The information economy should make it easier to be a smart consumer – but the sheer amount of data out there can make it harder. However, various comparative tools are available to help customers make the correct purchasing choice.
Consumers need access to all the information about products they’re interested in, but we also need a system that shows us exactly how relevant products compare to each other.
Fortunately, consumer technology is catching up and providing reliable and effective comparisons that can save consumers a lot of money.
That’s why 2016 may finally be the year of the comparison.
Making cellular simple
Cellular contract are a great example of how complicated consumer decisions have become. The market has become bewildering with over 10,000 combinations of packages on bundles available for you to choose. Which contract will be most cost effective? What phone should you get? Is my network right or should I migrate?
A prime example of a tool to help sort through this complexity is Tariffic – a web-based service that helps you find the best package for your unique needs, taking the guesswork out of choosing the perfect cellular contract.
Comparisons aren’t just about spending less, they can also be about earning more. Another valuable comparison tool for consumers is the new free mytreasury.co.za Savings Optimiser, which finds you the savings account with the highest interest rate. Until now bank accounts have been notoriously opaque. With so many products giving hundreds of different rates based on a range of criteria across numerous banks, finding the best interest rate was almost impossible. My Treasury now makes it quick and easy.
It doesn’t cost anything to put your cash in a high interest savings account, making it an smart and effective way for ordinary people to grow their wealth.
Real value insurance
Now that you can get instant quotes from a range of insurance companies, there’s no longer any reason to stick with an insurance policy if you can get a better deal somewhere else.
However, there are some important points to bear in mind. When it comes to insurance, reliability is key. A cheaper premium is worth nothing if you can’t depend on the insurer to pay out when you need it. Look for the best deal, but don’t compromise on quality cover.
Information is consumer power
The great thing about effective comparison technology is that it makes consumer markets more transparent, which increases competition. It’s time consumers stop accepting complex price plans that conceal high prices. When it comes to being a smart consumer, knowledge really is power.
AppDate: DStv taps Xbox, Hisense for app
DStv Now app expands, FNB gets Snapchat lens, Spotify offers data saver mode, in SEAN BACHER’s apps roundup
DStv Now for Xbox and Hisense
Usage of DStv Now, the online DStv service available free to DStv customers, is increasing rapidly with more than two million plays of live and Catch Up content per week. In addition to using DStv Now to watch TV on tablets and smartphones, an increasing number of DStv customers are also opting to use it as their primary method of getting DStv on additional TVs in the house. This is set to increase with the release of two new big-screen TV apps, one for Xbox gaming consoles (Xbox One, Xbox One S, Xbox One X) and another for Hisense smart TVs (2018 and newer models).
Expect to pay: A free download.
Platform: Any of the Xbox One range of gaming consoles and 2018 or later Hisense smart TVs.
Stockists: Visit the store linked to your Xbox console or HiSense smart TV.
Santam Safety Ideas
Start-up businesses that have a FinTech or InsurTech business venture brewing are called to enter the third annual Santam Safety Ideas competition. Safety solutions or InsurTech ventures that are ready for piloting could win up to R150 000 worth of incubation support and R200 000 in seed funding.
The Safety Ideas competition was launched two years ago in partnership with LaunchLab, Stellenbosch University’s startup incubator that facilitates valuable connections for corporates and startups sourced from the startup ecosystem and partner universities in South Africa. The previous winners are Herman Bester and Anton Swanevelder, co-founders of MyLifeLine – a wearable panic device that won the competition last year; and Ntsako Mgiba and Ntandoyenkosi Shezi, co-founders of Jonga – a cost-effective security system for low income families, which won the competition in 2017.
Entries close on 28 February 2019. For more information on how to enter, visit: www.santam.co.za/safetyideas/
Click here to read about the FNB Snapchat lens, Spotify Free with data saver, and 00:37.
Fortnite fixes hackers’ hole
Epic Games has repaired a vulnerability that exposed Fortnite, the world’s most popular game of the moment, to hackers. The hole, which was left in Epic’s web infrastructure, allowed hackers to target players with email that appeared to come from Epic Games, but would have led them to a phishing site, where their log-in details would have been stolen.
Researchers at cyber security solutions provider Check Point Software alerted Epic to vulnerabilities that could have affected any player of the hugely popular online battle game.
Fortnite has nearly 80 million players worldwide. The game is popular on all gaming platforms, including Android, iOS, PC via Microsoft Windows and consoles such as Xbox One and PlayStation 4. In addition to casual players, Fortnite is used by professional gamers who stream their sessions online, and is popular with e-sports enthusiasts.
If exploited, the vulnerability would have given an attacker full access to a user’s account and their personal information as well as enabling them to purchase virtual in-game currency using the victim’s payment card details. The vulnerability would also have allowed for a massive invasion of privacy, as an attacker could listen to in-game chatter as well as surrounding sounds and conversations within the victim’s home or other location of play.
While Fortnite players had previously been targeted by scams that deceived them into logging into fake websites that promised to generate Fortnite’s ‘V-Buck’ in-game currency, these new vulnerabilities could have been exploited without the player handing over any login details
Click here to read how the Fortnite hack worked
To win a set of three Fortnite Funko Pop Figurines, click here.