Brevity in Communication: Twitter vs the telegram

The Victorianachronists

While Twitter has become a wildly popular new means of communication, it has not been without its critics.  Questions like, “What can we say that is meaningful in 140 characters?” and “What are we losing by keeping our social interactions so brief?” have abounded since Twitter’s inception.  The value of brevity, however, is not a new concept.  In the late 19th and early 20th century, one of the most efficient ways to transmit important information rapidly over great distances was the telegram.

Telegram authors had an incentive to be brief – most telegram companies charged per word.  As a result, authors took some common shortcuts used in the Twitterverse such as dropping pronouns and articles and using abbreviations and code words to maximize information and minimize characters.  So forced brevity in communications isn’t really a new concept at all. In fact, telegrams were often used to convey life-changing news-births, deaths…

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By chiefwriter Posted in General

New Nokia Asha Phone.

Nokia has added another Asha phone, the Nokia Asha 501. Nokia says the phone will have a longer battery life. Well you should believe this since we all know that Nokia batteries are very durable. The other thing is that this phone will run the Nokia S40 OS and it will sell below $100.

Well what that means is that it is an entry level smartphone so don’t expect Samsung Galaxy 4 perfomance or screen quality here.Image

Smartphone Survey For Zimbabwe


There was a survey on the Techzim website about which smartphone is used the most.

Below are the results of the survey:

Results Summary

  • There were 87 respondents mostly coming from the 25-35 age group and the majority (93%) of them were from Zimbabwe.
  • Most of the respondents named Samsung (35%) as the phone they used most followed by Nokia (26%).
  • Samsung was named the favorite phone by 42%, HTC 17%, Apple phones 15%, and Nokia 12% and only 4% wanted a Blackberry.
  • Android was the most popular Mobile Operating System (53%) amongst respondents followed by Nokia’s Symbian 17%, Apple’s iOS 11.5% and Windows Phone 7%.
  • Over 79% of the people cited price as being either everything or very important when purchasing their phones as compared to 6% who do not care about price at all.
  • 51% care about the availability of accessories and servicing technicians whilst 49% do not care that much.
  • More than 87% of the respondents have smartphones.
  • Meanwhile close to 44% of the people use their phones as the primary means to access the internet.

And the insights (Gloating)

  • Nobody wants a GTel for some reason- I suspect people still associate it with cheap Asian imitations. Nothing can be further from the truth. GTel smartphones can compete with the rest of them up there in terms of performance and specifications.
  • Android is king but Symbian is still a force to be reckoned with.
  • Samsung is the most coveted brand of phones but Nokia is still very much in the picture.
  • Price is critical to people when making a purchase and for a lot of people it is the only thing between them and their favorite phone.
  • People do not care as much about the accessories and availability of service technicians when making a purchase. I would imagine warranties mean nothing to them as well.
  • Smartphones are the new deal in town and if you are a reseller, you would do well to stock your shop with them especially the cheap ones.
  • The number of people who use their phones is significant (close to half of the respondents) increasing webmasters would best be advised to make sure that their sites are optimized for mobile viewing considering this is the global trend as well.
  • People love Whatsapp and corporates should, in the same way they have Facebook pages, consider joining Whatsapp to communicate with their clients and other stakeholders. I bet you there will be a time when people will use Whatsapp more than they use Facebook.
  • People still use Opera the most on their phones but Chrome is coming for that top spot.

So there you have them, I took part in the survey as well and I think Samsung is the King of Smartphones and Android is the top Operating System for mobile phones.

Whatsapp Woes


I have seen people getting robbed because they have to install whatsapp. Some people do not even know how the whole whatsapp thing works.

One of my friend thought all the money he juices in his phone goes to whatsapp.

In Bulawayo town, some “clever and greedy” people are capitalising on people’s ignorance to get cash.

To get your own Whatsapp on your phone, you need to folk out an astounding $5 and to get Opera Mini, you will fork out another $5. That is $10 whooping bucks in one go.

What that person does is to give you a copy of Whatsapp and Opera that is in his computer and “Charge” you.

So how do you install both Whatsapp and Opera Mini for Just a $1, yes one dollar.

There are two options: Lets start with option one

  1. Arm yourself with the data cable that came with your phone.
  2. Find the best Internet Cafe that is fast. Some Cafe are dead slow.
  3. Log in and search “download whatsapp”,
  4. Better still follow this link here
  5. DO NOT download from the Google Play Store! You are on a computer right? Then Playstore Does not download to your computer
  6. Make sure the file you are downloading has an .apk extension like so whatsapp000.apk if you using Android Phones.
  7. Now plug in the data cable onto the computer usb port as well as your phone
  8. Now send the whatsapp .apk file to your phone and make.
  9. The next step is a bit tricky it depends with what version of Android you are running.
  10. Now go to your File Manager and Find the whatsapp.apk file on your phone memory card.
  11. Touch the file and your phone will complain about “Your phone does not Install Third Party Apps” Just below that statements there is a “Settings” and “Cancel”. Choose settings and your settings will open.
  12. There will be an option were it says “Unknown Applications” Touch that and there will be a green tick in a box.
  13. Done, go back to the whatsapp.apk file and touch it again. It will Install without glitch.
  14. Make sure you have some airtime in your phone.
  15. Enjoy whatsapp.

Now Option Two:

  1. Go to an Internt Cafe that has an option of Wifi. One hour wifi costs one dollar. You need fast wifi.
  2. With your phone, scan for the wifi network of the cafe, use the password that they gave you to connect to it and then search for “whatsapp for Android” I guess you are using Android.
  3. Navigate to this link on your phone: whatsapp download
  4. Now let the app download untill it finishes.
  5. Do nothing, when the app finishes download it will install and ask you to verify phone number and stuff and you are done.
  6. Enjoy whatsapp.

So which method is better. Both methods are good but obviously method two is simplest. However, you take less than ten minutes with both methods.

However the first method has the advantage that the whatsapp.apk file will remain in your computer as well as your memory card after installing. So you can charge people to install whatsapp from you computer or you can send it via Bluetooth to other Android Phone Users.

So enjoy whatsapp

Kingdom Bank falters! Sends wrong signal to the world


Kingdom Bank made headlines in the press for almost “collapsing”! Well the bank did not collapse as the “collapse” as what the press said. The Spiritage credit they borrowed to the collapsed firm almost did them in.

However, may main worry is that Kingdom Bank is a local Bank and Saviour Kasukuwere is saying Banks must be siezed and Indeginised. Now a local Bankis collapsing and sending the wrong the signal to the world about local banks.

The issue caused panic. My friends opened new accounts with some Banks, One company closed its account as they the news. So are we really supposed to sieze these foreign Banks like since they are the most stable banks?

If you look at the chain of banks that were local that closed you will be amazed. Royal Bank, Barbican, Genesis! All these banks are nowhere to be seen.

I would rather bank my business money in a foreign owned stable bank than support a bank that is “local” all in the name of “indeginasition” that seems to be faltering, I don’t know what yopu think about it.

Astro Phones, should you buy these “Made in Zimbabwe” phones?

At the ZITF 2013 I stumbled upon the Astro Brand of phones and it was my first time to come across this brand. Their flagship phone was the Astro Virtual which is a Phablet! Well a huge phone that is.
In fact this phone is 5.1 inch screen size, running Android 4.2 which is the latest Android version the world over mind you. From my temporary usage at the ZITF 2013 I found the large screen refreshing than the 2.8 inch phone that I had that was stolen at the same ZITF 2013 trade fair.
With 1 gig ram you really can’t complain unless if you want to play 3D games and all. If you the usual whatsapp, Opera Mini + a few games and music player then with such specs you can’t go wrong.
However one thing got me raising my eyebrows, the guy who showed me the phone at the ZITF told me that the phones were ‘Made in Zimbabwe’ with a straight face!
Really you expect us to believe that! Designed in Zimbabwe I may believe but ‘Made”!!! Hey even Apple Phones are not made in USA but they are assembled in Asian countries.
Well, I hope to get my hands on this phone and see how it fares against the G-Tel Infinity 707 as these two companies are “Proudly Zimbabwe”.

G-Tel Infinity 707

G-tel had the Infinity 707 during ZITF 2013 and I must say I was impressed. I liked the 3D home page view. I must say it was quiet impressive. I haven’t used the phone fully to write a full review but their website say:


  • Screen Size – 4.3 inch
  • 1Ghz Processor
  • 1600 Mhz battery

However to my horror, I trooped to the G-Tel shop near Magnet House only to find the shop empty. No phones were on the shelves. That was just the beginning. I asked the lady manning the empty counters if they had “Android phones I could view?”
With a straight face she said “NO!”

She then perskily shoved a piece of torn paper that had all the phones that they had, to my amusement, the paper had Android phones. Now for a company that is trying to beat Samsung in Zimbabwe I think the customer care you get from the shop attendants is a factor that may drive away clients.
I then trooped to Tinny Communications and what a cool service I got there. I was given the phone I requested, tested it, asked for another one, tested it and bought one phone, shown how to operate it and I was thanked for making the purchase.
To those who are waiting for a full review of the Infinity 707 you may have to wait until I get my hands on it, hoping I don’t come across pesky sales people.

However with the above specifications, you expect normal performance, not mind blowing performance! By the way, I have seen really a few people who “NEED” mind blowing performance in Zimbabwe

You can also read a review about the Astro Virtual Phablet here as it is also a “Made in Zimbabwe” product.