5 things you need to know in Australian tech today

Half of Australians on the internet now use Dropbox. Image: Shutterstock.

Hello all!

Here’s what’s happening in tech today.

1. With 9 more sleeps until we vote, is the NBN about to be an election issue? Former NBN Co. boss Mike Quigley took to the stage in Melbourne last night to defend his legacy and lash the government’s NBN plan, developed by then communications minister Malcolm Turnbull, as “short-sighted, expensive” and a “huge miscalculation”.

“The original NBN was a visionary project,” he said, and “it is such a pity that so much time and effort has been spent on trying to discredit and destroy the original FTTP-based NBN”.

It was a very long and highly detailed speech that got stuck into the Coalition for its initial political attacks, outlining a long list of predictions and costings they made which have subsequently proved wrong, Quigley said.

And then there’s this line:

“To spend billions of dollars to build a major piece of national infrastructure that just about meets demand today, but doesn’t allow for any significant growth in that demand over the next 10 or 20 years, without large upgrade costs, is incredibly short-sighted.”

Ouch. Read more about it here.

2. The ASX spent another $10 million on the blockchain. After spending $15 million at the start of the year for a 5% stake in New York-based Digital Asset, the ASX spent another $10m to raise its stake to 8.5% and score a seat on the board.

The start-up, led by former JP Morgan executive Blythe Masters, is working with distributed ledger technology, aka the blockchain, and the ASX wants to use it for post-trade settlement, replacing the CHESS system, as part of a massive upgrade of its tech platforms.

Read more here.

3. Half of Australians on the internet now use Dropbox. That’s a lot of people. For those late to the game, Dropbox is a file hosting service where you can store your photos, docs, videos, and files. Since launching its Australian HQ in April 2014 in Sydney, the business has grown its local presence to more than 200 partners and resellers, and now has 11,000 business teams in Australia using Dropbox Business.

Today it has also announced a range of new productivity tools. One of them even allows you to scan documents into your Dropbox account using your mobile app, and then search within these scans, make notes next to them and share them with others. Nifty.

4. This video game was just refused classification in Australia. This is a little strange. The game is called MeiQ: Labyrinth of Death. It’s a dungeon crawling RPG. It’s sort of amazing it’s even coming to Australia in the first place.

But here’s the strange part: MeiQ: Labyrinth of Death received a “teen” rating in the US (13 years and up) and “B” in Japan (12 years and above) but in Australia it has been refused classification. The Classification Board has described MeiQ: Labyrinth of Death as a game that deals with “matters of sex, drug misuse or addiction, crime, cruelty, violence or revolting or abhorrent phenomena in such a way that they offend against the standards of morality, decency and propriety generally accepted by reasonable adults.”

Mark Serrels, who writes for Kotaku Australia, has more.

5. Campaign Monitor is launching an App Store for marketers. The company, which provides email marketing software for business, has launched the store with more than 200 certified apps and integrations to marketing technology providers.

Companies like Birchbox, BuzzFeed and Jaybird have already signed up for the store and curated collections to build their own customised marketing stack.

It’s available today at no cost to new and existing customers, however pricing can vary per application.

BONUS ITEM: Want to know what Australia’s tech leaders want to see from policy makers on July 2, when Australia heads to the polls? Well, we asked a whole bunch of them for their thoughts and compiled their answers into an epic list. From a focus on STEM, to cybersecurity, innovation and talent acquisition, here’s what’s on the wishlists of some of the country’s finest business leaders, including many from the technology industry.

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