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Technology & Communications News

International space probe en route to Mercury

By: Rebecca Campbell     Updated 7 hours ago The joint European-Japanese twin-probe BepiColombo space mission, to the Solar System’s innermost planet, Mercury, was successfully launched from Kourou in French Guiana on Saturday. The spacecraft, built by Airbus and launched by an Ariane 5 rocket, has four main elements: the Mercury Planetary... 

Court to hear MTN's case against Nigeria's central bank in $8.1bn transfer row

By: Reuters     22nd October 2018 A hearing in the court case between MTN and Nigeria's central bank in a dispute over the alleged transfer of $8.1-billion of funds by the telecoms firm, has been set for Oct. 30, a lawyer for MTN said on Friday. MTN has denied claims that it depleted Nigeria's forex reserves, the South African... 

Data underpins urban growth in South Africa

By: Simone Liedtke     19th October 2018 The use of census data, and modern cloud-based software, as a tool in urban growth modelling is a sustainable route for long-term urban planning, Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) senior researcher Quintin van Heerden said on Friday. In this regard, he told delegates at a CSIR... 

South Africa renews bid to accelerate digital migration process 

By: African News Agency      19th October 2018 The South African government on Friday announced steps to join fellow African nations which have migrated to broadcast digital terrestrial television, despite missing the June 2015 target. "The mere fact that 11 years since Cabinet has approved this project, and we are still this far behind... 

South Africa renews bid to accelerate digital migration process
Communications Minister Nomvula Mokonyane

Mokonyane to give update on progress of digital migration

By: News24Wire      19th October 2018 Communications Minister Nomvula Mokonyane will brief the media on the progress made by the Broadcasting Digital Migration Advisory Council on the country's digital terrestrial television (DTT) plan on Friday. The council and the project director for the DTT programme management office headed by... 

Mokonyane to give update on progress of digital migration
Communications Minister Nomvula Mokonyane

Tech, fashion showcased in iconic African designs

By: Natasha Odendaal     19th October 2018 A successful campaign aimed at bringing to life the transformative capabilities of data has revealed the combination of the power of technology and fashion and turned a concept into a dialogue. A thought-provoking project under the bannered theme “Fabric” undertaken by Siemens in August... 

University hosts Africa’s first virtual reality press conference

By: Natasha Odendaal     19th October 2018 As Singularity University (SU) works to prepare global leaders and organisations for the future, it has showcased Africa’s first virtual reality (VR) conference, hosting SU leaders from around the world to discuss, in real-time, SU’s global vision and how to future-proof Africa. While SU global’s... 

Aventics offers online service and product portal

19th October 2018 Pneumatic components and systems manufacturer Aventics will now offer their customers in Germany, France and Spain an innovative service and product portal. The online portal helps to quickly and easily find information on components and solutions tailored to the requirements of engineers and... 

Aventics offers online  service and product portal
AVENTICS PORTAL The online portal helps to quickly and easily find information on components and solutions tailored to the requirements of engineers and purchasers

Electronification prompts data-based services

19th October 2018 As part of the electronification of mobile hydraulics, drive and control technologies group Bosch Rexroth is developing new, data-based services for all aspect of rail vehicles. Until now, the maintenance of rail vehicles has essentially happened at fixed intervals, whereby the service engineer... 

Electronification prompts data-based services
INTERNET OF THINGS An Internet of Things solution manages the transfer, processing and visualisation of measured data for PredictDrivetrain and NextGenSpec

EOH hopes restructuring will create new growth platform

By: Schalk Burger     19th October 2018 JSE-listed information technology group EOH has separated into two companies as part of its work to renew the business and position it for growth. The EOH-branded information and communication technology (ICT) business will focus on digital services in a digitising economy and the Nextec company... 

Altron appoints another acting CFO

By: Creamer Media Reporter      18th October 2018 JSE-listed Allied Electronics (Altron) has appointed Andrew Holden acting CFO, effective October 19. This follows the resignation by acting CFO Tim Jacobs, who will assume a permanent CFO role at a multinational group as from October 19. 

Telecommunications industry loses billions of rands on the back of regulatory uncertainty

By: Natasha Odendaal     18th October 2018 The South African telecommunications industry needs regulatory certainty or it will continue to lose billions of rands in investment, Vodacom Group CEO Shameel Joosub warned on Thursday. Speaking during a question and answer panel at the MyBroadband conference, in Midrand, he explained that the... 

Liquid eyes further expansion as Cape to Cairo links up

By: Natasha Odendaal     18th October 2018 Pan-African telecommunications group Liquid Telecom is eyeing further expansion across the African continent after completing its Phase 1 decade-long project of connecting a 60 000 km network from Cape Town, South Africa, to Cairo, Egypt. The group on Thursday reported that, following the... 

Africans fear trend towards levies on data, services

By: Reuters     18th October 2018 The brisk business Julius Kirya did from his cash transfer kiosk in the Ugandan capital has slowed right down with a new tax on mobile money. Many of his customers have returned to sending banknotes by hand, in some cases via motorbike taxi. How to tax digital revenues, from fintech to social... 

Nigeria central bank, MTN getting closer to settlement – Minister

By: Reuters     18th October 2018 Nigeria's central bank and South African telecommunications firm MTN could soon strike a deal in their dispute over the repatriation of $8.1-billion, Nigeria's information minister said on Wednesday. The central bank says MTN transferred $8.1-billion of funds out of Nigeria in breach of... 

African countries can leapfrog technologies, if they understand the requirements

By: Rebecca Campbell     17th October 2018 The world, in trade and industrial terms, is being disrupted by both technological and political developments, providing opportunities but also posing risks to African countries. So highlighted University of Cape Town Mandela School of Public Governance Professor Carlos Lopes. On the... 

Poverty comes with a data premium – Competition Commission hears 

By: Natasha Odendaal     17th October 2018 Just over a year since initiating a market inquiry into data services, the Competition Commission on Wednesday kicked off its three-day public hearings to obtain a clear understanding of what is causing or leading to high data prices, along with the current state of competition, in South Africa.... 

MeerKAT telescope described as 'a quantum leap forward'

By: Kim Cloete     16th October 2018 The launch of Ghana’s Kutunse radio telescope, as well as South Africa’s 64-dish MeerKAT telescope have been lauded as examples of what can be achieved when African countries work together in the interests of science and technology. South African Science and Technology Minister Mmamoloko... 

MeerKAT telescope described as 'a quantum leap forward'
Photo by Dylan Slater
MeerKAT

CSIR, Sansa renew MoU to advance space research, tech development

By: Marleny Arnoldi     16th October 2018 The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and the South African National Space Agency (Sansa) have renewed their memorandum of understanding (MoU). The first MoU between the organisations was signed in November 2013.  

CSIR, Sansa renew MoU to advance space research, tech development

Digital-enabled creativity, tech solutions and interaction at Italian innovation fair

By: Creamer Media Reporter      15th October 2018 The circular economy, robotics, artificial intelligence (AI) and space exploration were among the main topics that were showcased at this year’s Maker Faire Rome, which took place at the Rome Exhibition Centre in Rome, Italy, from October 12 to 15,  2018. The largest European innovation event –... 

Telcos embracing once-feared OTTs

By: Natasha Odendaal     15th October 2018 South Africa’s mobile operators are seemingly starting to embrace over-the-top (OTT) services, with offerings of OTT-related bundles with lower effective rates per megabyte of data, the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa’s (Icasa’s) latest tariff analysis report shows. The... 

No digital migration funds have been wasted – Mokonyane

By: Natasha Odendaal     15th October 2018 The Department of Communications (DoC) will continue to have the remaining set-top boxes (STBs) it has already procured distributed ahead of the implementation of the new broadcasting digital migration model in March next year. None of the R10-billion in expenditure or procurements undertaken to... 

AfriCanopy to deploy low-cost Internet to rural KwaZulu-Natal in TV white space trial

By: Natasha Odendaal     15th October 2018 The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) has approved plans for telecoms start-up AfriCanopy to embark on an eight-month commercial trial of television white space (TVWS) devices. AfriCanopy will now deploy high-speed, low-cost broadband using its new telecoms technology... 

Mobile tech laboratory using robotics to inspire love of science in children 

By: Schalk Burger     12th October 2018 The latest mobile laboratory of the Inspired towards Science, Engineering and Technology (I-SET) science community engagement project has robotics kits that learners use to build and program robots, thereby inspiring them to pursue careers in science, mathematics, engineering and technology.... 

Mobile tech laboratory using robotics  to inspire love of science in children
i-Set project leader & Unisa lecturer Patricia Gouws discusses the i-Set Programme

Telecom connectivity for the South African market

12th October 2018 The Prysmian Connectivity Business Unit, a unit of Italian multinational corporation Prysmian Group, which manufactures electric power transmission and telecommunications cables and systems, visited South Africa in August to present product solutions to new and existing customers in the country... 

Customer analysis expected to sharpen business performance

By: Schalk Burger     12th October 2018 More detailed insight into daily business transactions, generated by deeper analysis of their characteristics, will help businesses to lower the costs of doing business, serve key segments better and seize transient opportunities, says customer behaviour prediction firm Xineoh founder and CEO... 

Customer analysis expected to sharpen business performance
VIAN CHINNER The industrialisation of smart systems will lead to companies being more responsive, data-driven and customer-centric

Cabinet approves revised digital migration model

By: Natasha Odendaal     11th October 2018 Cabinet on Wednesday approved a revised digital migration delivery model that will see government step back from its involvement in the procurement of set-top boxes (STBs), warehousing, transportation and the installation of the devices. The new model for the implementation of the broadcast... 

Cape vulture provides inspiration for homegrown vertical-axis wind turbine 

11th October 2018 A South African inventor has developed a new flexible wing, which he believes could have application in everything from wind energy and sailing to aviation and motoring. 

Cape vulture provides inspiration for homegrown vertical-axis wind turbine
Cape vulture provides inspiration for homegrown vertical-axis wind turbine

AAD 2018 aerospace and defence exhibition reports attendance figures

By: Rebecca Campbell     10th October 2018 Africa Aerospace and Defence (AAD) reported on Wednesday that its 2018 edition (held from September 19 to September 23) received 32 538 trade visitors. The show was divided into three trade days and two public days, the latter being over the weekend of September 22 and September 23. The two... 

AAD 2018 aerospace and defence exhibition reports attendance figures
Photo of AAD 2018, taken from an altitude of 500 km by an Airbus Pleiades satellite, on the first of the trade days (Airbus Defence and Space)

Blockchain tech coming to commodities, Masters tells LME

By: Bloomberg     10th October 2018 The blockchain is coming to commodity markets, Blythe Masters told guests at the London Metal Exchange annual dinner during LME Week. The virtual ledger technology underlying cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin promises greater confidentiality, fewer paper exchanges, better provenance and a boost in... 

Helios to enter South Africa within the next year, says CEO

By: Bloomberg     9th October 2018 Helios Towers wants to enter South Africa within the next year, helping the mobile phone tower operator build scale as it prepares for a stock market listing as early as 2019. Helios is in talks with potential partners to comply with South Africa’s black economic empowerment requirements and... 

Telkom Kenya holds talks over two submarine cable landing deals

By: Reuters     9th October 2018 Telkom Kenya is in talks with two unnamed parties over partnerships to allow it to sell high speed internet capacity from two undersea data cables that are about to land in the East African nation, its CEO said on Tuesday. The operator, which is the smallest in Kenya behind Safaricom and Bharti... 

Nigeria's Emefiele is said to meet with MTN, banks Tuesday

By: Bloomberg     9th October 2018 Nigeria’s central bank governor, Godwin Emefiele, will meet with MTN Group and four banks on Tuesday amid a dispute over $8.1-billion that the bank said was transferred illegally out of the country, two people familiar with the situation said. The people declined to be identified because the... 

Vunani, Ayo partner up for R100m fintech JV

By: Marleny Arnoldi     8th October 2018 Technology service providers AYO Technology Solutions and financial services group Vunani Group have formed a R100-million joint venture (JV) to expand the platform and financial services activities of the listed Vunani Limited. Vunani Limited is a diversified financial services group with more... 

MTN shares up 2% on possibility of reduced repatriation demand

By: Reuters     8th October 2018 South Africa's MTN Group shares rose as much as 2.55% after the Nigerian central bank governor said on Sunday the bank may reduce the amount it has ordered the telecoms firm to repatriate as part of an ongoing disagreement. MTN and the central bank are in a dispute over the transfer of $8.1... 

Logicalis Australia acquires CNI

By: Creamer Media Reporter      8th October 2018 JSE-listed Datatec on Monday announced that its Australian subsidiary Thomas Duryea Logicalis has acquired Melbourne-based Microsoft-certified gold partner Computer Network Integration (CNI). CNI, which has yearly revenues of about $2-million, has been a focused Microsoft Azure partner since 2012... 

Science fair affords students learnerships, prizes to promote science skills development

By: Marleny Arnoldi     5th October 2018 During the Eskom Expo International Science Fair, which was held from October 3 to 5, the Eskom Senior Grand Prize was awarded to a Curro Klerksdorp Grade 12 learner Aqil Variava, who developed the “pollution index” – a tool to investigate water quality. He won a R75 000 cash prize.  

Science fair affords students learnerships, prizes to promote science skills development
Curro Klerksdorp Grade 12 learner Aqil Variava wins Eskom Senior Grand Prize
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