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Afrikaans MVNO launched

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A new mobile network recently launched in South Africa that is tailored for mobile users who prefer communication in Afrikaans.

BokSel is South Africa’s newest mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) and was developed by pioneer mobile network enabler MVN-X, in partnership with the popular Afrikaans radio station Bok Radio. It is also the country’s first Afrikaans-language mobile service provider, and offers fully flexible packages on its www.boksel.co.za website, a user-friendly online platform in Afrikaans that went live today.

BokSel’s first customers will be listeners of Bok Radio, which has a strong following in the Western Cape, but the network is open to any mobile users in the country seeking a mobile network alternative that caters for their Afrikaans language preference.

Consumers who are interested in switching to BokSel can port their numbers for free.

How BokSel works

·         Create your profile on www.boksel.co.za and tailor your own package by choosing a bundle and data option.

·         To ensure that you are always connected, you can exceed your chosen bundle amount to a maximum of double your bundle’s monthly limit. This is your credit limit. For example, if your chosen bundle is R100, your credit limit will be R100 – that means you can spend up to R200 in total.

·         Out of bundle rates will apply if you exceed your chosen bundle amount: Talk at 79c/min; SMS at 60c; MMS at 70c; and Data at 99c/MB.

·         Your contract is month to month – you can upgrade or downgrade at any time.

·         Choose your bundle: Spend your bundle on anything you like – talk, SMS, MMS or data.

R49 Value Bundle             –              R0.79/min R0.60/SMS R0.70/MMS R0.99/MB

R99 Value Bundle             –              R0.79/min R0.60/SMS R0.70/MMS R0.99/MB

R199 Value Bundle          –              R0.69/min R0.60/SMS R0.70/MMS R0.99/MB

R299 Value Bundle          –              R0.59/min R0.60/SMS R0.70/MMS R0.99/MB

R349 Bok Onbeperk        –              R-.–/min   R0.60/SMS R0.70/MMS R0.99/MB

R499 Superbok                  –              1 000 mins 1000 MB 1000 SMS

·         Add monthly data to a bundle to take advantage of BokSel’s affordable MB rates:

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A real alternative for consumers
“All around the world there is a consumer trend towards serving customers in their mother tongue. With Bok Radio having such a loyal and engaged audience, it presented an opportunity to tap into this trend by providing Afrikaans-speakers with a mobile network that serves them in their home language and that offers some great value-added services in Afrikaans,” says Steve Bailey, CEO of MVN-X, which provides infrastructure and technical support to BokSel.

Bailey says the network is built on Cell C infrastructure, but MVN-X has provided a tailored technical backbone and professional customer support service in Afrikaans for the network.

Rennert van Rensburg, founder and MD of BokSel, says there are already a few thousand Bok Radio listeners lined up to sign up for BokSel. “We are tremendously excited about the launch of BokSel, and so are our Bok Radio listeners. They are a very loyal and engaged listenership and they already trust the Bok Radio brand. They are going to love BokSel. The BokSel team are ready to provide them with excellent customer service – in relaxed, friendly and courteous Afrikaans.”

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Huawei Mate 20 unveils ‘higher intelligence’

The new Mate 20 series, launching in South Africa today, includes a 7.2″ handset, and promises improved AI.

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Huawei Consumer Business Group today launches the Huawei Mate 20 Series in South Africa.

The phones are powered by Huawei’s densest and highest performing system on chip (SoC) to date, the Kirin 980. Manufactured with the 7nm process, incorporating the Cortex-A76-based CPU and Mali-G76 GPU, the SoC offers improved performance and, according to Huawei, “an unprecedented smooth user experience”.

The new 40W Huawei SuperCharge, 15W Huawei Wireless Quick Charge, and large batteries work in tandem to provide users with improved battery life. A Matrix Camera System includes a  Leica Ultra Wide Angle Lens that lets users see both wider and closer, with a new macro distance capability. The camera system adopts a Four-Point Design that gives the device a distinct visual identity.

The Mate 20 Series is available in 6.53-inch, 6.39-inch and 7.2-inch sizes, across four devices: Huawei Mate 20, Mate 20 Pro, Mate 20 X and Porsche Design Huawei Mate 20 RS. They ship with the customisable Android P-based EMUI 9 operating system.

“Smartphones are an important entrance to the digital world,” said Richard Yu, CEO of Huawei Consumer BG, at the global launch in London last week. “The Huawei Mate 20 Series is designed to be the best ‘mate’ of consumers, accompanying and empowering them to enjoy a richer, more fulfilled life with their higher intelligence, unparalleled battery lives and powerful camera performance.”

The SoC fits 6.9 billion transistors within a die the size of a fingernail. Compared to Kirin 970, the latest chipset is equipped with a CPU that is claimed to be 75 percent more powerful, a GPU that is 46 percent more powerful and an NPU (neural processing unit) that is 226 percent more powerful. The efficiency of the components has also been elevated: the CPU is claimed to be 58 percent more efficient, the GPU 178 percent more efficient, and the NPU 182 percent more efficient. The Kirin 980 is the world’s first commercial SoC to use the Cortex-A76-based cores.

Huawei has designed a three-tier architecture that consists of two ultra-large cores, two large cores and four small cores. This allows the CPU to allocate the optimal amount of resources to heavy, medium and light tasks for greater efficiency, improving the performance of the SoC while enhancing battery life. The Kirin 980 is also the industry’s first SoC to be equipped with Dual-NPU, giving it higher On-Device AI processing capability to support AI applications.

Read more about the Mate 20 Pro’s connectivity, battery and camera on the next page. 

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How Quantum computing will change … everything?

Research labs, government agencies (NASA) and tech giants like Microsoft, IBM and Google are all focused on developing quantum theories first put forward in the 1970s. What’s more, a growing start-up quantum computing ecosystem is attracting hundreds of millions of investor dollars. Given this scenario, Forrester believes it is time for IT leaders to pay attention.

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“We expect CIOs in life sciences, energy, defence, and manufacturing to see a deluge of hype from vendors and the media in the coming months,” says Forrester’s Brian Hopkins, VP, principal analyst serving CIOs and lead author of a report: A First Look at Quantum Computing. “Financial services, supply-chain, and healthcare firms will feel some of this as well. We see a market emerging, media interest on the rise, and client interest trickling in. It’s time for CIOs to take notice.”

The Forrester report gives some practical applications for quantum computing which helps contextualise its potential: 

  • Security could massively benefit from quantum computing. Factoring very large integers could break RSA-encrypted data, but could also be used to protect systems against malicious attempts. 
  • Supply chain managers could use quantum computing to gather and act on price information using minute-by-minute fluctuations in supply and demand 
  • Robotics engineers could determine the best parameters to use in deep-learning models that recognise and react to objects in computer vision
  • Quantum computing could be used to discover revolutionary new molecules making use of the petabytes of data that studies are now producing. This would significantly benefit many organisations in the material and life sciences verticals – particularly those trying to create more cost-effective electric car batteries which still depend on expensive and rare materials. 

Continue reading to find out how Quantum computing differs.

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