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Samsung debuts affordable A8 with high-end features

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Samsung Electronics has announced the latest additions to the Galaxy A series, the Galaxy A8 smartphone.

The Galaxy A8 feature a Dual Front Camera, a large Infinity Display and stunning ergonomic design that draws on Samsung’s flagship design heritage and experience. With additional everyday features, the Galaxy A series is more stylish, practical and convenient than ever before.

“With the release of the Galaxy A8, we’re bringing our customers’ favourite features from our flagship smartphones, such as the Infinity Display and our first Dual Front Camera with Live Focus, to our Galaxy A series, which is already known for its premium design,” said Craige Fleischer, Vice President of Integrated Mobility at Samsung Electronics South Africa. “The Galaxy A8 exemplify our continued dedication to meeting the needs of our consumers by providing them with greater choice and convenience.”

Samsung provided the following information:

Snap bright, clear selfies with the 16MP F1.7 rear camera and 16MP+8MP F1.9 Dual Front Camera, no matter where you are or what you’re doing. The Dual Front Camera is made up of two separate cameras so you can switch between the two to take the type of selfie you want – from close-ups with the background to portrait shots with a clear and crisp background. And with the advanced Live Focus feature, you can easily adjust the bokeh effect before or after you take the picture to create high-quality images.

From day to night, the advanced camera makes sure you capture sharp images, even in low-light conditions. The new devices also allow you to customize your photos with fun options, from adding stickers to your selfie or highlighting a culinary extravaganza with Food Mode.

Shaky video footage will be a thing of the past with video digital image stabilisation (VDis) technology, and with an added hyperlapse feature, you can now create time-lapse videos that let you record, tell and share even longer stories.

When watching movies or playing games, the latest Galaxy A devices set a new standard for uninterrupted, immersive viewing experiences. The Infinity Display goes beyond the bezel with an immersive 18.5:9 display ratio, so that you can view the whole scene across your screen for the ultimate cinematic experience. The large screen is supported with ergonomic curved glass on the back and front. Its sleek glass and metal frame, smooth curves and comfortable grip make it even easier to watch or interact with content on your phone. The Galaxy A8 are available in four colours including black, orchid grey, gold and blue to suit your personal style.

Both devices will continually keep you informed with the Always On Display, meaning you can get information at a glance without unlocking your phone. Offering IP68 water and dust resistance, the Galaxy A8 can withstand the elements, including sweat, rain, sand and dust, making it suitable for nearly any activity or situation. The Galaxy A8 support microSD cards so you can expand your storage capacity by as much as 256GB, and are the first in the A series to support Samsung’s Gear VR.

The Galaxy A8 will be available in early January 2018.

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Now download a bank account

Absa has introduced an end-to-end account opening for new customers, through the Absa Banking App, which can be downloaded from the Android and Apple app stores. This follows the launch of the world first ChatBanking on WhatsApp service.

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This “download your account” feature enables new customers to Absa, to open a Cheque account, order their card and start transacting on the Absa Banking App, all within minutes, from anywhere and at any time, by downloading it from the App stores.

“Overall, this new capability is not only expected to enhance the customer’s digital experience, but we expect to leverage this in our branches, bringing digital experiences to the branch environment and making it easier for our customers to join and bank with us regardless of where they may be,” says Aupa Monyatsi, Managing Executive for Virtual Channels at Absa Retail & Business Banking.

“With this innovation comes the need to ensure that the security of our customers is at the heart of our digital experience, this is why the digital onboarding experience for this feature includes a high-quality facial matching check with the Department of Home Affairs to verify the customer’s identity, ensuring that we have the most up to date information of our clients. Security is supremely important for us.”

The new version of the Absa Banking App is now available in the Apple and Android App stores, and anyone with a South African ID can become an Absa customer, by following these simple steps:

  1. Download the Absa App
  2. Choose the account you would like to open
  3. Tell us who you are
  4. To keep you safe, we will verify your cell phone number
  5. Take a selfie, and we will do facial matching with the Department of Home Affairs to confirm you are who you say you are
  6. Tell us where you live
  7. Let us know what you do for a living and your income
  8. Click Apply.

 

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How we use phones to avoid human contact

A recent study by Kaspersky Lab has found that 75% of people pick up their connected device to avoid conversing with another human being.

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Connected devices are becoming essential to keeping people in contact with each other, but for many they are also a much-needed comfort blanket in a variety of social situations when they do not want to interact with others. A recent survey from Kaspersky Lab has confirmed this trend in behaviour after three-quarters of people (75%) admitted they use a device to pretend to be busy when they don’t want to talk to someone else, showing the importance of keeping connected devices protected under all circumstances. 

Imagine you’ve arrived at a bar and you’re waiting for your date. The bar is busy, and people are chatting all around you. What do you do now? Strike up a conversation with someone you don’t know? Grab your phone from your pocket or handbag until your date arrives to keep yourself busy? Why talk to humans or even make eye-contact with someone else when you can stare at your connected device instead?

The truth is, our use of devices is making it much easier to avoid small talk or even be polite to those around us, and new Kaspersky Lab research has found that 72% of people use one when they do not know what to do in a social situation. They are also the ‘go-to’ distraction for people even when they aren’t trying to look busy or avoid someone’s eye. 46% of people admit to using a device just to kill time every day and 44% use it as a daily distraction.

In addition to just being a distraction, devices are also a lifeline to those who would rather not talk directly to another person in day-to-day situations, to complete essential tasks. In fact, nearly a third (31%) of people would prefer to carry out tasks such as ordering a taxi or finding directions to where they need to go via a website and an app, because they find it an easier experience than speaking with another person.

Whether they are helping us avoid direct contact or filling a void in our daily lives, our constant reliance on devices has become a cause for panic when they become unusable. A third (34%) of people worry that they will not be able to entertain themselves if they cannot access a connected device. 12% are even concerned that they won’t be able to pretend to be busy if their device is out of action.

Dmitry Aleshin, VP for Product Marketing, Kaspersky Lab said, “The reliance on connected devices is impacting us in more ways than we could have ever expected. There is no doubt that being connected gives us the freedom to make modern life easier, but devices are also vital to help people get through different and difficult social situations. No matter what your ‘connection crutch’ is, it is essential to make sure your device is online and available when you need it most.”

To ensure your device lifeline is always there and in top health – no matter what the reason or situation – Kaspersky Security Cloud keeps your connection safe and secure:

·         I want to use my device while waiting for a friend – is it secure to access the bar’s Wi-Fi?

With Kaspersky Security Cloud, devices are protected against network threats, even if the user needs to use insecure public Wi-Fi hotspots. This is done through transferring data via an encrypted channel to ensure personal data safety, so users’ devices are protected on any connection.

·         Oh no! I’m bored but my phone’s battery is getting low – what am I going to do?

Users can track their battery level thanks to a countdown of how many minutes are left until their device shuts down in the Kaspersky Security Cloud interface. There is also a wide-range of portable power supplies available to keep device batteries charged while on-the-go.

·         I’ve lost my phone! How will I keep myself entertained now?

Should the unthinkable happen and you lose or have your phone stolen, Kaspersky Security Cloud can track and protect your device from data breaches, for complete peace of mind. Remote lock and locate features ensure your device remains secure until you are reunited.

 

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