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Jan 14
Strategy Analytics: TV's not dying; it's...

Contrary to some recent melodramatic predictions, the television industry isn't dying but is undergoing a process of rapid change, according to a recent report from Strategy Analytics.

The research group says that the global installed base of TV-addressable screens is in fact in the middle of a second wave of rapid expansion. The first wave peaked in 2007 and was driven by consumer PC adoption.

The current wave peaked in 2012 and is being driven by mobile devices. Together with traditional TVs these "new TV" devices increased the global installed base of TV addressable devices to 5.1 billion at the end of 2013. By 2017 a further two billion TV devices will have been added to the global population.

"TV's impending death has been overstated by some commentators," says David Watkins, director, Connected Home Devices (CHD). "The reality is that, while the television industry is changing and will look different in the future, it is very much alive. TV screens are...

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Jan 13
Americans concerned about the privacy of text messages...

With the news that the National Security Agency tracks the locations of nearly 5 billion cellphones every day overseas, including those belonging to Americans abroad, now more than ever, people are worried about the privacy of their text messages and mobile phone calls.

A new survey from CoverMe, a private messaging app, and SodaHead, the web’s largest opinion-based community, reveals that Americans are very concerned about the security on their phones, the government’s reach and other people reading their text messages—and that level of concern varies according to gender, age, and whether respondents considered themselves ‘liberal’ or ‘conservative’..
 
The survey reveals that:
 
° Americans are very concerned about the privacy of their mobile communications. Sixty-five percent of respondents are not confident that their mobile phone comes with adequate security and privacy technology. Thirty-three percent of respondents believe that the government...

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Jan 10
High-speed wireless devices to surge in shipments

The global market for high-speed wireless-enabled devices is set for explosive growth within the next five years as more consumer electronics products  take advantage of rapid wireless transfer capabilities, according to a new report from IHS Inc. (http://www.isuppli.com).

Annual shipments of high-speed wireless-enabled devices such as smartphones, televisions and mobile PCs are expected to reach 503 million devices by 2018, up more than tenfold from 49 million units anticipated in 2013, says the research group. Growth during the next three years will be tremendous, ranging from 60% to 120%, with expansion during the last two years of the forecast window moderating somewhat to still-high increases of up to 30%, as shown in the attached figure.

A high-speed wireless-enabled device, as defined by IHS, is one that includes at least one of the following technologies: WirelessHD, WHDI, 802.11ad (WiGig) or...

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Jan 09
Gartner: companies should deploy technologies to...

Companies that address accessibility needs in their IT product development are better positioned to leverage those same assistive technologies to mass market solutions, according to Gartner, Inc. (http://www.gartner.com).

The research group says that people with disabilities (PWD) are an underserved market segment with one billion people worldwide. They and their immediate friends and family have an annual disposable income of more than IS$8 trillion.

"People with disabilities make up 15% of the world 's population and some of the assistive technology marketed to people with disabilities can also be sold to the other 85% of the population that is 'situationally disabled' by their environmental conditions, at work and at play," says Andrew Johnson, managing vice president at Gartner. "Every day situational disabilities include listening to a conference call in a noisy airport, or using a mobile phone...

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Jan 08
Internet of Things installed base to grow to 26...

The Internet of Things (IoT), which excludes PCs, tablets and smartphones, will grow to 26 billion units installed in 2020 representing an almost 30-fold increase from 0.9 billion in 2009, according to Gartner, Inc. (http://www.gartner.com).


The research group said that IoT product and service suppliers will generate incremental revenue exceeding US$300 billion, mostly in services, in 2020. It will result in $1.9 trillion in global economic value-add through sales into diverse end markets. 

The Internet of Things is the network of physical objects that contain embedded technology to communicate and sense or interact with their internal states or the external environment. 

"The growth in IoT will far exceed that of other connected devices. By 2020, the number of smartphones tablets and PCs in use will reach about 7.3 billion units," said Peter Middleton, research director at Gartner. "In...

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Jan 07
Bluetooth Smart sets the stage for 67% growth in...

Wearable technology, the trend encapsulating everything from fitness trackers to Bluetooth Smart enabled running shoes, is seeing phenomenal growth and high consumer demand. Everyday items such as watches, bracelets, gloves and even hats, are being updated with Bluetooth wireless technology, allowing them to capture data and send it back to an application on a smartphone or tablet.

Bluetooth Smart is fast becoming the de facto connectivity solution for wearable technology, spurred by growth in wearable sports and fitness trackers, which make up 96%of shipped wearable devices in 2013. ABI Research (http://www.abiresearch.com) projects 32 million Bluetooth enabled sports and fitness devices will ship this year alone.

Bluetooth Smart is the intelligent, power-friendly version of Bluetooth wireless technology that is making wearables practical for the mass market. While the power-efficiency of...

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Jan 06
Wearable medical devices market to reach US$5.8...

According to a new market report published by Transparency Market Research (http://www.transparencymarketresearch.com) the global market for wearable medical devices was valued at US$2 billion in 2012 and is expected to reach a value of $5.8 billion in 2019, growing at a CAGR [compound annual growth rate] of 16.4% from 2013 to 2019.

Wearable medical devices defined in the strictest sense are devices with sensors attached to the body that detect and monitor changes in body signatures of various areas and organs. The research group says the meek wrist watch that was used to monitor only heart rate in the last decade has today been transformed into a powerful gadget that can today store vast quantities of data on patient information such as SPO2, heart rate, temperature, blood pressure and water content in the body among several other intelligent diagnostic parameters....

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Jan 03
ABI Research: portable speakers powering the digital...

Digital speakers represent an important accessory that enables consumers to extend their smartphone or tablet from a personal to a shared experience. This class of speakers, with its smaller size and high quality sound, has enabled the change from electronics as the center of a room to electronics which complement modern design.

The digital speaker market, which includes portable speakers, speakers with dock, sound bars, and network audio systems, is expected to grow from over 47 million units in 2013 to nearly 61 million by 2018, with portable speakers representing over half of the market by the end of the forecast window, according to ABI Research (http://www.abiresearch.com)

"iOS-centric digital speaker products, like speakers with docks, lead the market, but a turning point came when Apple switched from the 30 pin connector to its new Lightning connector, compelling customers to place...

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Jan 02
The Northern Spy: Prognostications for 2014

By Rick Sutcliffe

A year of consolidation looms in parts of the high-tech landscape. For instance, television manufacturers will continue to exit this unprofitable sector and find other ways to (try to) make money.

Sony in particular remains problematic. The Spy recently purchased a Sony 1040 receiver as both reviews and specs seemed promising. After all, very few receivers at any price have all of AirPlay, Wi-Fi, Ethernet, and BlueTooth, and many no longer offer phono inputs. Sony's model has them all at a reasonable price point.

However, finding stock has been a problem, and this seems more than just an end-of-model-year issue. Yes, after years of being behind the feature curve, Sony surpassed the others in receiver featuritis last year, but was the company too late with too little? And, can they turn their TV business around? Is it worth trying? Time will tell, but there's not much good news coming out of Sony these days, and it has to be...

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Jan 02
Berg Insight: mobile location platform revenues will...

According to a new research report from the analyst firm Berg Insight (www.berginsight.com), the global market for location platforms will grow steadily in the next few years, mainly driven by the emerging indoor location segment.

At the same time, the market for location platforms deployed by mobile operators is maturing. Annual revenues for GMLC/SMLC and SUPL A-GPS servers, passive location platforms, as well as middleware deployed by mobile operators are forecasted to grow from an estimated € 190 million in 2012 to € 275 million in 2018. The market is primarily driven by public safety and lawful intercept mandates that require network operators to invest in location platforms enabling location of any handset.

Overall, the growing end-user demand for commercial location-based services (LBS) will not have a substantial effect on the market for mobile network location platforms. Most mass market...

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Dec 31
Gartner: 20% of new tech spending will be on as-a-...

Organizations’ need to drive innovation and growth, coupled with a limited budget and the mainstreaming of consuming technology “as-a-service”, is creating the perfect condition for integrated platform solutions.

Susan Tan, research director at the Gartner research group (http://www.gartner.com) says that new technologies — such as cloud, mobile, analytics, social, sensors and in-memory computing—- offer the promise of innovation and creation of competitive advantages. However, enterprises face challenges to their adoption. Organizations still struggle with tight budgets and inflexible legacy systems, and many organizations lack resources, skill sets, appetite and time to adopt these new technologies in a conventional manner.

Traditional implementations that take months and years to build cannot be agile enough to keep up with changing technologies or respond quickly to fleeting market opportunities,...

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Dec 27
Mobile gambling user numbers to rise by 100 million...

Over the next five years, the number of mobile and/or tablet owners using their devices to gamble will increase by 100 million, meaning that 164 million people will either place a bet, visit a mobile casino or buy a lottery ticket on their device in 2018. These findings come from Juniper Research’s latest report on mobile gambling, which highlighted that the strongest growth would come from the North American market.

According to the report although growth has been slow in the US since the DoJ (Department of Justice) ruling in 2011, the number of users in the region is expected to pick up sharply from 2014 onwards. This will occur as states which have not yet fully legislated on remote gambling make progress following successful services launching in Nevada and New Jersey. In addition, inter-state poker, where two players in separate, regulated markets play against each other, is likely to become a reality in the medium term, further driving mobile/tablet gambling usage,...

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Dec 26
Early adopters of mobile websites are not who you...

Research from optimized website specialist Telnames (http://www.telnames.com) says that the businesses leading the way in adopting mobile websites are not who you might think.

The businesses leading the way in adopting mobile websites – and capitalizing on the consumer boom in mobile search - are not the larger hi-tech companies with established and mature web presences that people might expect. It is the UK’s small and micro businesses that have most enthusiastically adopted mobile technology.

The explosive growth in mobile search traffic represents a major opportunity for businesses looking to attract browsers on the move or searching at home on their smartphone and tablet devices, and Telnames’ research shows that small and micro enterprise owners in particular have been quick to grasp the benefits of establishing a mobile-ready web presence.


According to research by Google, 95% of...

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Dec 23
Growth of LTE-based in-car Wi-Fi hot spots to boost...

Although the majority of rear-seat entertainment usage is likely to be based on BYOD [bring your own device], ABI Research (www.abiresearch.com) forecasts that the number of embedded original equipment manufacturer [OEM] supplied rear-seat entertainment displays shipped in cars will increase to reach 13.3 million units globally by 2020.

Rear-seat entertainment systems, typically incorporating DVD players, have been offered by OEMs and numerous aftermarket suppliers for many years. However, the higher bandwidth of LTE and its increasing coverage in North America, Europe and other parts of the world means that OEM Wi-Fi hot spot solutions will enable a host of new in-car applications such as video streaming, gaming and even video-conferencing, as well as enabling multiple devices to be connected simultaneously.

"Although we expect the majority of people to use their own smartphone or tablet devices in...

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Dec 20
Gartner: BYOD an applications strategy, not just a...

Bring your own device (BOYD) is not just a purchasing policy and needs to be approached more broadly with the applications and strategies designed for today's world, according to Gartner, Inc.

While most enterprises today are increasingly feeling the imperative to "do mobile," many don't know where to begin and there are many obstacles to success. The research group says the key decision about BYOD is one of applications architecture and solutions design. 

"Designing your applications to meet the demands of BYOD is not the same as setting usage policies or having strategic sourcing plans that mandate a particular platform," said Darryl Carlton, research director at Gartner. "BYOD should be a design principle that provides you with a vendor neutral applications portfolio and a flexible future-proof architecture. If the applications exhibit technical constraints that limit choice and limit deployment, then the purchasing policy is irrelevant." 

Most...

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Dec 19
Study shows how tablet users share content

MAZ (www.mazdigital.com) — whose publishing platform powers over 600 apps on the Apple App Store, Google Play and Amazon Appstore — has unveiled a study showing how users are sharing content from tablets.

The most interesting finding of the study was the fact that 72% of all shared content is shared via email. While a lot of digital strategists have written off email as an outdated tool compared to more modern social networks, the data suggests that despite being presented with the option to share to Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or Tumblr, users continue to prefer sharing content to their friends, family or coworkers via email.

With the recent buzz about young people moving to closed networks such as Snapchat, this study supports the idea that sharing to individuals and smaller groups may be preferable over public-facing networks. As for social networks, the study shows that users prefer to share to...

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Dec 17
Gartner: smart watches won't dominate consumer...

Despite the hype surrounding smart watches, they are unlikely to be featured on many consumers' holiday wish lists this year, according to Gartner, Inc. (www.gartner.com). The research group says that premium pricing paired with an unclear value proposition will steer consumers' spending toward tablets and fitness bands, leading to lackluster sales of smart watches this holiday season.

Smart watches are a product subset of the wearable electronics market that caters to different industry verticals and consumer groups that include fitness, health-monitoring, monitoring the elderly and law enforcement (tracking). Smart watches themselves are not a new device but they have recently evolved from the health and fitness field with an attempt to enter the mainstream consumer market by adding communication and more smart features.

"Samsung and other well-known vendors have recently entered the smart watch space, yet...

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Dec 16
Majority of consumers plan to shop online this holiday...

Based on a survey of shoppers completed by Overstock.com, a discount online shopping retailer, 75% plan to shop on Black Friday (Nov. 29) and of those, 57% plan to do it online. Cyber Monday (Dec. 2) will bring in 66% of shoppers online. The survey also revealed that consumers expect savings of up to 40% off during the Black Friday and Cyber Monday retail period.

"Online shopping allows consumers to make purchases comfortably from their home while avoiding the holiday rush, waiting in line, fighting traffic and suffering the weather," says Overstock.com Chairman and CEO Patrick M. Byrne. "Overstock offers great deals on high-quality products that can be shipped directly to your door." 

The majority of online shoppers will be younger consumers. According to a study by CFI Group, 50% of millennials intend to spend more than 40% of their holiday shopping budgets online, compared to 38 percent of baby boomers.

Overstock.com's survey also showed that 74% of shoppers...

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Dec 12
Chip firms, OEMs to enjoy strong revenue growth as...

The semiconductor and electronics original equipment manufacturing (OEM) industries are set to enjoy significant revenue growth in 2013 — partly due to their tight management of inventory levels — according to a Supply Chain Inventory market brief from IHS Inc. (www.isuppli.com).

Among OEMs in six categories, total revenue in the third quarter reached an estimated US$493 billion, up a robust 7% from $462 billion in the second quarter. Revenue in the final quarter of the year is expected to climb at an even more blistering pace, reaching $540 billion with sequential growth of 10%.

In contrast to the strong performance for the two last quarters of the second half, the first two quarters of the year started out more quietly, with growth in the second quarter reaching only 2%. Industrial electronics was the strongest of the six segments being counted in the third quarter, but wireless communications will finish...

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Dec 12
Android OEMs expand their enterprise smartphone...

According to a new report from ABI Research (www.abiresearch.com), Android smartphone OEMs [original equipment manufacturers] are taking advantage of a solid presence among consumers and mobile business users to drive more business entity smartphone purchases and expand use in the enterprise.

ABI Research predicts that shipment revenues from Android smartphones used by mobile business customers will grow from US$54 billion in 2013 to over $92 billion globally by the end of 2018. ABI Research analyzed Android OEM enterprise features and market presence to provide mobile business customer adoption forecasts for six OEMs including HTC, Huawei, LG, Motorola Mobility, Samsung, and ZTE.

"Despite a significant presence among employees in the workplace, businesses have not allowed or have limited the access of Android devices to enterprise applications and systems," says ABI Resesarch Senior Analyst, Jason...

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Dec 11
26% of U.S. broadband households eyeing an Internet-...

The Parks Associates (www.parksassociates.com) research group finds growing consumer interest in smart home automation solutions, with 26% of U.S. broadband households planning to purchase a smart thermostat during the 2013 holiday season.

"Roughly 25% of broadband households with new home management and home entertainment equipment report experiencing problems with these devices on a monthly basis, a surprisingly high amount," says Patrice Samuels, research analyst, Parks Associates. "Robust technical support will help consumers to achieve the promise of these devices and mitigate consumer frustration."

Parks Associates research finds 30% of consumers with electronic door locks regularly experience technical problems with these solutions, including 9% on a daily basis. Over 20% of smart thermostat owners regularly experience problems, including 12% on a daily basis.

"IP-enabled...

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Dec 10
One billion smartphones will have location-based...

As smartphones embrace always-on, ubiquitous location, location-based sensor fusion will become a standard feature, according to ABI Research (www.abiresearch.com). Location-based sensor fusion will enable the dawn of the quantified self, ambient intelligence, as well as provide huge potential around advertising and retail, says the research group.

"Sensor fusion is vital in enabling a consistent location experience, RF mapping, and the industry to scale rapidly," says ABI Research Senior Analyst Patrick Connolly. "Unfortunately, it is not just a case of putting in a 9-axis sensor to achieve this. Highly complex algorithms are required to optimize sensor outputs, integrate with other location technologies and combine with machine learning and data-fusion algorithms. Sensor fusion will surpass Wi-Fi and BLE as the most important handset-based indoor location technology by 2017."

ABI Research has...

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Dec 09
Smartphones, tablets revolutionize online content...

Driven by rapid adoption of smartphones and tablets, international consumers of digital media — video, video games, music and books — are moving away from traditional household ownership models to individual rental models, increasing the pressure on content publishers to increase investment and innovation.

This is according to "The Age of Curation: From Abundance to Discovery," an eight-country, 6,000 consumer survey and report to be presented on November 21 at the 2013 Forum D’Avignon, by Bain & Company (www.bain.com), aglobal business consulting firm. Key findings include:
° Smartphone ownership in developed markets (the U.S., U.K., France and Germany) jumped from 49% on average in 2012 to 64% in 2013, while increasing from 24% to 37% in developing markets (Brazil, Russia, India and China)

° Tablet ownership rose from 18% on average in 2012 to 39% in 2013 in developed markets, while increasing from 13...

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Dec 06
Americans reach for smartphones in unexpected places

With nearly 170 million Americans using smartphones today, mobile devices are now synonymous with everyday activities such as email, web browsing and communication via texts or social media. A number of Americans are actually reaching for their phones in some of the most unexpected places and using them for more than just staying in touch while on-the-go, according to results of a new nationwide survey released by LG Electronics.

Conducted by Kelton, the "Smartphone Secrets" survey of 1,152 Americans age 18 and over found that nearly one in five would never hide the fact that they are using their mobile device, no matter where they are. Some of the most shocking and surprising places in which Americans are not afraid to whip out their smartphones include:

° Places of worship: 48% of smartphone owners confess they would be comfortable using their devices in a place of worship.

° In the bedroom: 77% of smartphone owners admit they would openly use their phones...

| Read more »
Dec 05
Gartner: personal worlds, Internet of Everything are...

With the digital world upon us, digitalization will significantly change the technology market through the Internet of Things, according to Gartner, Inc. (www.gartner.com). While IT spending in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) will show an average annual growth rate of 2.2 percent through 2017, the Internet of Things (things, people, places and systems) will create new markets and a new economy, according to the research group.

"The traditional IT market is not going to grow at a faster rate any time soon, if ever. Increased growth will come from the non-traditional IT market," says Peter Sondergaard, senior vice president at Gartner and global head of Research. "While in 2015 the combined IT and telecom market will hit nearly US$4 trillion, the incremental revenue generated by the Internet of Things’ suppliers is estimated to reach $309 billion per year by 2020. Half of this activity will be new start-ups...

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