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Microsoft

ITEXPO East 2011 Attendance up 52%

January 13, 2011

For those of you who attended the ITEXPO and related events last year in Miami, you remember it was a very strong show with great attendance. The conference usually draws from all over the world – especially Latin America, the Caribbean, Europe, the Central and Eastern US and of course Canada.

The even better news about this upcoming event Feb 2-4, 2011 at the Miami Beach Convention center is the numbers are trending much better than last year. My marketing team just sent over the comparable stats and here they are:

  • Overall attendance up 52% over same time last year
  • Paid conference attendance up 54% over same time last year
  • Loews hotel block up 31% over last year

The event has certainly grown and there are currently 13 collocated events as follows.

An App Store is an App Store

January 13, 2011

I generally agree with Microsoft that the term “app” is generic – meaning it is a general word used commonly and not associated with any company or brand. Certainly the term “killer app” has been around for decades so the use of the term “app” is not new. The term “store” too is generic so it is tough to consider “app store” to be anything but generic.

It is worth pointing out I don’t recall the term “app store” to be exceedingly common before Apple started using it.

Is Apple the Biggest Facebook Threat?

January 13, 2011

Now I am not saying Apple is today ready to take on Facebook but boy are getting to a point where the pieces are lining up nicely for the maker of super-cool gadgets to combine the best of its offerings into a seamless social network.

Rather than talk about all the pieces, let’s instead begin the discussion realizing the massive marketshare Apple has and is gaining in consumer electronics. Add to this the increase in Mac shipments the company continues to boast. It is this network of devices which enabled the company to launch a product like FaceTime for video conferencing by immediately interconnecting millions of devices worldwide.

Microsoft Tablet Expensive but does Flash

January 5, 2011

Microsoft, the company which invented the tablet – Tablet PC just under a decade ago has a long way to go before they understand how to become an important player in the tablet space of today. In short order, the market has become one which is price sensitive – iPads start in fact at under $500.

Yet when Asus rolled out its tablet strategy with three Android units and one based on Windows 7, the latter device was priced at more than twice the average of the Android gadgets. So you can buy an Asus Tablet for $399 or $499 or pick up a Windows unit for $999.

Incredible New Content at ITEXPO East 2011 Next Month

January 5, 2011

If you haven’t checked out the ITEXPO home page in a while please do so because the show evolves as rapidly as the markets do with relevant quality content being added constantly. There is virtually no part of the tech market which will help you and your company that is not covered from multiple angles.

For example VI-Peering focuses on the IP peering space, the Business Video Expo focuses on the increased use of video by companies and Super WiFi Summit focuses on how white spaces could absolutely revolutionize the way broadband access is delivered via the disruptive use of radio frequency white spaces which are open and free.

Another addition is Telecom One-on-One powered by DealCenter and taking place Tuesday, Feb 1st, 2011 from 2-5 PM.

Facebook Now Worth $50 Billion, Does Deal with Goldman Sachs

January 3, 2011

Facebook has done a deal with Goldman Sachs to set up a special purpose vehicle or SPV which will allow the company to get around the limitation on the number of investors it can have. Currently limited to 499, Goldman Sachs will work with the world’s leading social network to get around this limitation and allow Goldman’s high net worth investors to get a piece of the company before it is publicly traded.

It is rumored that 2012 is the year Facebook is considering going public and at its ever-expanding valuation it seems virtually impossible that any company would be big enough to acquire them.

It should be noted the SEC requires as part of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 that companies with more than 499 investors disclose their financial results to the public and the commission may not look favorably on this deal.

MySpace May Layoff 550, Relies on Facebook for Traffic

December 31, 2010

Obviously most every site relies on Facebook for traffic but in the case of MySpace a whopping 18% of the traffic comes from Facebook – the top upstream site in-fact according to Alexa. The next highest referral sites are Google at 14% and Yahoo! at 5.5% making Facebook a crucial resource for MySpace in terms of traffic. What may be worse for MySpace is that once people are done visiting a MySpace page, Facebook is the #1 site they visit – 18.66% of the time in fact.

Microsoft Kinect to Explode in 2011

December 28, 2010

Using my personal experience as a guide, I can tell you hands down that the Xbox 360 Kinect is a breakthrough in technology. Here is a little secret which I will share with you about what happened when I actually saw the device in action in New York this past August thanks to Zig Serafin, General Manager, Speech and Larry Heck, Chief Scientist, Speech at Microsoft.

Picture this – I was sitting on the edge of stage where there were a number of stairs – maybe eight or ten behind me. I had a briefing in which Zig and his team explained how the company’s speech strategy was evolving.

Giving Back to At-Risk Youth

December 23, 2010

I love to see companies give back to their communities and people in need.

In fact you may have noticed as of late I have become an advocate of smaller government with far less overhead and taxes; in-part so organizations and wealthy individuals can have more money to spend on causes they deem wealthy.

The alternative where higher tax rates are imposed and the proceeds used to benefit special-interest groups with voting power never has and never will make sense to me.

To me, the American Dream is to start from humble means and make a positive difference on the lives of others through continued success.

So when I heard Interactive Intelligence starting a foundation for at-risk youth, I couldn't help but smile.

It's worth pointing out other companies who are successful and have made a difference via charity include Google, Salesforce.com and Facebook.

During this time of holiday cheer, it is gratifying to see companies taking the proceeds from their success and using them to help others.

When you allocate your charitable contributions at year-end and beyond, you may want to consider this foundation.

Here are some details:

  • Funds raised by the foundation are distributed to a small number of not-for-profit organizations roughly commensurate with the Interactive Intelligence Inc. employee distribution in Indiana (66%), Non-Indiana U.S. (19%), and Non-U.S. (15%).
  • Monetary distribution decisions are made one time each year by the foundation’s board of directors.
  • Special emphasis is placed on projects that promote technology education amongst the targeted at-risk youth sector.
  • At the decision of the board of directors, a portion of the foundation’s funds may be directed at times to assist world crises or natural disasters.


















MangoSpring MangoApps For Better Corporate Collaboration

December 21, 2010

Months back you may recall I covered Cisco Quad, a corporate social networking solution for truly massive companies. While many organizations use Microsoft SharePoint as a social solution, another option is to turn to MangSpring’s MangoApps, a solution which takes the best elements of Facebook, Yammer, Quad and others and combines them into an easy-to-use app that the company proclaims is a powerful open communication and project execution solution for Fortune five-million companies.

The company, founded in 2007, has over 35 employees and I had a chance to speak with CEO and founder Anup Kerjiwal as well as Mike Jensen VP of Customer Engagements a few months back and it was like drinking from a fire hose. The company supplies a solution that answers so many corporate needs and it is priced at only $2-$7 per user per month (based on total users).

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