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Apr 11
Global semiconductor revenue grew 5% in 2013

Total worldwide semiconductor revenue reached $315 billion in 2013, up 5 percent from 2012, according to Gartner, Inc. (www.gartner.com). The combined revenue of the top 25 semiconductor vendors increased by 6.9% during 2013.

This was a significantly better performance than the rest of the market, whose revenue growth was 0.9%, and was due, in part, to the concentration of memory vendors in the top ranking, according to the research group. The memory market increased 23.5% in 2013.

"After a weak start to 2013 due to excess inventory, revenue growth strengthened during the second and third quarters before leveling off during the fourth quarter," says Andrew Norwood, research vice president at Gartner. "Memory, and in particular DRAM, led this growth; not due to strong demand, but rather weak supply growth that pushed pricing higher. In fact, the overall market faced a number of demand headwinds during the...

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Apr 10
82% of U.S. broadband households now have an HDTV

Parks Associates (www.parksassociates.com) is predicting that 4K TVs will follow a similar, but faster, growth pattern as HDTVs, which have reached 82% of U.S. broadband households after 15 years on the market.

The research group forecasts that 4K TVs will reach mass-market pricing in the next 2-3 years and top 80% of households in approximately 10-12 years. Parks Associates analysts note 4K will initially be delivered via OTT, with companies like Netflix, Comcast, and Amazon already working on 4K-based offerings, and as 4K traffic increases over the next two years, traffic demands on broadband networks will grow dramatically. As a result, operators are aggressively looking into bandwidth-saving technologies, including next-generation video compression technologies.

"4K TV adoption is following the same pattern as HDTV, but prices are dropping more quickly," says Stuart Sikes, president,...

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Apr 09
Getting a better deal from your cable provider

Despite spending an average of US$1,848 annually on in-home telecom services, consumers aren't convinced it's money well spent.  The latest subscriber survey on telecom providers from the Consumer Reports National Research Center found almost universally low ratings for value across services — especially for TV and Internet.

Those who bundled the services for a discount still seemed unimpressed with what they were getting for the money. Even top-rated regional provider WOW and nationally-distributed Verizon FiOS, which both got high marks for service satisfaction, rated middling or lower for value.

"Our latest report on telecom services revealed that very few consumers think they're getting a great deal, in part because of soaring prices and confusing bills," says Glenn Derene, Electronics Editor for Consumer Reports. "But the last thing consumers should do is be passive. Even though some companies are cracking down on serial negotiators, there's really no downside to...

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Apr 08
Web content filtering market to reach $2.6 million in...

According to a new market report published by Transparency Market Research (www.transparencymarketing.com), a global market intelligence company, the web content filtering market was valued at US#1,230.9 million in 2012 and is expected to reach $2,579.6 million by 2019, growing at a CAGR [compound annual growth rate] of 11.3% from 2013 to 2019.

With exponential growth of the Internet, there has been increase in number of cyber attacks and cyber threats. Therefore, due to security reasons, the demand for content filtering solutions in business organizations and government agencies is expected to rise over the forecast period from 2013 to 2019, according to Transparency Research.

The ever changing government regulations coupled with growing desire to manage the Internet bandwidth consumption wisely have collectively fueled market momentum, adds the research group. The demand for...

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Apr 07
Is the private cloud losing steam?

It's no longer a question of whether cloud is the right strategy, but rather how you will leverage the cloud's abundance of resources to outpace your competition, according to a study from Cloud Connect in partnership with the Everest Group. Titled, "Cloud Adoption in the Enterprise: Distilling the Facts from Hype. The study reveals the increasing influence of the cloud on IT budgets, staff and business strategy.

"The new reality our research points to is that the modern enterprise will not be defined by public, private or hybrid but rather all of the above," says Steve Wylie, Cloud Connect general manager. "Companies will be working within very heterogeneous cloud environments putting additional pressure on IT in dealing with these additional complexities. The Cloud Connect Summit will continue to deliver an unparalleled program each year rich in content to help IT leaders implement and evolve an effective cloud strategy."

Here are a few highlights from the study:...

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Apr 04
Japan's mobile device market expected to...

IDC (www.idc.com) has published a new forecast for the Japan mobile device market, comprised of PCs, smartphones, tablets, and data communication products such as mobile cards and personal routers. IDC expects unit shipments will temporarily drop to 55.1million units in 2014, resulting in a year-over-year decline of -2.1%.

According to the research group, smartphone shipments will drop to 30.0 million units in 2014, which represents a year-over-year decline of -1.0%. The slowdown will be mainly due to lower sales of Android-powered smartphones caused by the three major carriers' promotional focus on the iPhone and slower new subscriber growth, particularly among consumers.

The commercial PC market is expected to decline -16.9% year over year, following some special demand brought about by Windows XP migrations in 2013. In contrast, the tablet market, which remains very healthy in both the commercial and consumer...

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Apr 03
ABI Research: unlock quality audio key to mobile...

Feature phones, smartphones, and tablets shipped more than 1.9 billion units combined in 2013. However, the quality of audio experience hasn’t kept pace with other mobile advancements making it the Achilles’ heel.

According to new research from market intelligence firm ABI Research (http://www.abiresearch.com), next-generation devices are poised to deliver high-definition voice capability and a surge in smart audio accessories will result in users spending a greater portion of the waking day with their devices.

"How is it that the mobile device market has managed to become so large and important, yet fail to impress when it comes to the quality of the audio experience?" asks senior practice director Jeff Orr. "As users customize and personalize their mobile device, they increasingly want a better audio experience."

Multiple initiatives are underway to revolutionize the mobile device...

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Apr 02
Global smartphone market to grow at CAGR of 15.3%

According to Research and Markets (www.researchandmarkets.com), the global smartphone market will grow at a CAGR [compound annual growth rate] of 15.3% over the period 2013-2018. One of the key factors contributing to this market growth is the declining ASP [average selling price] of smartphones.

The global smartphones market has also been witnessing increasing demand for large-screen smartphones, according to the research group. However, the high production cost could pose a challenge to the growth of this market.

Commenting on the report, Research and Markets says: "The Global Smartphones market is expected to witness significant growth due to some emerging trends that are likely to have a positive impact on market growth over the next few years. One such trend is the increasing demand for large-screen smartphones. With the emergence of new technologies such as cloud computing,...

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Apr 01
The Northern Spy: don your computers

By Rick Sutcliffe

Wearable computing technology has been the "latest" buzz longer than most ideas (indeed longer than some ideas endure from conception to death), generating endless speculation about who will bring out what product in the genre and when.

As often the case, the Spy has the inside track. Mind, he does not deal in speculation or rumour. However, he does keep his ear to the ground, his eye on the horizon, his nose to the grindstone, his hand in the industry, and his mind on the probabilities, which for simultaneity may be a literal anatomical improbability and for metaphorical use too much a melange merely to be termed "mixed."

One new technology recently in the news was a means to read the brain's diversified visual storage and reconstruct memories of faces--touted as useful in identifying perpetrators of crimes. Sounds quite interesting. Add this to a new manufacturing technique from I.R.C. for integrated...

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Apr 01
Online video the most important video source for young...

Over 50% of U.S. broadband households now use paid over-the-top (OTT) video services, either subscription or transactional, according to research from Parks Associates (http://www.parksassociates.com). The firm also notes 37% of consumers 18-24 say online video is their most important video source.

"Parks Associates research shows 45% of U.S. broadband households subscribe to a paid online video service, with younger consumers such as Millennials more likely than older consumers to use OTT services," says John Barrett, director, Consumer Analytics, Parks Associates.

According to the market research firm, online video is one of the most important sources of video among all U.S. broadband households. Over 40% of U.S. broadband households selected online video as one of the top three important sources of video, versus 25% for rented DVDs or 13% for owned Blu-ray discs.

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Mar 31
Mobile wallet market to undergo shakeups in the next...

The U.S. mobile payment landscape is currently in a state of flux: Although two-thirds of consumers are interested in learning more about transitioning to a mobile wallet platform, that interest is simply not translating into adoption, according to the Yankee Group (www.yankeegroup.com).

While traditional payment methods continue to reign supreme, a number of third-party mobile wallets are jockeying for position in the U.S. mobile payment landscape — but not all have the vision needed for long-term survival, says the research group. To endure the inevitable wave of consolidation, a well-defined roadmap paired with patience and endurance will be among the many competencies required.

Highlights from a new Yanke Group report include:
° Mobile wallets remain a story of high interest and low adoption, as just 16% of mobile device owners have used their phone to make an in-store payment in the past...

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Mar 28
Branded tablet shipments to reach 200 million this year

ABI Research (www.abiresearch.com) says this is a pivotal year for tablets as the traditional markets leading computing and CE [consumer electronics] deployments reach a tipping point and give way to growth regions.

The most mature markets, including North America, Western Europe, Japan and South Korea, are yielding to other regions, such as Latin America, Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa, where the connectivity infrastructure and distribution channels are coming of age. ABI Research forecasts 200 million branded tablet shipments this year—a 20% gain year-over-year from the 166 million shipments in 2013.

With more choices than ever for mobile computing, consumers and businesses will weigh the role of tablets along with ultraportable PCs and large screen smartphones (the so-called phablets) to satisfy their communications and computing needs. But 2014 will be anything but status quo for tablet...

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Mar 27
Consumer asset tracking, ambient intelligence next big...

While first generation LBS services have largely been commoditized or shifted to advertising models, the imminent arrival of indoor location, BLE tags, and wearables will enable next generation services around ambient intelligence and consumer asset tracking, according to ABI Research (www.abiresearch.com). In the latest edition of the company’s quarterly market data, "Location Enabled Services", these new markets are forecast by each major region.

"While these are very different markets, the common denominator is the availability of these new technologies and devices," says senior analyst Patrick Connolly. "Ambient intelligence, or the quantified self, is the first service that will truly change how people live their lives, while also enabling intuitive advertising and services. Local search will be unrecognizable from today’s model, as intelligent algorithms tell users what is of interest nearby, based...

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Mar 26
Almost 50% of One-Time Passwords fail to arrive

New global research by the Ponemon Institute, sponsored by mobile interaction service provider tyntec, has revealed that on average almost 50% of One-Time Passwords(OTPs) fail to arrive due to invalid mobile numbers provided by end-users. For the study, the Ponemon Institute surveyed more than 1,800 IT and IT security practitioners around the world.
 
The research also revealed that 65% of respondents felt the traditional username and password approach was insecure. As a result, 90% of global IT managers say their organizations plan or consider the possibility to adopt SMS-enabled two-factor authentication (2FA) in 2014 in order to improve online security.
 
The majority of international respondents (31%) cited on average 11-20% is the amount of OTPs that fail to be delivered. Of that, almost 50% on average fail because an invalid mobile number was entered by the end-user. As well as end-users providing invalid mobile numbers, OTPs can also fail due to technical...

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Mar 25
ABI Research: Intelligent transportation technologies...

With more than two-thirds of the global population expected to live in urban contexts by 2050, the deployment of smart cities technologies and intelligent transportation services in particular, will become key policy areas for local governments, according to ABI Research (www.abiresearch.com).

By 2025, penetration of ITS technologies in smart cities will range from 20% (autonomous vehicles) to 98% (traffic management), according to the research group.

"While numerous smart city projects are currently testing or deploying multimodal transportation, traffic management, adaptive traffic signaling, transit ticketing and smart parking payment solutions, the focus will shift to urban tolling and freight systems to address rampant congestion and pollution issues, especially in developing regions. However, more structural approaches based on eMobility, cooperative ITS and V2I, autonomous vehicles, and...

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Mar 24
ABI Research: startups driving market for public cloud...

The public cloud services market is slowly maturing, giving rise to a varied ecosystem of composite and value-added services. Security is starting to figure more prominently among these services as organizations realize they need better control over cloud-based processes, according to ABI Research (http://www.abiresearch.com).

While compliance concerns still remain high, cloud service providers have worked hard to address the issue, but at premium-level costs. SMBs have struggled to find the right balance between public cloud offerings and security. This gap is quickly being filled by innovative startups, eager to fill the demand for cost-effective and specialized security services for organizations subscribed to public cloud services, according to ABI Research.

The most dynamic market responses are around cloud API management, identity and access management (IAM), host and network security,...

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Mar 21
ABI: Chinese vendors will account for over 50% of...

ABI Research (http://www.abiresearch.com) says that Chinese handset vendors will account for over 50% of mobile handsets in 2015. Chinese vendors already accounted for 38% of mobile handset shipments in 2013 and the ongoing shift in growth to low cost handsets, especially smartphones, will increase their market share.

Greater China has long dominated the mobile handset manufacturing supply chain, but now its OEMs are beginning to dominate sales at the expense of the traditional handset OEMs [original equipment manufacturers], including even Samsung, according to the research group.

Many of the Chinese OEMs have focused almost exclusively on the huge Chinese market, with little activity beyond its borders, but this is set to change. Huawei (6th in worldwide market share for 2013) and ZTE (5th) have already made an impact on the world stage, but other Chinese handset OEMs like Lenovo — the...

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Mar 20
Apple Consultants: Four risks that threaten your...

By Ted Devine

Whether working as a one-person shop or part of a small consulting business, Apple consultants have more opportunity than ever to increase their revenue: 97% of Fortune 500 companies use iPhones for business, 98% of those companies use iPads, and Apple leads the individual smartphone market with 41% of users. When you take government and educational institutions into account, iPhones account for 59% of the entire enterprise smartphone market, and iPads for 78% of the tablet market.

But as with anything, these tremendous opportunities aren’t without their risks. Apple consultants who aren’t careful to manage the risks that accompany their work could find themselves with no clients, no revenue, and high legal bills.

The Major Risks That Threaten Apple Consultants

Here’s a look at the four biggest risks that threaten Apple consultants and how they can manage those risks to keep their business in the black....

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Mar 19
External disk market recovers from slump

Worldwide external disk storage systems factory revenues increased year over year by 2.4%, totaling $6.9 billion, during the fourth quarter of 2013 (4Q13), according to the IDC research group (http://www.idc.com).

For the quarter, the total (internal plus external) disk storage systems market generated $8.8 billion in revenue, representing a 1.3% increase from the prior year's fourth quarter and a sequential increase of 17.2% compared to the seasonally lower 3Q13. Total disk storage systems capacity shipped surpassed 10.2 exabytes, growing 26.2% year over year.  

"The disk storage systems market was able to break free of recent headwinds due to traditional year-end budget flushes, improved economic sentiment, and a strong desire to address long-standing storage infrastructure inefficiencies," says Eric Sheppard, research director, IDC Storage. "Industry stakeholders able to capitalize the most on this demand...

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Mar 18
Workstation, pro GPU markets head upward in Q4'13

2013 proved to be a good year for the tandem markets for workstations and professional GPUs, reports technology and market research firm, Jon Peddie Research (www.jonpeddie.com). In the fourth quarter, the market continued onward and upward, holding on to the substantial gains of the previous two quarters, closing out a healthy 2013.

Worldwide, the industry shipped approximately 971.6 thousand workstations in the fourth quarter of 2013, essentially flat (-0.2%) from Q3'13 and up 4.0% from the same quarter the year prior. That figure nearly eclipsed the record 1.0 million units the market set back in 2011. Given the quarter was sequentially flat, but exhibited respectable year-over-year (YoY) growth rate (4.0%), the leading workstation and graphics research firm labeled Q4'13 as another positive quarter in the market's steady, albeit unhurried, journey forward.

With growth coming in at a modest but...

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Mar 17
139.1 million consumer Wi-Fi access points shipped in...

The worldwide Wi-Fi customer premises equipment market including access points, routers and gateways shipments surpassed 139.1 million in 2013. 802.11ac access point adoption is starting to gain market share, representing 8% of the total consumer access point market in 2013, according to ABI Research (http://www.abiresearch.com).

More device manufacturers started to ship 802.11ac products in 2013; the majority of them provide dual-band access to support existing 802.11n devices.

"Although 802.11n devices hold the largest market share of the consumer Wi-Fi device shipments in 2013, 802.11n share of shipments is likely to start declining in 2014 as 802.11ac device adoption continues to grow. 802.11ac devices are expected to represent 45% of consumer Wi-Fi equipment shipments at the end of 2014," says Khin Sandi Lynn, industry analyst, ABI Research.

In the enterprise Wi-Fi market, 13.2...

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Mar 14
Survey: demand for cloud professional services on the...

Technology Business Research Inc.’s "Cloud Professional Services Customer Report" shows demand for cloud professional services continues to escalate, with more than 74% of enterprise clients, compared to 59% in 2011, purchasing or considering purchasing cloud computing services engaged with a cloud professional services vendor for assistance.

Recently, clients’ professional services demands shifted, with a need for assistance in system integration and implementation taking the lead. TBR surveyed 900 end users of cloud professional services across North America, Europe and Asia to map vendor opportunity and customer and competitor landscapes for the report, which is one of three customer-facing research initiatives in TBR’s cloud customer portfolio, says TBRI Senior Analyst Ramunas Svarcas.

With a growing number of customers investing in cloud services, the demand for cloud professional services is on the rise. TBR estimates cloud professional services revenue...

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Mar 13
Nearly 30% of U.S. broadband users watch video on...

The Parks Associates research group (www.parksassociates.com) has released mobile industry research showing roughly 29% of U.S. broadband users watch video on a mobile phone monthly, with the average user watching 1.7 hours of video on a mobile phone each week.

"Since 2008, revenues from voice services for the top-four U.S. mobile network operators (MNOs) have declined 6%, while data revenues have grown 129%," says Harry Wang, director, Health & Mobile Product Research, Parks Associates. "Mobile data revenues will be key to offsetting stagnant growth in voice revenues. Most major MNOs worldwide are transitioning or have already adopted tiered or shared usage-based data plans, and they will continue to experiment with pricing models to optimize the revenue-generation potential of mobile data access."

Parks Associates mobile research shows:

° The number of people in North America who...

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Mar 12
Advanced Content Recommendations to reach 75% of US...

Consumer exposure to advanced recommendations engines will grow to reach 75% of Pay TV households on multiscreen services and 55% on set-top boxes within North America by 2018, up from 20% and 10% in 2013, respectively, according to ABI Research (http://www.abiresearch.com).

This significant growth is driven by today’s highly competitive viewer landscape for Pay TV and OTT operators, says the research group. At the core of this are search, recommendation and discovery technologies that rely heavily on rich metadata as well as user analysis and learning.

"TiVo’s acquisition of recommendation specialist Digitalsmiths is indicative of the tight relationship between guides, metadata, and recommendations," says ABI Research Practice Drector Sam Rosen. "We expect further consolidation moving forward as recommendations move from a wish-list item to a must-have in today’s competitive environment....

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Mar 11
LTE data share plan of the market grows by 150%

According to ABI Research’s "Mobile Internet Pricing Q1-2014 Market Data," more than 55% of the cheapest country tariff plans are 4G compared to just 22% a year ago. This has been driven by the aggressive deployment of LTE networks and a wider choice of consumer-centric LTE smartphones.

"However, we found that the average cost of mobile Internet tariff plans across the cheapest 20 markets increased by 8.24% between Q1-2013 and Q1-2014," comments Marina Lu, research associate at ABI Research (http://www.abiresearch.com). "While 55% of the 20 cheapest country plans were 4G, 4G tariff plans were only marginally more expensive than 3G tariff plans. One year ago, the 4G data pricing was around 20% higher than 3G for the equivalent data-plan. Competition is forcing the mobile operators to pare down the prices of even their 4G tariffs."

The current 4G service adopters are bigger spenders than their...

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