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Dell Tablet Ad Takes on Apple and Android

December 3, 2013


Microsoft is having a tough time this holiday season - lets face it, Wal-Mart alone sold 1.4 million tablets on Thanksgiving. This is exactly why the company and its hardware retail partners and Intel desperately need a piece of the tablet pie.

The result? The companies finally put out an ad - really its a Dell ad for the Venue 8 Pro which is worth watching. It features a traveler on an airplane who has no space and is still able to work with his office apps and more.

I am left wondering though - since Microsoft is now the proud owner of Skype - a consumer technology which could entice potential buyers, why not mention it in the ad somewhere?




Microsoft Strikes Back at Chromebook

November 27, 2013

Amazon’s second most popular laptop result when you search for the term and sort by best sellers is the following Samsung Chromebook. Moreover, Chromebooks have been popular on Amazon for quite some time. As if the threat from smartphones and tablets weren’t enough to scare the daylights out of Microsoft’s PC division, the Chromebook threat seems to be really inflicting damage. This is the reason Microsoft is “striking back” with an ad campaign featuring Pawn Stars cast explaining a Chromebook is not a real laptop, doesn’t work when there is no WiFi and goes on to explain that Google tracks you in order to show you ads and of course there is no Microsoft Office.



This is negative advertising at its finest – it is interesting though that Microsoft has to explain a lot about Chromebooks before it can bash them.

GigSky Wants to Easily Connect You Everywhere

November 12, 2013

One of the largest challenges international travelers have is staying connected at affordable and easy-to-understand rates. The last time I was in Europe I was fortunate enough to have a portable WiFi device with me that gave me free access to 3G. I happily streamed music in the gym and would occasionally look at my phone ad notice the WiFi icon was missing for some reason. My stomach would drop whenever this happened as I had no idea how long I was streaming at local roaming rates.

SimpleSignal and gUnify Brings Lync-Like Power to Google Apps

October 12, 2013

I’ve had a few conversations recently with analysts and resellers about how Microsoft Lync is getting trials in many of the largest global corporations and this has traditional telecom equipment providers getting nervous. From these discussions you might surmise that the future of telecom is going to be dominated by Redmond. We know however there is also a major competing force in the market… Cloud-based services. Moreover, Microsoft’s dominance as an operating system seems to be coming to an end due to the onslaught of Android, iOS and Chromebooks.

Does Microsoft Need to Fire Bill Gates?

October 2, 2013

Steve Ballmer and Bill Gates are synonymous with Microsoft’s management and for many years the duo did a fantastic job creating value for customers, shareholders and employees. While the company is far from in trouble, possessing huge amounts of cash and cash flow, it has flopped in many areas which they saw as important. Phones and tablets are a few of these spaces and you may want to add search in as well. Unfortunately these are the products of the future.

Thanks PopSci: Web Page Integration may be the next Social Frontier?

September 30, 2013

You may have heard that Popular Science has shut down its comments citing studies which show comments can influence the readers perception of a story.

Specifically:

Another, similarly designed study found that just firmly worded (but not uncivil) disagreements between commenters impacted readers' perception of science. If you carry out those results to their logical end--commenters shape public opinion; public opinion shapes public policy; public policy shapes how and whether and what research gets funded--you start to see why we feel compelled to hit the "off" switch.

They go on by explaining there are still lots of ways to interact with the company – social media, etc. Response from readers was mixed and to me it seems that shutting down comments is a bit like soft-censorship; people will still comment on the content but much of it will be hidden from readers.

This is echoed by a commenter, jasonthibeault who says:

Okay, so I am going to take a little different stance.

GENBAND Buys Fring to Make Carriers Sexy

September 12, 2013

Carriers are scrambling right now as they see OTT services such as Skype and WhatsApp eating into their revenues. In a conversation with David Walsh (pictured), GENBAND’s new CEO, we discussed how OTT players have taken 30% of voice traffic in seven years and how service provider voice growth is now around 3% per year.



In response to this onslaught of new competition, carriers have come together to develop standards which will allow their telecom equipment to run on off-the-shelf servers so they can more effectively compete with their app-based competitors. This initiative: network functions virtualization or NFV will help turn hardware-based telcos into software telcos allowing them to be more flexible in rolling out new offerings while saving money in the process.

Conferencing is Broken and UberConference Wants to Fix it

September 11, 2013

Many conference calls in the corporate world start with lots of beeping and questions. “Did someone just join?” “Hello?” “Who just came on?” Occasionally you also get the stray person from another corporate department that joins by accident. All of this non-core communication to get to the actual call is wasteful and kills productivity. Of course it gives the people on the call extra time to update their Facebook profiles and check out the day’s news but most companies likely are looking to reduce this time-wasting taken for granted as part of the typical conference.

Predicting Recession: Google's Real Competitive Advantage

September 5, 2013

Being able to determine global trends before others is an amazing way to increase your chance for success and no one has better access to the needs and desires of the world users than Google. In 2003 just before blogging became all the rage, the company reached out and purchased Weblog software to help create its Blogger platform. Just before video became super-popular on the web, the company launched its own video search service to compete with YouTube. Google determined this move did not slow its competitors growth so the search engine company purchased the leading video distribution company.

John Battelle summed up Google’s access to people’s wants and desires very well in his book The Search which I reviewed in 2006.

Microsoft Buys Nokia Device and Services Business

September 3, 2013

“What’s good for windows phones will be good for the Windows ecosystem,” said Steve Ballmer to CNBC regarding the company’s acquisition of Nokia’s services and device business. He went on to explain that this deal will help Lenovo and Dell. Of course he said this precisely because this strategy is going to cause problems with Microsoft’s relationship with other hardware manufacturers the company relies on. The goal of course is to the thread the needle – similar to Google, by producing hardware and licensing Android to others.

Under the terms of the agreement, Microsoft will pay EUR 3.79 billion to purchase substantially all of Nokia’s Devices & Services business, and EUR 1.65 billion to license Nokia’s patents, for a total transaction price of EUR 5.44 billion in cash.

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