Time for our first week roundup of the African blogosphere as far as tech, innovation, startups and the other stuff we like here on Afrinnovator. So let’s dig in:

West Africa

At $50,000, Will The .ng ccTLD Become The Hottest Top-Level Domain? – TechLoy

On January 3, 2011, one of Nigeria’s leading newspapers, ThisDay launched a new website on their N7.5million domain – thisday.ng – which they ‘supposedly’ bought through NIRA’s auction process.

In case you don’t know, .ng is Nigeria’s country code Top-Level Domain (ccTLD) and NIRA is the country’s official TLD registrar.

This raised a lot of questions and controversy. Most importantly, it begs the question: Will the sale make the .ng ccTLD become hot in the global domains market?

While it is too early to predict, the .ng ccTLD has for a long time been viewed as one of the most valuable extensions in the domains market for an obvious reason: it creates virtually any verb-related web domain on the surface of the Internet.

For example, with .ng you may soon find domain names such as ni.ng, facebooki.ng, bi.ng, googli.ng, etc and could come in handy for URL shorteners.

If You Like Apple TV, You’ll Love Encipher TV – TechLoy

Encipher, the cloud computing company that released its own tablet, INYE last year has announced they’ll be launching Encipher TV, which does pretty much what the Apple TV does, and maybe more.

Encipher TV wants to aggregate all your media and social trends to your TV via the use of a setup box.

Encipher TV is powered by Android 2.2, and armed with a HDMI output, Wifi, bluetooth connectivity to your keyboard, 3 USB ports and a remote control.

Intel Nigeria to boost employment opportunities – Webtrendsng

Intel Nigeria Limited has said it will boost employment opportunities this year through a range of new technologies, which includes hybrid devices that provide a combination of net books with the best of tablets.

Most Visited Nigerian Sites and Trends in December 2010 Analyst Review – Webtrendsng

The top ten list only has one casualty (nigeriagalleria.com) which dropped from 10th spot to 16th while others reshuffled their ranking within the top ten. The top ten is evenly split between news sites and other with 50% of the top ten being news related sites and others are; forum, jobs, bank and government site.

Nnpcgroup.com just reached it’s all time high, 8th spot! Nairaland.com sits tight on the number one spot with its other contemporaries; punchng.com, vanguardngr.com, gtbank.com and sunnewsonline.com in the top five in that order.

East Africa

Erik discusses the online classifieds listings opportunities in Africa and a solution he and Ushahidi co-founder David Kobia are working on pigia.me.

In 2008 we saw the scales begin to tip with imports of data enabled phones being larger than that of non-data enabled phones.

In 2009 we saw the undersea cables hit East and Southern Africa in a big way.

In 2010 we saw the mobile operators get serious about data availability and cost packaging for everyday Africans.

2011 is upon us, and with it brings a new type of data-enabled mobile user in Africa. It also brings the mobile web to center stage.

The Kenya Tech Winners and Losers 2010 – Kachwanya

Kachwanya takes a very elaborate look at the winners and losers in Kenya’s tech space in 2010

Top 10 Tech Trends Kenyans will be looking for in 2011 – TechMtaa

TechMtaa makes some predictions on Kenyans’ expectations in technology for the new year.

2010 is gone and 2011 is here. Which technologies will we be looking for as Kenyan techies? They are varied and might not be the same but majority of these stuff just will be the same. Our pockets might not allow us to make long lines infront of shops during launches but we witnessed a near stampede last year during the launch of Nokia C3 sale.

South Africa

SA filmmaker makes YouTube’s ‘Life in a Day’ cut – Memeburn

South African, Kjell Bismeyer’s clip entitled ,’Elephants swimming by moonlight‘, will be included in the film Life In A Day, a cinematic experiment which aims to capture life around the world in a single day.

Africa’s mobile numbers, and where to find them – Erik Hersman for Memeburn

Erik takes a look at where the numbers lie in terms of mobile in Africa and where to target if you want to reach a mass market for a mobile based product

To reach African tech users requires a shift in headspace from the lofty ideals of smartphones to the practical realities of life for the majority of people.

Google appoints 33-year-old Kenyan to head Africa policy - Michelle Atagana for Memeburn

Ory’s appointment to Google as Policy Manager for Africa continues to make headlines:

Google recently appointed Ory Okolloh, an online activist and co-founder of Ushahidi, as Policy Manager for Africa. Ushahidi is a famed crowd sourcing site dedicated to information collection, visualisation and interactive mapping.

Google’s appointment shows its confidence in Africa’s digital growth and recognises the continent as a future tech giant.

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