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Bill and Hillary Clinton give stark assessment of the internet and its problems

Although the internet has enabled an “amazing advance” for humanity, it has “real problems” with social networks, the addictive nature of smart devices and the loss of our personal privacy, says Bill and Hillary Clinton. It was an unusual scene: a former US president and former first lady, the two […]

A year without the biggest social network on my phone has made me a freer person

“So you just view it in Safari,” a friend asked me with great bewilderment when I explained I didn’t have the Facebook app on my phone and the interactions he saw were through my iPhone’s browser. Just over a year ago I deleted Facebook off my phone. Not long afterwards […]

Ready, set, go – Black Friday is here!

It’s that time of year again: Christmas decorations are hitting the shelves, stores are rediscovering their love for Boney M. and Michael Bublé, and retailers are already sending out their Black Friday marketing. Yes, it’s the start of the summer campaign season – the stretch from Black Friday to Christmas […]

Apple CEO precipitously warns that “data industrial complex” needs to be resisted

Perhaps because it was Apple CEO Tim Cook sounding the alarm, his admonishments that our personal data “is being weaponized against us with military efficiency” are all the more real. Cook, the long-time Apple insider who took over from Steve Jobs, shares his predecessor’s stance on privacy, which is a […]

The debate about whether an algorithm will replace your job is becoming more pertinent

Most of the conversations about artificial intelligence (AI) seem to be focussed on the potential job losses this new form of automation will result in. Some 800-million people could lose their jobs by 2030 according to the figures from a study by the McKinsey Global Institute last December, which also predicted AI […]

Despite WeChat being ubiquitous in China, its stock has fallen due to a mobile gaming ban

When I handed cash to the cashier at a restaurant in Shanghai, he looked at me blankly for a moment. In front of the register were prominent signs for WeChat Pay and Alipay, the two dominant forms of mobile payments which are used by hundreds of millions of Chinese instead […]

What science fiction got wrong about our retail future

You can tell you’ve reached adulthood by the things you wish were real in your favourite sci-fi. When I was a kid, it was KITT and the flying skateboard from Back to the Future. Nowadays, the sci-fi tech that really gets me excited is the everyday stuff – the ability […]

Calling founders of Instagram “product leaders” being interpreted as the ultimate put down

When it first burst onto the app scene in 2010, Instagram was a revelation. This little picture-sharing app let iPhone users not only share their pictures but add clever filters at the touch of a button. Suddenly everyone could be Obie Oberholzer, the extraordinary South African photographer whose richly coloured […]

This time there can be no excuses about whose fault it was for 50m users being hacked

This time Facebook can’t blame a third party for last week’s major hacking of some 50m accounts, nor its seemingly scandalous use of cellphone details for marketing purposes when they were logged as security backup numbers. When the Cambridge Analytica scandal broke, Facebook tried desperately to paint itself as the […]

Has smartphone innovation peaked? Has our interest in these devices peaked?

As expected… I began writing about this month’s iPhone XS launch and realised that phrase summed up the last few years of Apple product launches. The Steve Jobs years were characterised not only by his showmanship but by his iron-clad insistence on secrecy. No supplier would dare leak any details […]

Twitter initially laughed off the hashtag and now it’s a truly global internet phenomenon

Just over 11 years ago a small word entered our global internet lexicon and is now a part of our cultural firmament: the hashtag. It was first used on August 23 2007 by Chris Messina, who – appropriately – tweeted: “how do you feel about using # (pound) for groups. As […]

A month after Apple, Amazon has also passed the magical $1tn valuation figure

Just a month after Apple became the first company to pass the magical US$1tn threshold, Amazon has done the same. Amazon isn’t called the “everything store” for nothing. From its humble origins as an online bookseller, it has morphed into an ecommerce giant and the largest provider of cloud computing. […]

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