Hungarian Govt establishes Freedom Award

The name of the first recipients of the award will be announced in the presence of Condoleezza Rice, former US Minister of Foreign Affairs, and maybe the current minister, Hilary Clinton, writes.

The Hungarian government is establishing a Hungarian Freedom Award.  The name of the first recipient will be announced at the trans-atlantic diplomatic week’s Freedom Dinner – Zsolt Németh, state secretary announced.

Hungary might introduce tax on unhealthy products

The government has decided, and if the parliament also votes in favour, the “Hamburger tax” may arrive in September, Hungarian TV2 reports.  This tax has a focus on sodas, potato chips, sweets and energy beverages.  Companies selling these products in Hungary will have to pay more tax.  The government’s spokesman said that the list is not yet complete.

The government decided today on a tax on unhealthy food, and drinks, including snacks such as potato chips and sweets, but also baged soups.  The tax has been coined as the “Hamburger tax” amoung people, while it’s official name is “Public health product fee”.  Anna Nagy, spokeswoman for the government says that as of 1st of September grocery products who’s consuming is proven to have an unhealthy impact on people’s health and bring with them a health risk.
Products with high content of sugar, salt, carbon dioxide and caffeine would be charged with an extra tax.

The government says that the list may be extended, but an overview might look like this:

Soft drinks    10 HUF/Liter

Energy drinks    300 HUF /Liter

Wrapped sweets    200 HUF /Kg

Ice Cream    100 HUF /Kg

Salt Snacks     400 HUF /Kg

Food Powder    500 HUF /Kg

Bagged powders for preparing meals are the ones that seem to get the most tax, while also chips and energy drinks will have a significant tax to it.

Péter Boros, Manager at CO-OP Hungary says that the prices of these mentioned products will increase since the added tax will not be included in the current prices of the products.  Saying further that they expect this price increase to further lower the demand for products in an alreadt tight market.

Original plans included taxing fast food as well as products added preservatives, while the government has not yet decided on this matter.

The only other country in Europe that has a similiar tax, on products containing sugar, is Denmark.

Telenor: 75% of smartphones sold run Android

One in five handsets sold by Telenor is a smartphone. Android is clearly the most popular platform with three of four handsets sold running the Google OS. These news were announced at Telenor’s Best of Android Workshop presenting two new Android-based handsets and two winning applications of the operator’s idea contest, Telenor writes in a press release.

Telenor and Free Association Kft. conducted a market survey among Hungarian Internet users in the first quarter of 2011. One in three men and one in four women interviewed in the survey have a smartphone and about the same number use small-screen mobile Internet. Of the ways of using small-screen Internet, phone-based browsing is increasingly popular both with men and women (59% and 69%, respectively). When asked about the mobile operating systems they’ve heard of, 60% of men and nearly 25% of women spontaneously mentioned Android. Statistics also confirm the increasing dominance of Android beating the runner-up by nearly 10% in Hungary.[1]

Telenor continuously expands its smartphone offering. Currently, it has the largest Android-based portfolio in Hungary including 23 models. New additions include Sony Ericsson XperiaTM neo, a state of-the-art environmentally friendly handset available only from Telenor in Hungary. Using the latest Sony technologies, this smartphone can capture high quality photos even in poor light conditions and delivers a crystal clear image on its display. Another handset soon to hit the shelves will be HTC ChaCha, an Android-based smartphone with a QWERTY keyboard and a front-side camera tailored to the needs of Facebook fans. The most popular Android-based handset sold by Telenor is Samsung Galaxy S favoured by one in five smartphone customers. The recently announced Galaxy S II is expected to be even more successful than its predecessor.

“Telenor wants to make the benefits of smartphones available to as many people as possible. The Smart Tariffs available since May 2011 offer our customers unlimited browsing and e-mail. To further enhance user experience and provide our customers with the best Internet access also in the long run we started developing a new network. Hipernet will offer access with a theoretical maximum speed of 21 Mbps virtually to all Hungarians. The Android Workshop series announced in December aims to take the world of smartphones and mobile Internet closer to people because this is the platform that brings the benefits of mobile Internet within reach. The popularity of these events shows that we do share useful information with participants. With this initiative, we contributed to the emergence of a real Android community in Hungary”, said Ferenc Klausz III, Chief Corporate Development Officer of Telenor Hungary.

The fifth Android Workshop, the last one before the summer holiday, repeated the most exciting presentations of previous events. The agenda of the Best of Android Workshop and its choice of speakers were decided based on the online votes of Telenor’s Facebook fans.

The event also presented “Magyar Alkalmazások” and “Kétkerék” bike route planner, two winning applications of the Androidea contest announced by Telenor at the first Andorid Workshop. Magyar Alkalmazások collects Hungarian apps sold on Android Market in one place together with their description and availability details. Third-place winner “Kétkerék” bike route planner makes the life of bikers easier with functions to plan, capture and share bike routes and an integrated GPS for orientation. Its users can also browse a database of 19,000 sites including monuments, museums, natural sights, restaurants and accommodations. The applications are available for download from Telenor’s Website and Android Market.

[1] Source: Statcounter,