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Posts tagged "Digital"
The adoption of fintech applications including digital wallets is booming in the Asia Pacific region, according to a new study by Rapyd, a global Fintech as a Service company.
The survey said digital wallets are particularly taking off for personal transactions, such as personal repayments from family or friends, rebates, and sale of personal goods or services.
Across the seven markets studied, India was found to the biggest adopter of digital wallet apps for both business-to-business (B2B) and P2P transactions, recording the highest usage rates.
Rapyd surveyed 3,500 online consumers in the Asia Pacific region (India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan, and Thailand) in March and April 2020, found that consumers across the region are rapidly embracing mobile fintech apps, with 77.6% of Indians, 77% of Malaysians, 70% of Indonesians, and 66% of Thai, having used a digital wallet app over the past month.
The survey respondents were identified as household decision-makers aged 18-64 across a full spectrum of income levels and asked questions around banking and payment preferences, behaviours, and concerns.
The survey, which contrasted attitudes between different countries, is a sign of where they are on their digital payments journeys. The report also found that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to global payouts. Every country is unique in its preferences and digital leaders must be prepared to localize their payout experiences to drive beneficiary loyalty and engagement.
The survey, however, threw up some interesting info about India: Indian users who are self-employed and work on a contract basis received payments more via wallets than cash or bank transfers. Around 33.5% of Indians chose this as their preferred option.
India is the only country that picked e-wallets as an option for transferring remittances. The possible reason is that the cost of remittances remain high in India.
Indians value data safety
Most interestingly, India cared more about keeping its data and private information safe than any other Southeast Asian country.
The survey said that 82% of Indians, 75% of Malaysians and Indonesians, and 68% of Singaporeans cited keeping personal information safe as the most important attribute of receiving payments.
The Reserve Bank of India, India's Central bank, would be happy to know of this as it has mandated a mechanism for all companies to store data in India, much to the chagrin of international tech giants and credit card networks.
Their insistence on safety and security reflects the mood of the Indians.
Overall, the study reflects remarkable buoyancy in the finance app industry which has seen staggering growth in global adoption, from 16% in 2015 to 64% in 2019.
The move by large organisations and small- and mid-sized enterprises to transform their businesses digitally is driving public cloud spend in the Middle East and North Africa (Mena).
Sid Nag, research vice-president at Gartner, said that government initiatives such as Smart Dubai, Smart Abu Dhabi, Bahrain’s Cloud First Policy of 2019 have bolstered cloud adoption among large organisations in the region.
Organisations are also increasingly moving their applications and workloads to the public cloud as concerns around security and governance dissipate further as many global tech companies have opened data centres in the region for data residency regulations.
Big tech companies have shown interest in the UAE to open data centres. Amazon Web Services has a cluster of data centres in Bahrain and the UAE.
Oracle already opened its first data centre in the UAE last year in Abu Dhabi and plans to open one more in Dubai this year, and two in Saudi Arabia this year, one had already opened in Jeddah, while Microsoft opened its data centres in Dubai and Abu Dhabi last year.
Alibaba Cloud, the cloud computing arm of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group, has already invested in one data centre in the UAE while SAP opened its data centres in UAE and Saudi Arabia last year.
IBM opened two data centres – one each in Dubai and Abu Dhabi – this year.
Big cloud providers need to have local data centres to cater to governments, financial and banking sectors for data residency regulations.
Necip Ozyucel, Cloud and Enterprise Group Lead at Microsoft UAE, that the cloud adoption was strong in the UAE but the challenge was finance and government industries because of data redundancy and latency was also another challenge for other industries as well.
After the opening of data centres in the UAE, he said there is a strong adoption of cloud services across industries and it has also unlocked all the problems of the governments.
“Governments and financial sectors are moving mission-critical apps onto the cloud and many customers in retail, construction, airlines, and small- and medium-sized companies are migrating,” he said.
Arun Khehar, senior vice-president for East-Central Europe, Middle East, Africa and India at Oracle, said that that the data centre is a huge catalyst for on-premises customers to move to the cloud as they can expand beyond their geographies and it can be done only through the internet and cloud.
“Government sector is not an issue as we have been selling to them three years back. The issue is with the sensitive part of the government such as the department of finance. This happened because of the Abu Dhabi data centre. Data sovereignty is a key issue. HR and payroll are crucial and sensitive in this part of the world,” he said.
Security and privacy issues have been taken care of because of the local data centre, he said and added that the cost of running a cloud is cheaper as there is no infrastructure cost, skills are not needed as Oracle own the skills and upgrades.
- Oracle sees more UAE governments moving to the cloud platform
- Microsoft sees room for growth opportunities for all cloud providers in UAE
- Oracle on track to beat AWS in number of data centres by end of the year
Growth drivers: CRM and ERP
Khehar said that business issues have become critical and digital transformation has become a much bigger issue than where the data is going to reside.
Nag said that the collective economic goal of the region to become more technology- and data-centric has been a cornerstone to this rapid acceptance of both the private and public cloud.
The regional market is expected to increase 21% year on year to $ 3b this year compared to $ 2.5b a year ago and this figure is expected to increase to $ 3.6b in 2021.
Nag said that SMEs in the region are focusing their investments in cloud deployments that will enable faster business analytics and artificial intelligence, both of which are key growth drivers for public cloud in the region.
In the public cloud space, software as a service (SaaS) is expected to account for 53% of the total public cloud service revenue to $ 1.6b this year compared to $ 1.3b a year ago.
“SaaS products are typically sold via subscription, allowing companies to avoid large up-front licensing fees and capital costs. The cost-effectiveness of SaaS is one of the motivations for organisations to increase their spending in the segment,” Nag said.
Customer relationship management (CRM) and enterprise resource planning (ERP) remain the top two segments driving the growth of SaaS and will continue to go up as businesses keep enhancing their customer experience.
Nag said that ERP will accounts for 12% of the overall public cloud service revenue forecast this year and this is because most independent software vendors have converted their ERP applications from on-premises, license-based offerings to cloud-based SaaS offerings.
While business intelligence (BI) applications are currently low in the region, he said that it is the fastest-growing segment among SaaS offerings and on pace to total $ 29 million in 2020, an increase of 37% from 2019.
“BI revenue is expected to achieve 30% growth over the next three years as local businesses leverage BI-based analytics to make smarter decisions and optimize their business operations,” he said.
In this guide to the best photo printers, we look at the top devices for ensuring your photos look their best when you make physical copies of them.
No matter if you're a professional photographer, or merely a keen amateur that likes to take holiday photos, you'll want the very best photo printer your budget can stretch to – and we're here to help.
These days, there's a huge range of photo printers to choose from, so our best photo printers guide is here to make things more simple. We've picked the absolute cream of the crop when it comes to photo printers – from affordable desktop photo printers for everyday use, to expensive studio-quality professional photo printers and even wireless printers that can be used with a smartphone.
The best photo printers come in every shape and size, from budget photo printers that are easy to use, portable devices and even professional-level photo printers. Fortunately, this means that no matter what you’re looking for, you should be able to find the best photo printer for your needs.
Not only have we collected the very best photo printers for a huge range of budgets and use cases, our very own price comparison tool will also scour the internet for you and deliver the best prices.
The best photo printer at a glance
- Canon Pixma Pro-100
- Epson Expression Photo XP-970
- Epson SureColor SC-P800
- Canon IP8720
- Epson EcoTank ET-7750
- HP Envy 5055
- Canon Pixma TS9150
- Canon Pixma G4510
- Epson Surecolor P400
- HP Envy Photo 7855
The Canon Pixma Pro-100 is a monster of a photo printer. Its 8-ink dye system called ChromaLife 100+ provides excellent color accuracy and a wide range of colors for vivid prints that you would want to hang in a museum. Its large format allows you to print up to 13” x 19” prints and, with its two paper trays, you’re able to cover just about any paper stock you can think of, making this printer incredibly versatile.
Despite its sleek dimensions, this smooth 3-in-1 inkjet device is able to print on A3-size paper and uses not four, but six inkjet cartridges to achieve superior colour accuracy. It means your ink costs are rather high, but it’s worth it for the beautifully shaded results. The scanner is only A4-size, but it makes very high resolution scans and combined with the high print resolution, you can make near identical colour copies. There’s no fax and print speeds are slow, but in all other respects, the Epson Expression Photo XP-970 is hard to beat. For an idea of its performance you can read our review of the almost identical Epson Expression Photo XP-960.
This A2-size print-only device will suit any business that needs to turn out professional quality large format colour documents. It uses Epson’s nine-colour UltraChrome HD inkset for lifelike colour shading, which come in high capacity 80ml cartridges. Add the paper roll option and this machine can handle high print runs, or turn out impressive panoramic posters. Unsurprisingly, it takes up quite a bit of room and the cost is high, although considerably lower that outsourcing your prints.
Read the full review: Epson SureColor SC-P800
Want to produce borderless photo-quality prints of up to 13” x 19”? Most printers just can’t do that. The Canon IP8720 however can. And with its 6-color ink and 9600 x 2400 max DPI, you get gorgeous and rich color reproduction as well as incredible detail. The Canon also allows for a plethora of ways to print including from mobile devices using their Canon Print App or from the cloud with AirPrint and Google Cloud Print.
It looks a little ungainly with the refillable ink tanks ruining the symmetry of this otherwise compact all-in-one, but it’s the refined EcoTank system that sets this model apart from the competition. If you can swallow the high price tag, your ongoing ink costs will be very low and Epson’s five-colour printing guarantees excellent image quality, especially with photos on photo paper.
Read the full review: Epson EcoTank ET-7750
This humble all-in-one can scan and copy, but its real strength is in printing photos. Frustratingly, there’s no Ethernet port, or USB port for printing from a flash drive and it churns very slowly, but the results are surprisingly good for such an affordable inkjet. The supplied starter cartridges are rather light on ink, but if you replace them with high-capacity carts, then the running cost is competitive too.
Sitting at the top of Canon’s Pixma range, the TS9150 looks like a premium product as you might expect, with a giant touchscreen display nestling up-front. It also boasts a high-resolution printing and scanning and Canon’s excellent six-ink system. By using black pigment ink alongside dye-based colours, photographic prints look especially realistic.
Canon’s most affordable printer to include ink tanks instead of cartridges is a modest 4-in-1 that could work well in a small office that needs to run out lots of colour documents. It prints very slowly and cannot print on both sides of the page, but in all other respects, it holds up well. The cartridge-less system is very economical and the box includes enough ink for 6,000 mono and 7,000 colour pages.
Read the full review: Canon Pixma G4510
If you want results that look like they came from a photo lab, the Epson Surecolor P400 is hard to beat. Not only does it come with an 8-color ink set including both matte and photo black for a full spectrum of rich color, but it has cut-sheet and roll paper support that allows you to produce just about any project you can think of. The ink system includes 14 mL cartridges that can be individually replaced, making this a printer that won’t run out of ink in the middle of a project or waste precious ink.
HP’s oddly shaped all-in-one includes every feature from a fax facility, to an SD card slot, while giving you easy access to them via a colourful touchscreen interface. The coloured inks are combined in one cartridge and if you subscribe to HP’s Instant Ink service, it will be automatically replaced just before you run out. It feels a little flimsy, but photos prints in particular, look vibrant.
- We've also highlighted the best small business printers
If you're ready to cut the cord, your first step is buying an HD antenna. Depending on where you live, these inexpensive replacements for rabbit ears offer more than a dozen over-the-air channels that you can get without paying a dime.
Unfortunately the fact that TVs can receive these channels is a fact that has largely been obscured by cable companies that are all-too-eager to sign you up for an expensive cable plan. That said, while over-the-air broadcasts are much more limited than any cable package out there, they're totally free and still usually carry the biggest sports match-ups (the NFL on Sunday, the NBA Finals and the Stanley Cup), plus sitcoms, dramas and comedy shows from NBC, ABC, CBS and more.
But which HD indoor antenna is the best? Well, that's exactly what we wanted to find out, so we called in a whole bunch from various manufacturers and put them to the test. What you'll find below is, in our opinion, the definitive round-up of the best indoor TV antennas for your money in 2020.
Best indoor TV antennas at a glance
- AmazonBasics Indoor Flat TV Antenna (35-Mile Range)
- TERK Trinity Amplified Indoor HDTV Antenna
- Antennas Direct ClearStream Eclipse 2
- Antop HD Smart Bar AT-500SBS
- Antop HD Smart Antenna SBS-301
- Winegard FlatWave Amped FL5500A
- Mohu Blade Indoor/Outdoor Bar Antenna
- Ready to upgrade your TV as well? Here are the best smart TVs in 2020
Best indoor TV antennas 2020
It's right there in the name: Amazon's own antenna option is basic indeed, with a very thin, paper-like slab of plastic that mounts to your wall with the included double-sided adhesive pads. This one isn't amplified, so there's no power plug needed—it simply plugs into the coaxial input on your television.
In our testing location, we consistently saw stellar results with the AmazonBasics Indoor Flat TV Antenna, which is rated to reach sources up to 35 miles away. There were occasional discrepancies, though, such as struggling to get the local PBS channels. You may need to play around with positioning in your space to maximize the reach, but that's true with most indoor antennas.
If you live close to a major city, for example, this could be all you need. And at an asking price of just $ 20, it's a great deal if it fits your situation. Amazon used to sell a longer-range, amplified antenna rated for up to 50 miles, but it is now discontinued. If you live further out from a major city or broadcast source, or you anticipate having reception issues, then you may want to opt for an amplified alternative instead.
The TERK Trinity Amplified Indoor HDTV Antenna doesn't look like any other TV antenna that we've seen, but it does look a lot like some internet routers we've used. We like the slim, distinctive look, plus the ability to adjust and reposition the three tri-modal antennas as needed to maximize reception.
We saw strong results in both testing locations, on the ground floor and second floor, especially with the antennas pointed towards the city. This amplified antenna is rated for up to 60 miles, which gives you a lot of range to work with, and the $ 40 price tag is great for a long-range indoor antenna that actually lives up to its claims.
The ClearStream Eclipse 2 is similar to Amazon's thin, plastic antenna at its core, but this very distinctive figure-eight design is one of a kind. Whatever engineering Antennas Direct did to pin down this kind of design clearly worked, however, as this amplified long-range antenna does an excellent job of picking up channels.
It's rated for 60+ miles and consistently delivered strong reception while pulling in all of the channels we expected to see. It also comes with curved double-sided tape pads that sit on the upper and lower backs of the design, ensuring a snug fit to your wall. It's a pricey option at $ 70, but that's an investment in a quality product.
If you live far from a broadcast source and/or you've had trouble with other antennas, the Antop HD Smart Bar (AT-500SBS) could solve your issues—if you're willing to pay a steep price and tolerate the very large size.
The Antop HD Smart Bar is a hard-plastic antenna that measures 2.5 feet wide and can be mounted on your wall like a soundbar, or you can use the included base stand to prop it up vertically. In any case, it's much more visible than nearly any other indoor antenna on the market, but the trade-off is a much longer promised range of 80 miles. It also has a 4G signal filter, an FM tuner, and the ability to connect to a second TV, plus the reception was excellent in our testing. However, with a $ 119 price tag, we recommend trying cheaper alternatives first to see if they'll meet your needs.
Antop's HD Smart Antenna (SBS-301) keeps most of the perks as the Antop model above, but does so with a slimmer design and slightly lower price. It's a flat plastic design like Amazon's antenna, but actually looks like two of them merged together. You can stick it to a wall with the included Velcro pads or prop it up using the simple plastic stand. In our testing, it pulled fewer channels on the stand next to the TV than when it was mounted higher up on the wall.
This amplified antenna's range is slightly less than the Smart Bar at 70 miles, but it still has the 4G signal filter, FM tuner, and ability to connect to two TVs at once. The $ 89 price point is easier to stomach too, even if it's higher than all the other non-Antop antennas on this list. The signal looked great to us, but as with the Smart Bar above, this might be an option for those who are having reception issues using other antennas.
Winegard's amplified FlatWave FL5500A antenna checks all of the same boxes as the AmazonBasics model listed above. It offers a 50-mile range, is flat and nearly paper-thin with black and white sides, and delivers a strong 1080p signal. In our testing, it found just over 50 channels in both locations. We have no complaints about the device itself.
Really, our only issue that the FlatWave FL5500A costs more than double the price of the AmazonBasics 50-mile option, and truth be told, we couldn't tell a difference between them in use. They are nearly identical across the board, but based on current pricing, you'll save more than $ 25 with Amazon's model. It's great, but there's no clear reason to pay extra that we could see.
Mohu's new Blade antenna is a one-of-a-kind – instead of a floppy sheet, it's a thicker, rectangular plastic panel that you might not be compelled to hide. You could mount it on the wall below the TV like a soundbar, or there's a little attachable kickstand if you'd rather put it on a TV stand. In any case, it's stylish in a way that most antennas simply don't strive to be. And if you want, you can mount it in an attic or even outside.
But that style comes with frustrations. We struggled mightily to attach a coaxial cable or 90-degree coaxial adapter to the back of the antenna, because its coaxial connector is wedged so tight to the backing. Ultimately, we used a screwdriver to remove the spongey support ring on the back to give our hands a bit more room, and then had to use pliers to tighten the adapter because it wouldn't budge using our fingers. It was a real pain.
Once it was finally up and running, we searched multiple times and found fewer channels with the ground-floor TV – just 44 max, compared to 50+ with the others. None of the omissions were crucial, but it was still a difference. Upstairs, we had to play around with the location before hitting the same 50+ mark as the other antennas. The Blade is sleek and stylish, but the smaller size brings a couple of frustrations along with it.
Antenna scams you should know about
Recently there have been a number of misleading product pages on Amazon that have promised customers outrageous features like a 120-mile range and 4K resolution. Do not take them at their word. These claims are misleading and, with our current technology, impossible.
You can read a great breakdown of lies antenna manufacturers tell you over on TechHive, but suffice it to say that the curvature of the Earth prevents more than an 80-mile range for broadcasts and no broadcast station in America currently puts out a 4K OTA signal. That is going to be part of the next set of ATSC standards that's currently in development and is called NextGen TV. That should start rolling out by the end of 2020.
Best indoor TV antenna: how we tested
For this piece, we tested indoor antennas that remain near your TV, both standard antennas that connect solely via coaxial cable, and amplified ones that add a USB connection or must be plugged into a wall outlet for a powered-up range boost.
We tested several current indoor TV antennas from the top makers in the business, watching to see how many channels each antenna could find, how easy it was to set up, how crisp the signal looked, the style and size of the device, and the price and overall value.
Our testing environment was a two-story house just outside of Chicago, less than 15 miles from downtown. Each antenna was tested on two televisions: one on the first floor, and another upstairs on the second floor.
Even if modern antennas are more reliable than the old versions, they can still be fickle: your distance from broadcast towers is important, but so too is where you place the antenna, where you are in your home, and what's around it. Your experience may vary to ours, as a result, and you may need to experiment with location to yield the most channels to watch.
These are the best indoor TV antennas that we've tested so far, and we'll be adding more to the list once we try more models.
The best DAB radios are able to fill your home with great-sounding music, chat and lots of witty banter. It doesn't matter how many years go by – and how many newer audio standards come and go – the good ol' digital radio is still going strong and is still a staple for many. Yes, even in the days of smart speakers.
Because they work well in all kinds of environments, DAB radios make great gifts – especially for that person who's difficult to buy for, or who doesn't necessarily care about the difference between FLAC and MP3.
However, the sheer variety of DAB radios available on the market right now can make finding the one that's right for you a real challenge. To save you the trouble, we've taken the best DAB radios in the country that we've had the opportunity to test ourselves and rounded them up into a single, unified list.
So whether you're looking for a decent-sounding digital radio for the kitchen, an alarm radio for your bedside table, or a radio you can take on the go, we'll have the best option for you – whatever your budget. Here are the 5 best DAB radios available in the UK today.
- Looking to add a bit of luxury to your bedside table? Ruark's Tempo DAB radio combines striking design with a very, very high price tag
The Pure Evoke C-F6 marries modern connectivity options with old-school CD playback, and is just about the best stereo system you can buy today.
Easy to set up, a delight to listen to, and featuring just about every bell and whistle you could need from a single-room audio device, this is a fantastic choice for anyone looking for a one-stop audio box. With 3-inch stereo speakers and a 20W output, too, it can crank up to party levels while maintaining a rich, balanced sound.
Read the full review: Pure Evoke CF-6 review
The build quality in the Revo is truly excellent, and so is the sound, though it's how Revo has addressed the needs of real people in real rooms that we like most. The touch-snooze feature, the volume dial and Bluetooth are all brilliantly convenient, though we reserve most praise for the use of an OLED screen that keeps the bedroom dark. The OLED screen uses some great-looking typography, too.
Sound is the most important feature and the quality here is precise, warm and powerful. That said, a mono rather than stereo speaker is always a shame, though it does make sense on a bedside table.
Read the full review: Revo SuperSignal review
Taking your music on the go? Few digital radios have built-in batteries and splash-proof, portable designs, so the PAL+ BT is a bit of a one-off. Its 16 hour battery is simply superb, and makes it a great – though expensive – alternative to a Bluetooth speaker that you might take out into the garden or on a longer jaunt to the beach.
Its headline slot and aux-in are handy, while the sound quality is thoroughly decent. But Bluetooth isn't exactly an expensive technology and the sound quality isn't perfect enough for Tivoli to be charging the kind of money it's asking for the PAL+ BT.
The design has, however, smartly improved over the past few years, shrinking the remote and ditching the oversized analogue knob for a more capable LCD screen. The Tivoli's PAL+ BT isn't the most cost-effective way of getting a DAB+ radio, but it is still one of the best out there.
In the end, this is a compact, versatile DAB radio that can be taken around the home (and anywhere else) quite easily thanks to a 16-hour battery – while the PAL+BT's inclusion of Bluetooth and a bass-heavy sound goes some way to justifying its high price. Perfect for occasional forays into the bathroom.
Read the full review: Tivoli Audio PAL+ BT review
What makes the Pure Siesta Charge stand out is – you guessed it – its charging capabilities. If your smartphone or phablet is compatible with QI wireless charging, you’ll be able to leave it on top of the Siesta Charge as it fills up your battery.
It has a lovely sound, with simple customization options and presets, while all the practical alarm, timer and radio functions of Pure's popular Siesta range position it as a hugely practical bedside gadget. Not to mention an auto-dimming LED display and dashing glass screen.
Not everyone will make use of the wireless charging feature: but either way you're getting a sleek, well-designed DAB radio and speaker that's well worth a look.
Read the full review: Pure Siesta Charge Review
With DAB, DAB+, Bluetooth, touch-sensitive buttons, line-in and a hard carry case that both protects and props-up the stereo 2.1 speaker, the Model XS is excessively impressive. Music is refined, well balanced and gets to high volumes without a hint of distortion; for DAB fans who like taking radio around the world, or want a cute desktop option, this is the best compact all-in-one in the business.
The price might be a tad high for some, but there's no doubting the top tech going on inside this product which is absolutely one of the best DAB radios we've tested.
Read the full review: Geneva Sound System Model XS DAB+ review
- Best Bluetooth speakers 2020: take your music portable