Meta Hosts XR Show, Announces Future Africa Scholarship Winners – Today

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As part of its Extended Reality (XR) programming and research investment in XR talent across Africa, Meta recently showcased an exclusive XR exhibit featuring six finalists from “Future Africa: Telling Stories, Building Worlds.”
Developed in partnership with Africa No Filter, Electric South and Imisi 3D, the exhibition focuses on supporting the next generation of XR creators in Africa.
With a focus on owning and transforming the African narrative while telling compelling, contemporary and immersive African stories, the finalists have developed a range of immersive digital experiences rooted in African culture across various media formats, including 360 video, AR/VR and Mixed Reality.

Sherry Dzinoreva, Director of Public Policy Programs at Meta, Africa, Middle East and Turkey said: “As the next phase of this programme, we are pleased to unveil this specially curated exhibition showcasing the work of six talented innovators from across the continent, all of whom have created African stories and experiences. Beautiful and thought-provoking using immersive technology. We know that Africa has tremendous talent, which we see reflected in coordinated experiences, and as we set our sights on the metaverse, we believe innovators, especially those on the continent, will play a key role in unlocking its potential.”
Creators showcased at the event included Malik Avigboa’s ‘Transition Between’, a 360 documentary that presents a virtual heritage experience of the Kovar Mata dye pit, a cultural and historical site in Kano, Nigeria, by viewing it in a virtual 3D. reality model.

The others were Xabiso Vili (writer, artist, and new media artist, Xabiso “Black Boi Meets Boogeyman” is a multi-title visual album, “Choose Your Adventure” in 360-degree style); Dylan Valley, South Africa (Dylan Sissy Jules House is a 360-degree documentary about precarious housing at the new Cape Town Hospital); Nirma Madhu (fashion filmmaker, XR creator and PhD candidate. Nirma XWE, a 360-degree fashion film using volumetric capture and photometry, is a tribute to South Africa’s original stargazers); Pierre-Christophe Gam (Pierre is a multimedia artist who has worked on “TOGUNA”, a hybrid art installation (live and online), integrating AR/VR, film, photography, multimedia sculpture, forward thinking, and storytelling); and Michelle Angawa (film editor and creator of XR, Michelle Shilling 1000 in Nairobi, 360 degree fantasy, is a tragic short film that depicts a day in the life of a boda rider in Nairobi).

Gadget Experience Center, Apple Yard, launched in Lagos
Apple Yard, the first unique gadget experience center offering services including sales, maintenance, phone exchange and more, has been launched in Lagos.
Created by Nigeria’s contemporary design firm, the Gadget Experience Centre, 88 homewares is modeled after the Apple Store on Regent Street, London and promises to offer customers similar world-class experiences and services.

Speaking at the store’s launch, 88 Homewares CEO, Mr. Ebuka Arinze, expressed his happiness with the flagship store.
“What we have created with Apple Yard is to give our customers an experience unlike any other anywhere in Nigeria. We purposely designed this venue for the Apple Store to demonstrate our commitment to providing customers with the best, most modern gadgets, services and prices they can find in Nigeria,” said Arinze. “We also wanted to give them a hint of what it would feel like to visit an Apple store if there was one in Nigeria.”

The center is now fully open to work with a variety of unique and advanced gadgets, including the new series of iPhones (12, 13, 14 and 14 Pro max), Apple Watches (all series including the just released Ultra series). ), Meta Quest, speakers, and other accessories and gadgets are all available for purchase.
Apple Yard is located at 12 Admiralty Way, Lekki, Lagos. The launch event was attended by business and technology executives, celebrities and influencers from various industries.

Healthtech Startup, Nguvu Health Partners AXA Mansard
Nguvu Health, an on-demand online treatment platform, and AXA Mansard have teamed up to provide affordable mental health care to African diaspora and at home.
The partnership allows companies to stay true to their mutual vision of improving access to health care, including mental health.
The two-year agreement brings together the health tech startup’s telemedicine and AXA Mansard connections to thousands of users seeking appropriate health coverage.
B2B additions to the partnership include quarterly discounted wellness sessions and a mental health review for AXA Mansard clients and stakeholders. The B2C arm of the partnership not only focuses on offering discounts to users seeking different types of therapy, but also spends 15 percent on marital therapy and supportive group therapy.

Speaking about Nguvu Health, Co-Founder and Chief Marketing Officer, Juliette Odomuso, said, “This partnership is a huge win for the health industry as it will explore the drivers and impact of mental health issues in society in a comprehensive way. This will happen by exploring practices that help users, individuals and businesses, to slow down and speed up in ways that complement each other to help shift the paradigm from stress and survival to excitement and vitality.”
AXA Mansard policyholders and insureds will now have access to therapists and other wellbeing solutions offered by Nguvu Health.

Apple fined $19 million for selling iPhones without chargers
Apple is said to have been fined $19 million for not including chargers in the new iPhones being sold.
The Civil Court in Brazil’s Sao Paulo has ordered that new iPhones sold in the country come with battery chargers included in the box.
The fine was the result of Apple’s appeal of a Brazilian order preventing it from selling iPhones without a charger in September when the Brazilian Ministry of Justice imposed a $2.38 million fine, Reuters reported at the time. Apple argued that it did not include chargers to reduce carbon emissions.

Apple started not including earbuds and the power adapter with the release of the iPhone 12 in 2020 — except in France, where it must comply with radiation laws to reduce waste and move toward a carbon-neutral supply chain.
However, it is not a final decision and can be appealed again.
In related news, EU lawmakers recently approved a new directive that requires manufacturers to offer USB-C as a common charging port across a wide range of devices by 2024. This will force Apple to switch to USB-C chargers for upcoming iPhones.

Crypto Investment Pillow Earns $18 Million and Plans to Expand in Nigeria
The Crypto Investment Platform has raised $18 million in Series A funding co-led by Accel, Quona Capital, Elevation Capital and Jump Capital. Elevation Capital was also Pillow’s first seed investor, leading the round in 2021.
Singapore-based The Pillow said it had plans to use the money to expand and do more to raise the profile of people’s personal finance journeys in emerging markets such as Africa and Southeast Asia.

The app creates simple, transparent and accessible products, including crypto investing, crypto savings, crypto payments and other financial services.
The Pillow app allows users to invest and save in stablecoins backed by dollars and several cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, Ethereum, and others.
Since the start of 2022, the company claims to have grown its user base by three hundred percent, with assets under management growing five times. Additionally, the startup has expanded into Nigeria, Ghana and Vietnam, among other emerging markets.

Technical character of the week:

Adeola Ali

This week’s tech personality is the founder and CEO of OneHealthng, Adeola Alli.
OneHealthng is an online pharmacy and healthcare platform that provides access to medicines and healthcare solutions for individuals and healthcare providers.
As a licensed pharmacist in the UK and USA, Adeola launched OneHealthng in Nigeria when she realized that it was difficult to procure specialty medicines in the country for her child.

Adeola has leveraged technology to get the right medicines at the right time to the right hand, using coordinated and analyzed data, and various health provider partners to deliver relevant health solutions to people. To date, it has helped at least 8,000 people access pharmacies from a network of more than 1,000 pharmacies across the 36 states in Nigeria.
She has over 15 years of pharmaceutical and commercial experience. She was recently honored by the Google for Startups Accelerator Africa and was one of the recipients of the Google for Startups Black Founders Fund. She has participated in the Microsoft Accelerator and has spoken at the Africa Digital Health Summit and Cyber ​​for Health Care conference organized by the Cyber ​​Peace Institute.

She and Onehealthng were part of Nigeria’s premier digital startup accelerator program hosted by Forbes and supported by Global Startup Ecosystem 2020. She was also a startup lab finalist for the World Health Summit in 2020 and a speaker at the Ehingbeti Lagos Economic Summit 2021.
She is passionate about solving healthcare problems across Africa, particularly those that she has personally experienced – access to specialized medicines.

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