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Finalists named for reality app

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Cell C, along with Blink Pictures, recently announced #BreakTheNet (#BTN) Top 30 finalists in a reality show broadcast on the Cell C Reality App.

Over the last month hundreds of participants entered a countrywide search with their original one minute YouTube videos, all vying for the chance to win R250 000 and a trip to Hollywood and the title of South Africa’s next YouTube Sensation.

Finalists from all over the country have been selected to take part in the next phase of the Cell C #BreakTheNet reality show. Each week participating contestants will be given a task to include in the filming of their videos and will be selected to continue week by week based on the number of views that they receive for each video.

The top 30 participants, who will be mentored by local social media celebrities including Suzelle DIY, cinematographer Ofentse Mwase and YouTube personality Theodora Lee. Derick Watts and the Sunday Blues will anchor the show while Darren ‘Whackhead’ Simpson will take on the role of taskmaster, where he will issue tasks to be completed by the contestants during the weekly reality show. South African actor Blessing Xaba will participate as a “celebrity” contestant.

Says Odette Schwegler, director of Blink Pictures: “The celebrities, who have been chosen for their high entertainment value, are going to encourage contestants to not only deliver on exciting material but also learn the challenges faced in the industry. We want people to tune in to a never before seen digital flow of content online, unprecedented addictive reality.”

The top 30 contestants entered one minute videos which ranged from footage of singers, rappers, comedians, video animators, magicians, and even our very own South African Crocodile Dundee.

Finalist Leewin Chen, from Bloemfontein, entered a video which he dubbed ‘Asian South African’ whereby he shows his life as a Taiwanese South African. Ian Morrison from Johannesburg shows off his DJ’ing talents while ‘Bored on a Flight’, and Quincy Mojela shows off his football skills with ‘Soccer my Everything’.

The Top 30 Finalists are:

Umar Abrahams (Rondebosch East, Cape Town) with “X-Factor Greatest Auditions”

Ursula Botha (Parktown, Johannesburg) with “How to Speak South African”

Ian Morrsion (Greenstone, Johannesburg) with “Bored DJ on a Plane”

Hloniphiswe Coleman (Rondebosch, Cape Town) with “I Call It…”

Daniel Rademeyer (Mayville, Pretoria) with “Live Life Full”

Tristan Edwards (Waterkloof, Pretoria) with “Trick Shots with T-man”

Dylan Gous (Murrayfield, Pretoria) with “Half Past Awkward Hot”

Ryan George Griffiths (Wynberg, Cape Town) with “Cell C #BTN entry”

Phephelo Fakude (Clydesdale, Pretoria) with “News with JAG”

Klara van Wyk (Gardens, Cape Town) with “Pretina’s Inescapable Truth”

James Keenan (Pinetown, Durban) with “Card Forfeits”

Kelly Ernstzen (Belhar, Cape Town) with “Songs Gone Wrong”

Werner Labuschagne (Florida Hills, Johannesburg) with “Language Barriers”

Waydene Laing (Johannesburg) with “How to be a YouTuber”

Leewin Chen (Woodlands Hill, Bloemfontein) with “Asian South African”

Nondwe Maqubela (Edenberg, Johannesburg) with “Know your Crazy 8”

Quincy Mojela (Clayville, Olifantsfontein) with “Soccer my Everything”

Puleng Moeketsi (Roodeport, Johannesburg) with “That is me trying diumb Life Hack”

Sibu Mpanza (Forest Hill, Cape Town) with “Sipu Mpanza – #BTN”

Eben Odendaal (Bryanston, Johannesburg) with “60 with EB and Dave”

Ade Omole (Vereeniging, Gauteng) with “Justin Bieber Cover”

Riaz Orrie (Plumstead, Cape Town) with “How to get a Girlfriend”

Nick Redlinghuys (Somerset West) with “Stop.Motion.Coffee”

Nduduzo Shandu (Soweto, Johannesburg) with “The Interview”

Sandile Sibuyi (Kwathema, Gauteng) with “South African Love Story”

Jeandre Strydom (Lorraine, Port Elizabeth) with “Smartydom – One Klap Man”

Troye May (Cape Town) with “#Beertime”

Thiko and Tsiko Nudau (Benoni, Gauteng) with “TweelinZA”

Graham “Dingo” Dinkelman (Hillcrest, Durban) with “How to catch a Crocodile”

Lindy Vermaak (Alberton, Gauteng) with “MAK3UPGeek”

Says Doug Mattheus, Executive Head: Marketing of Cell C, innovation leaders in the telecoms space: “South Africa has its own crop of social media celebs with a loyal local and international following. From wildlife spectacles to Afrikaans rappers, South Africans have contributed a lot to the online sensation of YouTube. We as Cell C want to provide the platform to allow people to make their dreams become a reality.”

#BTN aims to change the face of reality shows, and ultimately bring South Africa to the forefront of social media enhancement. With Cell C, believing is now a reality.

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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.

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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.

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SA car wins
Dakar Rally

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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 an historic victory. Not only was it a first win for Toyota, but it was also the first petrol-powered car to win the Dakar in the South-American era.

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.

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