In an email sent to paid subscribers yesterday, Zoom announced that starting Aug. 1, the Kenyan government will levy a 16 per cent VAT to be borne by the customer.
The app has ditched its invite-only policy to grant everyone access to its audio chat rooms. Now anyone can host an audio panel about business strategies for sustainable wealth growth.
The update was announced during Clubhouse’s Town Hall on Wednesday. Previously, those who wanted to enter the Clubhouse had to be invited by someone already inside, like being vouched for by a regular at an exclusive club. Now you can simply rock up and jump straight into a room full of men who are in love with Elon Musk, just like a regular bar. All users on Clubhouse’s waitlist are being granted immediate access, with the app available to everyone globally on both iOS and Android.
Clubhouse has long had plans to expand to the general unconnected public, though we had no indication of when that might be until now. In a blog post published last July, Clubhouse co-founders Paul Davison and Rohan Seth stated that the app’s invite system allowed it to grow its community slowly, enabling them to finetune features and fix problems as they arise, as well as putting less strain on their small team. Now it seems they’re finally confident enough to throw the doors wide open.
The social media audio app probably could use the burst of new users that opening up will bring. Though Clubhouse enjoyed significant interest in the months after its March 2020 launch, it seems to have cooled off notably since then. Vanity Fair reports that engagement is down in some areas of the app, and downloads of Clubhouse have also noticeably slowed, dropping to below one million in April this year — a far cry from its impressive Japan-driven surge of 9.6 million in February.
The app’s Android release being made available worldwide in May did significantly help figures. Clubhouse’s installation numbers swung back up to 3.7 million in May and 7.7 million in June, with 76 percent of June’s installs coming from India’s marketplaces according to Sensor Tower. But that spike seems to be temporary as well, with this month’s download numbers sinking to 1.7 million as of July 20.
To be fair, the likelihood that people who want to join Clubhouse are already on it increases as time goes on, which would contribute at least a bit to dropping signup numbers. Still, those aren’t figures any app wants to see drop.
Clubhouse also recently made efforts to improve its user experience by adding text messaging feature Backchannel earlier this month. Audio conversations may be Clubhouse’s big drawcard, but convenience is the real appeal of any social media app, and some things are better read than said.
Kenyans to start paying more for Zoom calls starting next month
Starting from next month, paid users of Zoom in Kenya will have to fork out an additional fee for their subscription, as the government is set to impose value-added tax (VAT) on several online services to operate in the country.
“Like many companies with a growing international presence, Zoom is routinely evaluating its indirect tax collection and remittance obligations,” the company said.
“The application of these taxes to business with online activities is a complex and evolving area. Zoom continues to review such developments, as well as the nature and extent of its activities in different jurisdictions, and, based on such regular review, will start charging indirect taxes where applicable,” the message read in part.”
Zoom currently prices its lowest subscription package, which offers unlimited group meetings among other perks at Ksh15,000 (about $150), while the highest-paid package costs Ksh25,000 ($250) per year. With the VAT implementation, Kenyan individuals and companies will now pay at least Ksh2,500 ($25) more for the cheapest package and at least Ksh4,100 ($41) more for the highest-priced package.
Zoom is not the only digital service to recently fall under the microscope of the Kenyan taxman. Last year, Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) introduced the Finance Act 2020 Digital Service Taxes (DST) on income from services provided through the digital marketplace in Kenya, which is charged at 1.5 per cent of the gross value of a transaction (exclusive of VAT). The regulation requires individuals and firms that supply or expects to supply taxable goods and services worth at least Ksh5 million ($50,000) in a year to register for VAT. However, Kenyans registered for VAT will be exempted from paying the tax.
How to connect your iPhone to a speaker
You’re at a party. The music is terrible. You want to jump on aux, but you don’t know how to connect your iPhone to the speaker. Sounds like a nightmare, right?
Good thing it’s very simple and easy to connect your iPhone to a Bluetooth speaker.
Your iPhone is equipped with the ability to connect to speakers via Bluetooth, which comes in handy anytime you want to play music or anything else on a speaker.
Follow these steps to connect your iPhone to a Bluetooth speaker.
How to connect your iPhone to a Bluetooth speaker:
1. Open Settings.
2. Select “Bluetooth.”
3. Make sure your iPhone’s Bluetooth is on.
If it is on, the oval next to Bluetooth will be green, and you will see “My Devices” and “Other Devices” below Bluetooth. To turn Bluetooth on, tap the circle in the oval next to Bluetooth.
4. Make your speaker available to pair.
Hold down the button on your speaker that makes it available to pair. This may be different depending on your speaker.
5. Find your speaker under “Other Devices” on iPhone, and tap it to connect.
If you follow those simple steps you should be able to connect to any Bluetooth speaker.
If your speaker is not Bluetooth, you can connect your iPhone to it the old fashioned way…simply by plugging it into the aux cord.
These are the countries with the biggest number of Twitter users
The social network Twitter is particularly popular in the United States, where as of October 2019; the micro-blogging service had 48.35 million active users.
Japan and the United Kingdom were ranked second and third with 35.65 and 13.9 million users respectively. Global Twitter usage as of the first quarter of 2019, Twitter had 330 million users, according to Statista, a site that tracks global business data.
This represents a notable decline from the 336 million monthly active users in the first quarter of 2018. The most-followed Twitter accounts include celebrities such as Katy Perry, Justin Bieber and former US President Barack Obama.
Twitter has become an increasingly relevant tool in domestic and international politics. The platform has become a way to promote policies and interact with citizens and other officials, and most world leaders and foreign ministries have an official Twitter account.
US President Donald Trump is known to be a prolific Twitter user, but opinions are divided on the appropriateness of his behavior on the platform. During an August 2018 survey, 61 percent of respondents stated that Trump’s use of Twitter as President of the United States was inappropriate.
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