Technology

Namibian mobile operator slashes data pricing

Inspired by South African data protests, Namibian mobile operator Paratus has cut its data prices by a massive 80%.

The operator announced in a statement that it reduced the cost per gigabyte from N$85 (R85) to N$15 (R15).

"According to statistics from Research ICT Solutions (2018), Namibia rates 29th out of 52 African countries with regards to the cheapest 1 Gigabyte mobile prepaid rates per month for 2018 in USD, with a rate of US$7.35," the Paratus statement reads.

2 new features for WhatsApp

WhatsApp is giving users 2 new features, the ability to add a description to group chats and allows users to switch between the voice and video call feature, according to reports. 

WhatsApp rolled out the group description feature for the beta version of Android last month. 

To read the article titled, "WhatsApp adds 2 new features that may make your life easier" click here

Facebook has a "responsibility" to protect its users' data

Breaking more than four days of silence, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg admitted mistakes and outlined steps to protect user data in light of a privacy scandal involving a Trump-connected data-mining firm.

Zuckerberg posted on his Facebook page on Wednesday that Facebook has a "responsibility" to protect its users' data.

"If we can't then we don't deserve to serve you," he wrote.

MTN, Vodacom charging more for out-of-bundle data

Amid reports of South Africa’s top two networks charging up to 2 639% more for out-of-bundle data, Vodacom has said it is normal business practice to offer discounts to customers that make longer term commitments. 

Despite a push by government and the Independent Communications Authority Of South Africa (Icasa), out-of-bundle data rates are much more expensive than in-bundle.

Credit Bureau Data Leak

The sensitive private information of 30 million South Africans, contained in a massive data breach, appears to have been hacked from a credit bureau. 

This is according to Australian Microsoft regional director, Tory Hunt, who exposed the leak on Twitter on Tuesday.

Hunt is also a security researcher and creator of the website HaveIbeenpwned.com. The website allows people to check if their personal information has been compromised. 

Windows 10 Mobile no Longer a Focus

The company's Windows 10 chief has tweeted that developing new features and hardware for the Mobile version of the OS was no longer a "focus".

Joe Belfiore added that he had also switched to Android himself.

Windows 10 Mobile tried to attract users by letting them run the same "universal apps" on both their PCs and handsets, but the concept failed to catch on.

To read the article titled, "Microsoft gives up on Windows 10 Mobile" click here

Vodacom Tender Investigation

The Competition Commission has launched an investigation into the Vodacom Group after allegations that it abused its dominance to clinch what has amounted to R1 billion in government spending after winning a National Treasury tender to supply services to government departments.

But Vodacom and the Treasury yesterday said rigorous governance and transparent tender processes had been followed and the objective of the award had been to cut costs.

Twitter Praises for Anti-Corruption Drive

Twitter users have welcomed the Gauteng Political Report delivered by Premier David Makhura in the Legislature in Johannesburg on Tuesday.

Makhura announced that disciplinary proceedings have been instituted against 125 government officials allegedly involved in financial misconduct.

Former Congress of South Africa Trade Union Secretary –General, Zwelinzima Vavi ‏says, “Listening to #GPPoliticalReport, good progress being registered. How I wish similar advances were made in all provinces.”

Cheaper‚ Faster Internet Reaching More South Africans‚ Study Finds

Internet access reached 52% of South Africa’s 55-million population in 2015‚ up from 49% in 2014. This is according to a report on Freedom of the Internet‚ compiled by Freedom House.

The report classifies the status of the internet in South Africa as “free” however it classifies the status of press freedom as “partly free”.

The report further notes that access to quality and relatively affordable internet is growing‚ primarily among low income communities through government-subsidized WiFi projects across the country.

Cyber Attacks on the Rise

October is cyber security month and Deputy Minister of Telecommunications and Postal Services, Professor Hlengiwe Buhle Mkhize, says people need to be aware of online risks.

Speaking on Morning Live, she says cyber attacks are on the increase and people need to be educated about the risks of being online. 

People are now accustomed to online banking, buying items from Internet retailers and are active participants in the social media arena. 

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