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CES: Medical wand and translator named Last Gadget Standing

An all-in-one diagnostic device and an over-the-ear translation tool won the audience award in one of its closest voting polls yet

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The Ambassador translation device and the Medwand hand-held diagnostic tool were named joint winners of the Last Gadget Standing contest at CES in Las Vegas last week. 

It is the first time in the event’s history that two products have been named winners. It was the 20th annual edition of Last Gadget Standing, an audience-based award show produced by Living in Digital Times (LIDT) in partnership with the Consumer Technology Association (CTA).

“This was one of the closest voting polls we have seen in the past 20 years – it was quite exhilarating, and we are thrilled to have two winners for this year,” said Robin Raskin, Living in Digital Times founder and president. “Regardless of who won, everyone on stage today was a winner. Each finalist promises to improve our lives in so many ways and they certainly impressed everyone in the room.”

Ambassador Interpreter wowed the audience with its high quality translation tool for professionals and travellers. It has an over-the-ear design that makes it as hygienic and versatile, as it is shareable, with seamless pairing, simple sharing and adaptable settings for natural and professional-grade live translations, across the globe.

Las Vegas physician Dr Samir Qamar won the audience over with his MedWand – a handheld medical diagnostic device. MedWand contains a powerful camera system, pulse oximeter, IR thermometer, stethoscope and ECG, all in a single 114 gram enclosure. In addition to the real time remote exams, it can be used by home health care, EMS, hospice and palliative care workers, as well as in assisted living home monitoring environments.

The online People’s Choice award winners for Last Gadget Standing were WowCube, ClearUP & ThermArt.

  • WowCube is a Rubik’s cube inspired electronic platform for gaming and much more
  • ClearUP is an electronic wand for sinus pain relief
  • ThermArt is smartphone enabled ear and forehead thermometer

Hundreds of applications in the cutting edge categories of IoT devices, AI-powered devices, AR/VR, and self-driving kits, among other, submitted entries for a chance to be one of the ten finalists for CES 2020 Last Gadget Standing. The top ten finalists each had 4-minutes to present their gadgets on stage to a live audience.

The finalists were;:

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DStv Now adds free education to ‘lockdown channels’

In its response to the COVID-19 lockdown in South Africa, DStv is offering 16 free channels on its streaming app

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Two new channels have been added to a free service being provided on DStv Now, the online version of DStv. 

In response to the unfolding COVID-19 pandemic, DStv owner MultiChoice worked with local and international news channels in mid-March to add 24-hour news coverage to the DStv Now free service.

The company says the intent was to help all South Africans stay up to date with announcements and developments, and the results so far are encouraging. Usage of the service has increased 20% since the lockdown began, and peak usage is up 80% compared to pre-crisis peaks. 

 Now, in another step to help families through the lockdown period, MultiChoice has added additional educational content to the free service with the Mindset PoP channel. This channel features educational programming covering the entire General Education and Training (GET) phase, including Early Childhood Development (ECD), as well as a key focus on the Grade 4 – 9 curriculum. 

The channel aims to prepare children for when schools reopen. Mindset PoP will deliver live lessons daily, with six fresh hours every day. A website is available for parents to download worksheets and information sheets to work through with expert teachers. Lessons are based on the South African Curriculum Assessment Policy Statements (CAPS) and are also aligned to the Cambridge curriculum.

“We’re extremely grateful to all of the channel providers for being so willing to work with us to help all South Africans through this unprecedented lockdown period,” said Niclas Ekdahl, CEO of the Connected Video division of MultiChoice. 

“Thanks to their support we’re able to keep people informed, keep kids’ educations going, and keep people entertained.”

The full list of channels available to non-DStv customers on the DStv Now free service is:

100 – DStv

180 – People’s Weather

238 – SuperSport Play

313 – PBS Kids

317 – Mindset PoP

320 – Channel O

343 – TBN

400 – BBC World News

401 – CNN

402 – Sky News

403 – eNCA

404 – SABC News

405 – Newzroom Afrika

405 – AlJazeera

414 – Euronews Now

417 – africanews

To sign up for the DStv Now free service, go to http://now.dstv.com 

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FNB Connect cuts data price by 55%, offers 1GB free

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FNB Connect has reduce its data prices by up to 55%. It is also doubling customers’ data on Lifestyle plans without any price increase.

This weekend, FNB Connect will also give all its customers 1GB of free data during the national lockdown, with a validity period of 30 days. This lockdown data allocation is in addition to the Free Connect allocations that customers with qualifying transactional accounts receive monthly.

“This will enable our customers to save on telco spend, which is a regular feature in household budgets,” says Raj Makanjee, CEO of FNB Retail. “Access to affordable and free data goes a long way in assisting our customers navigate difficult times and is also aligned to our ethos of offering real help when it’s needed the most.”

Shadrack Palmer, FNB Connect product head, says: “In our efforts to provide our customers with more value for their money, we’ve reduced our mobile data prices and doubled the data bundles on most of our Lifestyle plans, to give our customers more reason to connect anywhere and anytime. This is needed now more than even, as South Africans are observing the 21-day national lockdown, with many strapped for cash during these challenging times.”

The new data prices and doubling of the Lifestyle plans are to be repriced as follows:

“Since the launch of our Free Connect offering in July 2019, we’ve tried to remain consistent to see how best we can incentivise our customers when they need it most,” says Palmer.  “As FNB Connect, we understand the pressures customers are facing financially and are committed to providing better value at every opportunity.”

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