Catching Up

ICYMI: Phone Screens To Fold Like Paper & M’sia’s Oldest Newspaper No Longer ‘Surat Khabar Lama’

  • VP Hot Takes is our weekly roundup of tech and digital lifestyle news in Malaysia.
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Malaysia’s Oldest Newspaper Ditches Print & Goes Full Digital By Year End

Malay Mail, the country’s oldest newspaper at 122 years, will cease its print edition on December 1 and pivot to go fully digital. Its first paper was published on December 14, 1896.

Malay Mail editor-in-chief Datuk Wong Sai Wan told staff that a third of them may be outplaced, though nothing has been finalised yet. It was also reported that staff affected by the digital pivot this December have been given one week to decide whether they want to leave or stay on and retrain for new roles in the revamped organisation.

“The old way of doing the newspaper business of advertising subsidising the circulation, editorial and printing costs is no longer viable,” said Datuk Wong Sai Wan.

“When we celebrate the (Malay Mail’s) 122nd birthday, that’s the last print issue. But it’s also a new adventure, and we’ll see where it goes,” said Wong.

Dale John Wong
Welcome to the club, Malay Mail! Digital was always going to become the standard, and I guess this was more of a when-not-if type situation. Now to see how long The Star and NST can continue to last.
Nicholas Ker
I think most of us have been expecting traditional print media to digitise—but I’m still pretty surprised that they’re going to completely do away with their print edition, although I haven’t read one in years.
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Image Credit: Ore Huiying/Bloomberg

Grab Makes Headlines Twice This Week Thanks To Partnership With Mastercard And Region-Wide Glitch

Grab can never resist being in the limelight—last week it was taxi drivers protesting against them (again!) and this week it’s their Mastercard partnership and the recent region-wide glitch.

Firstly, the good news: Grab has partnered with Mastercard to issue prepaid cards tailored to their customers in Southeast Asia. They will be hoping to leverage off Grab’s digital wallet, GrabPay and help its unbanked users transact online. It shares several parallels with BigPay; however instead of relying on just the physical card you will have two options: physical and virtual, as you can still pay with GrabPay.

Next up, the bad news for Grab and their driver partners but good news for customers as Grab suffered a region-wide glitch yesterday at around 3–4PM that fixed all prices shown on the app at RM5. No matter how far the destination was, the app would still show RM5—unsurprisingly, drivers weren’t too pleased about that. Grab has issued a notice that they will be compensating those affected accordingly, so the pitchforks have been kept away.

Nicholas Ker
Definitely a good move to work together with Mastercard—more versatility is only a good thing, That said, the price glitch was a major cock-up and I wouldn’t be surprised to see quite a few heads roll. Drivers and customers were united in their rage, so I hope this serves as a warning to Grab to get their sh*t together.

Image Credit: YouTube/ TechDroider

Samsung Unveils Foldable Devices That Will Make Your Mind Go Boom

Foldable phones aren’t new as they have been around for quite some time now, but those were the old flip phones which is still considered a “foldable” phone. However there hasn’t been one which has a foldable display.

Samsung might just be the first to bring smartphones and even laptops to a whole new level as there has been much rumour going on about their upcoming Samsung Developer Conference on November 7 and 8.

Samsung has described its upcoming developer conference as “the crossroads between the present and the future” and showing a subtle graphic of two lines unfolding into a right-facing arrow.

“Like foldable smartphones, Samsung is collaborating with display makers to develop laptops with foldable displays that will not just simply fold in and out but create new value and user experience, amid the changing market trends for laptops,” said Lee Min-cheol, vice president at marketing for PCs at Samsung.

Justin Lee
I’m looking forward to how the new devices look like and how practical it is. I still don’t see why we need foldable phones other than having bigger displays. However, knowing Samsung, the selling point won’t only be just that it can fold but there will be more under the hood that makes the phone sell like hotcakes.

Feature Image Credit: Malay Mail/Mukhriz Hazim

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