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GUAPTunes launches with 1GB free data from AlwaysOn

Posted by radio On November - 11 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS

New mobile music and video application gives you the power to control your data use

There’s a new digital music player that lets you create your own personal mobile music and video channel – and it gives you the power to choose how much data you use.


GUAPTunes is a homegrown app that’s free to download from the Android store, and the first 20,000 downloads will also receive one gigabyte of free data from AlwaysOn, a Wi-Fi internet services provider, as a welcome gift.



“GUAPTunes is a hybrid between music television and YouTube, all presented on a custom-built music-focussed mobile platform,” says founder Jerome Pikwane, an award-winning graduate of New York’s Film Academy. “It puts all the awesomeness of the music industry at your fingertips, while giving you the power to actively manage your data consumption and expenses.”


GUAPTunes lets you control your data consumption, as you can manipulate and select part of the video stream without affecting the quality of sound production. It also offers a personalised audio option, which lets you to listen to your favourite music as an audio-only file, reducing data consumption even further. There’s also a blog that shares all the latest news in the local and international music industries.


“We hate billing surprises as much as music lovers do, and using GUAPTunes gives you the power to stay connected to your tunes at all times, while keeping control of your budget,” says Hayden Lamberti, managing director of AlwaysOn. “At AlwaysOn, we’re delighted to partner with GUAPTunes to give music fans more tunes for their money.”



‘GUAP’ is street slang for wealth or abundance, and music fans will have access to rich resources of hip hop, R&B, kwaito and house created by artists all over the world. Fans should follow @GuapTunes on Twitter or find GuapTunes on Facebook for more information about the app, the community, and how to enjoy more of their favourite music for less data charges.


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MTN slash FrontRow subscription price

Posted by radio On August - 7 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS

Save R60 on an MTN FrontRow Club subscription



MTN FrontRow Club subscription now costs only R119 a month on any mobile network – that’s an early Christmas gift of R60 a month. Even better, if you’re an MTN subscriber, you get free data for streaming too!


New subscribers are already being charged the lower amount, while current subscribers will be moved to the new price this month.


So what do you get for your R119? You can choose from a huge range of TV series or movies from our ever-growing catalogue to watch whenever you like, on any of your digital devices and on any mobile network.


Exclusive to MTN FrontRow Club are the acclaimed drama series Power (we have episodes of season two just 24 hours after their US debut) and Black Sails. Other current TV highlights include The Honourable Woman; Sherlock; Castle; and the original Australian version of The Slap.


The MTN FrontRow Club movie selection has hundreds of all-time favourites and evergreen classics. Watch titles such as Erin Brockovich; Good Will Hunting; Stand by Me; Sin City; and Identity.


Then there are plenty of TV shows and films for the kids; a treasure trove of new and older music videos in popular genres; and beautifully made documentaries … you’ll never be bored again.

Meanwhile, renting a blockbuster or silver-screen classic on MTN FrontRow Premiere will still cost as little as R15 a film – with or without an MTN FrontRow Club subscription and on any mobile network. MTN subscribers using MTN FrontRow Premiere will also now enjoy free data for streaming.


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Naspers post strong results again

Posted by radio On June - 29 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS

Naspers today announced financial results for the year ended 31 March 2015


Progress across platforms


naspersOn an economic-interest basis, revenue grew 26% to R132,4bn, driven by growth across the internet, ecommerce and video-entertainment (previously pay-television) segments.


Core headline earnings, an indication of sustainable earnings performance, grew 30% to R11,2bn, mainly due to increased earnings contributions from Tencent and some profitable ecommerce businesses. Core headline earnings per share amounted to R27,82 and a dividend increase of 11% to R4,70 per share is proposed.


“We improved our internet and video-entertainment platforms,” said Naspers chair, Koos Bekker. “In a few key markets we strengthened people, technology, content or marketing. However, competition is tough and global, while some emerging economies are struggling and consumers feel the pinch.”


“The combination of populous markets and attractive platforms for ecommerce and content delivery, suggest growth potential for the years ahead,” said Naspers CEO, Bob van Dijk. “We are investing in proven business models that can become cash generators if executed well,” he added.


In ecommerce, both classifieds and etail saw growth, resulting in revenues increasing 36% to R27,8bn. Tencent in China was the main contributor to the group’s share of equity accounted results growing to R16,4bn.


The video-entertainment division produced consistent performance. Revenues increased 17% to R42,4bn, whilst a step-up in development spend on the DTT business resulted in margin pressure. The DTT subscriber base doubled to close at 2,2m customers. Some 727 000 DTH subscribers were added to bring the DTH base to almost 8m subscribers. In total, the group now serves around 10,2m households in 50 countries across the African continent.


The print-media segment saw the listing of printing business Novus in March 2015. This segment managed to deliver only marginal revenue growth, while continuing to develop young revenue streams in internet and ecommerce.


“We aim to deliver great customer experiences in order to grow ahead of our competitors and expand markets. This is reflected in the development spend (including those of equity-accounted ecommerce investments) which increased by 33% to R10,7bn,” said Basil Sgourdos, group CFO.




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MTN FrontRow launched: watch what you love

Posted by radio On December - 30 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

Yesterday was a mega day for MTN: as they officially launched  MTN FrontRow,  premium entertainment network that brings you all the TV series and movies you love, even if you’re not an MTN subscriber – and you could get the first month FREE.


You won’t even have to install a dish, buy a box or take out a bank loan. From only R179 a month, you can sign up to MTN FrontRow Club and play our content instantly at any time via your browser on your computer or mobile device, or on our Android app (an iOS version is coming soon!). You can even stream to your TV via your devices.


And once you have subscribed, you can rent brand-new blockbuster movies and more from only R15 a film on MTN FrontRow Premiere even before they’re added to the main catalogue.


But what would convenience and a great price be without exceptional content? As an exclusive offer on MTN FrontRow Club for the launch, you can view the thrilling pirate adventure series Black Sails, from executive producer Michael Bay (the brains behind Transformers, Bad Boys and Pearl Harbor). It’s a hard-hitting tale: those of you who love the grown-up drama of Game of Thrones will get hooked on Black Sails too.


If you get seasick easily, fear not: on MTN FrontRow Premiere, you can rent How to Train Your Dragon 2 – a sure-fire hit for the whole family – and, fresh off the cinema circuit, Guardians of the Galaxy, the gung-ho space adventure that ruled the box office this year.

That’s just a tiny taste of the thousands of TV series and movies in our catalogue, which stretches from today’s hits to all your favourite classics that you can now watch over and over again.


Ready to try out MTN FrontRow? Simply visit our website and sign up for the special launch offer of R179 a month for all you can watch, or pay R399 a month and we’ll throw in a full 10GB of streaming data – that’s about 28 hours of viewing on us.

Even better, the first 1,000 subscribers on will get their first month of viewing FREE!


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Digital Media Revenue to soar

Posted by radio On October - 27 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

Although there is dramatic change in the way consumers spend their money, digital revenues in other segments remain relatively small. Internet access provides the potential for expenditure on digital content, yet outside of Internet access revenue itself, digital revenues will still only account for a fraction of the overall

Digital media background concept

Nevertheless, digital is on the rise both in terms of consumer and advertising revenues. Without Internet access included, digital consumer revenues will increase from 2.1% of total consumer revenue in 2013 to 2.7% in 2018.


Digital consumer revenue will overtake non-digital consumer revenue in 2016 and will account for 55.3% of the market in 2018, helped by dramatic increases in the number of mobile Internet subscribers.


Digital advertising

In 2009, digital advertising revenues comprised just 1.9% of overall E&M advertising revenue. Advertisers have since seized upon the measurability and spending guarantees of Internet advertising, with digital advertising constituting 5.1% of 2013 revenues and forecast to make up 9.7% of revenues in 2018.


Despite dramatic growth, traditional advertising media will still prevail, with the likes of television and radio revenues still guaranteeing the kind of captive mass audiences that the Internet cannot yet offer.


Internet access revenues aside, the tipping point from traditional media to digital media remains a long way off in South Africa, in terms of revenue at least. Companies and advertisers would still do well to focus on the digital consumer, who may well have greater disposable income, but for the time being traditional media will still constitute the majority of revenues.




For more on this visit



[Source: PwC]

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There is no doubt that digital is having a profound impact on both advertising and marketing with digital tentacles creeping into every industry. Speaking at the Future of Media & Advertising conference, Luke McKend, Country Manager for Southern Africa, Google, said mobile has become pervasive and thoroughly embedded in the world we live


Last year we predicted that by the end of 2014 more people would be searching Google on their mobiles than on desktops. It happened … in January 2014,” he revealed. “We never anticipated how quickly mobile was going to become a core part of our business.”


As a result of all the different platforms that media is now consumed on, the industry’s concept of measurement has had to change. The concept of a four screen world – phone, tablet, laptop and TV– has become a reality with screens used interchangeably. While media owners typically belong to one of these screens, problems arise when you look at each screen in isolation. However, the notion that we have to use digital in isolation has been blown apart – even though most people don’t use all four screens simultaneously.


As soon as digital is thrown into the equation, said McKend, the competitive landscape is dramatically altered, opening local players up to global competitors. What marketers need to remember, he stressed, is that digital is not about clicks or views, but about the products sold.


McKend illustrated brands which are successfully using digital media, including Red Bull which has used digital to re-invent its brand. In the online space Red Bull is associated with extreme sports, offering highly engaging content. “Red Bull has completely re-imagined their brand and positioned themselves as content publishers who happen to sell carbonated sports drinks on the side.”


He stressed that one of the key challenges resulting from the digital revolution is how to buy and sell in a digital world.


The panel discussion following McKend’s presentation included Marcus Stephens, GM: Publishing, Kagiso New Media and Brett Loubser, MD of WeChat and focused on issues such as how digital facilitates disruption, changes the distribution model, and enables rapid execution. The panel agreed that consumer touchpoints need to be critically analysed and that the onus is on advertisers to create great content to ensure people watch it rather than choose to skip it.


McKend concluded by saying he hoped that any advertisers who have had interaction with Google have some form of positive ROI to show for it.



[Source: Redzone]

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YouTube on a rampage over licencing

Posted by radio On June - 19 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

you tube





It’s being reported that the media sharing giant will be removing indie artists of all genres from its site According to, some of your favorite videos may disappear forever from YouTube.


The news comes as some music trade groups have criticized YouTube’s plans to potentially block the content of certain labels from appearing on YouTube’s free, ad-supported Website unless they sign deals to participate in the new, subscription streaming music service. The deals that YouTube is offering are on “highly unfavorable, and non-negotiable terms,” according to a news release issued by the Worldwide Independent Music Industry Network last month.


YouTube declined to comment on the terms of the deals, but said in a statement that the new service would provide new revenue for the music industry.


The site, which is owned by Google, has already signed licensing deals with most of the music industry’s major distributors, however, the independent labels are refusing the allegedly unfair deals that Google has set up for them.


With YouTube building up a paid subscription service, the indies are being faced with two options; sign the licensing deals or face being left off the service AND have your content removed from the site.


While we wish that we had a 100% success rate, we understand that is is not likely an achievable goal and therefore it is our responsibility to our users and the industry to launch the enhanced music experience”, says Robert Kyncl, VP and Global Head of Business at YouTube.

The new service is alleged to be called MusicPass and is intended to change the way people use YouTube. Users will be able to download music just like Spotify, iTunes Radio, and Amazon’s recently added Prime Music.


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MTN to partner with simfy africa

Posted by radio On June - 5 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

MTN South Africa has become the first mobile operator in the country to launch a streaming music service following an exclusive partnership with South African based simfy Africa.


For R49 per month, MTN customers will be able to listen to all of their favourite music via streaming or in an offline mode. Customers can access an endless supply of music across multiple devices including their computer, tablet and smartphone. All customers will have the opportunity to try the full service, and enjoy all of its features during a two week free trial period.

“MTN is proud to be the first to bring an innovative streaming music service direct to our customer’s smart devices,’ says Mike Fairon: General Manager Products and solutions. simfy Africa offers superior technology and a strong focus on the best music content, making them a fantastic partner for MTN. “Customers no longer need to use a separate ipod, MP3 or CD player. Living in the connected world means that there is no need to carry a dedicated music player if a smartphone or tablet can just as effectively fulfil that function,” adds Fairon

mtn logo

The service will be available to the public from 4 June 2014. The user simply needs to register at and confirm their username and password. All that remains is to download the simfy Africa mobile application from either the Android, iOS or Blackberry stores, or access simfy Africa via their website. This will provide customers with full access to 23 million songs that include a full selection of top international,South African and African content across all musical genres, including RnB, pop, alternative, jazz, soundtracks, opera and SA favourites hip hop, kwaito, Afrikaans and SA rock.

‘We have a strongly African focus’, says Gillian Ezra, Chief Operating Officer of simfy Africa. ‘As a company which is locally based, we ensure that our product is targeted to the needs of the South African consumer, both in technology and music choices. This partnership with MTN will further extend this ethos, allowing us to offer added and exclusive benefits.’

Simfy Africa is an ‘on demand’ service, thus customers can choose the music they would like to hear and access it instantly. Users can choose to listen to tracks or albums, or even set up their own unique playlists, and share any of these with friends via social media. Users also have the choice of accessing the hundreds of pre-made playlists which are easily accessible via the service. Also on offer are the built in personalised radio channels, proving the ultimate ‘sit back’ experience. All music offered on the service is fully licensed.

Simfy Africa launched in South Africa in late 2012, and has been steadily building and improving its service since that time.

“This follows the recent announcement that MTN is providing its customers with free WeChat streaming to the CliffCentral unradio radio station. It is further testament to how MTN is identifying strategic partnerships with content providers that are able to enrich the lives of its customers,” says Mike Fairon: General Manager Products and solutions

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Media Modelling of the future

Posted by radio On June - 2 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

In a time of browsing and scheming, future media models are all about reading – grasping the attention of the bored consumer – and being innovative with digital. But, it is predicted that 80 to 90% of publishers will still fail to innovate. They will fail because they have not integrated digital strategy with print strategy. They will fail because they have not understood digital margins vs. print margins. They will fail because they cling to the banner ad and have failed to develop viable alternatives and are facing competition now, not just from other media houses, but from the brands themselves and their advertising agencies.


And they will fail because they have failed to understand their changing consumer – the millennial generation who read when they are bored, when there is nothing else to do or view or play with. These were some of the very interesting insights coming out of the Digital Innovators Summit in Berlin recently. The objective of the seven-year-old event is to help content business leaders develop better strategies and media models in the digital era, but the opening advice to delegates this year was to ditch the ‘D’ word, reports in a very insightful article on the media summit.


If you are still talking about your digital model and your print model, you might as well put your pen down and retire. It is integration or bust.

Reading is key. Ten years ago I attended a global print conference in Cape Town which already warned of an increasing ‘alliterate’ generation that can read, but chooses not to. This was of course before the advent of social media.


Future media models were envisaged by the Digital Innovators Summit, as follows:


  • Native content is something we hear a lot of in South Africa, but mainly from the digital and advertising agencies, not publishers, which are losing a slice of major advertising revenue as a result.


  • Include the “social dynamic”. Stories need to be told differently for the different social networks, from Facebook to Twitter to Instagram and Vine, for example.


  • Reimagine news from a mobile perspective and learn to tell it differently. My Twitter feed scrolled so fast these past few weeks with the same tweets from the #Oscartrail from different media and journalists, that I could hardly keep up. It was disruptive and extremely repetitive. There has to be a different way. The worst is when people try to “serialise” their tweets with ‘Parts 1 – 10 when they are trying to make a point. Just like we don’t translate radio content for TV, too many are still trying to write for social media and mobile applications like they do for print. Déjà vuanyone? We made the same mistakes in the early days of online media!


  • The banner ad is dead (long live the banner ad!), and magazine publishers were told to look to new sources of revenue from “native and programmatic advertising”. Reporter Peter Houston from explained in his article that “prescriptions for successful native included quality content, clear labelling and strong social integration”; and programmatic advertising was described as “an opportunity to exploit booking efficiencies to free up time for cross-selling and creative consultation with commercial partners”.


  • And this is where we get to the part where publishers were told to act more like marketing agencies. That makes sense, because many agencies have been acting as publishers recently with the increasing use of branded and native content. For more on native content and recent international trends, here’s an indepth article from Forbes last month


  • Then there were partnerships for content distribution and ecommerce deals for readers, such as in the travel and leisure markets makes sense and many of our local publishers are being very successful with commercial brand extensions, travel tours and fashion websites, etc.


  • And here’s a very interesting one: publishers have been urged to invest in technology startups to bring talent and opportunities into legacy publishing businesses – something we have seen a couple of our big local media houses do with some success.

The advertising industry has learnt the hard way and in many ways is ahead of publishers in reimagining new ways to reach consumers with innovative content marketing across the different media spectrums that vie for the consumers’ attention. Publishers would do well to keep an eye on the agencies and brands which have long been predicted to become their own branded media platforms


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Icasa sets sights on new spectrum bands

Posted by radio On May - 29 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS


Although Icasa regulates all spectrum between 9kHz and 1THz, Stucke explained that the authority has not really attempted to tackle anything above 30GHz until now.


Icasa only has a spectrum licensing framework that goes up to 30GHz. We don’t know how to regulate spectrum above 30GHz,” he said.


Stucke said the first challenge is that the current spectrum fee regime doesn’t make sense above 30GHz as it will prove prohibitively expensive. He explained that the issue is resolvable and Icasa intends addressing it so that the industry can take advantage of EHF spectrum.


Icasa, he said, must still determine which licensing models are most appropriate – whether the frequency should be licence-exempt or licensed in some way. He said the conventional licensing model for spectrum is well understood, but is slow, cumbersome and expensive. The licence-exempt model tends to work quite well for Wi-Fi, but only for personal hotspots, he said. “It’s not always as good for commercial uses as there is no provision for protection [from interference].”


Because of its properties, EHF spectrum is most likely to be used for short-distance, high-capacity, point-to-point links – providing “very fast throughput using relatively small antennas with very high gain”, according to Wapa executive committee associate and spectrum expert Jens Langenhorst. One application, Langenhorst said, would be for providing high-speed backhaul between small cellular sites (so-called picocells).


However, EHF spectrum has a number of problems, including the fact that it is only really suitable for short-distance communications (typically 2km or less) and the fact that it is highly susceptible to so-called “rain fade”. Also, specifically around 60GHz, oxygen in the atmosphere “absorbs” radio signals and causes significant attenuation.


In past it was considered unusable spectrum, but you can do a hotspot and get a gigabit per second of capacity over it over a relatively short distance,” he said. “60GHz is not usable much beyond 2km and is the one place in EHF spectrum where attenuation is at its worst.”


Heavy rain also causes problems, Langenhorst said. However, Simon Yomtov, country MD of networking specialist Ceragon, said South Africa is “an almost perfect place to deploy e-band”. This is because rainfall is fairly low in general.


Wietz Joubert, co-founder of Redline Technologies, proposed a different solution. He said so-called “optical wireless broadband” (OWB) technology, which uses optical laser beams to transmit data at high speeds in the 300THz and 400THz bands, could be used in conjunction with EHF equipment to provide high-speed short-haul links.

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