Techzim

Zimbabwe and regional technology news and updates

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WhatsApp testing business directory (yellow pages). This will be a big deal.

The younger amongst us will have no idea what ‘yellow pages’ means. Let’s get everyone on the same page first. The telephone directory For those of us who grew up in the 90s, there was a magical book called the telephone directory. This book had the landline number of every single person in the country, […]


700TB of data sent via lasers in 20 days, Liquid and X announce

Last year we covered the partnership between Liquid Intelligent Technologies, the Econet Group and Alphabet subsidiary X. The goal is to connect remote places to the internet, affordably and reliably. Quick recap X has tried various solutions in pursuit of that goal before. For example Project Loon which involved beaming lasers between balloons 100km apart […]


EcoCash turns 10, let us look back on its dramatic first decade

Yesterday, EcoCash celebrated its 10th anniversary. Only 10? It feels like we’ve had the mobile money solution for longer than that. That’s because of just how much impact the service has had in our lives. Granted, the last few years have been tough for the mobile money services provider. But there is no denying we […]


Razer releases finger sleeves to improve mobile gaming experience

I consider myself the textbook definition of a casual gamer. I do play the more mainstream PC games – Halo, Far Cry, Tomb Raider, FIFA and so on. However, I can go for months without launching a PC game. Most of my gaming is done on my smartphone, usually pretending to look busy to avoid […]


Update Chrome now to patch serious bugs found

There is no such thing as a bug-free piece of software. The mighty Google Chrome is no exception. That’s why there are constant updates being released for the browser. The latest Chrome update patches 11 vulnerabilities that were discovered. All eleven were rated high-severity and two of those eleven were zero-day vulnerabilities. So, you need […]


Empty words from gvt, information officers not the same as information flow

Zimbabwe remains a democratic republic. Of course, we have had contested election results which undermine that. We also turn authoritarian when it suits us. So, there’s that too. The other thing we have consistently struggled with when it comes to democratic values is transparency. So, when the Freedom of Information Act was passed, few Zimbabweans […]


CBZ finally revamps eyesore of mobile app, phasing out old one

I remember when I opened my CBZ account. It wasn’t the best of experiences, I was frustrated to the point of almost choosing another bank. That all changed when I opened the CBZ Touch app. I burst out laughing. I couldn’t believe my eyes. ‘Good one Cibby,’ I thought. I needed the comic relief. The […]


Google search on desktop finally adds dark mode, what took so long?

I don’t know what it is, but light text on a dark background just does it for me. As the dark mode fever has really reached fever pitch in the past couple of years, I’ve been one happy bunny. Sometimes called night mode, this option of displaying content on a screen is my go to […]


576MP: Samsung planning to beat human eye with insane camera

Scientists estimate that the human eye has a resolution of about 576 megapixels. Samsung wants to make a camera that beats that by 2025. Yes, besting the human eye is in sights people. About time, I felt the recently announced 200MP camera was child’s play. A 576MP camera is just what the doctor ordered. A […]


WhatsApp messages are still secure, why the misleading coverage?

You read the story; some report made it appear as if WhatsApp’s end to end encryption was a sham. We were told WhatsApp staff can read our secure messages. Which is true, but they deemphasized a crucial point. Customer service staff at WhatsApp can only see messages that have been sent to them by a […]


Jah Prayzah at 1 million Facebook followers, swimming in money?

I don’t think Jah Prayzah needs an introduction now. There are a million reasons why should know him by now. The musician is uber popular now. I mean, how can one have 1 million Facebook followers in a nation of about 15 million. That’s close to 7% of the population. That’s even more impressive when […]


How do you define a successful startup in Zimbabwe? Seriously.

The challenge we have in Zimbabwe is that most of the content we consume is foreign. Even for something as basic as business news, you find many watching / reading more BBC News and Al Jazeera than ZBC News or other local providers. Entrepreneurs are no different. Almost every young aspiring businessman knows more about […]


Zimbabwean banking industry: Shame, Shame, Shame!

If you remember, the gallant RBZ announced that Zimbabwean banks were to start paying interest on savings accounts, effective 1 July. The RBZ sounded proud of this development as we could tell from the tone of their address. That was surprising. Every single person to ever be associated with banking in Zimbabwe should have been […]


Are you sure you’re not vulnerable if your phone is stolen?

I was overcome with sympathy when I heard that Kaitano Tembo’s phone was stolen. I’ve had a phone stolen before, how I loved that Galaxy S (1). However, my thief was not as cruel as Tembo’s. The thieves that stole his phone have been soliciting money from his contacts. They have been sending messages posing […]


Is the Zimbabwean Government Prepared to Thwart Cyber Attacks?

The cyber attack story that is unfolding in Belarus is destined to have a big budget HBO mini-series made about it. My goodness, the story has everything that makes a compelling thriller – mystery, danger, formidable villains and the unlikeliest of heroes. The story is one of hackers, or more correctly ordinary technology-sector employees, who […]


Enough with the crypto scams already, help prevent them

Another day, another “Zimbabweans lose millions of USD in a Ponzi scheme” headline. This time the relatively new cryptocurrency scam struck to the tune of over USD$5 million. What happened this time? Martin Mhlanga (the schemer) is sitting pretty somewhere after promising his victims fantastic returns on their investments and then failing to deliver. Mhlanga […]


Some Econet Shop franchisees tarnishing brand

When a company is chasing growth there comes a time when tough decisions have to be made. Do you entrust strangers with your hard-built brand in franchise deals? Or do you go it alone? Going it alone means slower progress, higher capital requirement and higher growth risk but allows for tighter control. Franchise deals address […]


Looking for a fast charger? Read this first

I never really hopped onto the fast-charging bandwagon. I just felt that if a phone had good enough battery life it didn’t matter how fast one could top it up. I was impressed by the eight minute top up Xiaomi demoed though. That attitude came from the priviledge of having access to a power outlet […]


Econet, Netone ill-prepared for data demand, small towns suffer

They say you never really know a person until you have seen them deal with a slow internet connection. I’ve discovered myself in the past two months or so, turns out I might have anger issues. In my defence, how many times can one interact with the No Internet Connection Dino and be expected to […]


Here Is How Much Zimbabwean Banks Charge You For POS Transactions

Zimbabwe is now almost completely a cashless economy. The latest report on payment systems from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe revealed that cash was responsible for only 2.05% of all monetary transactions. This means we are now effecting 97.95% of all payments through electronic means – cards, internet and mobile. This did not come as […]


This Is The State Of The Payments Sector in Zimbabwe

It is human nature to assume that one’s experiences are similar to everyone else’s. Living in urban Zimbabwe, it is easy to forget that over two thirds of Zimbabweans live in rural areas and oftentimes their experience living in this country can be worlds apart from their urban counterparts’. For instance, access to electricity in […]


Dogfight: The Mobile Network Operator Battle For Market-share In Zimbabwe

It is hardly news that Econet has the lion’s share of market share in the Zimbabwean mobile telecommunications industry. This has the been the case for as long as we remember, even though Econet was the last mobile network operator to enter the race. Why is that? Let us explore.   The mobile network operator […]


How Is The Contested Election Result Affecting Zimbabwe’s Re-engagement Plans?

There is no sufficient word to describe the last ten months in Zimbabwe. We saw events we never thought we would get to see in this ‘peace-loving’ nation of ours. Each of those events had a profound effect on the outlook of the ordinary citizen. A nation accustomed to hardship in the last two decades […]


Will Wallet-To-Wallet Transfers Really Change The Fortunes Of OneMoney And Telecash?

It is no secret that the government is not too chuffed about EcoCash’s dominance in Zimbabwe. The minister of ICT, Supa Mandiwanzira is on record multiple times saying as much. The fact that the government has two products of its own in direct competition with EcoCash and yet combine to command a pitiful 2% market […]


Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Defends Ban On Cryptocurrencies In Court

Here is the latest chapter in the Golix vs RBZ (Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe) saga. The RBZ filed its opposing application with the courts. Summary of how we got here: the RBZ banned the trading of cryptocurrencies, ordered banks to freeze Golix’s accounts and then ordered Golix to cease operations. Golix sued and got an interim […]


Rwanda Puts National Currency On Blockchain; Cost-Free Transfers, Cash-Outs For Everyone

Rwandan bank I&M partnered with a Norwegian firm to launch a blockchain based solution called SPENN and it is a big deal. SPENN is a mobile banking application and that is how it appears to the general public. It looks just like other mobile banking apps everyone is used to. But that’s on the surface. […]


It’s Tough Doing Business In Zimbabwe; The Story Of A Crypto Exchange

Be warned, this story will make you angry. We have been told time and time again that Zimbabwe is for sale open for business. This story will highlight just how empty that statement is, or at the very least get you asking just to whom (who?) is Zimbabwe open. Tatenda Mabungu Tatenda Mabungu is one […]


The State Of Blockchain Technology In Zimbabwe, Get The Techzim Report

Zimbabwe has been in the news recently over the ban of cryptocurrency trading by the central bank. There has been lots of debate about whether such a ban was necessary or not and even the courts are involved now. The debate has pulled in blockchain enthusiasts as well who of course have made the debate […]


Econet Manages To Squeeze More From Their Customers: Average Revenue Per User Up

Talk about stellar results. Yesterday, the Econet group released the financial results for the year ended 28 February 2018. We were impressed to find that profits after tax were up 125% to $132m whilst revenue was up 34% to $831.6 million. EcoCash was responsible for a huge chunk of that growth and is growing in […]


Petition To Zimbabwean Parliament To Regulate And Not Ban Cryptocurrencies Launched

May 2018 proved to be a crazy month in the cryptocurrency world. Cryptocurrencies went from ‘allowed’ to ‘banned’ and back to ‘allowed’ all in the space of 12 days. Governor John Mangudya and his friends at the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) overstepped their authority and issued a directive banning the trading of cryptocurrencies. They […]