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Why companies must pay more attention to coms

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As technological innovations start changing communications, businesses are being forced to to retire outdated systems and implement newer ones, writes RAVIN NAIDU of Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise.

The corporate world is overflowing with innovation and new advancements that are changing the face of communications. As a result, businesses both large and small are being forced to say goodbye to their old, outdated communications systems and implement newer ones.

Communications systems allows businesses to connect with their customers but most importantly, they allow employees to connect with one another, ensuring a productive workforce that will provide better service to their customers. With technology advancing at a rapid rate, it has become easier for employees to stay connected to their colleagues and their line managers. I believe this makes solving queries easier and more efficient.

Another vital component of a business’s communications infrastructure is the foundation of their communications server. In my opinion, a communications server is the heart of a business that connects their employees to a network, allowing them the convenience of accessing this information remotely. With the introduction of smartphones, employees have been exposed to new levels of productivity and capability on the move. This phenomenon has become known as BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) and it is in every businesses best interest to embrace this.

The infrastructure of a business’s communications system also needs to be robust enough to ensure it is able to handle high call volumes without running the risk of lost calls or unanswered voicemails. This is where businesses can really improve on their customer service. A reliable communications system will ensure that the customers query never goes unanswered and thus, investing in state of the art communications systems will benefit both you and your customer.

In an environment where data is constantly being transferred from one point to another, it is of utmost importance that your communications tools and solutions are adequately protected from cyber-attacks. Some businesses may have sensitive data that they do not want all members of staff having access to and we know the most efficient way of protecting this is through encryption as only those with a secret key or password will be able to access these files using cipher text.

Communications systems should never be considered an unchanging, unimportant aspect of a business model, but rather a vital cog in ensuring its longevity. Not enough importance is placed on communications systems in today’s age and many fail to remember that the communications infrastructure of a business bridges the gap between your business and your customer, making it an indispensable driver of success.

* Ravin Naidu, Regional Director Southern Africa for ALE, marketed under the brand Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise

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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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