Tech: Latest News
Kevin Mwanza, 7:57 am
Kiira Motors Corporation, the Ugandan motor-vehicle manufacturer that produced Africa’s first ever solar-powered bus in February will not commercially produce similar buses for at least the next ten years, further pushing forward the continent’s dream of producing eco-friendly cars. The delay has been caused by lack of financial partners ready to support the Ugandan auto-maker venture into the market.
Kevin Mwanza, 5:27 am
Uganda could become the first African nation to adopt legal regulations in the use of bitcoin in monetary transactions after hosting an event focused on the policy guidelines, legal and social-cultural issues on the use of crypto-currencies on the continent. The Ugandan government has left the digital currency, which is owned by BitPesa of Kenya, largely un-regulated since its entry into the region’s second biggest economy in November, last year.
Dana Sanchez, 3:26 pm
South Africa has seen a massive adoption of North American retail trends, and Black Friday is no exception, a trend analyst says. “It is tested, it works and is already embedded in the minds of South Africans.” Other research analysts are more critical. “Black Friday…is an attempt to cash in on the hype surrounding the day in the U.S.,” said Arthur Goldstuck, managing director at tech research firm World Wide Worx. “It is a classic example of self-inflicted cultural colonialism, except that here the motive is unashamedly commercial. That, in turn, means it represents blatant exploitation of the consumer at its worst.”
Peter Pedroncelli, 2:33 am AFKI Original
African business leaders make use of social media to communicate with and mentor their followers, dropping pearls of wisdom in under 140 characters. From South Africa to Nigeria, the high profile personalities and multi-millionaires from Africa offer their opinions on many issues while advancing their own agendas through social media. Here are 12 African business leaders worth following on Twitter.
Tom Jackson, 4:41 am AFKI Original
Last year, the annual AfricaCom conference in Cape Town finally got serious about startups, launching the co-located AHUB event to bring together entrepreneurs, investors and other stakeholders from across the continent. The event took place for the second year last week, bigger and better, and allowing the ecosystem to join together to map the sector’s progress and discuss obstacles.
Dana Sanchez, 5:25 pm
In the last few years it seems like news reports about HIV/AIDS in Africa have been dominated by South Africa’s success making antiretrovirals available to the public. SA still has the worst HIV/AIDS epidemic in the world. Almost 20% of the population has it, with adolescent girls disproportionatley so. Trump’s election raised anxieties that U.S. humanitarian aid like PEPFAR will stop. Trump said that the U.S. should “stop sending foreign aid to countries that hate us.” On the other hand, there is one foreign aid program Trump likes: the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief.
Dana Sanchez, 12:01 am
As reality TV shows go, “Shark Tank,” may be unusual for its focus on businesses seeking investment rather than on the drama or personal lives of cast members. There are now “Shark Tank” versions all over the world. An investor on the recently launched South African version is making waves by offering to invest in a company using bitcoin — possibly a “Shark Tank” world first. South African entrepreneur Vinny Lingham is a vocal bitcoin supporter. He’s known for a string of companies including Gyft, Yola and blockchain startup Civic.
Dana Sanchez, 3:53 pm
The RTS,S anti-malaria vaccine isn’t perfect. It showed an initial protection rate of around 31-to 56 percent, depending on the age of the patient, and seems to wear off after a year. Another vaccine developed in the U.S. showed better protection rates — as high as 80 percent — and longer-lasting protection. Used with bed nets and insecticides, RTS,S could provide a “very meaningful contribution to controlling the impact of malaria on children in those African communities that need it the most,” its maker said.
Dana Sanchez, 1:26 pm AFKI Original
Ugandan engineer Brian Turyabagye designed a biomedical smart jacket to quickly and accurately diagnose pneumonia, which kills 27,000 Ugandan children under the age of 5 every year. Most of these cases are due to pneumonia being misdiagnosed as malaria. He’s one of 16 African engineers who’ve come up with problem-solving innovations that got the attention of private and public stakeholders in the U.K. The 16 engineers are in the U.K. for 6 months of mentoring. They’re vying for a $30,000 prize.
Dana Sanchez, 10:35 am
Naspers owes its fortune to one great investment — a 34% stake in China’s top internet service, Tencent. The stake is worth more than Naspers itself. Investors aren’t impressed with Naspers’ operations in some markets. The mega firm is aggressively selling some assets, buying others and expanding online classifieds in new markets including the U.S., where it hopes to topple Craigslist.
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