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Rich Tehrani
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Justifying Amazon's 16x Greater than Apple P/E Ratio

May 16, 2012

One of the biggest surprises to me is comparing P/E ratios of tech companies against Amazon. Actually to be more specific, I marvel at Amazon’s P/E against pretty much any company I have seen lately. Now I don’t go around memorizing the price to earnings ratios of companies but yesterday I happened to be talking to TMC webmaster Robert Hashemian who is also an accomplished financial author having written Financial Markets for the Rest of Us. Together we compared the trailing P/E of Amazon against virtually any company we could think of like Adobe, Apple and Microsoft which were far lower.

GM to Facebook: Your ads Don't Work

May 16, 2012

When you are about to have one of the largest public offerings in the world - north of $100 billion and much of the reason for the size of your IPO has to do with advertising revenue, there is nothing worse than having one of the world's largest and most sophisticated advertisers telling you your ads don't work. And that is exactly what just happened to Facebook when GM pulled the plug on a $10 million dollar ad deal.

To put this in perspective, GM is the third largest advertiser in the US and its budget is absolutely huge. Last year in fact it was  $1.8B. The interesting part of the situation is that even though GM won't be continuing its ad spend this year it plans on continuing to spend $30M or so for Facebook content.

What this tells us is Facebook is just becoming a driver of the Splinternet or another Internet which advertisers and developers need to take into account.



Kickstarter: Sometimes the Cloud Can't Keep a Secret

May 15, 2012

Data breaches happen - a while back Moveable Type upgraded its blogging software and posts scheduled to be seen at a later date were given away by tag pages which posted immediately. In other words if a blogger wrote about a new Version of Microsoft Word and scheduled the post for later in the week,the tag pages - for things like "word processor," "microsoft," "pc" and any others would be immediately visible to readers and search engines.

Yours Truly was hit by this bug a few times and was even accused of not honoring an embargo as a result.

Point being - data breaches are real and they happen in the cloud as well as in-house systems.

Kickstarter recently had a breach as well where 77,000 projects became accessible via an API which the Wall Street Journal was able to access until around 1:40pm EST this past Friday, May 11th.

If there is good news it is that Kickstarter has 77,000 projects and financial data wasn't disclosed - as a refresher, the company helps get new products off the ground by crowdfunding and taking a 5% cut. The highest profile project may be from Arianna Huffington who is trying to use the platform to buy back the company she founded The Huffington Post from AOL for $1B.

Will this breach result in a major problem for Kickstarter? Probably not - unless it happens repeatedly.









Are You Ready for the Identity Economy?

April 28, 2012

With Facebook’s value being pegged around 100 billion dollars; it is easy to see why many are calling identity the new oil of the internet. And one company, UnboundID is looking to become the leader in this bold new frontier which they call the identity economy. By allowing companies to buy, sell, trade and leverage customer information the company allows their customers to combine this information with others in order to add value to themselves as well as end users.

An example of this concept in action is logging into a site using Twitter or Facebook – end-users hate to answer questions online and indeed many will abandon a site which makes queries which take their time.

Neustar Aims to Make Mobile App Development Easier

March 20, 2012

With over half a million apps in the Apple App Store alone one might argue that developers have all the tools they have to develop compelling applications but what if there was a way to take traditional apps and integrate them more closely with carrier networks and big data analytics allowing them to be more powerful, spur increased consumer spending while greasing the wheels of mobile commerce and more?

Recently Jean Foster and Steve Edwards at Neustar showed me their Intelligent Cloud service which integrates rich anonymized databases from TARGUSInfo with access to carrier networks and other information to accelerate developer productivity and to frankly enable applications to become better drivers of value for consumers and revenue for advertisers and merchants.

One demo they showed me involved a gift card where a user scans the bar code associated with it. At this point a unique URL is passed to a browser and opened on the mobile device allowing a consumer to check balance information, make a payment and connect their cell phone to the card.

Amazon Gives Away Money to Promote Local

March 20, 2012

7 Wireless Data Cap Winners

March 7, 2012

Yesterday I outlined 7 Wireless Data Cap Losers and today I thought I would explore the flipside – in other words, who might win as a result of carriers becoming far stingier with their bandwidth allotments. After all, devices are becoming far more powerful and quad-core tablets and smartphones could become the norm by the middle of next year if not sooner. So with all this power and limited supply of bandwidth, how might user behavior change?

Here is my list of the 7 wireless data cap winners.

Off to MWC 2012 Next Week

February 23, 2012

I've got lots on my plate this week before I take off to Barcelona to attend Mobile World Congress (MWC) - which was once called 3GSM. I've got great meetings lined up and I am very interested in seeing what is happening in the world of 4G, white spaces, M2M, tablets and smartphones. Apple won't be there - formerly anyway so I consider this event to be kind of like the anti-Apple confab. Interestingly, all the major events I attend these days are devoid of the iconic Cupertino brand as well.

Logitech Zagg iPad 2 Keyboard: Do You Need a Laptop?

February 14, 2012

A few months back I was in Boston interviewing a number of companies in the tech space and just before one of my interviews I was reading about the Logitech Keyboard Case by ZAGG for iPad 2 and I was intrigued. I thought having a real keyboard connected to the iPad 2 was a great pain reliever for my fingers which ache when hitting glass repeatedly but I worried the addition would limit my ability to use the tablet while standing. Quite often in my office I find myself using the iPad and I figured a fixed aluminum keyboard would make this practice cease.

Owen DeLong of Hurricane Electric is an iPv6 evangelist but I found him equally good at evangelizing why I needed a bluetooth keyboard from Zagg for my iPad 2.

Google+ Growth, Dropbox Killer: Google IS the Tech News

February 9, 2012

Google has entrenched itself is so many areas of tech they have become the technology news of the day. First off, Google+ growth has been nothing short of fantastic, in part because the company has altered search results to put more emphasis on this social network. Every SEO/SEM professional has had no choice in the past few months to get up to speed on the latest social network from the search giant. And this in part is the reason why it has half the unique visitors of Twitter according to web traffic tracking site Compete.

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