Tech news around Africa today

Tech news around Africa today

INTERVIEW: North Wind Digital CEO on the potential for Blockchain in Africa

North Wind Digital CEO, Adrian van der Merwe, has a vast understanding of technology as well as the finance function thereof. With a career in the accounting industry spanning 20 years, Adrian is passionate about using technology to bring about the best return. IT News Africa’s Jenna Cook had the opportunity to chat with him about the understanding and application of blockchain in Africa. Here’s how it went: 

‘Blockchain’ is no longer exclusively synonymous with ‘Bitcoin’ and other cryptocurrencies, however, other notable Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) applications are not well publicised. Why do you think this is?

In the case of DLT applications, it is because of the lack of awareness for what DLT stands for. We understand the term Blockchain better as there is a use case that we can relate to in the form of Bitcoin. 

Smart contracts are the next use case we could all relate to, however, we have no working examples of that yet. The adoption rate for the technology is slow, and it’s not from a lack of potential areas of impact. Key challenges are how to implement and ensure adoption. 

What are some of the other ways that DLT can be implemented in Africa specifically?

DLT has many potential applications within Africa, however, the main areas include public services for identity and rights management, healthcare for diagnoses and treatment and finally, cryptocurrencies for commerce and potentially as parallel currencies in the event of hyperinflation.

Apple on track to compete in the 5G market

To all iPhone fans, brace yourselves — the iPhone 5G may be coming soon. It would seem that Apple is gearing up to design and manufacture devices with 5G functionality after the companies recent purchase of Intel’s smartphone modem business.

Week-long negotiations came to a successful end on Thursday, 25 July 2019, when Apple announced a purchase agreement. The deal is said to be valued at $1 billion and will see Apple take on innovative equipment, leases and intellectual property as well as over 2,200 Intel employees. 

On the positive side, the Apple-Intel deal is said to provide Apple with ownership of over 17,000 wireless technology patents. On the negative side, it might still be a while until the tech manufacturer is ready to release a 5G capable device. 

Pop-up camera smartphone set to launch in South Africa

On Thursday, 25 July 2019, Huawei announced that its YP Prime 2019 is officially set to launch in South Africa on 1 August 2019.  The company said ‘as part of our promise to constantly improve its products, this new device will flaunt some great new elements. These features include an Auto Pop-Up Selfie Camera, a triple rear camera, a long-life battery, impressive storage, and the Huawei Ultra FullView Display screen’.

The Pop-Up Selfie Camera can be found tucked away neatly into the top of the Huawei Y9 Prime 2019. This smart camera automatically ‘pops-up’ within a second of being activated, removing unnecessary bezels from the appearance of the phone.