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MWC: Alcatel puts Oreo in tabs

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At Mobile World Congress currently underway in Barcelona,  TCL Communication introduced the new Alcatel 1T tablet series, with two new compact and portable tablets. 

The Alcatel 1T 10 and Alcatel 1T 7 are aimed at being affordably priced while offering simple, sleek designs and the latest Android 8.1 Oreo operating system. The Alcatel 1T series, says Alcatel,  continues its legacy of making mobile technology accessible to consumers around the world, particularly in households looking to share entertainment and gaming experiences as a family.

“Today more than ever we count on our mobile devices to keep us connected to the news, people and entertainment we love, and with our all-new Alcatel 1T tablets, we’re giving consumers around the world a fantastic tablet experience,” said Christian Gatti, Global President Alcatel Business Division and Executive Vice President TCL Communication. “Not only are these two of the best tablets we’ve ever made, they’re also two of the most affordable Android Oreo tablets in the market starting at under €100.”

Both tablets feature Kids Mode, a dedicated mode that comes with pre-loaded applications and content, such as games, kids’ camera, and drawing app, all designed with the youngest members of our families in mind. This mode also comes with an easily manageable built-in parental control interface that gives parents the ability to set usage limits. Also included in the 1T tablet series is Eye Care mode, which is designed to reduce blue light in order to relieve visual fatigue and have an enjoyable viewing experience, regardless of the time of day or night.

Alcatel provided the following information:

Alcatel 1T 10

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Featuring a 10.1-inch IPS display, the Alcatel 1T 10 tablet offers Wi-Fi connectivity and is Alcatel’s newest and most affordable 10-inch tablet ever. Weighing 415g, it is also the lightest tablet you can get in its size and price range, allowing for greater portability when sharing the device with the entire family. It comes with a 4000mAh battery that will ensure that your family is able to enjoy entertainment, gaming and productivity for 8 hours on one charge, along with 16GB of internal storage and microSD expanded storage up to 128GB. For maximum productivity, an optional dedicated Bluetooth keyboard and textured cover will be available to make typing quicker and easier while providing protection against scratches, drops and dust.

ALCATEL 1T 7

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The Alcatel 1T 7 Wi-Fi tablet also comes with an incredibly pocketable form factor and lightweight body, weighing in at 245g and measuring 9.15mm thin, making it ideal for sharing the device within the home. The 2580mAh battery provides up to 430 hours of standby time and 7 hours of usage, so no matter if you and your family are using it for streaming movies, playing a game together or simply doing email and other work.

The Alcatel 1T 10 and Alcatel 1T 7 tablets will be available later in Q2 across Europe, Latin America, Asia and South Africa, starting at €99,99 and €69,99 respectively. Local prices will be announced closer to the time of launch.

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Load-shedding leads
local searches

South Africans are searching in the dark, according to the latest Google Search trends.

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With more 1 million search queries generated in the space of 76 hours, load-shedding was by far the top trending search on Google South Africa this week.

Valentine’s Day came a distant second.

After news emerged last Sunday of the impending stage 3 load shedding, South Africans had generated more than 1-million load-shedding search queries by the time Tuesday came around:

  • “Loadshedding schedule” – generated more than 100k searches on Sunday
  • “Load shedding schedule” – generated more than 100k searches on Sunday
  • “Eskom load shedding” – generated more than 100k searches on Sunday
  • “Load shedding Cape Town” – generated more than 50k searches on Sunday
  • “Load shedding schedule” – generated more than 400k on Monday
  • “Load shedding Johannesburg” – generated more than 20k searches on Monday
  • Load shedding schedule” generated more than 200k search queries on Tuesday

Leading up to Valentine’s Day, South Africans generated close to 300k search queries related to the romantic festival, including searches for quotes and gift ideas:

  • “Valentines Day” generated more than 100k search queries on Thursday
  • “Happy Valentines Day Images” and “Valentines Day Images” generated more than 10k search queries each on Thursday, with “Happy Valentines Day 2019” generating more than 20k search queries on Wednesday
  • “Valentines Day Specials 2019” generated more than 5k search queries on Thursday
  • “Love quotes” generated more than 5k search queries on Thursday
  • “Valentines Day quotes” generated more than 100k search queries and “Valentine messages” generated more than 50 000 search queries on Wednesday

Search trends information is gleaned from data collated by Google based on what South Africans have been searching for and asking Google. Google processes more than 40 000 search queries every second. This translates to more than a billion searches per day and 1.2 trillion searches per year worldwide. Live Google search trends data is available at https://www.google.co.za/trends/hottrends#pn=p40

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Showmax invites
student films

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Thanks to the growing popularity of video-on-demand services, there’s a new opportunity to help kickstart the careers of local filmmakers.

Numerous Hollywood blockbusters (District 9Tomb Raider 2018, and The Avengers: Age of Ultron to name a few) have featured substantial shoots in Johannesburg and Cape Town. While providing great opportunities for SA’s production talent, aspiring writers and directors don’t get the same benefit.

So where can local creatives showcase their work? Broadcast TV isn’t a natural home for unknown short films, and while self-publishing platforms are readily available hosting options, it’s tough to get noticed and get traffic when competing with videos from across the planet.

But with the emergence of video-on-demand services into the mainstream, there’s now a solution. The African film school AFDA has teamed up with the streaming service Showmax to give local talent a much larger platform than ever before. From 18 February, eighteen of the best recent short films made by AFDA students from their Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban and Port Elizabeth campuses will be live on Showmax. Drama, documentary, fantasy, and animation are all represented, in pieces running from under eight minutes to almost half-an-hour long. The full list of movies is included below.

Teresa Passchier, CEO of AFDA, said: “AFDA, Africa’s number-one school for the Creative Economy, is proud to kickstart this exciting and meaningful journey with Showmax and AFDA students, ensuring emerging young African filmmakers’ voices are heard and given a platform. It’s ground-breaking to share young, local, culturally relevant content on the same platform as Hollywood blockbusters. I am certain that this unique initiative will serve to boost and develop the African film industry and the careers of many young South African and African students alike.”

Included in the short films coming to Showmax are the award winners Junior and O-PunchaJunior, directed by Bert Dijkstra, picked up the Audience Award in the Made in South Africa Competition at the shnit Worldwide Shortfilmfestival Awards 2017. O-Puncha, directed by Adam Hansen, won two awards at the 5th annual Eldorado Film Festival: Best Student Made Short, and Best Editing – Alexander La Cock.

Another celebrated film is Sicela Amanzi directed by Mlu Godola, which talks to the subject of water shortage. The film’s heroine Zoleka is a mild-mannered young woman forced to go to extreme lengths when a small community’s only source of water unexpectedly collapses. The power of films like this is they shine a light on critical topical issues in new ways.

Speaking about working with the film school, Candice Fangueiro, Head of Content for Showmax, said: “There’s immense depth of filmmaking talent in Africa and it’s a privilege to be able to give that talent a home and a platform. Showmax is becoming part of the fabric of film and TV production in Africa, and importantly we’re doing this as a partner rather than just as a consumer. This is a key competitive advantage of being local and something we aim to continue to work on.”

AFDA is an Academy Award-winning institution, founded in 1994, and the first and only African film school to win an Oscar – for the Best Foreign Student film in 2006, the postgraduate film Elalini, directed by Tristan Holmes.

The full list of AFDA short films coming to Showmax is as follows:

Film titleDirectorGenre
Lullaby from the CryptKeenan Lott & Raven DavidsAnimation
Ko Ga CherenyaneSibonokuhle MyatazaDocumentary
IzilwaneKyllian RouxDrama
MallemeuleJaco Van BoschDrama
Canal StreetBrodie MuirheadDrama
On the FenceWarrick BewsDrama
The Righteous FewLindo LangaDrama
Hlogoma PeakLuke AhrensDrama
Frozen FlameCameron HeathmanAnimation
WolfBrett van DortFantasy
The Walk HomeSisanda DyantyiDrama
BearWesley RoodtDrama
JuniorBert DijkstraDrama
O-PunchaAdam HansenDrama
UmngenoSiphosethu NdungeDrama
DoreenLuvuyo Equiano NyawoseDrama
ForeverLindo LangaMusical
Sicela AmanziMlu GodolaDrama

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