over-the-top (OTT) services, with offerings of OTT-related bundles with lower effective rates per megabyte of data, the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa’s (Icasa’s) latest tariff analysis report shows. The... 

No digital migration funds have been wasted – Mokonyane

By: Natasha Odendaal     15th October 2018 The Department of Communications (DoC) will continue to have the remaining set-top boxes (STBs) it has already procured distributed ahead of the implementation of the new broadcasting digital migration model in March next year. None of the R10-billion in expenditure or procurements undertaken to... 

AfriCanopy to deploy low-cost Internet to rural KwaZulu-Natal in TV white space trial

By: Natasha Odendaal     15th October 2018 The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) has approved plans for telecoms start-up AfriCanopy to embark on an eight-month commercial trial of television white space (TVWS) devices. AfriCanopy will now deploy high-speed, low-cost broadband using its new telecoms technology... 

Mobile tech laboratory using robotics to inspire love of science in children 

By: Schalk Burger     12th October 2018 The latest mobile laboratory of the Inspired towards Science, Engineering and Technology (I-SET) science community engagement project has robotics kits that learners use to build and program robots, thereby inspiring them to pursue careers in science, mathematics, engineering and technology.... 

Mobile tech laboratory using robotics  to inspire love of science in children
i-Set project leader & Unisa lecturer Patricia Gouws discusses the i-Set Programme

Telecom connectivity for the South African market

12th October 2018 The Prysmian Connectivity Business Unit, a unit of Italian multinational corporation Prysmian Group, which manufactures electric power transmission and telecommunications cables and systems, visited South Africa in August to present product solutions to new and existing customers in the country... 

Customer analysis expected to sharpen business performance

By: Schalk Burger     12th October 2018 More detailed insight into daily business transactions, generated by deeper analysis of their characteristics, will help businesses to lower the costs of doing business, serve key segments better and seize transient opportunities, says customer behaviour prediction firm Xineoh founder and CEO... 

Customer analysis expected to sharpen business performance
VIAN CHINNER The industrialisation of smart systems will lead to companies being more responsive, data-driven and customer-centric

Cabinet approves revised digital migration model

By: Natasha Odendaal     11th October 2018 Cabinet on Wednesday approved a revised digital migration delivery model that will see government step back from its involvement in the procurement of set-top boxes (STBs), warehousing, transportation and the installation of the devices. The new model for the implementation of the broadcast... 

Cape vulture provides inspiration for homegrown vertical-axis wind turbine 

11th October 2018 A South African inventor has developed a new flexible wing, which he believes could have application in everything from wind energy and sailing to aviation and motoring. 

Cape vulture provides inspiration for homegrown vertical-axis wind turbine
Cape vulture provides inspiration for homegrown vertical-axis wind turbine

AAD 2018 aerospace and defence exhibition reports attendance figures

By: Rebecca Campbell     10th October 2018 Africa Aerospace and Defence (AAD) reported on Wednesday that its 2018 edition (held from September 19 to September 23) received 32 538 trade visitors. The show was divided into three trade days and two public days, the latter being over the weekend of September 22 and September 23. The two... 

AAD 2018 aerospace and defence exhibition reports attendance figures
Photo of AAD 2018, taken from an altitude of 500 km by an Airbus Pleiades satellite, on the first of the trade days (Airbus Defence and Space)

Blockchain tech coming to commodities, Masters tells LME

By: Bloomberg     10th October 2018 The blockchain is coming to commodity markets, Blythe Masters told guests at the London Metal Exchange annual dinner during LME Week. The virtual ledger technology underlying cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin promises greater confidentiality, fewer paper exchanges, better provenance and a boost in... 

Helios to enter South Africa within the next year, says CEO

By: Bloomberg     9th October 2018 Helios Towers wants to enter South Africa within the next year, helping the mobile phone tower operator build scale as it prepares for a stock market listing as early as 2019. Helios is in talks with potential partners to comply with South Africa’s black economic empowerment requirements and... 

Telkom Kenya holds talks over two submarine cable landing deals

By: Reuters     9th October 2018 Telkom Kenya is in talks with two unnamed parties over partnerships to allow it to sell high speed internet capacity from two undersea data cables that are about to land in the East African nation, its CEO said on Tuesday. The operator, which is the smallest in Kenya behind Safaricom and Bharti... 

Nigeria's Emefiele is said to meet with MTN, banks Tuesday

By: Bloomberg     9th October 2018 Nigeria’s central bank governor, Godwin Emefiele, will meet with MTN Group and four banks on Tuesday amid a dispute over $8.1-billion that the bank said was transferred illegally out of the country, two people familiar with the situation said. The people declined to be identified because the... 

Vunani, Ayo partner up for R100m fintech JV

By: Marleny Arnoldi     8th October 2018 Technology service providers AYO Technology Solutions and financial services group Vunani Group have formed a R100-million joint venture (JV) to expand the platform and financial services activities of the listed Vunani Limited. Vunani Limited is a diversified financial services group with more... 

MTN shares up 2% on possibility of reduced repatriation demand

By: Reuters     8th October 2018 South Africa's MTN Group shares rose as much as 2.55% after the Nigerian central bank governor said on Sunday the bank may reduce the amount it has ordered the telecoms firm to repatriate as part of an ongoing disagreement. MTN and the central bank are in a dispute over the transfer of $8.1... 

Logicalis Australia acquires CNI

By: Creamer Media Reporter      8th October 2018 JSE-listed Datatec on Monday announced that its Australian subsidiary Thomas Duryea Logicalis has acquired Melbourne-based Microsoft-certified gold partner Computer Network Integration (CNI). CNI, which has yearly revenues of about $2-million, has been a focused Microsoft Azure partner since 2012... 

Science fair affords students learnerships, prizes to promote science skills development

By: Marleny Arnoldi     5th October 2018 During the Eskom Expo International Science Fair, which was held from October 3 to 5, the Eskom Senior Grand Prize was awarded to a Curro Klerksdorp Grade 12 learner Aqil Variava, who developed the “pollution index” – a tool to investigate water quality. He won a R75 000 cash prize.  

Science fair affords students learnerships, prizes to promote science skills development
Curro Klerksdorp Grade 12 learner Aqil Variava wins Eskom Senior Grand Prize

Icasa publishes discussion document to define its role and responsibilities in cybersecurity matters

By: Natasha Odendaal     5th October 2018 The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) this week published a discussion document to determine its role in the regulation of cybersecurity. Interested parties have until November 30 to make their written submissions on the matter, after which the authority will likely... 

Saudi Arabia ‘ready to invest in the South African defence industry’

By: Rebecca Campbell     5th October 2018 State-owned Saudi Arabian Military Industries (SAMI) is seeking very close relationships with South African defence companies. "We are ready to invest in the South African defence industry and fund local research and development (R&D)," SAMI CEO Dr Andreas Schwer told "Engineering News" at the... 

Govt looking at ‘modernising’ defence funding – Ramaphosa

By: Rebecca Campbell     5th October 2018 President Cyril Ramaphosa has stated that the Government was looking at reducing the dependency of the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) on direct funding by the State. He was delivering the opening address for the Africa Aerospace and Defence 2018 exhibition at Air Force Base... 

UK reaffirms wish to strengthen ties with SA defence industry

By: Rebecca Campbell     5th October 2018 Britain was committed to further developing and strengthening partnerships with South Africa in the defence and security sectors, and not least with the South African defence industry. "The Prime Minister's [Theresa May's] recent visit here highlighted the importance the UK places on its defence... 

Air traffic control being transformed by digital technologies

By: Rebecca Campbell     5th October 2018 The dramatic advances in information and communications technology, electro-optical technologies and digitalisation have enabled a revolution to take place in terms of airport air (and ground) traffic control. This was highlighted in a briefing at the recent Africa Aerospace and Defence 2018... 

Automotive aftermarket distributor looking to expand

By: Jessica Oosthuizen     5th October 2018 Automotive aftermarket distributor AfriPart is focusing on expanding its footprint into the sub-Saharan Africa market and on adding value for clients by improving its operating, product and technology platforms, says MD Andrew Sommerville and sales and marketing head Richard Berner. AfriPart is... 

Automotive aftermarket distributor looking  to expand
AUTOMOTIVE AFTERMARKET AfriPart is the country’s first automotive aftermarket distributor that is 100% owned and operated through an empowered employee trust

Importers tightening control over logistics processes

By: Jessica Oosthuizen     5th October 2018 Amid government’s Automotive Masterplan support programme that targets 60% local component production and manufacturing, automotive businesses are tightening control over their logistics processes – where trade finance is being viewed as a broader import finance solution rather than a... 

Importers tightening control over logistics processes
TECHNOLOGICAL VISIBILITY Technology is becoming critical in the importing process

Saab suggests capability upgrade for SAAF Gripens

By: Rebecca Campbell     5th October 2018 Swedish aerospace and defence group Saab has proposed to the South African Air Force (SAAF) than it adopt the latest incremental update developed for the JAS39C and JAS39D Gripen fighter. The update is designated MS 20. "The Gripen was developed with the concept of continuous upgrades – small... 

Security as important as people, technology in ensuring organisational success

By: Schalk Burger     5th October 2018 Security is as vital to organisational success as technology and people, and is fundamental for digital transformation, says market intelligence and advisory firm International Data Corporation (IDC) sub-Saharan Africa associate VP Mark Walker. If systems are taught the wrong things at the start,... 

Dlamini-Zuma calls for collaboration as NDP is divided into smaller plans

By: Simone Liedtke     4th October 2018 Minister in the Presidency Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma on Thursday called for greater collaboration between the public and private sectors in South Africa as she announced that the National Development Plan (NDP) would be divided into smaller plans that would be attended to within five-year... 

Dlamini-Zuma calls for collaboration as NDP is divided into smaller plans
Minister in the Presidency Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma

Necsa hopeful that radioisotope production will restart soon

By: Rebecca Campbell     4th October 2018 South African Nuclear Energy Corporation (Necsa) CEO Phumzile Tshelane told “Engineering News Online” on Thursday that it was hoped that production at its subsidiary NTP Radioisotopes would restart in the near future. Operations at NTP were shut down in June following a breach in safety... 

Necsa hopeful that radioisotope production will restart soon
Photo by Duane Daws/Creamer Media
Necsa’s Pelindaba complex, which includes its NTP operation

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