Get the latest announcements from MEF Members across the mobile ecosystem globally in this weekly review of member news…

Hiya takes spam protection app to iOS 10 users

After a long wait, iPhone users can finally screen off nuisance callers with the Hiya app.

Hiya provides ‘enhanced caller ID’ products to protect phone owners from unwanted calls and texts. It has a database of more over 1.5 billion numbers, and it uses real-time signals to identify spammers.

The app has been available on iPhone, but it’s more limited than the Android version. Now, however, Hiya has worked with Apple to leverage the new iOS 10 CallKit framework to make it fully featured.

“With the integration of the new CallKit Directory extension, iOS users finally have a call blocking app they can depend on to fight intrusive robo and spam calls that have invaded our mobile phones,” said Mayur Kamat, Hiya’s VP Product.

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KMK Online hires SpotX to monetise video advertising

One of Indonesia’s leading digital publishers, KMK Online, is hoping to capitalise on the boom in mobile video.

It’s teamed up with SpotX to build a programmatic platform to make buying and selling slots efficient. Spotx’ platform helps publishers understand video placement, sizing and how to maximise each sales technique to boost CPMs and fill-rates.

It said: “We are the first major Indonesian publisher to adopt a programmatic video strategy. The Indonesian media market is maturing quickly and video is quickly becoming the preferred method for advertisers to reach consumers.”

KMK expects to monetise video on its various popular online portals such as Liputan6.com (news), Vidio.com (video) Bintang.com (entertainment) and Bola.com (sport).

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DOCOMO Digital to boost VICE Media content in Japan

VICE has turned to DOCOMO Digital in a bid to drive awareness of its edgy written and filmed content with Japanese audiences.

The edgy online brand launched a Japanese office in 2012, and says several million Japanese people view its content every month. But it want to grow the audience and says DOCOMO Digital will provide new customer acquisition, marketing and payment services.

Hiroyuki Sato, CEO of DOCOMO Digital, said: “Like VICE, we believe the ability to contribute and participate in the digital economy should be universal, and the most universal gateway on the planet is mobile.”

The strategic partnership starts in Japan and will cover the APAC region later.

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Mobiquity Wallet users can make payments by talking

Mahindra Comviva has now added Siri support to its mobile wallet, meaning users can simply speak to send or receive payments.

The new version leverages key features of iOS 10 such as SiriKit, which enables apps to incorporate Siri, Apple’s voice-controlled virtual assistant.

The wallet also comes with 3D touch integration, enabling a user to access features such as transaction history and current balance without opening the wallet.

Srinivas Nidugondi, SVP of Mobile Financial Solutionsat Mahindra Comviva, said: “With this integration, we provide the consumer with more personalization and control which paves the way for an enhanced user experience, and leads to increase in mobile wallet usage.”

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Infobip opens office in Beijing

Croatia’s messaging specialist Infobip has invested 5 million euros in its Chinese expansion, and now it has a dedicated office in the capital.

The company opened a Shenzhen office in December 2015, and already serves a number of Chinese internet and tech firms with services such as two-factor authentication, mobile number validation, notifications and omni-channel campaigns.

“We’re honoured to be part of the country’s amazing tech ecosystem, which is rapidly shaping itself into one of the world’s principal IT centres,” said Silvio Kutic, Infobip’s founder and CEO.

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PubMatic adds two new senior hires

Digital ad giant PubMatic has strengthened its management team with the addition of Michael Adair and Kyle Dozeman.

Adair arrives from Rubicon Project to become VP of Publisher Development, Americas, while Dozeman has been promoted to VP of Advertiser Solutions, Americas. He previously held roles in both sales and corporate strategy.

This expansion of PubMatic’s management team follows the recent launch of its new revenue management platform, SEVEN, including the company’s new Unified Ad Server for both programmatic and non-programmatic direct sold inventory.

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New Opera desktop browser includes free VPN

Opera has become the first major browser firm to release a built-in VPN option, which anonymises the user’s online activity. It’s bundling the feature inside Opera 40.

Turning on the browser VPN creates a secure connection to one of Opera’s five server locations around the world. VPNs are mostly used by the tech-savvy, but this option should appeal to anyone concerned about online surveillance.

In a blog, the firm said: “We strongly believe that if more people knew how the internet truly works, they would use a VPN – and we hope that by making our browser VPN free and easy to use, it will become an essential tool for everyone.”

Other new features in Opera 40 include

  • Automatic battery saving
  • Chromecast support
  • Video pop-out improvements
  • Newsreader with RSS support
  • Updated browser engine

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