Press Release : F1RST.com Will Launch a Menus and Catalogues Feature

Port of Spain, August 21 2014 — Consumers in Trinidad and Tobago will soon be able to browse specific products, services and menu items of local businesses online through the new Menus and Catalogues feature being released by the search platform, F1RST.com.

The announcement was made by company Director and Co-founder, Kyle Maloney, during his presentation at the 2014 ICTs 4 Skills Development & Entrepreneurship Among Young People held at the Hyatt Regency, Trinidad on August 20, 2014. The event was hosted by The Telecommunications Authority of Trinidad and Tobago and the Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation.

The Menus and Catalogues feature will empower consumers to make purchasing decisions for a meal or product directly from the palm of their hands in a fast and convenient way. They can easily view what’s the newest or most popular menu items. Menus will feature full descriptions, pricing, photos and reviews. Customers will also be able to Like, Review and Share individual items with their friends.

At the event, Maloney’s delivery focused on six points to motivate the young entrepreneur to get started and keep moving. He disclosed that F1RST.com has received well over 1,000,000 search queries, just six months after it went live on February 1, 2014. The search platform and mobile app have made several exploratory steps in driving user satisfaction and bridging the gap between businesses and consumers in the Caribbean. The Menus and Catalogues feature is testimony to F1RST’s proactive approach to meeting the needs of their users.

Regarding the difference between F1RST.com and the global travel app, Foursquare, fellow F1RST Co-founder and Director Nicolas Maloney said “There are over 100,000 business places in Trinidad that can be found on F1RST, versus just about 4,000 on Foursquare.” He added that F1RST.com gives users the ability to find small businesses in rural areas in Trinidad likewise those that are densely populated.

The announcement of the Menus and Catalogues feature was magnified by the first-ever public viewing of the product launch video. The feature is expected to become available to the public in September 2014.

Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK



Samsung and NOOK Media, a subsidiary of Barnes & Noble has announced the Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK. This is a 7" tablet combining Samsung’s leading technology and NOOK’s extraordinary content and reading experience. They are saying that the tablet is optimised for reading. It light and thin and easy to hold with a beautiful HD display. The press release does not specify in what ways the tablet is optimised for reading. The tablet does come at a special price and bundled with a NOOK content offer. Please share your thoughts with us in the comments below.

LG Budget Phones Coming



LG is set to unveil two budget phones at IFA. According to their press release, "The L Fino and L Bello are powerful alternatives to higher-priced smartphones, perfect for teenagers and first-time smartphone owners in emerging 3G markets." Interestingly enough what they term 3G is what we have in Trinidad as 4G (HSPA+). The carriers in Trinidad don't carry LG phones but you'll probably see these at the mobile shops. Price and availability information will come later on. “With their competitive specs and accessible pricing, we have high hopes for the L Fino and L Bello to continue our successful expansion into emerging markets,” said Dr. Jong-seok Park, president and CEO of the LG Electronics Mobile Communications Company. “Our newest L Series smartphones represent the best of LG in design, hardware and UX as well as our commitment to bringing best smartphone experience to 3G customers as many as possible.”

L Fino Key Specifications:

  • Chipset: 1.2GHz Quad-Core
  • Display: 4.5-inch WVGA IPS (800 x 480 / 207ppi)
  • Memory: 1GB RAM/ 4GB
  • Camera: Rear 8MP/ Front VGA
  • Battery: 1,900mAh
  • Operating System: Android 4.4.2 KitKat
  • Size: 127.5 x 67.9 x 11.9mm
  • Network: HSPA+ 21Mbps (3G)
  • Colors: White / Black / Gold / Red / Green (varies by market)

L Bello Key Specifications:

  • Chipset: 1.3GHz Quad-Core
  • Display: 5.0-inch FWVGA IPS (854x480/ 196ppi)
  • Memory: 1GB RAM/ 8GB
  • Camera: Rear 8MPAF / Front 1MP
  • Battery: 2,540mAh
  • Operating System: Android 4.4.2 KitKat
  • Size: 138.2x 70.6x 10.7mm
  • Network: HSPA+ 21Mbps (3G)
  • Colors: White / Black / Gold

This is my first IFA related post. I plan to cover as much of the announcements as possible. Please share your thoughts with us in the comments below.

Gevva - A New Type Of Search Engine



Hat tip to @TheCaribTech for tweeting about this startup. Gevva is a new type of search engine. They are calling it a do engine and are saying that it is the future of search. The team comprises three high school seniors, Sahil Gupta, Stan Zhang and Cavan Klinsky who have been coding since the 5th grade. They are self taught and their project won them the school hackathon and 500 dollars which they used to exhibit at New York Tech Day. Gevva looks for service APIs and uses the best of them to provide functionality. They term it interception. A bunch of tasks can be stringed together to form an intelligent workflow. I've read that core services will be free while additional services will cost a monthly subscription fee. From their intro video some types of functions that you would use Gevva for are, convert a file, make a reservation, read the news, book event tickets or get delivery. According to their website, "Gevva is the first search engine to focus on getting things done. It intelligently predicts your end goal, and directly gives you the tools you need to complete the job." I reached out to the team via email and asked the following questions. They were kind enough to respond to my email and provide me with beta access. I will be testing it out over the next few days.

What is a do engine?

A do engine is a search engine that focuses on actions over information. Gevva, more specifically, is Google married with If This Then That. A user enters a goal (e.g. "translate", "convert a file") into our search bar, and is instantly presented with our concise version of the best tool for the job, free of all distractions, ads, and bloat. Additionally, if the user's goal requires multiple services (e.g "planning a trip" which requires the user to find directions, check weather, pick restaurants, etc.), Gevva allows users to create "workflows", which consist of multiple tools strung together with inputted information carrying over from service to service. This eliminates the need for users to navigate to different sites, on which they would need to re-enter the same information, over and over again. Our focus on getting things done online makes formerly tedious processes clear, concise, and consistent.

What's the meaning of gevva? How did you come up with that name?

Gevva means "to give" in Pennsylvania Dutch. We came up with it by looking at short and catchy available domain names.

How did you guys meet?

We all go to the same high school and were all in AP Computer Science together.

What's your plans for the future of Gevva?

Our plans for Gevva are to build it into a company that fundamentally changes the way people navigate and interact with the internet. We want to make formerly tedious processes clear, concise, and consistent.

Tell me anything else you would want to say about Gevva.

Gevva is in private beta, you can sign up for an invite at https://gevva.com. We also have an iOS app on the way.

I am extremely impressed and undoubtedly this is going to become a big deal. They have a great idea and youth and passion on their side. Visit their website and sign up for a beta invite. Follow them @TheNewDoEngine and spread the word. Please share your thoughts with us in the comments below.