Zimbabwe and regional technology news and updates

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Econet to launch Facebook on USSD

“Can you imagine browsing Facebook using any handset? Now You Can!” If you saw this in a teaser advert in today’s paper you must have been wondering (like we were) what sort of service this was and from which operator. We have just established from sources from Econet that this is their new product, Facebook on […]

Zvinhu Zvirikufaya viral videos and social media marketing

There really is no stopping this “Zvinhu Zvirikufaya” craze that has gripped social media is there? More and more amusing videos are being churned out by Zimbabweans and being posted on the popular Facebook page.   The latest video on Facebook features this snazzy dude drinking home brewed masese (opaque traditional Zimbabwean beer) from a wine […]

Startup solutions can help local tourism

Local tourism has always been a great investment centre that can be tapped into by players with the right enterprise, imagination and resources. It has continually been noted as a key contributor to the economy, with a lot of attention focused on how tourism related revenue generation can be boosted exponentially. Recently the Minister of […]

Econet announces free access to Twitter, your move Telecel?

Econet Wireless announced that they will be giving all broadband subscribers free access to micro blogging site Twitter.  With a tweet carrying an amusing jibe at Telecel’s catch phrase #tellsomeone, Econet has highlighted that this freebie will only last for one month. This is a welcome development for the Zimbabwean Twitter community aka #Twimbos. Expectations […]

Startup TV Yangu wants Africa to tell its own story through video

We all love great video content. It has an even greater impact if it’s got local relevance. Because of this appetite more and more local content creators are churning out productions but they face the challenge of limited online places where all this content can be consumed. TV Yangu, a local video on demand service […]

My complicated relationship with my network provider

My relationship with my network provider, Econet Wireless is rather complicated. Why complicated? Well there’s so much to be happy about when it comes to being an Econet subscriber. Then there’s the litany of frustrating practices that warrant dismissing the Econet service and using another provider altogether. All this leaves one with conflicted choices about […]

Hooked on promos

Readers may be familiar with an induction principle used by drug cartels. New drug lords wanting to penetrate the market would kidnap teenagers and force drugs on them and release them. This was done several times up to a point at which the kids became addicted. The teenagers are released eventually but drugs still made […]

Want to make an easy $300,000 in Africa?

Are you at least 21 ,socially flexible, fun-loving, open minded, bold, adventurous and are looking for a way to make $100,000 per month for three months? Are you comfortable in front of a lot of people and aren’t camera shy? No, it isn’t a call for “adult entertainers”, just an invitation to try out for the […]

What’s this “Zvinhu Zvirikufaya” craze?

I have a love-hate relationship with social media. Attached to the joys of hashtags and retweets, shares and Yos are the annoyances of Candy Crush Saga requests, chain messages and pokes. These are things that can only be avoided by being digitally anorexic. Of course there’s the magic of bringing communities together which means so much […]

Google+ engages FIFA World Cup fans with face painting feature

The 2014 FIFA World Cup has broken all barriers by all social media perspectives. So it’s not surprising that every social media platform is trying, through engaging campaigns and services, to squeeze as much of the football flavour as possible before the final whistle later this month. The latest is the face painting feature from […]

The Facebook emotion manipulation experiment: Why the internet is outraged

So all this time people have been (or at least seem to be) mad at revelations that governments, the US government in particular, analyse everything you do and say online. Turns out there’s worse stuff to be worried about. There’s outrage right now about Facebook conducting tests on its users without their knowledge. You’d at first (like […]

Social TV: What’s in it for brands?

When a dubious penalty was awarded in the dying minutes of the Ivory Coast vs Greece game, I immediately reached for my phone by reflex to launch a vehement protest on Twitter. The fact that the game had a specific hashtag made it easier for me to do that. Judging by the analysts’ feedback after […]

Facebook for Android app gets a performance bump

  Last week social media giant Facebook issued an update to its app that has a much needed performance tweak. It’s now more lighter, more faster than ever. It goes all the way down to the detail. This is a major refresh since it’s very first incarnation. The app is now 50 percent faster to […]

Tips on how to handle negative feedback on social media

Negative feedback from customers has been part of the business landscape since time immemorial. What is just different now is the velocity and visibility of complaints as a result of the pervasiveness of social media usage. Jade Furubayashi of Simply Measured puts it across in a succinct manner.  He observed that “as hard as you […]

Econet & Telecel say they do not throttle bandwidth for WhatsApp bundles

If you are an Econet or Telecel subscriber let’s take a minute to celebrate WhatsApp bundles. Discounted access to the platform has meant sending and receiving images, audio clips and videos; something to smile about. I love the ability to watch,listen and send every video or amusing audio clip without having to worry about mobile […]

Hooray for Telecel’s WhatsApp bundles! Now comes Facebook & Twitter?

A few days ago Telecel launched its own WhatsApp bundles, offering discounted access to the hugely successful IM and social media platform.  This move was what we had all been expecting for some time now, considering how their competition, Econet, has been using the same product to boost subscriber value. Telecel’s WhatsApp play deserves applause […]

How I got my number banned from WhatsApp

Yes, I once got my WhatsApp number banned. Right here in Zimbabwe! When watching Fear Factor, 1000 ways to die or some other dare-devil movie, usually they state clearly: “don’t try this at home”. Somehow I didn’t take that to heed and went for a whole 6 months without being able to communicate with the […]

Telecel introduces cheaper WhatsApp bundles, offers bonus data for early sign ups

Telecel has amped up its broadband services game with an introduction of their own WhatsApp bundles(finally). Priced for daily, weekly or monthly unlimited access to the WhatsApp service they act in the same way as the Econet variant released earlier this year. The WhatsApp bundles have proved to be successful for Econet, with the IM […]

Facebook is down. (Update: and it’s back)

Normally, Facebook is the place where we complain about services like WhatsApp, Twitter and others being down. Today it’s the reverse. Facebook, the largest social media network globally, is down. If you try to access Facebook right now from a desktop, as confirmed by several people in tweets and WhatsApp messages, you will get the following screen: We’re […]

New version of ZimStocks app lets user discuss counters

  On Saturday the the team behind ZimStocks announced on their blog the release of a new version of the application. The latest version for Android devices is already available on Google Play with the iOS version provisionally set for release on the 25th of June 2014. The ZimStocks app has been going through evolutionary […]

The good, the bad and the ugly of cheap social media

Let’s face it- some of the best products Econet has ever offered its subscribers are the Facebook and WhatsApp bundles. For a bargain price you have unlimited access to two of the most frequented, and probably essential applications for anyone exploring the virtues of a smartphone in Zimbabwe. Econet gets how social media is the […]

Three key factors for achieving social media success

Outbound marketing is in the intensive care unit and it has already been declared dead in some quarters. This is largely due to the rise in appropriateness of inbound marketing techniques as brands reach out and connect with their always on social media savvy consumers. So what are some of the success secrets that brands […]

Four critical social media marketing trends every marketer must know

Social media marketing is an ever evolving discipline and it is unsurprising that quite a number of new and useful trends surface now and again. These new ways of conducting social media marketing unlock immense value to companies. However, to make a multi-spoked social media strategy work, marketers should look beyond maintaining a mere presence […]

Keep your social media marketing campaigns on track via SWOT analysis

I recently finished reading a whitepaper on the importance of conducting a SWOT analysis in digital marketing and thought it would be good to share its highlights. One of your key responsibilities as a social media marketer is to ensure that your campaigns are on track and a SWOT analysis on a regular basis represents […]

Social media: Platforms are not as important as knowing the audience

Many brands have finally caught the buzz and have adopted social media marketing in one form or the other. However, many of them have also fallen into the trap of assuming that social media is all about knowing how to use the different platforms. Whilst mastery of social media channels is very important, unfortunately it […]

How will tech change the World Cup experience this time?

The greatest football show on earth, THE FIFA World Cup, is a little over a month away and Zimbabwe, just like every other country is joining up in the build up to the excitement that comes once every four years. Tech is set to make a big difference on how we are going to experience […]

Content marketing is not as new as we all thought

What has Ecclesiastes 1:9 have in common with social media marketing? Everything. The verse reads:  “What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again;  there is nothing new under the sun.” Surely there is nothing new under the sun and this includes social media. Although it is sometimes referred to […]

Why mobile marketing is unavoidable

Mobile marketing is here to stay and it will continue to evolve into the definitive cost-effective marketing channel with the greatest reach and engagement potential. Marketers must also awaken to its possibilities with some urgency as they might continue to put their marketing dollars in channels that do not deliver similar results at the same […]

ZBC’s broadcast of Parliamentary debates a welcome development

Recently the state broadcaster ZBC made the decision to beam live parliamentary sessions on TV and radio on select days of the week. This move, although coming as a very late approach to Zimbabwe’s attempts at open legislative activities, is definitely a welcome development. The broadcasts are scheduled for TV on Wednesday during parliament’s question […]

Facebook to introduce optional “Nearby Friends” feature

Social network giant Facebook continues to add services and improvements to its services. Recently it announced on its blog the roll out of a new feature called Nearby Friends. This new optional feature works by identifying friends that are nearby or on the move. Through notifications received on your mobile device, you will be told […]