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Important Tech News of the Day Dec 14, 2012

December 14, 2012




Amazon Prime Instant Video app for iOS is out


and in my testing on a 4th generation iPad it worked well. Some complaints remain that for non-Prime users the experience isn’t that great. I for one would like to be able to download video on the app – there is a download area but no instructions as to what is downloadable or how to download.

Alcatel Lucent says providing video to devices is a great new revenue opportunity for carriers.

Avaya and Mitel Cross at Canadian Border

November 16, 2012


New Jersey-based Avaya, spun out of Lucent and previously AT&T has a decades-long history of providing business communications solutions. With its purchase of Nortel’s business communications assets a few years back it picked up even more knowledge, know-how and relationships. Mitel, the Kanata, Ontario-based global business communications company cofounded in 1973 by Sir Terry Matthews is known for delivering superior technology. More recently Mitel has become publicly traded and acts sort of as a partner to the dozens of Sir Terry Matthews’s companies under the Wesley Clover Brand.

Dunkin Donuts App Lets You Pay More Quickly

August 16, 2012


Allowing you to utilize a virtual credit card, the new Dunkin Donuts app available on iOS and Android allows you to send "gifts" electronically through text and Facebook for example. The app also functions as a nutritional guide and allows you to find the closest store.

While there has been much chatter about the Starbucks relationship with Square, Nigel Travis, Dunkin's CEO thinks that there will be a mix of payment options and he sees a future where voice integration plays a role in future apps.

Dunkin outsourced its app development to Digitas among others and Travis touted the company's ad budget - likely referencing the fact that this app will be getting some serious publicity in the future. The company expects to order 600 new stores globally in Korea, the west coast of the US, Latin America and "Even Europe," he says.

Although the popular east coast US coffee chain is late to the mobile app game, studies have shown that coffee shops whether they are Starbucks or Dunkin have loyal customers - who more than likely haven't switched loyalties because of the ability to order online via mobile device.

The upshot of the news is that it's more convenient to get your morning java fix regardless of the store you frequent and that mobile devices continue to boost productivity beyond the workplace.








What the Auto Market can Teach us about Mobile

August 14, 2012

Have you ever heard from someone that they don’t like Starbucks coffee but they like the experience at the store so they go in, sit down and buy the coffee? It is quite a testament to the world’s largest coffee chain that they are able to lure in customers who don’t like their premium-priced primary product but are instead attracted to their comfortable seating areas and atmosphere replete with cushy couches and free WiFi.

The point here is people buy things for subtle reasons they may not consciously realize. But how you may ask does this translate into tech and cars?

Gadgets to Have Integrated Welcome Ads Soon?

May 18, 2012

If ads on the Kindle Fire Welcome Screen are successful, others will follow



There are a few things which are well known about Amazon’s Kindle Fire. First of all at $199 the company either loses money or at best breaks even depending on which analyst you speak with. We also know the version of Android the device runs is unusual as Amazon has its own proprietary shell around it.

Pinterest Now Worth $1.5B

May 17, 2012

Now that was fast – Pinterest just raised $100M at a valuation of $1.5B in a round of funding led by Japanese e-commerce site Rakuten Inc. Pinterest's existing venture-capital investors such as Andreessen Horowitz, FirstMark Capital and Bessemer Venture Partners also participated according to a press release.

Hiroshi Mikitani, CEO of Rakuten said: "While some may see e-commerce as a straightforward vending machine-like experience, we believe it is a living process where both retailers and consumers can communicate, discover, and curate to make the experience more entertaining. We see tremendous synergies between Pinterest's vision and Rakuten's model for e-commerce. Rakuten looks forward to introducing Pinterest to the Japanese market as well as other markets around the world."

And the Japan connection makes sense as I have recently detected a dearth of Hello Kitty pins.

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.

Volubill Helps Carriers Deliver Enhanced Wireless Services

March 19, 2012

The FCC has a web page dedicated to bill shock and encourages wireless users who haven’t achieved a successful resolution with their wireless carrier to call and complain. The same page explains one in six users has at one time or another experienced bill shock – totaling 30 million users in total.

One of the companies helping carriers reduce bill shock for their customers is Volubill, the policy management and charging company has many innovative ideas to help carriers in an era of data caps and ballooning cell phone bills. In a recent conversation with Akil Chomoko Head of Product Marketing at the company he explained the company looks at the business side of things – enabling subscribers to be unrestricted and subsequently free to choose from various options which not only serve the needs of the customer better but potentially can generate more revenue for carriers.

Will Nimble 2.0 take Social CRM Mainstream?

February 14, 2012

Recently consumer products manufacturer P&G – one of the largest advertising spenders at over $9B announced it will cut its marketing headcount in-part because advertising on Facebook and Google is more efficient. The maker of Gillette and Pantene products is not alone; in-fact the business world is focusing heavily on social media including Google+ and Twitter.

But while it is understood by many web-savvy companies that social is important – how many of them are embracing social CRM? My informal analysis shows the numbers are very low meaning there could be huge room for growth.

Rewards Network, the Social Restaurant Hub

February 7, 2012

In the last few decades it has become apparent that all companies are for the most part limited by their imaginations. Apple was thought to be a computer company but is now a leader in music, movies and phones. Amazon went from selling books to everything – even its servers are for rent via its cloud-computing solutions. Google went from search to purchasing Motorola Mobility and is well known for being involved in many projects from solar to self-driving cars and the television space.

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