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Rich Tehrani
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Apple Chooses Qi for iPhone 8 and iPhone X Charging

September 12, 2017

Whatever wireless charging tech Apple decided to use would spark a trillion-dollar upgrade cycle in cars, gym equipment such as treadmills, office furniture, night-tables (especially in hotels), coffee-shop furniture and basically all flat surfaces.

Just to stay competitive, Dunkin' Donuts will upgrade all its tables to keep pace with Starbucks and there may not be a restaurant that can afford to ignore the trend.

We are talking world-wide here - over a trillion dollars will easily be spent. Some of the upgrades would have happened anyway but do not underestimate the power of Apple to force companies to piggy-back on their success.

Apple could have gone with its own standard and taken a piece of this new trillion-dollar space through licensing but instead they decided to use Qi, the standard we first talked about in 2013 when we were a bit thinner.



Because Apple went the open route, and decided not to make money from their newfound wireless charging dominance, the industry as a whole will flourish.

There will be no Apple-tax and subsequently all vendors have a new standard to focus on. Expect Microsoft laptops to benefit as well because they soon will have to embrace Qi. Ditto for Chromebooks and all Android devices. We saw Qi powering an electric kettle four years ago so it will likely be able to handle the charging of much of our electronics - not servers but at least much of what we put in our laptop bags.

Expect dirt-cheap Chinese Qi-power mats.













Paul Ryan: Smartphones Are Cleaning FEMA Out

September 7, 2017



According to Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan, people are using smartphones to apply for FEMA assistance at unprecedented levels and as a result it is nearly out of funds.

This wasn't possible in past disasters because people needed PCs, electricity and homes which weren't flooded or destroyed to connect to the internet.

Hurricane Harvey and it's immense amount of flooding has destroyed a large number of homes (above) while Hurricane Irma has already hit land in the US territory of Puerto Rico and will hit the US mainland soon. Even worse, hurricane Jose isn't far behind Irma.

Smartphones have made the pace of everything happen more quickly and asking for assistance from FEMA is no different and while this is great for those in need, it will put inordinate strain on government budgets to ensure the emergency fund stays solvent.







Roku IPO Reminds us Tech is an Oligopoly

September 3, 2017



Roku is a company that defied the odds - competing in a market with Apple, Google and Amazon and somehow persevering by making superior products in what is without a doubt a highly commoditized space. To make matters worse, Google and Amazon really don't seem to care too much about profitability - Amazon in general and Google/Alphabet for its businesses beyond search.

Still, despite the challenging competitive environment, Roku has persevered and done well.

The company's investors are about to partially cash out via an IPO and in its filing documents it tells us that two of its most popular services, YouTube and Netflix pay them virtually no money.

Tech is an oligopoly of sorts. In 2015, Om Malik wrote about the winner-take-all nature of Silicon Valley.

Here is an excerpt:

This loop of algorithms, infrastructure, and data is potent. Add what are called network effects to the mix, and you start to see virtual monopolies emerge almost overnight.











Facebook and Google May Become Regulated Utilities

July 28, 2017


Google effectively has a monopoly in search and Facebook has one in social networking and together they have a virtual monopoly in online advertising. Worldwide, Google has 92% market share! Facebook has 2 billion users with no competitor in site. The two companies alone account for virtually all digital advertising growth.

It is for these and other reasons that Steve Bannon wants the companies regulated like utilities.


Target and Casper, Retail is now like Telecom

May 25, 2017

Retailers are now a lot like broadband providers


Casper sells a mattress that rolls up and comes in a box and has rave reviews as well as a massive marketing budget which we've witnessed on the web, TV and radio. The company bills itself as the Internet's famous mattress.

Target is a retailer with nearly 2,000 stores under increasing pressure from the Internet's favorite reseller, Amazon.

For years, people in telecom have discussed why carriers like AT&T and Verizon don't want to be purely "dumb pipe" providers, they want to provide more enhanced services such as home security, business firewalls via NFV, OTT alternatives to Skype and more. That more is quite often programming aka content aka video programming.

Bottom line, retail is now like the telecom business where retailers need to diversify from distribution to content. In the same way, retailers need to diversify from distribution to products.

Carriers need to diversify because broadband is a commodity.








CafeX Chime Shows How Communications Enables Digital Transformation

April 9, 2017

There is is a nonstop movement from traditional communications and UC players to add value to their applications and services. It reminds us a great deal of what is happening with communications service providers - they had been trying for years to add value to their connections so as not to be considered dumb pipes. The latest move in this direction is AT&T offering HBO free in some of its service packages.

In a recent meeting with Sajeel Hussain of CafeX - we got a glimpse of what the evolution of UC and collaboration could be. CafeX has a service called Chime (PDF)- not to be confused with the more recent Amazon Chime service by the same name - which by the way, spurred a lawsuit from CafeX.

Hussain describes it as business-focused, outcome-driven pervasive collaboration with customer engagement.



Most Successful Woman in Tech Earns $41 Million!

January 16, 2017

There has been tremendous emphasis on increasing diversity in the tech world... African American representation has been quite low, so has Hispanic and female participation. The reward however, if you make it to the very top can be quite good.

A recent CNNMoney report highlights a handful of top female earners in tech and various other industries and the results are fascinating. It's really great news.



  • Oracle CEO Safra Catz occupies the No. 1 position.






NYC or France, Where Would You Locate Your Company?

January 7, 2017

New York City – whose moniker is “The City that Never Sleeps” has pushed to ensure your company never sleeps and in today’s connected and digital economy, this may be the difference between success and failure.

If you had a chance to choose a western region to locate your company and you had the choice of just New York City or France, which would you choose based on recent events? Moreover, if you had to make your decision largely based on recent government actions – let’s the last few weeks or so, which would you choose?

In other words, we are going to put aside tarriffs, currency, minimum wage, taxation, regulations, the availability of a solid slice of pizza, baguette or the availability of fine wine.

As we reported on Christmas Day of last year, France has a new law which allows people working for companies with 50 or more people to negotiate to not work after normal business hours.

President Zuckerberg? The Top 28 CEO Choices for U.S. President

December 12, 2016

Now that Donald Trump has become president, the mold has been broken and lots of other wealthy CEOs will throw their hats in the ring. Billionaire founder of Bloomberg L.P., Michael Bloomberg almost ran for president this time around according to reports.

A lot of hype has been made recently about Mark Zuckerberg toying with running for office. This got us thinking – what CEOs have enough name recognition or success to run for office and win?

2017 Predictions From Rich Tehrani

December 9, 2016

Without further ado, here are my predictions for the new year!!! What do you think? 

 

  1. We will see major financial problems begin to take shape at hardware companies without a solid cloud strategy.
  2. Trump’s new offshore tax rules will bring a flood of cash to tech companies – much of this will be shared via dividends and buybacks but it will also find its way into M&A as well as new product development.
  3. Smart factories with low cost energy will make the US a major force in manufacturing but this prediction will need to take 10 years to play out and thanks to IoT and robotics, the factory of tomorrow will need 1/10th the workers of today.
  4. Chinese cell phone provider Huawei or Xiaomi will become a serious thorn in the side of Samsung – producing low cost phones for hundreds less than the Korean maker and selling them in large numbers outside China.
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