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Jan 10
Seven strategies to protect your smartphone from ‘...

While many Pennsylvanians found a new smartphone under the tree last month, Secretary of Banking and Securities Robin L. Wiessmann urges consumers to consider several strategies to protect their new smartphones from phony apps that can steal information, take over that new device, and wreak havoc on personal networks.

Wiessmann explains that these phony mobile apps are promoted on websites or through marketing emails, which appear to be legitimate offers from famous companies. However, phony apps are designed to fool users into sharing credit card, banking, or other personal information. Some phony apps also contain viruses, malware, or ransomware, which can take over the phone and steal personal information of people stored in email address books and contact lists.

According to research firm RiskIQ, criminals using phony smartphone apps focus their efforts on imitating the leading brands in e-commerce. These brands have thousands of blacklisted apps that contain...

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Jan 10
Survey: most folks get their music for free

MusiComms, an organization “dedicated to the future of music distribution,” has announced the results of its latest industry research. The survey, which was conducted in quarter four of 2017, polled 5,000 consumers across all demographics and regions across the U.S.

How much will consumers pay for music? Will they ever pay more? How will this type of information impact music business strategy? Those are the types of questions MusiComms posed to consumers in their latest survey. Here’s what they learned:

° Most people get their music for free today. Fifty-two percent of people indicated that they don’t pay anything currently for their music. Of that number, 29% said their primary source is free AM/FM radio. That number was followed by 15% who listen to free Internet-based music services, and 7% referred to Internet video sites.

° Forty percent of consumers polled will never pay more for music. When asked what would motivate consumers to pay more, a whopping 40%...

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Jan 09
Semiconductor revenue grew 22.2% in 2017

Worldwide semiconductor revenue totaled $419.7 billion in 2017, a 22.2%increase from 2016, according to preliminary results by Gartner, Inc. (www.gartner.com). Undersupply helped drive 64% revenue growth in the memory market, which accounted for 31% of total semiconductor revenue in 2017.

"The largest memory supplier, Samsung Electronics, gained the most market share and took the No. 1 position from Intel — the first time Intel has been toppled since 1992," said Andrew Norwood, research vice president at Gartner. "Memory accounted for more than two-thirds of all semiconductor revenue growth in 2017, and became the largest semiconductor category.”

The key driver behind the booming memory revenue was higher prices due to a supply shortage. NAND flash prices increased year-over-year for the first time ever, up 17%, while DRAM prices rose 44%. Gartner says equipment companies could not absorb these price...

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Jan 08
Juniper: mobile QR code coupon redemptions to surge

A new study from Juniper Research (www.juniperresearch.com) has found that the number of QR code coupons redeemed via mobile will reach 5.3 billion by 2022, up from an estimated 1.3 billion in 2017. The report finds that the use of QR codes to deliver coupons and discount offers will increase substantially, as in-built QR functionality on mobile devices drives usage, with Apple leading the way.

Recent changes by Apple, to include QR code reader functionality as part of the camera application on iPhone devices, has lead Juniper to revise upwards our mobile coupon forecasts. Juniper forecasts that over one billion mobile devices will access coupons through QR codes by 2022.

"Apple’s addition of QR code reading facilities directly addresses a major barrier for use in Western markets,” says research author Lauren Foye. “The lack of an in-built reader had been a hindrance, with consumers needing...

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Jan 05
mHealth market projected to reach $118.4 billion by...

TMR (www.transparencymarketresearch.com) predicts that the global mHealth market will earn an estimated US$118.4 billion by the end of 2025 at a CAGR [compound annual growth rate] of 22.1% during the forecast timeframe 2017-2025.

In 2017, the market had been worth a US$23.9 billion. By product, connected medical devices had secured a dominant share in 2016. By region, North America stood at a leading position while being worth a US$45.9 billion by the final forecast year.

The wide range of mHealth applications has been anticipated to bring in scores of lucrative business prospects in the world market, according to TMR. From chronic disease management to complex population health analysis, mHealth could be highly demanded across several applications in the modern times.

In a healthcare setting, mHealth could play a vital role as healthcare payers and providers...

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Jan 05
IDC: Banks that commit to digital transformation will...

Digital transformation (DX) in the worldwide banking industry is characterized by the ability to use technology to break out of the constraints forced by legacy systems and processes and enable a more efficient and responsive institution.

While all banks worldwide acknowledge the importance and complexity of transforming their businesses to compete in this new digital economy, nearly 40% have not yet executed on a sustainable digital transformation strategy, according to a new survey from International Data Corporation (www.idc.com). Key findings of this study include:

° All banks worldwide acknowledge the importance and complexity of transforming their businesses to compete in the new digital economy. However, nearly 40% are still at the ad hoc or opportunistic stages of maturity, meaning that they have not yet executed on a sustainable digital transformation strategy. Fewer than 10% can claim that they are in a...

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Jan 04
The Northern Spy: questions, questions, questions

By Rick Sutcliffe

The Spy thinks he understands a little about a lot of things, and quite a bit about a few things, but he does not understand...

Why are some people's reactions are so ridiculously extreme?

Leaving ordinary politics (if there is such a thing) aside for the moment, and as detailed here last month, the Spamhaus reaction to spam emanating from a handful of servers at the NewTek/Deerfield/Atjeu facility was to ban an entire range of 65536 IP addresses. Despite NewTek's and the Spy's efforts, nothing can persuade the Spamhaus boffins to be more reasonable and ameliorate this. The Spy has now dropped Spamhaus from his server's mail scanning RBLs. Given their policies are this arbitrary, they cannot be relied upon to accurately detect spammers. Remove them from your Exim preferences.

But immediately taking politics and society up again, he has reconsidered last month's comments on technologically-induced...

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Jan 04
IPIN market to see 55% CAGR through 2023

An Indoor Positioning and Indoor Navigation (IPIN) system locates, navigates and tracks objects inside any indoor environment by using magnetic fields, radio waves, acoustic signals collected by mobile devices.

The global indoor positioning and indoor navigation market is expected to grow with a CAGR [compound annual growth rate] of about 55% during the forecast period of 2016-2023, according to Research and Markets (www.researchandmarkes.com). Increasing adoption of IPIN solutions and services in healthcare, commercial buildings, hospitality, etc., is fueling growth in the global IPIN market, adds the research group. Also, increasing adoption of radio frequency identification is boosting the growth of the global IPIN market during the forecast period.

However, large processing time and delays is the factor restraining the growth of the global IPIN market during the forecast period,...

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Jan 03
AI market forecast to grow at CAGR of 62% through 2023

The global artificial intelligence market is anticipated to expand at a CAGR [compound annual growth rate] of 62% during the forecast period 2016-2023. and is projected to hit $36 billion by 2025, according to a new report from Research and Markets (www.researchandmarkets.com).

Due to hardware advantages, superior processing power, superior serial and parallel power and excellent memory power due to recent advancements in the computer power and several other benefits, adds the research group. North America has the largest market for artificial intelligence and occupied 38% of total market share in 2015 as all the elite market players are in U.S. Factors that attribute to the growth of North America include high-tech developments of artificial intelligence in various fields.

Demand in Europe is mainly due to scalability of developed advanced solutions. Asia Pacific is expected to...

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Jan 03
Smart fitness device market projected to reach $9.4...

The global smart fitness devices market is expected to reach $9.4 billion by 2025, according to a new report from Research and Markets (www.researchandmarkets.com).

The research group notes that the smart fitness devices market has witnessed a rising demand among the growing urban population in a bid to enhance their fitness goals. Advantages such as accessing fitness activities data in remote and real-time operations have resulted in an increased penetration of the market.

Additionally, there are tremendous opportunities for advancements in the smart fitness devices owing to the increasing usage of smartphones and enhanced internet accessibility, which, in turn, would fuel the growth of smart fitness market. The growing adoption of the smart fitness devices to keep track of sleep, steps, calories, heart rate, and other bodily stats is anticipated to revolutionize the market by 2025....

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Jan 02
Study: many consumers don’t practice basic cyber...

A study conducted online by Harris Poll, on behalf of Tenable (www.tenable.com) has found that many consumers fail to practice basic security cyber hygiene.

While nearly all Americans (94%) were aware of news stories about security breaches in the past 12 months, few have taken critical steps to protect their data or changed their online habits. The study, conducted among over 2,000 U.S. adults found 44% of Americans did not use a password to protect their personal information on their computer in the past 12 months, and 55% failed to use a PIN to protect their personal information on their mobile devices.

When it comes to the industry recommended practice of two-factor authentication, a staggering 75% of Americans revealed they had not implemented this feature to protect their personal information on their devices. Just 32% of Americans who have heard of any news stories about security breaches in the...

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Dec 29
Standalone VR headset shipments to top 1.5 million in...

Canalys (www.canalys.com) forecasts that standalone smart VR headset shipments will pass 1.5 million in 2018, and grow with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 140% to reach 9.7 million units in 2021.

Oculus, HTC and Lenovo are launching new standalone headsets aimed at different market segments, which will drive rapid market growth. Standalone VR headsets are expected to help push the VR headset market to 7.6 million units in 2018, twice the shipments forecast for this year, according to Canalys. The research group says Oculus made a big move by unveiling the Oculus Go, its first consumer-ready standalone smart VR headset during Oculus Connect 4 on 11 October 2017.

“Oculus Go, while a great move by Facebook to mobilize VR, will fail to get consumer attention when launched,” said Canalys Research Analyst Vincent Thielke. “The extra cost of the headset and the fact that a smartphone-based solution, such...

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Dec 28
Amazon, Google dominate the smart speaker market

The rate of adoption of smart speakers continues to defy expectations and there are clear signs that the market is starting to move from the early adopter phase to hitting the mass market, according to Strategy Analytics (www.strategyanalytics.com). What’s more, the Chinese market for smart speakers will receive a kick-start in quarter fourth thanks to aggressive pricing and promotions around Chinese Singles' Day of devices from Alibaba, Xiaomi and JD.com as well as the much anticipated launch of Baidu's first Duer OS speaker, the research group adds.

Key findings from Strategy Analytics latest smart speaker quarterly report include:

° North America dominated sales of smart speakers in the third quarter of 2017 with nearly 75% global share although growth in Western Europe and Asia Pacific will reduce that share in quarter four.

° Amazon Alexa's AI operating system fell to 69%...

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Dec 27
IDC: digital transformation tech spending to hit $1.3...

Worldwide spending on digital transformation (DX) technologies (hardware, software, and services) is expected to be nearly $1.3 trillion in 2018, an increase of 16.8% over the $1.1 trillion spent in 2017, according to IDC (www.idc.com).

The research group forecasts DX spending to maintain a strong pace of growth over the 2016-2021 forecast period with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 17.9%. In 2021, DX spending will nearly double to more than $2.1 trillion.

The majority of DX spending in 2018 ($662 billion) will go toward technologies
that support new or expanded operating models as organizations seek to make their operations more effective and responsive by leveraging digitally-connected products/services, assets, people, and trading partners, according to IDC.

The second largest DX investment area in 2018 ($326 billion) will be technologies supporting omni-experience innovations that transform...

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Dec 26
Rising cyber-security threats fuel 9% growth in global...

The worldwide IT security market maintained momentum in quarter three (Q3) of 2017, growing 9% to reach $8 billion, according to the latest Canalys (www.canalys.com) estimates.

“High-profile ransomware attacks and increasingly sophisticated phishing techniques have proved the need for businesses to reinforce their IT security to safeguard data assets and ensure continuity of operation,” said Claudio Stahnke, an analyst at the research group.

Content security was the fastest-growing segment, with investment up 13% year on year. Network security grew 8%, while security management increased 5%.
The top five security vendors accounted for 34% of total spend, with Cisco accounting for the most, at 9%.

Cisco grew 7% year on year, thanks to its strong channel partner focus and a broad product portfolio boosted by acquisitions. It was followed by Symantec, Check Point, IBM and McAfee, which all grew...

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Dec 26
Gartner: by 2020, AI will create more jobs than it...

2020 will be a pivotal year in AI-related employment dynamics, according to Gartner, Inc. (www.gartner.com), as artificial intelligence (AI) will become a positive job motivator.

The research group says the number of jobs affected by AI will vary by industry; through 2019, healthcare, the public sector and education will see continuously growing job demand while manufacturing will be hit the hardest. Starting in 2020, AI-related job creation will cross into positive territory, reaching two million net-new jobs in 2025.

"Many significant innovations in the past have been associated with a transition period of temporary job loss, followed by recovery, then business transformation and AI will likely follow this route," said Svetlana Sicular, research vice president at Gartner. AI will improve the productivity of many jobs, eliminating millions of middle- and low-level positions, but also creating millions more...

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Dec 22
Spending on industry cloud by financial firms to grow...

Worldwide spending on industry cloud in the finance industry (banking, insurance, and securities and investment services combined) is expected to reach $3.2 billion in 2017, which represents an increase of 26% over 2016, according to the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Semiannual Industry Cloud Tracker. IDC (www.idc.com) expects the amount to more than double in 2021, amassing total worldwide spending of $7.2 billion.

The manufacturing industry (both discrete and process combined) was a larger spender on industry cloud though, relative to its finance counterpart. This industry is expected to spend $4.2 billion in 2017 and achieve year-over-year growth of 23% in 2018. Similar to the finance industry, the manufacturing industry is also set to double its 2017 spending in 2021, reaching a total of $9.2 billion by then, notes IDC.

However, the research group says that these two industries pale in...

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Dec 22
Rising cyber-security threats fuel 9% growth in global...

The worldwide IT security market maintained momentum in Q3 2017, growing 9% to reach US$8.0 billion, according to the latest Canalys (www.canalys.com) estimates.

“High-profile ransomware attacks and increasingly sophisticated phishing techniques have proved the need for businesses to reinforce their IT security to safeguard data assets and ensure continuity of operation,” said Claudio Stahnke, analyst at the research group.

Content security was the fastest-growing segment, with investment up 13% year on year. Network security grew 8%, while security management increased 5%.
The top five security vendors accounted for 34% of total spend, with Cisco accounting for the most, at 9%.

“Cisco grew 7% year on year, thanks to its strong channel partner focus and a broad product portfolio boosted by acquisitions,” said Stahnke. It was followed by Symantec, Check Point, IBM and McAfee, which all grew...

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Dec 21
OTT TV revenues to approach $120 billion by 2022

New data from Juniper Research (www.juniperresearch.com) has found that SVOD (Subscription Video on Demand) services, provided by the likes of Netflix and Amazon, will drive a surge in OTT [over-the-top] revenues to reach $120 billion in 2022, up from $64 billion in 2017.

The research also found that over a quarter of global households will subscribe to SVOD services by 2022. Juniper estimates that Netflix will spend over $6 billion during 2017-18, in contrast to the publicly funded BBC, which is investing a comparatively small sum of $1.4 billion. SVOD players including Netflix are seeking to out-spend traditional providers; attempting to deliver original content and reduce reliance on expensive back-catalogues.

“Success will hinge on whether these providers can continue to produce hits such as ‘Stranger Things’,” says research author Lauren Foye. “As consumers become more fluid in their...

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Dec 20
Smart audio hardware revenues to pass $10 billion by...

A report by Juniper Research (www.juniperresearch.com) finds that revenues from smart audio devices like the Amazon Echo and Sonos One will grow from an estimated $2.5 billion in 2017 to over $10 billion by 2022, as more audio brands integrate voice assistants into their devices.

The research group sys that the smart speaker market is largely divided by sector and brand. Tech companies are building from a digital assistant perspective, while audio vendors see them as a way to make their products more relevant and feature rich. Only Apple is breaking this pattern, with the HomePod positioned as an intelligent audio device rather than a platform for Siri.

These different approaches affect several elements of product design, with a large impact on prices. The research shows how devices costing over $200 will take over 40% of sector revenue while being only 16% of shipments in 2022, as voice...

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Dec 19
IDC: Virtual CEP market to reach $3 billion in 2021

Network functions at the enterprise edge, such as routing, security, and WAN optimization, have historically been delivered via dedicated purpose-built physical network appliances deployed on the enterprise network edge.

Under the new paradigm of virtual CPE (vCPE), these network functions are delivered on virtual multitenant commodity infrastructure, now widely referred to in the industry as uCPE. Instead of several physical appliances at the network edge, virtual CPE aims to leverage several virtual network functions on a single (or multiple) hardware device.

A new forecast from International Data Corporation (IDC) estimates that the worldwide virtual CPE infrastructure market – hardware and software – will exceed $3 billion by 2021. IDC (www.idc.com) forecasts the virtual CPE software market to grow from $145.7 million in 2016 to $2 billion in 2021 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 68.3%. The virtual...

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Dec 19
Server revenue grew 16% in the third quarter

In the third quarter of 2017, worldwide server revenue increased 16% year-over-year, while shipments grew 5.1% from the second quarter of 2016, according to Gartner, Inc. (www.gartner.com).

"The third quarter of 2017 produced continued growth on a global level with varying regional results," said Jeffrey Hewitt, research vice president at the research group. "A build-out of infrastructure to support cloud and hybrid-cloud implementations was the main driver for growth in the server market for the period.”

x86 servers increased 5.3% in shipments for the year and 16.7 % in revenue in the third quarter of 2017. RISC/Itanium Unix servers declined globally, down 23.5% in shipments and 18.3 percent in vendor revenue compared with the same quarter last year. The “other” CPU category, which is primarily mainframes, showed a decline/increase of 54.5%.

Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) continued to lead in the...

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Dec 18
AI platform market to reach $9.8 billion by 2022

The global AI (artificial intelligence) platform market is expected to grow from $2.61 billion in 2017 to $9.88 billion by 2022, at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 30.5%, according to new data by Research and Markets (www.researchandmarkets.com).

The proliferation of data generation is the major factor driving the growth of the AI platform market, per the research groupo. To sustain in a competitive market, analysis of raw data has become important to understand the customer behavior, increasing revenue and, better decision-making, for various industry sectors. In order to achieve efficiency across business processes, enterprises need to design and layout a plan of action. This can be done by properly implementing AI platform solutions into its operations, according to Research and Markets.

Slow digitization rate across emerging economies is expected to be a major restraint for...

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Dec 15
IDC: whole cloud revenues will reach $554 billion in...

The cloud delivery and consumption model has revolutionized the entire IT industry over the past decade, as evidenced by the dramatic rise of public cloud services, according to IDC.

But the research group adds that cloud opportunity extends well beyond the public cloud — which makes up less than half of all cloud-related spending today — and includes private and hybrid clouds, as well as managed cloud services, cloud-related professional services, and hardware and software infrastructure for building clouds. In its first forecast of the "whole cloud" opportunity, IDC estimates that worldwide whole cloud revenues will reach $554 billion in 2021, more than double those of 2016.

"The most obvious takeaway from this forecast is that the shift to the cloud consumption model – in all its forms – is a mass movement, and will continue to be such over the forecast period," said Frank Gens, senior vice president and chief analyst at IDC. "Equally important, though, is the...

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Dec 15
Gartner: global security spending will reach $96...

Gartner, Inc. (www.gartner.com) forecasts worldwide enterprise security spending to total $96.3 billion in 2018, an increase of 8% from 2017. Organizations are spending more on security as a result of regulations, shifting buyer mindset, awareness of emerging threats and the evolution to a digital business strategy, notes the research group. 

"Overall, a large portion of security spending is driven by an organization's reaction toward security breaches as more high profile cyberattacks and data breaches affect organizations worldwide," said Ruggero Contu, research director at Gartner. "Cyberattacks such as WannaCry and NotPetya, and most recently the Equifax breach, have a direct effect on security spend, because these types of attacks last up to three years." 

This is validated by Gartner's 2016 security buying behavior survey. Of the 53 percent of organizations that cited security risks as the No. 1 driver...

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Dec 14
Server market revenue soars 19.9% in quarter three

According to the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Q uarterly Server Tracker, vendor revenue in the worldwide server market increased 19.9% year over year to $17.0 billion in the third quarter of 2017 (3Q17).

The server market has strengthened recently after several slow quarters, in which much of the market waited for the Purley and EPYC launches, according to IDC (www.idc.com). While demand from cloud service providers has propped up overall market performance, other areas of the server market are beginning to show growth now as well, adds the research group. Worldwide server shipments increased 11.1% year over year to 2.67 million units in 3Q17.

Volume server revenue increased by 19.3% to $14.2 billion, while midrange server revenue grew 26.9% to $1.4 billion. High-end systems grew 19.4% to $1.3 billion, benefitting from IBM's z14 launch this quarter. IDC expects continued long-term secular declines...

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Dec 14
NFC mobile ticketing users to reach 375 million by 2022

New data from Juniper Research (www.juniperresearch.com) forecasts that the number of mobile users adopting NFC ticketing will exceed 375 million by 2022, up from an estimated 122 million in 2017.

While there’s rapid growth in NFC ticketing in European markets, Juniper has scaled back NFC ticketing adoption in many other markets, such as the U.S., India, and Africa, due to the lack of available services and infrastructure, adds the research group. However, driven by open standards and the adoption of wallets such as Apple Pay and Android Pay, mobile NFC ticketing will witness higher growth rate in comparison to mTicketing over the next five years, representing an average annual growth of 25%.

Juniper Research found that the continued failure to persuade transport operators of the NFC value proposition is proving a severe constraint on the sector, except in Japan and Korea where adoption has...

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Dec 13
U.S. content makes up over two-thirds of films...

A survey from the European Audiovisual Observatory (EAO) looking at the origin of film content in the EU has revealed the persisting dominance of American content within the region, according to RapidTV News (www.rapidtvnews.com).

The study, sampling 131 TV channels from 18 different EU member countries, found that overall, films produced in Europe made up 28% of movies broadcast by a sample of TV channels during the 2015/2016 season. The figure breaks down into 14% for national films and a further 14% for European non-national films, indicating, said the observatory, the “significant’” circulation of European films. However, this drops to 23% during prime time.

Public channels tended to broadcast more European films than their private counterparts. Taking a full day on public television, the EAO found that European films accounted for 44% of all films broadcast. This figure fell to 24% for the...

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Dec 12
A third of U.S. Internet users primarily watch video...

About a third of U.S. Internet users look to online video content as their primary way to watch video, according to figures from Raymond James, as reported by “eMarketer” (https://tinyurl.com/y7zv88s3).

About 31% of Internet users polled in November said that a subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) service is their main outlet for video entertainment. Netflix accounts for most of that: more than three-quarters (76%) of respondents named Netflix as one of the services they would pay for if they had to choose just three, based on their current budget — a success for the streaming giant that largely goes back to its original content investments, such as global hit Stranger Things.

The 31% figure is up from 24% in 2016, and almost neck-and-neck with the 35% who primarily use cable. The cable group cited access to broadcast TV channels, sports content and premium channels as their reasons for not...

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Dec 11
Consumers turning off personal data tap

U.S. consumers are locked in a vicious circle with brands over customer experience, according to new research from Accenture (www.accenture.com).

While 44% are frustrated when companies fail to deliver relevant, personalized shopping experiences, nearly half (49%) are concerned about personal data privacy as they subscribe to intelligent services designed to understand and anticipate their needs. Poor personalization and lack of trust cost U.S. organizations $756 billion last year, as 41% of consumers switched companies. Without deeper customer insight, companies can’t deliver the experiences they crave, according to Accenture.

The thirteenth annual Accenture Strategy Global Consumer Pulse Research gauged the attitudes and expectations of more than 25,000 consumers around the world, including 2,000 U.S. consumers, about their appetite for more intuitive, technology-driven brand experiences. As...

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Dec 08
Telecommunications services, pay TV services to grow...

Worldwide spending on Telecom Services and Pay TV Services is forecast to reach nearly $1.7 billion in 2017, an increase of 1.7% over 2016, according to IDC. The research group expects worldwide spending on Telecom and Pay TV services to grow 2% year over year and surpass $1.7 billion in 2018.

The largest segment of the market is Mobile which represents 52% of the total market in 2017. The mobile market is expected to have a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 2% over the 2017-2021 forecast period, driven by the growth in mobile data usage and M2M applications, which is offsetting declines in spending on mobile voice and messaging services. Fixed data service spending represents 21% of the total market in 2017 and that is set to grow by a CAGR of 4% driven by the need for higher bandwidth services.

The Pay TV services market, which consists of Cable, Satellite, Internet protocol (IP), and Digital Terrestrial TV services, will remain flat over the five-year forecast...

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Dec 08
Juniper: NFC mobile ticketing users to reach 375...

Juniper Research (www.juniperresearch.com) forecasts that the number of mobile users adopting NFC ticketing will exceed 375 million by 2022, up from an estimated 122 million in 2017.

While there is rapid growth in NFC ticketing in European markets, there search group has scaled back NFC ticketing adoption in many other markets, such as the U.S., India, and Africa, due to the lack of available services and infrastructure. However, driven by open standards and the adoption of OEM wallets such as Apple Pay and Android Pay, mobile NFC ticketing will witness higher growth rate in comparison to mTicketing over the next five years, representing an average annual growth of 25%, Juniper forecasts.

The new research found that the continued failure to persuade transport operators of the NFC value proposition is proving a severe constraint on the sector, except in Japan and Korea where adoption has been...

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Dec 07
Survey: online, offline commerce are in for a happy...

Valassis (www.valassis.com), which specializes in “intelligent media delivery,” has announced results from its 2017 Valassis Holiday Shopper Survey. The findings provide insights into consumer expectations and behavior for the remaining 2017 holiday shopping season, particularly for moms, millennials and millennial parents.

According to the study, the shopping season is far from over: 83% of holiday shoppers plan to purchase gifts after Cyber Monday and more than half (56%) of these shoppers are headed in-store for their purchases. According to RetailMeNot, 87 % of consumers plan to visit a physical retail store in the month of December – representing an opportunity for brick and mortar retailers in the last few weeks before the holidays.

Consumers are looking for deals, with 82% of respondents – and 88% of millennials – saying that offers sway their gift lists. Overall, 53% of respondents (and 61% of...

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Dec 07
Car sales will peak in 2022 as robotaxis take off

Canalys (www.canalys.com) forecasts that 93.7 million cars will be sold worldwide in 2017, up just 1.7% on 2016.

Low single-digit percentage sales volume growth will continue for the next five years, peaking at 99 million cars sold in 2022, according to the research group. Annual global sales will then decline as the urban mobility revolution, already affecting the market, gathers pace.

“The convenience of owning a car comes at a cost. Cars are under-used – they sit idle for more than 90% of the time. The wider availability of urban mobility services, such as ride-hailing, car-sharing and robotaxis, will further reduce car ownership. With the expectation of everything on demand, these services will revolutionize how people travel,” said Chris Jones, chief analyst, Automotive at Canalys.

“There are already too many cars on our heavily-congested roads, and most pollute the air and only carry one person...

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Dec 07
Top five smartphone vendors grow in the third quarter

Global sales of smartphones to end users totaled 383 million units in the third quarter of 2017, a 3% increase over the same period in 2016, according to Gartner, Inc. (www.gartner.com)All of the top five smartphone vendors achieved double-digit growth apart from Apple, which achieved a 5.7% increase, adds the research group. 

"Despite market weakness in China, sales of smartphones rose in the third quarter of 2017," said Anshul Gupta, research director at Gartner. "Emerging Asia/Pacific (15% increase) and North America (11.2% increase) drove the smartphone growth in the quarter." 

"In emerging Asia Pacific, both Samsung and Huawei saw healthy demand as along with Xiaomi and Vivo, which were able to grow their footprint outside their home markets," added Gupta. "In North America, Samsung was the driving force in the quarter due to its new flagship products.”

Samsung’s smartphone sales recorded a...

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Dec 06
‘Phablets’ to overtake regular smartphone shipments by...

According to a new forecast from IDC (www.idc.com) overall smartphone shipments will steadily grow from 1.5 billion units in 2017 to 1.7 billion units in 2021.

And “phablets" (smartphones with a screen size of 5.5 inches to under-7 inches) will far outpace total market growth by climbing from 611 million units in 2017 to one billion units in 2021, representing a five-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 18.1%, according to the research group. In comparison, the total smartphone market is expected to grow at a 3.0% CAGR during the same period, while normal smartphones (under 5.5 inches) will decline 7.4%. Overall, IDC lowered its previous forecast for 2018-2021 by 1.1%-1.5%,depending on the year.

Android-based phablets have been the primary driver of large-screen smartphones and IDC expects this trend to continue in the years to come. Samsung's early dominance of the phablet category has been short lived as...

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Dec 05
Juniper Research: hearable devices in-use to exceed...

A new study from Juniper Research (www.juniperresearch.com) finds that there will be more than 285 million ear-based wearables or “hearables” used in 2022, a nearly sevenfold increase over the 43 million expected to be in use by the end of 2017.

The research found that the growing trend for wireless audio, accelerated by smartphone original equipment manufacturers removing the 3.5mm headphone jack, is pushing the average price of headphones up, reducing the price gap between headphones and hearables. Multimedia hearables (hearables focused on providing audio) will be the leading category, comprising over 50% of hearables used throughout the forecast period. These will be a key platform for digital assistants, with over 80% having a voice assistant like Siri or Alexa.

Juniper expects large tech firms like Apple and Google to dominate this category, but new entrants like NuHeara and Nuraphone...

| Read more »
Dec 05
Global fitness devices market predicted to tally $29.4...

The global smart fitness devices market is expected to reach USD 29.4 billion by 2025, according to a new report by Grand View Research.

The smart fitness devices market has witnessed a rising demand among the growing urban population in a bid to enhance their fitness goals, according to the research group. Advantages such as accessing fitness activities data in remote and real-time operations have resulted in an increased penetration of the market.

Additionally, there are tremendous opportunities for advancements in the smart fitness devices owing to the increasing usage of smartphones and enhanced internet accessibility, which, in turn, would fuel the growth of smart fitness market, according to Grand View Research. The growing adoption of the smart fitness devices to keep track of sleep, steps, calories, heart rate, and other bodily stats is anticipated to revolutionize the market by 2025.

The smart fitness devices market has been segmented based on product...

| Read more »
Dec 04
The Northern Spy: Spam, power, and the pot

By Rick Sutcliffe

Under his hat as a sometimes web hosting and domain name provider (Webnamehost.com and WebNameSource.com) the Spy must monitor the spam arriving at his server. Numerous filters and subscriptions to spam services cut the volume of mail by forty percent in a slack month and as much as ninety-five precent during time when the BlackHats think they're on to something new.

Usually, this is a good thing. But recently, spam sent out from another server at the data centre where his box is located caught the attention of Spamhaus and the service decided to blacklist the entire range of IP addresses at NewTek (formerly Atjeu), even though a single offender was operating from very small subset of those addresses. Nothing the DC has done so far has been able to convince the Spamhaus people to lift or modify the blacklist. Spamhaus doesn't deign to reply to complaints from a renter of addresses like the Spy.

Since thousands of addresses are...

| Read more »
Dec 04
Strategy Analytics: 5G smartphone shipments will reach...

According to the latest research from Strategy Analytics, global 5G smartphone shipments will grow from two million units in 2019 to reach an impressive 1.5 billion in 2025. The 5G category will be the fastest-growing sector of the global smartphone industry for the next decade. Growth opportunities are huge for companies such as Qualcomm, Intel and Apple, according to the research group.

“We forecast global 5G smartphone shipments to grow from 2 million units in 2019 to an impressive 1.5 billion in 2025,” Neil Mawston, executive director at Strategy Analytics, said. “We forecast global 5G smartphone shipments to grow at an average annual rate of 250% between 2019 and 2025. The 5G category will be the fastest-growing sector of the worldwide smartphone industry for the next decade.”

Ken Hyers, Director at Strategy Analytics, added: “The next generation of smartphones that can access high-speed 5G mobile networks represents a huge growth opportunity for carriers,...

| Read more »
Dec 04
IDC: personal computing device market to decline

According to the latest forecast from International Data Corporation (IDC), global shipments of personal computing devices (PCDs) – composed of traditional PCs (desktop, notebooks and workstations) and tablets (slate, detachable) – are expected to decline 2.7% year over year in 2017.

While this is a slower contraction compared to the previous year, IDC's Quarterly Personal Computing Device Tracker (www.idc.com) forecasts the shipments to decline further (4% year over year) in 2018. Looking toward the end of the five-year forecast, volumes are expected to continue declining from 423.3 million in 2017 to 393.9 million in 2021. This represents a five-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of -2.0%.

When breaking down the PCD market, traditional PC shipments are expected to drop from 260.2 million units in 2016 to 248.1 million in 2021 units, resulting in a five-year CAGR of -0.9%. However, when detachable tablets...

| Read more »
Dec 01
Poll: IT execs ‘extremely concerned’ about apps...

Flexera (www.flexera.com), the company that’s “reimagining how software is bought, sold, managed and secured, has announced an IDG Research/Flexera CIO QuickPulse poll revealing that IT execs remain extremely concerned about the visibility of applications deployed in the cloud – specifically Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) implementations.  

“Organizations are spending millions on software running on the cloud,” said Walker White, vice president of Data Platform at Flexera.  “Yet, many have no idea that moving their applications to the cloud often exposes them to the same security and compliance risk they faced with on-premises.  IT executives are rightfully concerned.  Bottom line?  Without visibility into their IT assets on the cloud, companies can’t reduce those risks and make sound business decisions.”

Among the poll’s findings:

° Nearly all (98%) of respondents say it’s highly important to...

| Read more »
Dec 01
Nearly 50% of U.S. broadband households use a personal...

New data from Parks Associates (www.parksassociates.com) shows that 49% of U.S. broadband households use a personal assistant through an app or dedicated device, which is a key use case for a voice-based user experience. Currently 10% of U.S. broadband households own a smart speaker with a personal assistant, such as an Amazon Echo or Google Home, notes the research group.

“Collectively, companies are competing to stay in the race for dominance in the voice-first market," said Dina Abdelrazik, research analyst, Parks Associates. "Amazon, Google, Apple, Microsoft, and Samsung continue to announce new product enhancements in order to stay ahead of the demand for voice technologies. As the voice-first landscape expands, we will see voice capabilities embedded into a variety of devices, from appliances to thermostats to lighting. Voice alleviates complexity in the user experience for these products, and...

| Read more »
Nov 30
Managed cloud services demand shows no signs of slowing

International Data Corporation (IDC) forecasts that the worldwide managed cloud services market will grow at a five-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of nearly 18% with spending reaching $62.8 billion in 2021.

"The managed cloud services market is creating fundamental changes in the outsourcing industry involving the entrance of new providers, partnership ecosystems, investment requirements and opportunities, though also bringing with it some critical challenges to players shifting from a world of non-cloud (legacy) outsourcing to managed cloud services," said David Tapper, vice president, IDC's Outsourcing and Managed Cloud Services program.

The study by IDC (www.idc.com) provides a forecast of managed cloud services involving private, public, and hybrid markets across eight major regions. The study also includes advice to providers of IT services, an analysis of market and industry trends by key managed...

| Read more »
Nov 30
Virtual reality headset shipments top one million for...

Virtual reality headset shipments are showing no signs of slowing, as the quarterly total exceeded one million units for the first time in quarter three (Q3) of 2017, according to the Canalys (www.canalys.com) research group.

Sony took the lead, shipping more than 490,000 PlayStation VR (PS VR) sets in Q3. It was followed by Oculus, which shipped 210,000 of its Rift headsets. HTC took third place, shipping 160,000 Vive VR units. Collectively, Sony, Oculus and HTC made up 86% of the total market in Q3 2017.

Oculus increased shipments of its Rift headsets by cutting the price to US$399 for a limited time, matching that of the PS VR. “VR adoption in the consumer segment is highly dependent on price, and Oculus’ strategy of lowering prices has definitely helped drive adoption,” said Canalys Research Analyst Vincent Thielke.
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Incumbents and new players entering the market are targeting similar price...

| Read more »
Nov 29
Smart TV market predicted to reach $292.55 billion by...

The global smart TV market is expected to reach $292.55 billion by 2025, according to Research and Markets (www.researchandmarkets.com). The introduction of 4K resolution-equipped televisions, coupled with the shifting preference toward OLED and QLED displays, is expected to emerge as a major trend in the smart TV industry, according to the research group.

Streaming devices such as Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, and Google Chromecast are changing the consumers' viewing experience. Several manufacturers are teaming up with OTT content and device providers to provide built-in features with no further requirement of a set-top box. For instance, TCL Corporation has teamed up with Roku. and introduced a 4K HDR Roku TV. The China-based vendor is using the Roku platform for its television product line. Additionally, Hitachi, Hisense, and Sharp have also teamed up with Roku to provide such features.

... | Read more »
Nov 29
Net Neutrality to be revoked: what Internet users can...

Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai is delivering on his promise (threat?) to block the net neutrality regulations designed to protect the equal treatment of Internet content. Pai distributed his plan to other FCC commissioners Tuesday (Nov. 21) in preparation for a Dec. 14 vote.

Net neutrality is the principle that all online data should be treated equally by Internet service providers (ISPs). Net neutrality regulations, set in 2015, ban ISPs from obstructing access to content, or from singling out some types of websites over others. Chairman Pai’s proposal, to be voted on at the FCC’s Dec. 14 meeting, would finally roll back the 2015 regulations.

“Under my proposal, the federal government will stop micromanaging the Internet,” Pai said in his statement. “Instead, the FCC would simply require Internet service providers to be transparent about their practices so that consumers can buy the service plan that’s best for them.”

According to...

| Read more »
Nov 28
Biggest change in cars in 100 years is starting

Massive change in car needs and technology will drive $249 billion sales in 2027, according to a new report from Reportbuyer (www.reportbuyer.com).

The biggest change in cars in 100 years is now starting, adds the research group. It’s driven by totally new requirements and capabilities, according to Reportbuyer. They will cause huge new businesses to appear but some giants currently making cars and their parts will spectacularly go bankrupt. Cities will ban private cars but encourage cars as autonomous taxis and rental vehicles. Already 65% of cars in China are bought by businesses.

The Japanese want the car to be part of the hydrogen economy and a source of power when the next earthquakes and tsunamis hit. The emerging countries want car-like vehicles, mainly as taxis, that are one tenth of the cost and never refuel because the ample sunshine and wind will be grabbed and stored by the vehicle....

| Read more »
Nov 28
Consumer cloud storage services market to grow...

The global market for consumer cloud storage services is expected to grow at an exponential rate through 2025, according to new data from Persistence Market Research (http://tinyurl.com/yc8todhw).

The global market is estimated to reach a valuation of more than $2.8 billion by the end of the assessment year from a value of $873 million in 2017 and is poised to register a CAGR [compound annual growth rate] of 15.9% during the period of forecast, 2017-2025, adds the research group. The global consumer cloud storage services market is segmented by user age, storage tier and region.

° By storage tier, the 50 GB - 999 GB segment is the largest and is likely to dominate the global market by the end of 2025 with an estimated market value above $1.6 million. It is also the fastest growing segment.

° By user age, the 18-40 segment leads the market with a high market valuation and is poised to...

| Read more »
Nov 27
Must-read rules for screen time during the holidays

New research says that today’s kids spend 5 to 7 hours each day in front of a screen, whether it is watching television, playing video games, or surfing the web. Over the holidays, screen time only increases as kids have long, cold days ahead of them and parents become desperate for ways to keep them occupied.
 
“Screen time in this country has become a huge problem,” says Karl Volkman, tech expert and CTO of SRV Network. “Even traditional holidays activities have become overwhelmed by screen use—kids watch videos in the car while traveling to see Grandma, or they play with the iPad during Christmas recitals, or they play video games instead of baking cookies and wrapping gifts and getting in the Christmas spirit.”
 
Not only is this bad for their health and their brain development, it can also come with risks from online predators (1 in 7 kids will be solicited by predators online). Here, Karl Volkman outlines his "Holiday Screen Time Rules" to help kids...

| Read more »
 

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HoudahSpot is a versatile desktop search tool. Use HoudahSpot to locate hard-to-find files and keep frequently used files within reach. HoudahSpot will immediately feel familiar. It works just the... Read more
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Alto's Odyssey is a really, really good game. If you don't believe me, you should definitely check out our review by clicking this link right here. It takes the ideas from the original Alto's Adventure, then subtly builds on them, creating... | Read more »
Alto's Odyssey (Games)
Alto's Odyssey 1.0.1 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.0.1 (iTunes) Description: Just beyond the horizon sits a majestic desert, vast and unexplored. Join Alto and his friends and set off on an endless... | Read more »
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Our top 5 characters from casual RPG Cre...
Creature Quest definitely lives up to its name with a host of collectible creatures based on fantasy tales and world mythologies. To celebrate Creature Quest’s first birthday, we’re going to lay out what we think are the five best characters in the... | Read more »
Around the Empire: What have you missed...
Did you know that Steel Media has a whole swathe of other sites dedicated to all aspects of mobile gaming? Sure you'll get the very best iPhone news, reviews, and opinions right here at 148Apps, but we don't want you missing out on a single piece... | Read more »
All the best games on sale for iPhone an...
Oh hi there, and welcome to our round-up of the best games that are currently on sale for iPhone and iPad. You thought I didn't see you there, did you, skulking behind the bushes? Trust me though, the bushes aren't where the best deals are. The... | Read more »
The Battle of Polytopia Guide - How to H...
A new update just released for The Battle of Polytopia (formerly Super Tribes), which introduces online multiplayer. For all the fans of Midjiwan’s lite take on Civilization, this is certainly welcome news, but playing online isn’t as easy and... | Read more »
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It's Valentine's Day! Did you get loads of cards and chocolates and other tacky, simple expressions of human affection? Did you send out tat because you find it almost impossible to express emotion unless there's a section dedicated to it at your... | Read more »
Florence (Games)
Florence 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Florence is an interactive storybook from the award-winning lead designer of Monument Valley about the heart-racing highs and... | Read more »

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Lowest price of the year: 15″ 2.8GHz Apple Ma...
Amazon has the 2017 Space Gray 15″ 2.8GHz MacBook Pro on sale today for $251 off MSRP. Shipping is free: – 15″ 2.8GHz Touch Bar MacBook Pro Space Gray (MPTR2LL/A): $2148, $251 off MSRP Their price is... Read more
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Focus Camera has the 2017 13″ 1.8GHz/128GB Apple MacBook Air on sale today for $829 including free shipping. Their price is $170 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price available for a current 13″... Read more
21-inch 2.3GHz iMac on sale for $999, $100 of...
B&H Photo has the 2017 21″ 2.3GHz iMac (MMQA2LL/A) in stock and on sale for $999 including free shipping plus NY & NJ tax only. Their price is $100 off MSRP. Read more
Apple refurbished Mac minis in stock again st...
Apple has restocked Certified Refurbished Mac minis starting at $419. Apple’s one-year warranty is included with each mini, and shipping is free: – 1.4GHz Mac mini: $419 $80 off MSRP – 2.6GHz Mac... Read more
Tuesday MacBook Deals: $250 off 15″ 2.9GHz Ma...
Adorama has the Silver 15″ 2.9GHz Apple MacBook Pro on sale today for $250 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and Adorama charges sales tax for residents in NY & NJ only: – 15″ 2.9GHz Silver MacBook Pro... Read more
Save up to $350 with these Apple Certified Re...
Apple has a full line of Certified Refurbished iMacs available for up to $350 off original MSRP. Apple’s one-year warranty is standard, and shipping is free. The following models are available: – 27... Read more
B&H offers $200 discount on Silver 15″ Ma...
B&H Photo has Silver 15″ Apple MacBook Pros on sale for $200 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges sales tax for NY & NJ residents only: – 15″ 2.8GHz Touch Bar MacBook Pro Silver (... Read more
12″ Apple iPad Pro Sale of the Year! Models u...
B&H Photo has 12″ #iPad Pros on sale for up to $150 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges sales tax in NY & NJ only: – 12″ 64GB WiFi iPad Pro: $719 $80 off MSRP – 12″ 256GB WiFi... Read more
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Sr. Experience Designer, Today at *Apple* -...
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*Apple* Technical Specialist - Apple, Inc. (...
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