Z3 smart­phone zooms in

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - TECHNOLOGY - By TAN KIT HOONG bytz@thes­tar.com.my

BLaCk­BeRRy has in­tro­duced the Z3 smart­phone, a budget-priced model with a 5in touch­screen.

The Z3 is one of the first de­vices to come out from the com­pany since its re­or­gan­i­sa­tion and was orig­i­nally made for the In­done­sian mar­ket.

With a re­tail price of RM699, the Z3 has pretty mod­est spec­i­fi­ca­tions — a dual-core 1.2GHz Qual­comm pro­ces­sor with adreno 305 graph­ics chips, 1.5GB RaM, 8GB stor­age and a mi­croSD ex­pan­sion slot that sup­ports stor­age cards up to 32GB in size.

The rear-fac­ing cam­era has a pretty de­cent res­o­lu­tion of 5-megapix­els (with 1080p video record­ing) while the front-fac­ing cam­era is 1.1-megapixel and can record video at 720p.

The Z3 comes with 3G but has no LTe sup­port al­though it does come with a built-in FM ra­dio tuner, Blue­tooth 4.0 and WiFi, all run­ning on the lat­est Black­berry 10.2.1 op­er­at­ing sys­tem.

The Z3 is avail­able now at Black­Berry au­tho­rised part­ners and car­ri­ers. ++++ www.black­berry.com/black­ber­ryz3

An app that alerts users to floods emerged as the over­all win­ner in DiGi’s Chal­lenge for Change con­test.

as the Ban­jir Alerts app also won the Te­lenor Group award, its de­sign­ers will be mak­ing their way to Oslo, nor­way, to take part in Dig­i­tal Win­ners Global app De­vel­oper Chal­lenge by the Te­lenor Group, which largely owns DiGI.

They stand to win a €25,000 (RM110,000) grant to build their busi­ness, as well as work closely with Te­lenor Dig­i­tal as a commercial part­ner and gain ac­cess to Te­lenor Group’s global cus­tomer base.

The three-man team be­hind Ban­jir Alerts is made up of John Joel Sa­guit, 23, Barry Loh, 23 and Has­san Basri, 25, all of whom are full-time de­vel­op­ers.

Sa­guit said they chose to de­velop such an app be­cause his na­tive coun­try, the philip­pines, of­ten suf­fers from ty­phoons and floods.

“When I was young, we had a third-de­gree typhoon which wiped out ev­ery­thing in our area,” he said. Sa­guit, who is based here now, wants the app to help those af­fected by floods.

Chal­lenge for Change, now in its fifth year, has evolved into one of the leading app de­vel­op­ment com­pe­ti­tion in Malaysia.

“The ma­tu­rity of the ideas pre­sented and the mo­bile apps de­vel­oped show that more Malaysians recog­nise the power of con­nec­tiv­ity and mo­bile apps in driv­ing so­cial in­no­va­tions across com­mu­ni­ties,” said DiGi chief op­er­at­ing of­fi­cer, al­bern Murty.

The other win­ning apps in­clude Carkis, which teaches users to main­tain their own ve­hi­cles; Mini Malaysia, a guide to lo­cal restaurants and tourism spots; and SmartShop­per, which helps users mon­i­tor gro­cery prices.

De­vel­op­ers for each of the apps walked away with RM25,000 cash and will have the chance to par­tic­i­pate in MSC StartUp ac­cel­er­a­tor Lite pro­gramme to fur­ther en­hance and mar­ket their apps.

Win­ners of past chal­lenges have gone on to form suc­cess­ful start-ups.

For in­stance, the team be­hind app Yo, which won the Te­lenor Group award last year, has formed a new com­pany, Wired In.

The orig­i­nal team mem­bers — Muham­mad Muhaimin Juhari, Muham­mad nazrin almi, and Shafwan Mohd Radzi — credit their suc­cess to the ex­pe­ri­ence gained from the con­test.

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