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Technology & Communications News

South Africa pushes ahead with ocean monitoring satellite programme

By: News24Wire      28th February 2019 The government, through the Department of Science and Technology, has affirmed a further commitment to the Maritime Domain Awareness satellite programme. In addition to funding of R16.5-million, the department will pump another R27-million into the programme over the next three years, department... 

Vodacom cuts OOB rates, reconsiders data rollover fees

By: Natasha Odendaal     27th February 2019 Telecommunications giant Vodacom will not charge contract and hybrid consumers subscribed to data-only packages or data-inclusive integrated packages for the automatic rollover, for one month, of data. However, remaining data on bundle purchases by all customers will be rolled over at no... 

NTP Radioisotopes faces heavy losses this year but is confident of regaining market share  

By: Rebecca Campbell     27th February 2019 NTP Radioisotopes (NTP), a subsidiary of the State-owned South African Nuclear Energy Corporation, is expected to make a loss this year of R224-million, in comparison to profits of R108-million last year and of R184-million in 2017. This was stated in a written reply to a Parliamentary question... 

NTP Radioisotopes faces heavy losses this year but is confident of regaining market share
Photo by Duane Daws/Creamer Media
An aerial view of the South African Nuclear Energy Corporation complex at Pelindaba, which contains the NTP facilit

Rain launches 5G data network

By: Natasha Odendaal     27th February 2019 Mobile data-only network operator Rain is preparing for a mid-2019 commercial launch of South Africa’s first fifth-generation (5G) network. In partnership with global information and communications technology (ICT) solutions provider Huawei, Rain has built the first 5G commercial network, with... 

MultiChoice lists on the JSE

By: Natasha Odendaal     27th February 2019 Multichannel digital satellite and pay-television (TV) giant MultiChoice Group (MCG) on Wednesday listed on the JSE’s main board, and slotted into the top 40, with an opening share price of R95.50. The listing, which was the first at the JSE for this year, followed afetr parent company Naspers... 

Icasa won't take Vodacom data rollover charge 'lying down', MPs told

By: African News Agency      27th February 2019 The Independent Communications Authority of SA (Icasa) on Tuesday said it was probing whether Vodacom is guilty of any compliance breaches following its decision to charge consumers R49 to rollover unused data. Briefing member of Parliament (MPs) on Tuesday, Icasa chief executive Willington... 

CSIR showcases medicine dispensing robot's capabilities

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     25th February 2019 The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) has, in partnership with Right ePharmacy, developed a pharmacy automation robot for medicine dispensing. The robot is being showcased in conjunction with the Intelligent Manufacturing Systems ManuVation 4.0 workshop, which is being held on... 

CSIR showcases medicine dispensing robot's capabilities
The pharmacy automation robot for medicine dispensing

Helios to build 1 000 towers in South Africa 5G networks push

By: Bloomberg     25th February 2019 Helios Towers wants to build 1 000 telecommunication towers in South Africa in the next three years as it tries to capitalize on rapid growth in mobile services and shape up for an initial public offering. The company operates cellphone towers in countries including Ghana, Tanzania and the... 

Cell C signs term sheet with Buffet Consortium, Dos Santos to step down

By: Creamer Media Reporter      22nd February 2019 Jose Dos Santos will step down as Cell C CEO, effective March 1. He will take up a role as a consultant offering strategic advice to the Cell C chairperson. In this role, he will be involved in the delivery of Cell C’s strategic intent, which includes the reshaping of Cell C’s debt to ensure the... 

EOH CEO in fight to save graft-tainted South African IT company

By: Bloomberg     22nd February 2019 EOH Holdings CEO Stephen Van Coller is in a race against the clock to restructure the sprawling South African IT business before shareholders and lenders run out of patience. Van Coller, a former executive at Barclays Africa Group and MTN Group, was brought in to turn around the troubled business... 

CSIR displays new combined missile and gunshot warning system

By: Rebecca Campbell     22nd February 2019 One of the technologies recently showcased by the Defence, Peace, Safety and Security (DPSS) division of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) at its Pretoria campus was an Optical Missile Approach Warning and Gunshot Detection System. This combined system not only detects... 

CSIR displays its defence and security technologies to industry

By: Rebecca Campbell     22nd February 2019 The Defence, Peace, Safety and Security (DPSS) division of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) recently held a technology demonstration day at the CSIR campus in Pretoria. Various technologies developed by DPSS were displayed to representatives of industry and the media.  

SA wind tunnels very busy and other aeronautics projects secure partnerships

By: Rebecca Campbell     22nd February 2019 The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research's (CSIR's) wind tunnels are currently very busy with two international contracts, Aeronautics Competency Area Manager Kaven Naidoo tells Engineering News. Aeronautics falls under the CSIR's Defence, Peace, Safety and Security division.  

Employee training key to defending small firms from cyberthreats

By: Schalk Burger     22nd February 2019 Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) experience slightly more data breaches involving personal information, and the comparative size of data breaches are usually larger, compared to data breaches of larger enterprises. To effectively defend themselves, SMEs must recognise that data is... 

Airbus teams up with 3D software specialist to implement digital transformation

By: Rebecca Campbell     22nd February 2019 Giant Europe-based aerospace group Airbus and France-based 3D design, modelling and engineering company Dassault Systèmes have established a strategic partnership which will allow Airbus to significantly advance its digital transformation and, in the words of the Airbus press release, “lay the... 

IBM moves to support blockchain-based industrial supply chain solutions

By: Schalk Burger     22nd February 2019 Information technology multinational IBM is working with a wide range of industrial and commercial companies and organisations to develop blockchain-based industrial supply chain systems that improve on a range of value chain functions, including visibility, accuracy and supply-chain... 

IBM moves to support blockchain-based industrial  supply chain solutions
GERHARD DINHOF The solutions provide easy access for all parties in the supply chain and instant sharing of verified information

Cybersecurity to remain a dominant IT topic in 2019

By: Schalk Burger     22nd February 2019 Cybersecurity is expected to remain a dominant issue in the information technology (IT) industry this year and will underpin sustained investment in cybersecurity systems by companies, including IT service providers, says network services multinational Aruba South Africa business unit manager... 

Cybersecurity to remain a dominant IT topic in 2019
PIETER ENGELBRECHT Smart network solutions enable security teams to protect many clients and complex networks

Client choice and protection at heart of bank’s approach to fintech regulation

By: Schalk Burger     22nd February 2019 Financial technologies (fintech) are growing worldwide and reshaping the definition of money, financial services and economies. However, while the disruptions roil existing business models, companies and industries, increasing the choice of fintech services users while protecting their rights is... 

Client choice and protection at heart of bank’s approach to fintech regulation

MTN says chief of Iranian associate to retire

By: Reuters     21st February 2019 South African telecoms group MTN said the head of its Iranian associate MTN Irancell is to retire, to be replaced by an academic with expertise in the sector. MTN said Alireza Ghalambor Dezfouli, who had headed MTN Irancell since its 2005 inception, had been integral in building Irancell into the... 

EOH founder and chair resigns

By: Reuters     20th February 2019 South Africa's largest technology group EOH Holdings said on Wednesday its founder and CEO Asher Bohbot would resign from the board, effective Feb. 28. The resignation of Bohbot, who has been at the helm for 19 years, comes days after Microsoft terminated its channel partner agreement with EOH... 

EOH, buffeted by an anonymous tip, starts whistle-blower app

By: Bloomberg     20th February 2019 EOH Holdings, the South African information technology company reeling after an anonymous complaint prompted Microsoft to abruptly cancel a contract, has created an app that will make that process easier for future whistle-blowers. Expose-It, which was made available for download on Monday,... 

Icasa boss sentenced to 20 years in prison for fraud, money laundering 

By: News24Wire      15th February 2019 Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) chairperson Rubben Mohlaloga has been sentenced to 20 years in prison for fraud and money laundering. Mohlalonga was sentenced - alongside former acting head of the Land Bank Philemon Mohlahlane and attorney Dinga Rammy Nkwashu - on... 

Icasa boss sentenced to 20 years in prison for fraud, money laundering
Icasa chairperson Rubben Mohlaloga

Boeing reports the first flight of ‘Flying Car’

By: Rebecca Campbell     15th February 2019 US aerospace group Boeing announced on Wednesday, January 23, that its prototype autonomous urban air mobility vehicle had successfully made its maiden flight at Manassas in the US State of Virginia on the previous day. Boeing calls the aircraft a passenger air vehicle (PAV). The maiden flight... 

Airbus launches new space-based service for precision agriculture

By: Rebecca Campbell     15th February 2019 Airbus Defence and Space (Airbus DS), one of the companies of the Europe-based aerospace group Airbus, has launched a new service to support precision agriculture around the world. Precision agriculture is an approach to managing crops using remote sensing technologies (airborne and space-borne),... 

AI systems to be used to fight AI cyberthreats

By: Schalk Burger     15th February 2019 Companies are expected to deploy artificial intelligence (AI) systems and dynamic encryption algorithms to combat the expected complex cyberattacks arising from the growing use of AI by cybercriminals, reports digital security multinational Gemalto. Gemalto Africa identity and data protection... 

AI systems to be used to fight AI cyberthreats
NEIL COSSER Encryption renders data useless to any unauthorised person, effectively protecting it from being misused

Cryptocurrency trader welcomes SARB policy approach

By: Schalk Burger     15th February 2019 Local cryptocurrency trading platform Luno country manager Marius Reitz praises the South African Reserve Bank’s (SARB’s) approach to developing a regulatory response to cryptoassets in South Africa, which aims to protect cryptocurrency users and support the growth and development of the... 

Cryptocurrency trader welcomes SARB policy approach
MARIUS REITZ The regulations aim to ensure that the platforms are safe for people to use and combat illicit capital flows

Huawei to build data centres in South Africa

By: Reuters     14th February 2019 China's Huawei will build two data centres in South Africa from March, it said, as part of plans to expand cloud services across Africa. "The company is working with South African partners for the construction of the data centres in Johannesburg initially and later Cape Town," Huawei said in a... 

Minister withdraws telecoms amendment Bill

By: Simone Liedtke     12th February 2019 Communications Minister Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams has withdrawn the Electronic Communications Amendment Bill, which was tabled before Parliament in October last year. This decision, she explained in a statement on Tuesday, would enable further consultations and to align the Bill with the drive... 

EOH tumbles as Microsoft moves to pull resale licence

By: Schalk Burger     12th February 2019 Shares in information technology services company EOH plunged on Tuesday as the company announced that software multinational Microsoft planned to terminate its channel partner agreement with EOH Mthombo within 30 days. The impact on profit of no longer being a direct reseller will be about... 

Learners represent South Africa at Taiwan International Science Fair

By: Simone Liedtke     8th February 2019 Pretoria-based Hoërskool Waterkloof learner Christiaan Bauman won the fourth prize in the engineering category at the 2019 Taiwan International Science Fair, which was held from January 26 to February 1. Bauman’s project, titled ‘Mine Safety – The Robotic Way’, addresses the problem of miners and... 

Learners represent South Africa at Taiwan International Science Fair
Hoërskool Waterkloof learner Christiaan Bauman

Jasco’s Reflex dispute heads to arbitration

By: Natasha Odendaal     8th February 2019 A dispute over JSE-listed Jasco Electronics' majority ownership of Reflex Solutions by the fairly new addition’s minority shareholders is heading for arbitration. Jasco in November warned shareholders in its 2018 annual financial statements that the minority shareholders of Reflex Solutions have... 

Denel urges govt to use, support its new cybersecurity unit

By: Rebecca Campbell     8th February 2019 State-owned defence industrial group Denel has urged the Government to support the development of and make use of the capabilities of the group’s recently established division, Denel Sovereign Security Solutions (Denel S3). The aim is to ensure that cyber security for Government information and... 

Data emerging as high-value asset for businesses

By: Schalk Burger     8th February 2019 Data is one of the most valuable assets businesses can leverage and will drive digital agendas in 2019, with a focus on rapid analysis and use, says data management firm PBT Group executive Kevin Kemp. It is at the forefront of most digital and technology business strategies, and allows for... 

Adapt IT aims to expand African footprint

By: Schalk Burger     8th February 2019 JSE-listed information technology services company Adapt IT has grown its turnover by 4% year-on-year to R667-million and its earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (Ebitda) by 10% year-on-year to R118-million for the six months ended December 31. The company’s headline... 

AI and machine learning expected to boost productivity

By: Schalk Burger     8th February 2019 An increase in the productivity and pace of business processes can be expected owing to the use of artificial intelligence (AII) and machine learning (ML), says cloud service firm Oracle South Africa MD Niral Patel. An autonomous enterprise requires less time for manual tasks and lower chances of... 

CSIR displays new combined missile and gunshot warning system

By: Rebecca Campbell     7th February 2019 One of the technologies showcased by the Defence, Peace, Safety and Security (DPSS) division of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) at its Pretoria campus on Thursday was an Optical Missile Approach Warning and Gunshot Detection System. This combined system not only detects... 

Nigerian court adjourns MTN case until March 26

By: Reuters     7th February 2019 A judge has adjourned a Lagos court case between South African telecoms firm MTN Group and Nigeria’s attorney general over a $2-billion tax demand until March 26, the court said on Thursday. MTN faces the demand from the country’s attorney general, a claim which the company has said is without... 

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