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Technology & Communications News

Increased demand for locally manufactured drones in Africa

By: Erin Steenhoff-Snethlage     11th May 2018 South African fixed-wing drone manufacturer and supplier Aerial Monitoring Solutions (AMS) has seen the biggest demand for its Eagle Owl drones in Africa, mainly for mining surveying and security. The Eagle Owl is perfect for the three Ds of industrial work: dull, dangerous and dirty. With AMS... 

Decorative concrete market looking good

By: Jessica Oosthuizen     11th May 2018 Decorative concrete solutions can raise the aesthetic value of both new projects and renovations, and construction chemicals company Chryso Southern Africa is participating in the market to supply such solutions for aesthetic and practical applications, company CEO Norman Seymore tells... 

Decorative  concrete market looking good
LUMINESCENT LUMINTECH This technology contains particles that are incorporated into the concrete skin and glow in the dark

NNR conference a key stakeholder platform for nuclear industry

By: Melissa Zisengwe     11th May 2018 State-owned entity National Nuclear Regulator (NNR) will host its second nuclear regulatory information conference at the Indaba Hotel & Conference Centre, Johannesburg, from May 16 to 18. The key themes for this year’s conference are the energy mix; safety and security culture; lessons learned... 

NNR conference a key stakeholder platform for nuclear industry
SECOND CONFERENCE The conference will be an interactive platform for the NNR to share regulatory information

Data stewardship skills key to unlocking value from data

By: Schalk Burger     11th May 2018 Managing data according to its value and relevance, which change throughout the life cycle of the data, is key to realising and unlocking this value as a fundamental part of business processes, says business data multinational Commvault territory account manager for South Africa Mike Rees. Data... 

Edge platform adds industrial strength to software applications

By: Schalk Burger     11th May 2018 Critical availability specialist company Stratus Technologies has launched an edge computing device that provides high availability for software applications used in industrial environments, such as mines, factories and processing facilities says Stratus Technologies consultant head Greg... 

AI can help break down data silos to augment human decision-making

By: Schalk Burger     11th May 2018 Artificial intelligence (AI) systems are best suited to help companies explore and exploit the data that they have, simultaneously improving their business models and processes, a range of information technology (IT) experts say. The main improvements and benefits of AI derive from being able to... 

AI can help break down data silos to augment human decision-making

Technology key to improving education – EY

By: Anine Kilian     10th May 2018 Technology is rapidly contributing to improvements in the quality of education on the African continent, says EY Africa People Advisory Services Leader Chad Schaefer. Speaking at EY’s Strategy Growth Forum Africa conference, in Johannesburg, on Thursday, he noted that digital learning could be... 

Emerging markets more vulnerable to cyberattacks

By: Anine Kilian     10th May 2018 Africa has one the highest cyberattack rates in the world, says EY cybersecurity leader Samresh Ramjith. “We are seeing mobile penetration at more than 100% across Africa. To most people on the continent, mobile phones are the most expensive piece of equipment they own. 

FujiFilm unveils innovation centre to get closer to clients 

10th May 2018 Fujifilm has opened its new, more compact innovation centre, in Johannesburg, in an effort to get closer to its customers. Natasha Odendaal tells us more. 

FujiFilm unveils innovation centre to get closer to clients
FujiFilm unveils innovation centre to get closer to clients

Altron posts double-digit improvements for FY18

By: Natasha Odendaal     10th May 2018 JSE-listed Allied Electronics (Altron) on Thursday posted double-digit growth in revenue and earnings from continuing operations for the year ended February 28. Revenue for the continuing operations rose 14% to R14.7-billion during the year under review, while earnings before interest, taxes,... 

DST outlines plans to boost mining, manufacturing

By: Kim Cloete     9th May 2018 The Department of Science and Technology (DST) has outlined its investments in innovations in mining, with R186-million over the next three years being earmarked for targeted research and development to modernise South Africa’s mining industry. Science and Technology Minister Mmamoloko... 

DST committed to making inroads despite tight budget

By: Kim Cloete     9th May 2018 The Department of Science and Technology will be working on a tight budget of R7.8-billion this year, but hopes to make inroads in programmes and innovations across South Africa. The money will be used to address transformation, through key research, development and support initiatives.  

MTN’s Iran headaches return as US reimposes economic sanctions

By: Natasha Odendaal     9th May 2018 In the wake of fresh US sanctions against Iran, telecommunications group MTN will remain alert to the challenges of continuing the repatriation of its cash from 49%-owned MTN Irancell. The US on Tuesday withdrew from the multilateral Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) agreement and... 

MTN’s Iran headaches return as US reimposes economic sanctions

Africa is opportune for energy, smart solutions development – Schneider Electric

By: Marleny Arnoldi     8th May 2018 Automation and energy management multinational Schneider Electric on Tuesday revealed its strategy for the African continent and how it relates to creating smart cities – taking cognisance of challenges and opportunities.  

Africa is opportune for energy, smart solutions development – Schneider Electric
Photo by Marleny Arnoldi
Schneider Electric Middle East and Africa region president Casper Herzberg & Schneider Anglophone Africa cluster president Albert Fuchet

Only 10% of global manufacturing companies are championing digital transformation – PwC

By: Marleny Arnoldi     8th May 2018 Industry 4.0 is rapidly transforming the manufacturing sector and digital transformation has been on many a CEO’s agenda for a number of years, but despite this, only a small group of companies is in a position to gain real competitive advantage from this operations revolution, says... 

Altron’s Bytes UK signs five-year R2.5bn deal with NHS

By: Natasha Odendaal     7th May 2018 JSE-listed technology group Allied Electronic’s (Altron’s) wholly-owned subsidiary Bytes UK has signed a five-year, £150-million (R2.5-billion) contract with the UK’s National Health Service (NHS) to roll out Microsoft’s latest operating system, Windows 10, to all NHS computers. The... 

FNB to roll out biometric banking transaction points in South African townships

By: Schalk Burger     7th May 2018 Financial services firm First National Bank (FNB) will roll out 50 self-service kiosks that use fingerprint biometrics to verify a user’s identity in South African townships over the next six months, FNB Points of Presence CEO Lee-Anne van Zyl said on Monday. The “TouchPoint” is a self-service... 

FNB to roll out biometric banking transaction points in South African townships
The FNB TouchPoint reads a user's thumbprint to identify the user

Jonas, Tshabalala join MTN board

By: Natasha Odendaal     7th May 2018 Former Deputy Finance Minister Mcebisi Jonas and consulting and investment holding company Barbican Advisory Group executive director Bajabulile Tshabalala will join the board of telecommunications heavyweight MTN as nonexecutive directors, effective June 1. Tshabalala and Jonas bring extensive... 

Innovators emerge with novel ways to treat, conserve water

By: Kim Cloete     4th May 2018 Innovators from South Africa and Austria have met with potential partners and investors in Cape Town to present ideas to reduce the amount of water currently used in agriculture. The 17 innovators were chosen as finalists in the Agri-Water Open Innovation Challenge out of a pool of 70... 

South African NPO suing Indian IT multinational for intellectual property theft

By: Marleny Arnoldi     4th May 2018 One of India’s largest multinational companies, information technology firm Wipro, is being taken to court for allegedly appropriating the intellectual property (IP) of a small South African nonprofit organisation.  

Mark van Vuuren to succeed Da Silva as Jasco CEO

By: Natasha Odendaal     4th May 2018 JSE-listed Jasco COO Mark van Vuuren is taking the helm as CEO on July 1, as Pete da Silva steps aside to take up the position of nonexecutive director following the group’s restructure. Van Vuuren and Da Silva have, over the past 18 months, worked closely in preparation to ensure leadership... 

Firm sees taxis and mine trucks as logical hydrogen transport pioneers

By: Schalk Burger     4th May 2018 Hydrogen transportation technology can serve the local taxi industry and be used in large opencast mines where several haul trucks operate in a limited radius. One hydrogen fuelling station could serve an entire fleet. Such applications would eliminate the need for a dispersed suburban and urban... 

Initiative brings more German companies to AUW

4th May 2018 The German Energy Solutions Initiative which is coordinated and financed by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy will be bringing seven German companies to African Utility Week (AUW) for the German pavilion. According to the German Energy Solutions Initiative head of division... 

Initiative brings more German companies to AUW
RENEWABLE ENERGY The initiative supports the implementation of flagship energy projects

UK enters financial cooperation and development partnerships with African States

By: Rebecca Campbell     4th May 2018 The Bank of England, the South African Reserve Bank, the Bank of Ghana and the Bank of Sierra Leone (the last two being their countries’ central banks) have entered into a partnership to share their expertise, improve regulation and decrease the risks of banks failing in their respective... 

Industry body pioneers awareness programme to upgrade vending systems

4th May 2018 The South African metering standards industry body Standard Transfer Specification Association (STSA) will hold a workshop presentation and take part in the strategic conference during the African Utility Week (AUW) to urge the utilities industry to upgrade electricity meters to STS600. STSA is a... 

Hyperscale cloud being used to increase scope of financial services

By: Schalk Burger     4th May 2018 Financial services companies in South Africa are using hyperscale cloud systems to increase their range of services, lower costs and reach into new markets, says financial services technology firm Synthesis Software Technologies MD Michael Shapiro. The capabilities of cloud services, including... 

Hyperscale cloud being used to increase scope of financial services
MICHAEL SHAPIRO Financial services can scale and change dramatically by using cloud services to increase their range of services, lower costs and reach into new markets

Wastewater company aims to attract new clients at AUW

By: Melissa Zisengwe     4th May 2018 South African wastewater management company East Rand Water Care Company (Erwat) returns to African Utility Week (AUW) for the second time to showcase its “vital” energy and water services.   

Wastewater company  aims to attract new  clients at AUW
WATER TREATMENT EXPERTISE Erwat has the expert skills and capabilities to be a key player in the water and energy sectors

Virtualisation to improve African rural telecoms services

By: Schalk Burger     4th May 2018 The quality of services for rural and remote users, often served using 2G technology, can be significantly improved using virtualisation technologies, such as network function virtualisation and software-defined networking, says network virtualisation company Parallel Wireless president,... 

Virtualisation to improve African rural telecoms services
RAJESH MISHRA Virtualised network orchestrator gateways and small-cell converged wireless systems can improve service quality and lower costs to roll out telecommunications infrastructure

MTN’s subscriber base, revenue grow in Q1

By: Marleny Arnoldi     3rd May 2018 Mobile network operator MTN’s subscribers increased by 1.9% quarter-on-quarter with net additions of 4.1-million in the first quarter of this year, while active MTN mobile money users increased by 3.9% quarter-on-quarter to 22.7-million.  

MTN’s subscriber base, revenue grow in Q1

Kenya's Safaricom pilots messaging app linked to mobile money

By: Reuters     2nd May 2018 Safaricom, Kenya's biggest telecoms company, is piloting a social messaging app that will link to its mobile money platform in an attempt to move the company into the application business, the company said on Tuesday. Bonga, meaning 'chat' in Kiswahili, will be integrated with the company's... 

CEOs’ priorities shifting to embrace digital business – survey

By: Marleny Arnoldi     2nd May 2018 Growth, corporate strategies, information technology (IT) and workforce issues continue to top CEOs’ priorities for this year, says research and advisory company Gartner.  

Icasa announces new regulations for mobile network service providers

By: African News Agency      26th April 2018 The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) on Thursday issued new regulations which seek to prohibit mobile network providers from charging out-of-bundle tariffs without the consent of their subscribers in a bid to regulate runaway data prices.  This comes after Icasa last... 

MTN commits to creating 1 000 jobs in support of the YES initiative

By: Creamer Media Reporter      25th April 2018 Telecommunications company MTN Group has committed to the creation of 1 000 jobs within the first year of the Youth Employment Service (YES) initiative. President Cyril Ramaphosa last month launched the initiative – a business-led collaboration with government and labour which aims to empower... 

Cartrack achieves robust subscriber, revenue growth for FY17

By: Marleny Arnoldi     24th April 2018 JSE-listed telematics service provider Cartrack recorded robust subscriber and revenue growth in the financial year ended February 28.  

Cartrack achieves robust subscriber, revenue growth for FY17
Cartrack CEO Zak Calisto

Semiconductor revenue buoyed by industrial, automotive, IoT – Gartner

By: Schalk Burger     23rd April 2018 Revenue generated by the global semiconductor market grew by 21.6% to $420.4-billion in 2017, driven by strong growth in the memory market. Suppliers for the top 25 semiconductor vendors experienced significant growth as two key markets – industrial and automotive – continued to achieve... 

Vodacom Tanzania bets on data and mobile money to stay on top

By: Reuters     23rd April 2018 Vodacom Tanzania is focusing on growing its data business, mobile payments system and cloud services to stay on top of the East African nation's competitive telecoms market, the head of the company said on Friday. Investment in these areas will ensure the company retains first mover advantage,... 

Upgraded Sansa Space Weather Warning Centre rededicated

By: Rebecca Campbell     20th April 2018 The South African National Space Agency’s (Sansa’s) Space Weather Regional Warning Centre, at Hermanus in the Western Cape, was officially rededicated on Thursday by Science and Technology Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane following its recent upgrade. This is the only Space Weather Regional... 

Upgraded Sansa Space Weather Warning Centre rededicated
Photo by Sansa
Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane and Sansa Space Science MD Dr Lee-Anne McKinnell in the centre, right and left respectively, holding the rededication plaque. Sansas CEO Dr Val Munsami is at the extreme left. The other staff in the photo are unidentified

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