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Aug 01
ABI Research: mobile network security will be '...

Outdoor small cells pose increased security risk as mobile networks densify to meet burgeoning traffic demands. Small Cell shipments will exceed macrocells in 2016, and total shipments will reach nearly 15 million units through 2019, according to ABI Research (http://www.abiresearch.com).

With residential femtocells stagnating, shifting market dynamics favor larger deployment scenarios in enterprise and urban outdoor femtocells. Top-tier operators planning wide-scale deployments include AT&T, Verizon, Vodafone, Telefonica, SK Telecom, and SoftBank. Regardless of location and size, operators must provide Small Cell networks with at least the same level of security that is expected from the mobile network, according to ABI Research.

"Small Cells are inevitable parts of future mobile networks, but IP-based backhaul and location risks, like being out of operator direct reach and open to public...

| Read more »
Jul 31
The Internet of Things will keep demand for standalone...

The share of standalone Bluetooth ICs will be about 40% by the end of 2014, down from 42% in 2013, and by the end of 2019 that share will remain at 40%, according to ABI Research (www.abiresearch.com).

The steady market share of standalone Bluetooth IC market share is being maintained by both traditional device categories which consist of handsets, tablets, and PCs, and new growth categories including wearables, sports and fitness equipment, and smart home nodes.

"End user products such as smartphones and PCs have been shifting away from standalone solutions for some time now, and smartphones have shifted to integrated platforms with Bluetooth as well," says research director, Philip Solis. "On the other hand, there is a growing long tail of devices around the Internet of Things (IoT) that will gravitate towards standalone Bluetooth in many cases. The end result is that standalone Bluetooth ICs...

| Read more »
Jul 30
IDC: digital production color market on growth path

According to new research from IDC (www.idc.com), the worldwide digital production color market continued its unabated growth of top-line shipment value in 2013.

The industry achieved record shipment values of US$4.4 billion in 2013, fueled by growth in a range of technologies, from mid-production cut sheet to ultra-high volume inkjet systems. The cumulative value of shipments is expected to approach $25 billion over the 2014-2018 forecast period, climbing from US$4.6 billion to $5.4 billion with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4.2%.

"Between 2014 and 2018, IDC expects to see the sum of all production color shipments to surpass 353,000," says Amy Machado, senior research assistant, IDC. "The high end of the market, albeit smaller from a unit perspective, is where the gold rush of pages is occurring with vendors vying for market dominance."

Annual unit shipments doubled from 2008 to 2013, growing from...

| Read more »
Jul 29
ABI Research: global pay-TV market to generate $280.4...

The worldwide pay-TV market continues to grow in the first quarter of 2014 (Q1 2014). According to ABI Research (www.abiresearch.com), the total pay-TV subscriber base is expected to surpass 936.4 million at the end of 2014, generating US$280.4 billion in service revenue.

Although the global cable TV market grew in 2013, the North American cable TV market lost around 4% subscriber base in 2013. High subscription cost and other pay-TV alternatives are blamed for the declining subscriber base; however, cable TV operators experienced slower subscriber loss rate in the past two quarters. In Q1 2014, subscriber net loss of major cable operators in the United States was around 7k compared to over 200k subscriber loss in 4Q 2013.

"Innovative services such as Comcast’s cloud based X1 system which allows customers to store and watch TVshows on different devices has helped to reduce churn," says Jake Saunders...

| Read more »
Jul 28
IDC: cloud hardware spending breaks $4 billion mark

A new International Data Corporation (IDC) study confirmed that cloud is the major disruption factor in the EMEA [Europe, the Middle East, and Africa] infrastructure hardware market, accounting for a growing portion of hardware spending and exerting influence on hardware architectures and vendors' strategies.

The overall investment in hardware for cloud environments in EMEA is expected to exceed US$4 billion in terms of user value by the end of 2014, with a strong 19% year-over-year growth, says the research group. 15% of the infrastructure spend in EMEA will be related to cloud environments in 2014, versus only 8% in 2011. This will grow to more than 22% by 2018, says IDC (www.idc.com). Further findings from the report include:

° IDC estimates that $3.4 billion was spent on hardware going to cloud environments in EMEA in 2013, up 21% compared with 2012. This led to an increase in the penetration of the overall...

| Read more »
Jul 25
4G LTE to represent over 1-in-5 active mobile...

A new report from Juniper Research (www.juniperresearch.com) forecasts a rapid uptake of 4G LTE mobile technology in the next five years, with active connections crossing the one billion mark in 2017 and reaching 1.8 billion by 2019. This will represent 22% of the global active mobile SIM connections by this time.

The report from the research group finds that, with the rate of LTE network commitments and roll-outs at an all-time high, network and device vendors have significantly improved their position to offer products and solutions to network operators. The GSA (Global Mobile Suppliers Association) confirmed that 168 manufacturers have announced 1,889 LTE-enabled user devices, including operator and frequency variants, along with 300 commercial network launches.



Juniper found that TD-LTE (Time Division LTE - using unpaired spectrum) will indeed play a major role in global deployment....

| Read more »
Jul 24
Gartner: the business consumer requires a digital...

Gartner, Inc. (http://www.gartner.com) says that IT leaders have a significant opportunity to contribute to the business by creating a more flexible work environment that accommodates the needs of the business consumer.

Starting with the rise of PCs and the Internet era, users have a greater influence on IT strategy and we are currently witnessing the rise of what Gartner calls the "business consumer" — an employee for whom business activities are one part of a wider lifestyle," says Matthew Cain, research vice president at the research group.

"Individuals do not stop being consumers when they go to work," he adds. "Business consumers often make more consumer-like choices in their workplace computing tools and styles to increase efficiency."

Given the complexity of work environments and the geographic distribution of expertise across organizations, a critical competitive advantage will accrue...

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Jul 23
Cable operators seize the OTT initiative

Cable and over-the-top (OTT) providers are striking an unusual friendship, one that leads to profitability for both sides once some large challenges are hurdled, according to the latest report from Heavy Reading Cable Industry Insider (www.heavyreading.com/cable), a subscription research service from Heavy Reading.

"Cable & OTT: New Opportunities for Convergence" explores the market drivers, opportunities for convergence and the challenges ahead. It includes profiles of 10 cable software suppliers that offer solutions that support cable's TV Everywhere and multi-screen initiatives, which also can lend support for cable-OTT integration.

"As OTT video streaming services and devices began to attract consumers, they appeared like barbarians at the gate, ready to disrupt traditional media and topple the longstanding empires of cable and other television establishments," notes Craig Leddy...

| Read more »
Jul 22
IK Multimedia releases VocaLive 2 for iOS

IK Multimedia has released version 2 of its VocaLive app for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. It adds a flexible new multitrack studio with digital audio workstation features.

Now singers, songwriters and musicians can benefit from advanced editing features like timeline audio editing, waveform visualization, touch-and-drag looping and more. VocaLive can be used with the IK Multimedia iRig line of microphones and mic interfaces, VocaLive provides an all-in-one solution - with superb sound quality, recording flexibility and ease-of-use - for the professional singer on the go.

The newest feature in VocaLive 2 is its Studio section. Designed to complement VocaLive's Recorder section, it allows for a full degree of editing and composing flexibility with recorded tracks. Musicians can see and manipulate their audio tracks (up to four on an iPhone and eight on an iPad) as waveforms on a timeline grid, just like on a computer digital audio workstation.

Clips can be...

| Read more »
Jul 22
Study: channels are irrelevant to consumers

SDL has released the final report of the “Five Truths for Future Marketers” series titled “Channels are Irrelevant,” that features results from SDL’s global survey of more than 1,800 millennials (ages 18-36). The data reveals that today’s consumers no longer care about where they are or what device they are on when interacting with a brand, as 58% of millennials polled said they expect to engage with a company whenever they choose and via whichever channel they elect.

The data highlights the critical need for brands to stop focusing on channels and instead apply what they know about their consumers to elevate the overall experience in the buying journey. Millennials are the "always on" and connected generation, demanding consistent and seamless interaction with brands wherever they are and from any device they choose. According to the data, millennials touch their smartphones 43 times per day, and 30% admit they touch more than four devices over the course of 24 hours....

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Jul 21
Shipments of 300Mbps smartphone modems to exceed 700...

Shipments of second-generation LTE basebands, commonly called Cat4, enabling mobile users to enjoy up to 150 Mbps bandwidth, barely exceeded 42 million in 2013, according to ABI Research (www.abiresearch.com).

However, key chipset suppliers are stretching their muscles for next-generation basebands that will enable speeds of up to 300 Mbps, namely Cat6 chips. New findings from the research group indicate that cumulative shipments of Cat6 chips targeting smartphones are expected to exceed 700 million by the end of 2019.

"Although a number of chipset suppliers have announced their Cat6 basebands, mobile operators are not yet launching commercial networks that will allow users to enjoy mobile broadband speeds exceeding 150Mbps. An exception to this is SK Telecom which recently launched an LTE-Advanced service, offering speeds up to 225 Mbps," says Malik Saadi, practice director at ABI Research.

...

| Read more »
Jul 18
CHGT: new 3D printing innovations open up opportunities

As forward-thinking technology company Changing Technologies, Inc. (http://tinyurl.com/mcdmvoe) has examined new ways to commercialize the latest innovations, a recent news report suggests that 3D printing is set to become a game-changer in the multi-billion dollar headphone market.

While figurines, household items and even food are examples of smaller-scale items created by 3D printers for the consumer end user, ABC News reported last week that a New York-based company is now mass producing custom-fit earphones using advanced mobile and 3D-printing technologies. Simply using a phone app and a photo, the earphones are custom-made, have a price-floor under $200 and can be delivered in two days.

NDP Group consumer electronics experts project earphone/headphone sales to exceed $2 billion in 2014. Apple Inc. recently purchased consumer electronics company Beats Electronics producers of Beats by...

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Jul 17
In-vehicle ads to impact automotive infotainment market

Research and Markets (www.researchandmarkets.com) says in-vehicle advertising will affect the North American auto infotainment market.

There is an influx of connected vehicles in the United States. The success of mobile advertisements delivered through handheld devices is due, in large part, to social media, and the transition to the next largest audience (automotive) is promising, according to Research and Markets. The research group's study found:

° While mobile advertising has seen lucrative growth, Frost & Sullivan expects the industry to continue to grow, making in-vehicle advertising more attractive.

° Streaming services in vehicles do not have the same traction as mobile offerings, so in vehicle ads will almost make up for high-development costs to the service provider.

° Location-based services will be the leading method for ad delivery, but first marketers...

| Read more »
Jul 16
Cloud app development, management platforms to flourish

The nascent enterprise mobility space will see tremendous growth in new cloud based solutions as enterprises seek to mobilize quickly and easily, according to ABI Research (http://www.abiresearch.com).

No longer focused on mobile device management solutions, companies are seeking mobile application platforms deployed on-premise or in the cloud for the development and management of enterprise applications, the research group adds. The shift towards applications is based on necessity and scalability as enterprises are forced to deal with a growing number of devices and device platforms accessing enterprise content and systems.

"Mobile applications allow for greater flexibility when mobilizing content and employees," says ABI Research Senior Analyst Jason McNicol. "However, the cost in terms of time and resources is fairly expensive to generate a single app for multiple platforms like iOS,...

| Read more »
Jul 15
WiFi double digit growth to continue with next wave of...

Qualcomm-Atheros' recently announced portfolio of 802.11n/ac MU-MIMO "Wave 2" chips represents the next evolution of Wi-Fi to higher data rates and capacity, helping stimulate demand for Wi-Fi routers and Wi-Fi-enabled mobile devices, according to Strategy Analytics (http://www.strategyanalytics.com)

The research group predicts that 802.11n/ac with MU-MIMO will help propel the Wi-Fi market to 3 billion systems shipped in 2018, at the same time pushing the market for external RF power amplifiers for Wi-Fi up by more than 50% from 2013 sales, to the benefit of Skyworks, RFMD, TriQuint and other suppliers.

Based on a detailed analysis of Wi-Fi adoption and radio component architectures in 24 types of Wi-Fi systems, the report includes historical shipment estimates and specifications for the latest Wi-Fi radio SoCs and power amplifiers.

"The Wi-Fi SoC suppliers have worked hard...

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Jul 11
Worldwide IT spending on pace to grow 2.1% this year

Worldwide IT spending is on pace to total $3.7 trillion in 2014, a 2.1% increase from last year; however, this grow rate is down from earlier projections of 3.2% growth, according to the latest forecast by Gartner, Inc. (http://www.gartner.com). The slower outlook for 2014 is attributed to a reduction in growth expectations for devices, data center systems and to some extent IT services, according to the research group.

"Price pressure based on increased competition, lack of product differentiation and the increased availability of viable alternative solutions has had a dampening effect on the short term IT spending outlook," says Richard Gordon, managing vice president at Gartner. "However, 2015 through 2018 will see a return to ‘normal’ spending growth levels as pricing and purchasing styles reach a new equilibrium. IT is entering its third phase of development, moving from a focus on technology and...

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Jul 08
Wireless LANs to represent 18% of enterprise...

Canalys (www.canalys.com) has announced its forecast for enterprise networking investment, which shows the ongoing shift in budgets from wired to wireless.

The total worldwide end-user value of router, switch and wireless LAN shipments is forecast to grow from US$29.9 billion in 2013 to $33.7 billion in 2018, according to the research group. Wireless LANs will remain the fastest growing segment, accounting for 18% of total value by the end of this period, up from 14%.

"Wireless LAN investment continues to be driven by enterprises moving more of their campus and branch office networking budgets from fixed to wireless to support increasingly mobile-centric user device access at the LAN edge," says Canalys Principal Analyst Matthew Ball.

The transition to 11ac continued to accelerate during the first quarter of 2014, following the start of customer adoption in Q3 2013. Just over 10% of access point...

| Read more »
Jul 07
Consumers want more flexibility when shopping online

Online shoppers want retailers to make it easier to purchase their goods and services, according to comScore (www.comscore.com), a company that "measures the digital world." Consumers also want websites and stores to work better together. For now, they also prefer to evaluate and purchase products from their desktops rather than their mobile devices, and when it comes to shipping and returns “free” is a driving factor to complete the sale.

Earlier this year, comScore asked 5,800 consumers about their online shopping experiences. Respondents said they want more options in searching for items, checking out, enhanced security and alternate delivery locations. While smartphones play a big role in the online experience, user interfaces have some catching up to do to win over consumers.

Online shoppers who use multiple devices said they would prefer to shop on a desktop computer over mobile because larger and...

| Read more »
Jul 03
The Northern Spy: gone phishing

By Rick Sutcliffe

This month's column will be short but not entirely sweet. Following much ado about something in the two columns filed here from WWDC, the Spy has less to say this month, but that is not to suggest it has been a slow time.

WWDC

Upon reflection, the Spy remains convinced that the Swift programming language is a major step forward in developer tools. The language has a slight air of being unfinished, as a few spots (the role of modules, for instance) need a little work. However, he believes developers will be using it and its descendants for a long, long time. Of the other announcements for developers, the Home and Health Kits probably represent the greatest opportunities for making new products, and expanding the Apple ecosystem. These will be very big. You heard it here first.

Hacked

Far too much of the Spy's time afterwards was taken up by fixing vandalism. Under another hat he...

| Read more »
Jul 03
Annual digital payments to reach $4.7 trillion by 2019

A new report from Juniper Research (http://www.juniperresearch.com) finds that the annual transaction value of online, mobile and contactless payments will reach US$4.7 trillion by 2019, up from just over $2.5 trillion this year.



The report says that the largest net increase in spend would occur through remote physical goods purchases. However, while there was organic growth in the overall transaction levels due to increased purchasing on tablets and mobile, a significant proportion of tablet usage represented migration from desktop activity, according to Juniper Research. Combined transactions on mobile handsets and tablets will exceed those on desktops and laptops for the first time this year.



The report also notes that there's accelerating migration from physical format (DVD, CD) to digital (stream, download) across all core content sectors. These included a marked trend...

| Read more »
Jul 02
Newlyweds, new parents most likely victims of identity...

LifeLock (http://www.lifelock.com), provider of proactive identity theft protection services for consumers and fraud and risk solutions for enterprises. has announced newly commissioned research conducted by Forrester Consulting about consumer attitudes, behaviors, and exposures related to identity theft.

The February 2014 survey revealed that individuals who experience life milestones related to "new beginnings," including getting married, becoming new parents, buying a home or entering the dating scene, are more likely than the average population to become victims of identity theft.

"Life milestones in this day and age are often accompanied by significant sharing of personal data. Whether you’re getting married or buying a new home, you’re filling out many different forms both digitally and on paper – and you may have very little control over where your highly personal information goes," says...

| Read more »
Jul 01
Enterprise mobility solutions to shift from device to...

Mobile application management (MAM) is seeing increased adoption levels as enterprises seek solutions more flexible than traditional mobile device management (MDM)., according to ABI Research (www.abiresearch.com).

Currently, MDM solutions comprise over 60% of enterprise mobility management solution users; however, by the end of 2019, MDM share will drop to a bit more than 30% and MAM will command the lion’s share at over 60%. Thanks to large growth in the Asia-Pacific region, MAM will supplant MDM as the preferred enterprise choice, notes the research group.

"MDM is a tool being reserved more for corporate-liable devices, while MAM is a mobility solution for the masses, or employee-owned devices associated with BYOD," says ABI Research Senior Analyst Jason McNicol. "For employees to embrace enterprise mobility initiatives and more importantly policies, more flexible yet secure solutions are...

| Read more »
Jun 30
New materials, better processes spur touch sensor...

Both glass-based and film-based sensors are evolving to improve performance, while at the same time becoming thinner and lighter, and increasing optical quality, according to new data from NPD DisplaySearch (www.displaysearch.com).

The research group forecasts that the total touch sensor area yield of projective capacitive, in-cell, on-cell, and resistive sensors, will reach 23.3 million square meters in 2015, up from 18 million square meters in 2014. Capacity for sensors for film substrates will be higher than for glass substrate, due to expected area growth of each type of film structure.

"Metal mesh, sliver nanowires, and other new materials will be used in the production of larger displays with better sheet resistance at affordable prices, and these new materials might be used for curved or flexible-touch sensors soon," says Shoko Oi, deputy director of touch panel and emerging display...

| Read more »
Jun 27
Third generation of LBS to capitalize on location...

The LBS [location based services] market continues to grow strongly and with the arrival of always-on ubiquitous location, ABI Research (www.abiresearch.com) believes that the market is ready to truly support location based advertising efforts.

In Western Markets, a third generation of location based services is now underway. It has forecast retail/shopping, ambient intelligence, hyperlocal social and personal asset tracking/BLE beacon applications to emerge as the next wave of important location based services over the next five years, with ABI Research forecasting a four-fold increase in revenues by 2019. In emerging regions the value of location is not lost with strong local deals/offers markets already emerging.

"In Asia, ABI Research sees LBS downloads breaking 4 Billion in 2019. In China, major Internet companies can see the necessity of location and are acquiring/integrating as they move to...

| Read more »
Jun 26
Worldwide monitor market undergoes a slight decline

Worldwide PC monitor shipments totaled nearly 33.7 million units in the first quarter of 2014 (1Q14), a year-over-year decline of -0.4%, according to the IDC (www.idc.com) research group. IDC expects worldwide shipments to continue on their current trajectory, slipping to 106 million units for the full year 2018.

"Despite the overall decline, the shipment totals were stronger than the forecast of 31 million units," says Phuong Hang, program director, Worldwide Trackers at IDC. "Geographically, Japan and the Middle East and Africa (MEA) regions delivered the largest gains during the first quarter while Dell and HP both experienced solid shipment growth."

LED backlight technology adoption continues to increase with a new high of 92% market share in 1Q14. This represents a year-over-year increase of 16.4%. Screen size of 21.x-inches wide has held the largest worldwide share for the last six quarters, with 20.5% share...

| Read more »
 
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