PAYING for a taxi ride using your mobile phone is easier in Nairobi than it is in New York, thanks to Kenya’s world-leading mobile-money system, M-PESA. Launched in 2007 by Safaricom, the country’s largest mobile-network operator, it is now used by over 17m Kenyans, equivalent to more than two-thirds of the adult population; around 25% of the country’s gross national product flows through it. M-PESA lets people transfer cash using their phones, and is by far the most successful scheme of its type on earth. Why does Kenya lead the world in mobile money? Before we look into the intricacies of this question, it is apparent that the Kenyan economy is deeply integrated with Mpesa services and in extension, our lives in general. In order to assess the depth of this dependence, there is need t
An average smartphone these days is packed with a wide array of sensors such as GPS, Camera, microphone, accelerometer, magnetometer, proximity, gyroscope, pedometer, and NFC. According to a team of UK scientists , hackers can potentially guess PINs and passwords – that you enter either on a bank website, app, your lock screen – to a surprising degree of accuracy by monitoring your phone's sensors, like the angle and motion of your phone while you are typing. The danger comes due to the way malicious websites and apps access most of a smartphone's internal sensors without requesting any permission to access them – doesn't matter even if you are accessing a secure website over HTTPS to enter your password. Smartphone apps usually ask your permissions to grant them access to sensors lik
Android is the most popular operating system in the world when it comes to browsing the web. It’s hardly a surprise considering that smartphones are practically the go-to computer for going online, and most of these smartphones run Android. The stat trackers at StatCounter have come out with their internet usage numbers for the month of March, and they have, for the first time, reported Android as the world's most popular operating system. Nudging ahead of the once-untouchable Windows by a tiny fraction, Android is now the world's most-used platform for getting online according to these latest figures. “This is a milestone in technology history and the end of an era,” StatCounter CEO Aodhan Cullen said. It marks the end of Microsoft’s leadership worldwide of the OS market which i
Apple unloaded a laundry basket of announcements with changes for its iPad and the iPhone. The America's Tech giant just released its new tablet called “the new iPad 9.7”. Sure this is the cheapest a new 9.7inch iPad has ever cost but don’t pop the champagne yet, a lot of corners have been cut to achieve at such a low price. The screen has remained the same at 9.7 inches with a 1536*2048 resolution as other high end Apple tablets, but the True Tone Display functionality is no longer present. This feature ensured that colors are still accurate regardless of how dull or bright the screen was. Also, the anti-reflective coating that helped with outdoor legibility is also gone. The new iPad may be part of the Cupertino, Calif., tech giant’s gambit to resurrect tablet sales. At about 2
Sony has just unveiled four new smartphones at MWC. Each one of these phones are targeted to a different target market. Apart from the Sony Xperia XZ Premium that we already reported on, the company launched the Sony Xperia XZs, Sony Xperia XA1, and finally the Sony Xperia XA1 Ultra. The XZs comes with a 5.2 inch full HD display of the Triluminous variety. The phone is wrapped in a glass back and front while a metallic frame runs in between to form a water and dust resistant body. Being only one of the few smartphones which sport a whopping 4K display, the XZ Premium once again raises the bar in visual prowess. The Xperia XA1 Ultra phone comes with a whopping 6 inch screen with full HD resolution and almost no bezels at all, its quite breath-taking. A Mediatek Helio P20 runs the show rev...