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Vodacom takes aim at DStv Mobile

Just days after Naspers subsidiary MultiChoice launched a streaming television service on Vodacom’s network, the cellular network operator has launched a product of its own. The company at the weekend announced it would offer a video-on-demand service for cellphones, taking aim at MultiChoice and its DStv Mobile offering.

TalkCentral: Episode 4

Episode 4 of SA’s business technology podcast, TalkCentral, is live. In this week’s show, your hosts Duncan McLeod and Candice Jones talk about the dramatic axing of communications department director-general Mamodupi Mohlala. We interviewed her this week about how the drama unfolded at the department. We also review the other big stories of the week, including Wananchi’s plans to deploy fibre to the home in Kenya, the “I’m been unfairly maligned” speech by Telkom’s nonexecutive chairman, Jeff Molobela, the impending collapse of pay-TV operator Super 5 Media, the launch of DStv Mobile’s streaming video service, and much more.

SA left out as Kenya gets fibre to the home

Kenya and Tanzania are to get high-speed fibre-to-the-home connections offering a triple-play bundle of broadband, telephony and cable television thanks to a US$200m investment from the private sector. The company behind the project, Wananchi — which is backed by Cisco Capital and East Africa Capital Partners — says it would love to do the same in SA, but the regulatory environment here precludes it from doing so.

Mohlala backs down on legal action – for now

Axed communications director-general Mamodupi Mohlala has acceded to a request by President Jacob Zuma to postpone her legal action against communications minister Siphiwe Nyanda. Contradicting media reports elsewhere on the Web on Friday, Mohlala says she has agreed to the president’s request to postpone her legal application for now and a new court date has been set for 26 August.

DStv’s mobile streaming no stopgap

Pay-TV incumbent MultiChoice says its new streaming mobile TV offering is not a “stopgap” while it waits for a mobile TV licence. TechCentral broke the news this week that the company will go live with a streaming mobile TV offering at R59/month from 1 August.

Why StarCraft 2 was worth the wait

In a gaming industry where developers release sequels at the rate of one a year or every two years, a 12-year wait for a new game in a franchise is a lifetime. But that’s how long we have had to wait for StarCraft 2: Wings of Liberty, the follow-up to a real-time strategy (RTS) game that has sold about 10m copies worldwide and still commands a fanatical following. Rival franchises such as Command & Conquer have Zergling-rushed retail with a string of mediocre sequels over the past decade. Blizzard, by contrast, has turtled in its base for years to create something truly special. Initial impressions are that the game has been well worth the wait.

ZA Tech Show: Episode 121

Your panel this week consists of Ben Kelly, Duncan McLeod, Jon Tullett and Simon Dingle who discuss the iPhone 4.0.1 update, e-books and audio books, smartphones, inductive charging, Microsoft Kinect pricing, console gaming, Facebook, undersea cables, and more

Telkom seeks to stave off Nigeria bankruptcy

Telkom is trying urgently to renegotiate multiple contracts entered into by its troubled Nigerian subsidiary Multi-Links. If it can’t reach new agreements with the suppliers, Multi-Links could be forced to shut up shop. That’s the stark warning from Telkom acting CEO Jeffrey Hedberg, who had been running the Nigerian business until a few weeks ago, when he was called on by Telkom’s board to head up the group following the premature departure of former CEO Reuben September.

DStv to get HD movie channel

Broadcaster MultiChoice is again expanding its high-definition (HD) portfolio, with plans to launch an HD movie channel on 1 October, TechCentral has learnt. The channel, to be called M-Net Movies 1 HD, will join the four HD channels MultiChoice has already launched on its DStv Premium bouquet.

Taxman promises tech-driven facelift for customs

The SA Revenue Service (Sars) is modernising its customs processes to improve its service and increase compliance, the tax body said on Thursday. “The programme will improve the service for tax-compliant traders and increase the risks for those who are noncompliant,” Sars commissioner Oupa Magashula told a conference in Johannesburg.

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