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MWC: Cisco, Ericsson, Intel, join forces for 5G routers

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Earlier this week, at the Mobile World Congress, Cisco announced that it will be collaborating with Ericsson and Intel to develop the industry’s first 5G router.

Cisco, Ericsson and Intel are also partnering with Verizon within an ecosystem to accelerate the pace of 5G innovations.

The companies expect the next-generation 5G router to enable business and residential customers to achieve significantly faster networking speeds, lower latency, and the ability to handle exponentially more Internet-connected devices.  This advancement is intended to help accommodate the expected explosion of the Internet of Everything, and the streaming of high-definition video content.

This collaboration will help to enable secure, ultra-high speed wireless bandwidth. The solution will offer Gigabit-per-second speeds by combining Cisco’s enterprise networking innovations with Ericsson’s advanced 5G mobile networking technology and Intel’s next-generation 5G silicon. The announcement reinforces how industry collaboration will foster innovation in 5G via end-to-end technology development and trials. It also advances the next-generation partnership between Ericsson and Cisco to create the networks of the future, which was announced in November 2015.  For this project, that partnership will be further enhanced by Intel’s contribution of 5G modem and device technology.

According to the Cisco Visual Networking Index (VNI) Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast (2015 to 2020), released earlier this month, the surge in mobile users, smart devices and machine-to-machine (M2M) connections is expected to increase mobile data traffic eight-fold over the next five years.  Mobile video will have the highest growth rate of any mobile application, according to the forecast.  A new generation of robust, high performance wireless networks will be critical in facilitating this growth, and 5G networks will be instrumental in helping the industry develop a new economic model for offering new services for digital business transformation – the rapid and escalating value derived from the interconnectivity of people, processes, data and things.

“Verizon continues to accelerate innovation around 5G technology by working closely with our partners,” said Ed Chan, Senior Vice President, Technology Strategy & Planning at Verizon. “We were the first to launch 4G nationwide. With 5G, we will again drive innovation across the technology landscape.”

“The announcement represents a major step forward in mobile technology that will have a tremendous impact on businesses and consumers,” said Kelly Ahuja, senior vice president of Cisco’s service provider products and solutions.  “Only technology leaders of this caliber, partnering with a mobile and 5G visionary like Verizon, are capable of laying the foundation of tomorrow’s mobile network.”

“Collaboration among industry leaders in mobile, computing, and networking is critical to drive innovation and make 5G a reality,” said Asha Keddy, vice president and general manager of Intel’s Next Generation and Standards Group. “This new collaboration is especially exciting because it combines Intel’s silicon and networking expertise with the deep radio access, core and distribution network expertise offered by Ericsson and Cisco.”

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Huawei goes ultra-premium

Porsche Design and Huawei have launched the Porsche Design Huawei Mate RS in South Africa exclusive to MTN and retailing for R 26 459.

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The Porsche Design Huawei Mate RS boasts features like the world’s first dual fingerprint design, including an in-screen fingerprint sensor, the world’s first Artificial Intelligence (AI) processor and Leica triple camera with 40MP image capture.

“After the overwhelming success of the Porsche Design Huawei Mate 10 Pro in South Africa, we now bring you our latest offering, a perfect blend of innovation in a smartphone and luxury design,” said Likun Zhao, Vice President of Huawei Consumer Business Group Southern Africa. “From three-point security feature including facial recognition, rear fingerprint scanner and the new innovative in-screen fingerprint to the Leica triple camera system. it culminates in an unprecedented experience for our customers.”

The device incorporates Porsche Design’s signature design language and Huawei’s breakthrough technology.  The phone has a 6” 2K curved OLED screen and symmetrical look, minimalist feel and 8-edged 3D curved glass body.

High performance is symbolised by the naming of the smartphone: the term “RS” in the world of Porsche motorsport stands for outstanding racing performance.

Huawei provided the following information on The Porsche Design Huawei Mate RS benefits and features :

·         The world’s first dual fingerprint scanner for enhanced convenience, allowing users to wake and unlock the device simply, thanks to an in-screen fingerprint sensor. Hover to wake the device, touch to unlock it

·         The winning combination of Leica triple camera with 40MP RGB sensor technology and exceptional photography powered by Master AI. This combination puts effortless, eye-catching photography at the fingertips of those looking to immortalise their favourite moments. Combined with 5 x hybrid zoom, and the world’s first AI image stabilisation on a smartphone camera ensures photography lovers can capture the best shots with exceptional clarity in almost any situation

·         The Porsche Design Huawei Mate RS is the first Huawei handset to allow quick wireless charging, making it even easier to keep the phone topped up and ready to go and, thanks to its long lasting battery, users will easily be powered through the busiest of days

·         An ‘intelligent’ smartphone, the powerful AI processor automatically tailors the performance of the phone according to how it is used – constantly learning, understanding and anticipating needs, it is the perfect personal assistant for the pocket

·         256GB of internal storage means those constantly on the go and constantly on their phone can be worry free

·         Dual SLS (super linear system) speakers with DOLBY ATMOS enable users to have a superior experience, with the best immersive surround sound and entertainment on the go

·         Splash, water and dust resistant, which means there is no need to worry about damaging the device in the rain or accidentally dropping it in water

Jan Becker, CEO Porsche Design Group, said: “Both Porsche Design and Huawei seek to imagine and develop products that stand for precision and perfection, intelligent functionality and highly sophisticated design. Our aim was to create an outstanding device that goes one step further. We believe we have reached this goal by taking our partnership to the next level.”

Porsche Design and Huawei have worked in tandem to develop a smartphone that fuses together the two brands’ DNA, wealth of experience in design and technology, industry-leading expertise and exceptional performance. Through the use of colour in the device’s body, software themes and accessories, the new handset is accentuated with Porsche Design’s distinguished aesthetic and purist, minimalist feel.

The Porsche Design Huawei Mate RS will be available to purchase exclusively from MTN at R 26 459.

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Cross-channel chat launched

Clickatell has launched a cross-channel live chat service, Touch Go, that transforms omni-channel customer care.

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It enables live chat across a company’s website as well as social platforms (Twitter and Facebook) and mobile apps, bringing customer care and engagement into a single business platform.

“Today’s consumers expect to engage with your brand on the digital channel of their choosing,” says Deon van Heerden, Clickatell Engage CEO and Group CFO. “They want to message your business and instantly have queries resolved, find the information and services they are looking for, without the need for a voice call. Clickatell’s Touch Go makes that happen with the right level of capabilities for businesses of all sizes.”

Businesses can start using Touch Go immediately, with a free Starter option. Touch Go requires no credit card for sign-up and is fully featured with a simple setup process. It offers customisable branding, a unified chat desk business application as well as reports and analytics.

As the business scales up its digital customer care, it can opt-in for the Touch Enterprise offering. Touch Enterprise is designed for scaling up customer care efforts through advanced capabilities including AI driven virtual agents, sentiment analysis, automated workflows, enterprise integrations and in-channel mini-applications.

“Customer care has become a defining factor for sustained business success ” says Nirmal Nair, Clickatell Engage EVP Product & Marketing. “In an ever-increasing mobile native world, customers often choose to interact digitally, but they also expect to be able to reach a human immediately, should they need. Monitoring multiple channels and providing immediate action becomes challenging with siloed deployments. Touch’s unified solution allows businesses of all sizes to provide the customer delight in a simple modular approach.”

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