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Consumer Electronics

Will YipTV do to TV What Vonage did to Voice Calls?

March 11, 2015

The VoIP market literally revolutionized the way communications worked – allowing among-other-things, a company to provide over-the-top services which were decoupled from the phone company. For the first time you could go out and buy broadband from one company and phone service from another. The poster-child for this movement in the US had to be Vonage, and the company did a great deal for the fledgling VoIP market at the time. Thanks to Vonage, AT&T launched a competitive service called CallVantage out of fear.

Finsphere and Visa Just Made Credit Cards Smarter

February 12, 2015

One of the biggest credit card challenges for users is seeing charges get declined because of potential fraud. In families and many companies, a central card can be shared by many people and when the credit card company flags a potentially fraudulent transaction and alerts the cardholder, it is possible that the card gets immediately cancelled out of fear. This can happen, even if transactions aren’t really fraudulent and in turn can cause a cascade of problems related to automated payments and other pending transactions within the family or organization.

In my experience, the banks are getting better at communicating with their customers about the potential for a transaction to be fraudulent but they are far from perfect.

The Data Interconnections Waze and others need

January 13, 2015


Let me start by saying that there are exceptions to what I am about to discuss below but generally speaking, inter-app connectivity is lacking. The real power of technology is harnessing big data from multiple sources – the so called mashup. We have come a long way and there is so much potential to leverage technology – to further improve the world. Here are some of my thoughts on cooperation I’d like to see:

5 Tech Companies to Watch in 2015

December 30, 2014

There are so many companies I meet with who have interesting stories to tell so I spent some time putting together a list of those worthy of recognition. I hope you find this interesting and have a great 2015.

Talari T5000 pictured below



Talari Networks is all about revolutionizing WAN economics or in less marketing speak, they are disrupting the MPLS monopoly. Wait, I am still talking in marketing terms.

Shocking Bang & Olufsen Profit Warning

December 24, 2014

Generally, I don’t write about profit warnings but the latest one from B&O caught me by surprise because the luxury market is booming and the consumer electronics market is doing amazingly well yet Bang & Olufsen is not seeing sales explode. As I child I used to ride my bike to the nearby B&O store to marvel at the products which were beyond the reach of a 11-year-old. The company was decades ahead of the competition in terms of design.

BeoPlay A8



They did such a good job in-fact, Steve Jobs cited them as an inspiration. Apple’s success in-turn led to the consumer electronics world taking design very seriously.





Restoration Hardware's E-commerce Fighting Formula

December 16, 2014

A Tasteful Blend of Starbucks and Apple Retail Experiences designed to make customers fall in love



Apple has the most valuable retail real estate in history, outdoing Tiffany. As a result, Microsoft has stores which mimic Apple. Samsung does as well. More importantly, many retailers emulate the look of Apple stores.

Blackberry to Pay You $550 for your iPhone

November 25, 2014

The smartphone wars have gotten out of control with Blackberry paying you up to $450 to switch to the company’s devices. As you can see from the chart below, they are not messing around… There is serious money to be had here for the iPhone user that is looking to switch.

 

 

Trade-In
Value

BlackBerry
Top-Up

Offer
Total

iPhone 4S

up to $90

$150

up to $240

iPhone 5

up to $150

$150

up to $300

iPhone 5C

up to $130

$150

up to $280

iPhone 5S

up to $235

$150

up to $385

iPhone 6

up to $400

$150

up to $550

 

Amazon too has tried to get people to switch to the Kindle Fire phone by giving away a year of Prime service and unlimited photo storage and bundling a Kindle Fire HDX 7” for only 99 cents.

Awesome Cyber-Monday Phone Battery Charger Deal

November 17, 2014


My family has had great experiences with the PowerSkin PoP'n Battery Charger as the device has suction cups and sticks to the back of your phone which means no additional cable is needed. Best of all, since it isn't a case, you don't have to worry about the difficulty of separating your phone from the case. The only drawback is the base can be a bit fragile under heavy stress situations as you might expect. Still, this is a great battery and I endorse it fully because of the case-less and cordless charging capability.

The company will soon be selling these chargers for 1 cent and $7.99 for shipping.


What Skype for Web Means for WebRTC

November 14, 2014

 


Skype has finally decided to bring its VoIP and video platform to the web in an effort to better compete with a new wave of companies leveraging browser-based WebRTC technology. Today, they announced Skype for Web (Beta) which works with Chrome, Firefox and IE 10 or above. Recently, I mentioned how Microsoft has really been making some smart moves lately which make the company more relevant and ORTC/WebRTC support is certainly one of the most important areas in the communications space. My colleague Doug Mohney agrees when he says this isn't your father's Microsoft.

The simple reality about this move is it may make it tougher to compete with Skype as a pure WebRTC video or audio play as Skype obviously has a bigger name and bundles its solution with other Microsoft products.






10 Reasons Why Microsoft is Winning

November 11, 2014

With new CEO Satya Nadella at the helm, Microsoft is changing and into something it needs to be. A company embracing a changing tech landscape. It is apparent that Redmond has woken up to the threats that it faces in today’s world. Over the past decade they've been bleeding from a thousand cuts.

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