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Mxit could have been WhatsApp

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The former chief executive officer of First National Bank (FNB), Michael Jordaan, has expressed his disappointment at Mxit’s commercial closure, writes GARETH VAN ZYL.

Mxit announced on Friday that it is shutting down its commercial operations and donating all of its intellectual property and technology assets to independent public benefit organisation ‘The Reach Trust’.

The business further announced that Jordaan, who has been Mxit chair for the past two years, will not actively be involved with the operations of The Reach Trust.

Fin24 reached out to Jordaan for his comment on Mxit’s commercial closure.

“Disappointed but also happy that it can help free education in SA,” Jordaan told Fin24 in an email response.

The Reach Trust, which is taking over Mxit’s technology, has been providing free services such as text-based counselling and education initiatives to up to 10 million people since 2012.

Michael Jordaan

Michael Jordaan

‘Mxit could have been WhatsApp’

In a statement on Friday, Mxit said its monthly active user base in South Africa was just 1.2 million users in July 2015.

WhatsApp has over 10 million users in SA while Facebook has 13 million users in the country, according to recent research from World Wide Worx and Fuseware.

Jordaan told Fin24 that Mxit’s shrinking user base could be attributed to “customers switching to WhatsApp when they upgraded from feature phones to smartphones” and Mxit taking too long to adapt to smartphones. Mxit was launched in 2005 on feature phones.

Jordaan further told Fin24 that Mxit “could have been WhatsApp if it had acted two years faster”.

Jordaan became chair of Mxit after the social network’s former CEO, Alan Knott-Craig jnr, stepped down in late 2012.

Jordaan also heads up Montegray Capital, which is his startup investment vehicle.

He told Fin24 that he has invested in 15 startups, with Mxit not being one of them. He also said that he’s involved in another five startups.

“Most exciting tech development is ability for prices to drop in many industries and in some cases even become free,” Jordaan said.

He further provided advice to budding startups in South Africa in light of what’s happened to Mxit.

“Smartphones change everything. Make them a key part of your strategy, regardless of industry,” Jordaan said.

Fin24

Source

http://www.fin24.com/Tech/News/Michael-Jordaan-Mxit-could-have-been-WhatsApp-20151023

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Smash hits the Nintendo Switch

Super Smash Bros. delivers what the fans wanted in the latest “Ultimate” instalment, writes BRYAN TURNER.

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Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, the latest addition to the popular Nintendo Smash series, has landed on the Nintendo Switch with a bang, selling 5-million copies in the first week of its release. The game has been long-anticipated since the console’s release, as many fans consider iy to be a Nintendo staple. And the wait was well worth it.

It features 74 playable fighters, 108 stages, almost 1300 Spirit characters to collect while playing, and a single-player Adventure mode that took about three days (or 28 hours) of gameplay to complete. The game offers far more gameplay than its predecessors, making it the Smash game that gives its players the best bang for their buck.

For those new to the game, the goal is to fight opponents and build up their damage score (draining their health) to knock them off the stage eventually. This makes the game seem chaotic, as many players jump around the platforms as if they were on quicksand, in order to avoid being hit by the other players.

It also services two kinds of players: the competitive and the casual.

Competitive players can be matched on the online service by skill ranking to enjoy playing with similarly high-skilled opponents. This is especially important in e-sports training for the game, and for players wanting to master combos against other human players. The casual gamer is also catered for, with eight-player chaos and button-mashing to see who comes out luckiest. This segment is also important for those wanting to learn how to play.

Training mode is also a place to go for those learning to play. It offers “CPU” players that are graded by intensity to train as a single player to learn a character’s moves, combos and general fighting style. More challenging CPU players can also be used by competitive players to train when there isn’t a Wi-Fi connection available.

Direct Play features in this game, allowing two players with two Switch consoles to play against each other over a direct connection – no Wi-Fi needed. This is especially useful to those who want to have a social gaming element on the go, similar to that of the cable connector of the Gameboy.

Click here to read Bryan Turner review of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.

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Competitions

Win Funko Fortnite in Vinyl

Gadget and Gammatek have nine Funko Fortnite figurines to give away.

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A Funko Pop figurine based on a character set is indicative of reaching the heights of pop culture. It is no surprise, then, that the world’s biggest online game, Fortnite, has its own line of Funko Pop figurines. The Funkos are modeled on the characters in game, including Drift, Ragnarok, Dark Vanguard, Volar, Tracera Ops, and Sparkle Specialist.

Now, local Funko distributor Gammatek has released the Fortnite figurines in South Africa. To celebrate, Gadget and Gammatek are giving away a set of three Funko Fortnite figurines to each of three readers (9 figurines in total). To enter, first click on your favourite Funko Pop on the next page and post the Tweet that appears. Then, follow Gadget on Twitter.

You can put the tweet in your own words, but entries must have the competition’s hashtag (#FunkoFortnite) and mention @GadgetZA to be considered valid.

Click here to select the Funko Fortnite character you want to tweet.

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