The Mi-Fone A300 (and what it means for Africa)

The greatest trick Steve Jobs ever pulled was getting us to use his phone as the benchmark for all phones. They make a good benchmark of course: best experience, best industrial design and best ecosystem. Best for developed nations (and the developed nation pockets that exist in the developing world) perhaps? But best for Africa?…

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Samsung Omnia 7: I like it, really like it

You’re going to hear a lot of talk about “ecosystems” as Windows Phone 7 (Microsoft’s new SmartPhone Operating System) starts to gain momentum. An ecosystem is a pretty critical element of the modern technology landscape, worth getting to grips with. Software Ecosystems has a very broad, strategic definition of ecosystems: “A human ecosystem consists of…

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Nokia E7 — getting dirty.

Ok, I’ll admit it. I’m biased against the current crop of Nokia smartphones. I just think they’re crap — and maybe that’s because I’m a “power user” (although sometimes I think my levels of frustration exceed the everyday consumer). Or maybe it’s just because I’m getting grumpy in my old age. Symbian has simply ceased…

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Outsurance, broken brand promises and the social media effect…

BROKEN BRAND PROMISE #1: With claims service so fast, it’ll be as if it never happened. BROKEN BRAND PROMISE #2: We care about you, and we protect you. I actually like Outsurance’s new set of TV campaigns (see below). They’re catchy, witty and speak to one of the critical parts of the insurance relationship —…

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Are we returning to a mom-and-pop business culture?

Reading an extract of Gary Vaynerchuk’s new book, The Thank You Economy. You can grab the same extract here. First thoughts, it looks a lot better written than the first. More mature. Excited. Here’s a paragraph: At its core, social media requires that business leaders start thinking like small-town shop owners. They’re going to have…

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Nokia N8 review

I so badly wanted to like this phone. In my world, Nokia just hasn’t cracked it since the E71. That phone rocked my world. Nothing has since, and it seems that until Symbian has been rudely shoved aside, this situation will remain. Here’s a quick hit summary of the Nokia N8, with my fairly simple…

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A regular consumer view of the Nokia Ovi Store experience…

Nokia was kind enough to send me some rad bluetooth headphones, and more importantly, a R200 gift voucher for the Nokia Ovi Store (the artist formerly known as The Nokia Music Store). I did a quick interview with Jake Larsen when the store launched a couple of years ago, so I was keen to take…

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Clarins SA and their Foursquare pilot…

Disclosure: Tim Britz, the brand manager at Clarins who kindly gave me this interview is a personal friend, and is probably on Foursquare because of my incessant hounding. I have no current commercial ties to Clarins South Africa. Congrats on getting a Foursquare pilot going. You’re probably about the fifth company in SA to reach…

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The thank you economy

I had a very strange experience today. It was a warm winter’s day, and we had a fire going outside. Glass of wine in hand, I was fiddling around with my iPhone (as one does — usually to one’s wife’s discontent) — specifically a cult favourite app of mine: Mood Agent. As I launched the…

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Selling online: An FNB case study and some thoughts about the future…

“The great thing in the world is not so much where we stand, as in what direction we are moving.” – Oliver Wendell Holmes Writing this post has taken a long time (and it’s a long post). It’s one of those opinion pieces that moves dangerously between industry comment and personal insight. Add to that…

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