Given the explosion of the M2M sector, prepaid SIMs should be viewed as a critical business tool for the modern age, not just an end-user solution, writes HEIN KOEN, co-founder of Flickswitch.
Data traffic is expected to see an almost ten-fold increase by 2019, due to the growing range of new services and applications. However, while the GSMA Sub-Saharan Africa Mobile Economy 2015 report projects that machine-to-machine connections (M2M) in the region will reach 30 million by 2020, difficult economic conditions mean that enterprises using this technology remain under pressure to reduce their mobile data expenditure.
With the need to tighten budgets and a push to be more efficient, enterprises are re-examining their mobile data expenditure, prepaid offers a perfect alternative.
The age of enterprise prepaid is here
Gone are the days when traditional corporate accounts are the go-to product. With the continuous expansion of data requirements in a digital world, decision-makers are considering all avenues. Prepaid SIMs should form an integral part of this discussion.
Prepaid is often viewed as something only consumers in developing markets use, and while this might have been true a few years ago, the reality is quite different. It presents businesses of all sizes across industry sectors with a feasible data management solution.
We have been doubling the number of prepaid SIMs we manage in the market year on year, across sectors including retail, asset tracking, agriculture, insurance, and media. Prepaid solutions cut out potential bill-shock as users (and devices) can only use the amount of data that gets loaded. With lower risk and ultimate budget control, prepaid solutions have in many cases become the platform of choice.
Furthermore, it is more than just an end-user solution. Given the explosion of the M2M sector, prepaid provides even further impetus for change.
The 2015 Vodafone M2M Barometer Report reveals that 35 percent of South African companies surveyed have implemented M2M projects, with 26 percent planning to do so within the next 12 months.
Additionally, those companies who have adopted M2M technologies have already experienced a significant return on investment.
Those businesses who have embraced M2M are also seeing the benefits that prepaid provides them in the space. While it helps alleviate the burden of deploying SIMs to field workers and M2M-enabled devices, it needs to be managed effectively and there are management tools available that enable companies to better manage the prepaid SIMs they have in circulation.
Controlling everything from per-SIM data limits, to easily allowing those SIMs in use to be topped up if need be, the age of enterprise prepaid is here. By working with tools and partners who can help them manage their SIMs, enterprises are now in a position to be able to adjust to organisational requirements quicker than in the past.
Prepaid SIMs should therefore be viewed as a critical business tool for the modern age. Its low risk and cost effectiveness, linked to the ability to manage, make it a great business differentiator.
Huawei Mate 20 Pro matches camera benchmark record
A benchmark by DxOMark sees the triple-cam handset tie with the P20 Pro for best smartphone camera on the market.
The Huawei Mate 20 Pro has come out top in a camera benchmark test that assesses all aspects of smartphone camera performance.
DxOMark, which conducts rigorous hardware testing and is trusted as an industry standard for image quality measurements, has just released the results of its in-depth analysis of the Huawei Mate 20 Pro smartphone camera.
The Huawei Mate 20 Pro is the Chinese manufacturer’s latest top-end device. Building on the P20 Pro’s camera technology, the Mate 20 Pro comes with a Leica-branded triple-camera setup, but swaps its stable-mate’s monochrome camera for a super-wide-angle module, offering a 35mm-equivalent focal length range from 16 to 80mm—the widest of all current smartphone cameras.
The handset is in direct competition with the Apple iPhone XS Max, the Google Pixel 3 XL, the Samsung Galaxy Note 9, among other. How does it fare?
“With a total photo score of 114, the Huawei Mate 20 Pro ties the record-setting score of its cousin, the P20 Pro,” says DxOMark. “The overall Photo score is calculated from sub-scores in tests that examine different aspects of its performance under different lighting conditions.”
The Huawei Mate 20 Pro achieves a photo score of 114 points. In stills mode, the Mate 20 Pro’s triple camera captures images with good target exposure and a wide dynamic range, recording both good highlight and shadow detail even in difficult high-contrast situations. Noise levels are well under control down to low light levels, and the camera’s white balance system and colour rendering settings produce a pleasant colour response in almost all circumstances.
At 97 points, the Mate 20 Pro is very close to the best for video as well, thanks to a fast and smooth autofocus system with good tracking performance, accurate white balance as well as pleasant colour rendering, and low levels of noise, especially in bright shooting conditions. Our testers also liked the exposure system’s ability to adapt quickly and smoothly to changes in illumination.
It was not all good news. DxOMark also had some criticism for the device.
Click here to read about the drawbacks of the Mate 20 Pro camera, and other positives.
SA car wins
The final stage of Dakar 2019 drew to a close at the bivouac in Pisco, Peru, and saw Toyota Gazoo Racing South Africa’s Nasser Al Attiyah and Mathieu Baumel bring home their South African-built Toyota Hilux for
The Qatari driver ensured his French navigator, who turned 43 years old on Thursday, 17 January, received a great birthday present, when the pair arrived at the final time control of Dakar 2019 with teammates Giniel de Villiers and Dirk von Zitzewitz in close formation. The two Toyota Hilux crews completed the entire stage together, as De Villiers / Von Zitzewitz waited nearly 55 minutes for the leaders to start the stage, in order to shadow them to the finish.
The emotions bubbled over for Team Principal Glyn Hall, who found himself without words as his two crews drove into the media area after the time control. “This victory was long overdue,” he finally managed, before being swamped in a sea of well-wishers.
The winning driver, however, was much more vocal: “We are so happy to win the Dakar – not only for ourselves, but also for Toyota and the entire Toyota Gazoo Racing SA team. Everyone has worked so hard for so long, and really deserve this. Thank you for letting us drive this car.”
Toyota Gazoo Racing SA led Dakar 2019 from the first to the last stage, with Al Attiyah/Baumel drawing first blood, before handing the mantle to De Villiers / Von Zitzewitz during stage 2. But then a disastrous Stage 3 saw the Qatari retake the lead – a lead he didn’t relinquish despite some of the toughest stages yet seen on any South-American Dakar.
“When we first heard that the rally was going to take place only in one country, we were skeptical,” said Hall after regaining composure. “But the organisers made sure that this year’s race will long be remembered as one of the toughest tests in the last decade.”
Al Attiyah / Baumel’s victory at Dakar 2019 means that Toyota Gazoo Racing has now won both of the world’s toughest automotive races – the 24 Hours of Le Mans, and the DakarRally.
Click here to read Glyn Hall’s comment on winning the Dakar Rally, as well as the rankings.