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Jan 17
Parks Associates: Nearly 50% of U.S. broadband...

New research from Parks Associates (http://www.parksassociates.com) finds that subscribers of OTT (over-the-top) services spend more per month renting and buying video downloads than the average household.

This contributes to the success of Amazon's business model of integrating transactional services with its Amazon Prime subscription service, says the research group. Two-thirds of Amazon Prime Instant Video subscribers use Amazon transactional service.

"Amazon Prime subscribers report their expenditure on rented and purchased downloads is increasing," says John Barrett, director, Consumer Analytics, Parks Associates. "Netflix subscribers are more likely to say expenditure in all other categories has decreased-a fact that may reflect Netflix's reliance on a single revenue model. Redbox Instant subscribers, conversely, are more likely to say expenditure is increasing in all categories...

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Jan 16
Gartner: worldwide IT spending to reach $3.8 trillion...

Worldwide IT spending is projected to total US$3.8 trillion in 2014, a 3.1%increase from 2013 spending of $3.7 trillion, according to the latest forecast by Gartner, Inc. (http://www.gartner.com). In 2013, the market experienced flat growth, growing 0.4% year over year, according to the research group.

Spending on devices (including personal computers, ultramobiles, mobile phones and tablets) contracted 1.2% in 2013, but it will grow 4.3% in 2014, Gartner predicts. Company analysts said convergence of the personal computer, ultramobiles (including tablets) and mobile phone segments, as well as erosion of margins, will take place as differentiation will soon be based primarily on price instead of devices' orientation to specific tasks. 

Enterprise software spending growth continues to be the strongest throughout the forecast period. The 2014 annual growth rate is expected to grow 6.8%. Customer...

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Jan 15
Forrester: top five global eCommerce predictions for...

The past year saw a surge in eCommerce revenues worldwide and, according to a new Forrester Research (http://www.forrester.com) report.

Over the next year, Forrester expects eCommerce revenues to grow as more brands plan out their global road maps and start to execute on their international eCommerce strategies. Shoppers' online buying habits will continue to evolve, presenting new opportunities. In the new report, Forrester discusses the arrival and importance of several eCommerce and identifies eight trends that will gain momentum in the Age of the customer in 2014. The research group says here are the top five trends to watch out for:

° Mobile traffic and sales will continue to climb. In 2014, the percentage of traffic and total online orders placed via mobile devices are set to increase in virtually every market worldwide, and Forrester expects that a growing number of brands will launch new...

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Jan 14
Strategy Analytics: TV's not dying; it's...

Contrary to some recent melodramatic predictions, the television industry isn't dying but is undergoing a process of rapid change, according to a recent report from Strategy Analytics.

The research group says that the global installed base of TV-addressable screens is in fact in the middle of a second wave of rapid expansion. The first wave peaked in 2007 and was driven by consumer PC adoption.

The current wave peaked in 2012 and is being driven by mobile devices. Together with traditional TVs these "new TV" devices increased the global installed base of TV addressable devices to 5.1 billion at the end of 2013. By 2017 a further two billion TV devices will have been added to the global population.

"TV's impending death has been overstated by some commentators," says David Watkins, director, Connected Home Devices (CHD). "The reality is that, while the television industry is changing and will look different in the future, it is very much alive. TV screens are...

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Jan 13
Americans concerned about the privacy of text messages...

With the news that the National Security Agency tracks the locations of nearly 5 billion cellphones every day overseas, including those belonging to Americans abroad, now more than ever, people are worried about the privacy of their text messages and mobile phone calls.

A new survey from CoverMe, a private messaging app, and SodaHead, the web’s largest opinion-based community, reveals that Americans are very concerned about the security on their phones, the government’s reach and other people reading their text messages—and that level of concern varies according to gender, age, and whether respondents considered themselves ‘liberal’ or ‘conservative’..
 
The survey reveals that:
 
° Americans are very concerned about the privacy of their mobile communications. Sixty-five percent of respondents are not confident that their mobile phone comes with adequate security and privacy technology. Thirty-three percent of respondents believe that the government...

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Jan 10
High-speed wireless devices to surge in shipments

The global market for high-speed wireless-enabled devices is set for explosive growth within the next five years as more consumer electronics products  take advantage of rapid wireless transfer capabilities, according to a new report from IHS Inc. (http://www.isuppli.com).

Annual shipments of high-speed wireless-enabled devices such as smartphones, televisions and mobile PCs are expected to reach 503 million devices by 2018, up more than tenfold from 49 million units anticipated in 2013, says the research group. Growth during the next three years will be tremendous, ranging from 60% to 120%, with expansion during the last two years of the forecast window moderating somewhat to still-high increases of up to 30%, as shown in the attached figure.

A high-speed wireless-enabled device, as defined by IHS, is one that includes at least one of the following technologies: WirelessHD, WHDI, 802.11ad (WiGig) or...

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Jan 09
Gartner: companies should deploy technologies to...

Companies that address accessibility needs in their IT product development are better positioned to leverage those same assistive technologies to mass market solutions, according to Gartner, Inc. (http://www.gartner.com).

The research group says that people with disabilities (PWD) are an underserved market segment with one billion people worldwide. They and their immediate friends and family have an annual disposable income of more than IS$8 trillion.

"People with disabilities make up 15% of the world 's population and some of the assistive technology marketed to people with disabilities can also be sold to the other 85% of the population that is 'situationally disabled' by their environmental conditions, at work and at play," says Andrew Johnson, managing vice president at Gartner. "Every day situational disabilities include listening to a conference call in a noisy airport, or using a mobile phone...

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Jan 08
Internet of Things installed base to grow to 26...

The Internet of Things (IoT), which excludes PCs, tablets and smartphones, will grow to 26 billion units installed in 2020 representing an almost 30-fold increase from 0.9 billion in 2009, according to Gartner, Inc. (http://www.gartner.com).


The research group said that IoT product and service suppliers will generate incremental revenue exceeding US$300 billion, mostly in services, in 2020. It will result in $1.9 trillion in global economic value-add through sales into diverse end markets. 

The Internet of Things is the network of physical objects that contain embedded technology to communicate and sense or interact with their internal states or the external environment. 

"The growth in IoT will far exceed that of other connected devices. By 2020, the number of smartphones tablets and PCs in use will reach about 7.3 billion units," said Peter Middleton, research director at Gartner. "In...

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Jan 07
Bluetooth Smart sets the stage for 67% growth in...

Wearable technology, the trend encapsulating everything from fitness trackers to Bluetooth Smart enabled running shoes, is seeing phenomenal growth and high consumer demand. Everyday items such as watches, bracelets, gloves and even hats, are being updated with Bluetooth wireless technology, allowing them to capture data and send it back to an application on a smartphone or tablet.

Bluetooth Smart is fast becoming the de facto connectivity solution for wearable technology, spurred by growth in wearable sports and fitness trackers, which make up 96%of shipped wearable devices in 2013. ABI Research (http://www.abiresearch.com) projects 32 million Bluetooth enabled sports and fitness devices will ship this year alone.

Bluetooth Smart is the intelligent, power-friendly version of Bluetooth wireless technology that is making wearables practical for the mass market. While the power-efficiency of...

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Jan 06
Wearable medical devices market to reach US$5.8...

According to a new market report published by Transparency Market Research (http://www.transparencymarketresearch.com) the global market for wearable medical devices was valued at US$2 billion in 2012 and is expected to reach a value of $5.8 billion in 2019, growing at a CAGR [compound annual growth rate] of 16.4% from 2013 to 2019.

Wearable medical devices defined in the strictest sense are devices with sensors attached to the body that detect and monitor changes in body signatures of various areas and organs. The research group says the meek wrist watch that was used to monitor only heart rate in the last decade has today been transformed into a powerful gadget that can today store vast quantities of data on patient information such as SPO2, heart rate, temperature, blood pressure and water content in the body among several other intelligent diagnostic parameters....

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Jan 03
ABI Research: portable speakers powering the digital...

Digital speakers represent an important accessory that enables consumers to extend their smartphone or tablet from a personal to a shared experience. This class of speakers, with its smaller size and high quality sound, has enabled the change from electronics as the center of a room to electronics which complement modern design.

The digital speaker market, which includes portable speakers, speakers with dock, sound bars, and network audio systems, is expected to grow from over 47 million units in 2013 to nearly 61 million by 2018, with portable speakers representing over half of the market by the end of the forecast window, according to ABI Research (http://www.abiresearch.com)

"iOS-centric digital speaker products, like speakers with docks, lead the market, but a turning point came when Apple switched from the 30 pin connector to its new Lightning connector, compelling customers to place...

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Jan 02
The Northern Spy: Prognostications for 2014

By Rick Sutcliffe

A year of consolidation looms in parts of the high-tech landscape. For instance, television manufacturers will continue to exit this unprofitable sector and find other ways to (try to) make money.

Sony in particular remains problematic. The Spy recently purchased a Sony 1040 receiver as both reviews and specs seemed promising. After all, very few receivers at any price have all of AirPlay, Wi-Fi, Ethernet, and BlueTooth, and many no longer offer phono inputs. Sony's model has them all at a reasonable price point.

However, finding stock has been a problem, and this seems more than just an end-of-model-year issue. Yes, after years of being behind the feature curve, Sony surpassed the others in receiver featuritis last year, but was the company too late with too little? And, can they turn their TV business around? Is it worth trying? Time will tell, but there's not much good news coming out of Sony these days, and it has to be...

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Jan 02
Berg Insight: mobile location platform revenues will...

According to a new research report from the analyst firm Berg Insight (www.berginsight.com), the global market for location platforms will grow steadily in the next few years, mainly driven by the emerging indoor location segment.

At the same time, the market for location platforms deployed by mobile operators is maturing. Annual revenues for GMLC/SMLC and SUPL A-GPS servers, passive location platforms, as well as middleware deployed by mobile operators are forecasted to grow from an estimated € 190 million in 2012 to € 275 million in 2018. The market is primarily driven by public safety and lawful intercept mandates that require network operators to invest in location platforms enabling location of any handset.

Overall, the growing end-user demand for commercial location-based services (LBS) will not have a substantial effect on the market for mobile network location platforms. Most mass market...

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Dec 31
Gartner: 20% of new tech spending will be on as-a-...

Organizations’ need to drive innovation and growth, coupled with a limited budget and the mainstreaming of consuming technology “as-a-service”, is creating the perfect condition for integrated platform solutions.

Susan Tan, research director at the Gartner research group (http://www.gartner.com) says that new technologies — such as cloud, mobile, analytics, social, sensors and in-memory computing—- offer the promise of innovation and creation of competitive advantages. However, enterprises face challenges to their adoption. Organizations still struggle with tight budgets and inflexible legacy systems, and many organizations lack resources, skill sets, appetite and time to adopt these new technologies in a conventional manner.

Traditional implementations that take months and years to build cannot be agile enough to keep up with changing technologies or respond quickly to fleeting market opportunities,...

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Dec 27
Mobile gambling user numbers to rise by 100 million...

Over the next five years, the number of mobile and/or tablet owners using their devices to gamble will increase by 100 million, meaning that 164 million people will either place a bet, visit a mobile casino or buy a lottery ticket on their device in 2018. These findings come from Juniper Research’s latest report on mobile gambling, which highlighted that the strongest growth would come from the North American market.

According to the report although growth has been slow in the US since the DoJ (Department of Justice) ruling in 2011, the number of users in the region is expected to pick up sharply from 2014 onwards. This will occur as states which have not yet fully legislated on remote gambling make progress following successful services launching in Nevada and New Jersey. In addition, inter-state poker, where two players in separate, regulated markets play against each other, is likely to become a reality in the medium term, further driving mobile/tablet gambling usage,...

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Dec 26
Early adopters of mobile websites are not who you...

Research from optimized website specialist Telnames (http://www.telnames.com) says that the businesses leading the way in adopting mobile websites are not who you might think.

The businesses leading the way in adopting mobile websites – and capitalizing on the consumer boom in mobile search - are not the larger hi-tech companies with established and mature web presences that people might expect. It is the UK’s small and micro businesses that have most enthusiastically adopted mobile technology.

The explosive growth in mobile search traffic represents a major opportunity for businesses looking to attract browsers on the move or searching at home on their smartphone and tablet devices, and Telnames’ research shows that small and micro enterprise owners in particular have been quick to grasp the benefits of establishing a mobile-ready web presence.


According to research by Google, 95% of...

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Dec 23
Growth of LTE-based in-car Wi-Fi hot spots to boost...

Although the majority of rear-seat entertainment usage is likely to be based on BYOD [bring your own device], ABI Research (www.abiresearch.com) forecasts that the number of embedded original equipment manufacturer [OEM] supplied rear-seat entertainment displays shipped in cars will increase to reach 13.3 million units globally by 2020.

Rear-seat entertainment systems, typically incorporating DVD players, have been offered by OEMs and numerous aftermarket suppliers for many years. However, the higher bandwidth of LTE and its increasing coverage in North America, Europe and other parts of the world means that OEM Wi-Fi hot spot solutions will enable a host of new in-car applications such as video streaming, gaming and even video-conferencing, as well as enabling multiple devices to be connected simultaneously.

"Although we expect the majority of people to use their own smartphone or tablet devices in...

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Dec 20
Gartner: BYOD an applications strategy, not just a...

Bring your own device (BOYD) is not just a purchasing policy and needs to be approached more broadly with the applications and strategies designed for today's world, according to Gartner, Inc.

While most enterprises today are increasingly feeling the imperative to "do mobile," many don't know where to begin and there are many obstacles to success. The research group says the key decision about BYOD is one of applications architecture and solutions design. 

"Designing your applications to meet the demands of BYOD is not the same as setting usage policies or having strategic sourcing plans that mandate a particular platform," said Darryl Carlton, research director at Gartner. "BYOD should be a design principle that provides you with a vendor neutral applications portfolio and a flexible future-proof architecture. If the applications exhibit technical constraints that limit choice and limit deployment, then the purchasing policy is irrelevant." 

Most...

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Dec 19
Study shows how tablet users share content

MAZ (www.mazdigital.com) — whose publishing platform powers over 600 apps on the Apple App Store, Google Play and Amazon Appstore — has unveiled a study showing how users are sharing content from tablets.

The most interesting finding of the study was the fact that 72% of all shared content is shared via email. While a lot of digital strategists have written off email as an outdated tool compared to more modern social networks, the data suggests that despite being presented with the option to share to Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or Tumblr, users continue to prefer sharing content to their friends, family or coworkers via email.

With the recent buzz about young people moving to closed networks such as Snapchat, this study supports the idea that sharing to individuals and smaller groups may be preferable over public-facing networks. As for social networks, the study shows that users prefer to share to...

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Dec 17
Gartner: smart watches won't dominate consumer...

Despite the hype surrounding smart watches, they are unlikely to be featured on many consumers' holiday wish lists this year, according to Gartner, Inc. (www.gartner.com). The research group says that premium pricing paired with an unclear value proposition will steer consumers' spending toward tablets and fitness bands, leading to lackluster sales of smart watches this holiday season.

Smart watches are a product subset of the wearable electronics market that caters to different industry verticals and consumer groups that include fitness, health-monitoring, monitoring the elderly and law enforcement (tracking). Smart watches themselves are not a new device but they have recently evolved from the health and fitness field with an attempt to enter the mainstream consumer market by adding communication and more smart features.

"Samsung and other well-known vendors have recently entered the smart watch space, yet...

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Dec 16
Majority of consumers plan to shop online this holiday...

Based on a survey of shoppers completed by Overstock.com, a discount online shopping retailer, 75% plan to shop on Black Friday (Nov. 29) and of those, 57% plan to do it online. Cyber Monday (Dec. 2) will bring in 66% of shoppers online. The survey also revealed that consumers expect savings of up to 40% off during the Black Friday and Cyber Monday retail period.

"Online shopping allows consumers to make purchases comfortably from their home while avoiding the holiday rush, waiting in line, fighting traffic and suffering the weather," says Overstock.com Chairman and CEO Patrick M. Byrne. "Overstock offers great deals on high-quality products that can be shipped directly to your door." 

The majority of online shoppers will be younger consumers. According to a study by CFI Group, 50% of millennials intend to spend more than 40% of their holiday shopping budgets online, compared to 38 percent of baby boomers.

Overstock.com's survey also showed that 74% of shoppers...

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Dec 12
Chip firms, OEMs to enjoy strong revenue growth as...

The semiconductor and electronics original equipment manufacturing (OEM) industries are set to enjoy significant revenue growth in 2013 — partly due to their tight management of inventory levels — according to a Supply Chain Inventory market brief from IHS Inc. (www.isuppli.com).

Among OEMs in six categories, total revenue in the third quarter reached an estimated US$493 billion, up a robust 7% from $462 billion in the second quarter. Revenue in the final quarter of the year is expected to climb at an even more blistering pace, reaching $540 billion with sequential growth of 10%.

In contrast to the strong performance for the two last quarters of the second half, the first two quarters of the year started out more quietly, with growth in the second quarter reaching only 2%. Industrial electronics was the strongest of the six segments being counted in the third quarter, but wireless communications will finish...

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Dec 12
Android OEMs expand their enterprise smartphone...

According to a new report from ABI Research (www.abiresearch.com), Android smartphone OEMs [original equipment manufacturers] are taking advantage of a solid presence among consumers and mobile business users to drive more business entity smartphone purchases and expand use in the enterprise.

ABI Research predicts that shipment revenues from Android smartphones used by mobile business customers will grow from US$54 billion in 2013 to over $92 billion globally by the end of 2018. ABI Research analyzed Android OEM enterprise features and market presence to provide mobile business customer adoption forecasts for six OEMs including HTC, Huawei, LG, Motorola Mobility, Samsung, and ZTE.

"Despite a significant presence among employees in the workplace, businesses have not allowed or have limited the access of Android devices to enterprise applications and systems," says ABI Resesarch Senior Analyst, Jason...

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Dec 11
26% of U.S. broadband households eyeing an Internet-...

The Parks Associates (www.parksassociates.com) research group finds growing consumer interest in smart home automation solutions, with 26% of U.S. broadband households planning to purchase a smart thermostat during the 2013 holiday season.

"Roughly 25% of broadband households with new home management and home entertainment equipment report experiencing problems with these devices on a monthly basis, a surprisingly high amount," says Patrice Samuels, research analyst, Parks Associates. "Robust technical support will help consumers to achieve the promise of these devices and mitigate consumer frustration."

Parks Associates research finds 30% of consumers with electronic door locks regularly experience technical problems with these solutions, including 9% on a daily basis. Over 20% of smart thermostat owners regularly experience problems, including 12% on a daily basis.

"IP-enabled...

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Dec 10
One billion smartphones will have location-based...

As smartphones embrace always-on, ubiquitous location, location-based sensor fusion will become a standard feature, according to ABI Research (www.abiresearch.com). Location-based sensor fusion will enable the dawn of the quantified self, ambient intelligence, as well as provide huge potential around advertising and retail, says the research group.

"Sensor fusion is vital in enabling a consistent location experience, RF mapping, and the industry to scale rapidly," says ABI Research Senior Analyst Patrick Connolly. "Unfortunately, it is not just a case of putting in a 9-axis sensor to achieve this. Highly complex algorithms are required to optimize sensor outputs, integrate with other location technologies and combine with machine learning and data-fusion algorithms. Sensor fusion will surpass Wi-Fi and BLE as the most important handset-based indoor location technology by 2017."

ABI Research has...

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Dec 09
Smartphones, tablets revolutionize online content...

Driven by rapid adoption of smartphones and tablets, international consumers of digital media — video, video games, music and books — are moving away from traditional household ownership models to individual rental models, increasing the pressure on content publishers to increase investment and innovation.

This is according to "The Age of Curation: From Abundance to Discovery," an eight-country, 6,000 consumer survey and report to be presented on November 21 at the 2013 Forum D’Avignon, by Bain & Company (www.bain.com), aglobal business consulting firm. Key findings include:
° Smartphone ownership in developed markets (the U.S., U.K., France and Germany) jumped from 49% on average in 2012 to 64% in 2013, while increasing from 24% to 37% in developing markets (Brazil, Russia, India and China)

° Tablet ownership rose from 18% on average in 2012 to 39% in 2013 in developed markets, while increasing from 13...

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Dec 06
Americans reach for smartphones in unexpected places

With nearly 170 million Americans using smartphones today, mobile devices are now synonymous with everyday activities such as email, web browsing and communication via texts or social media. A number of Americans are actually reaching for their phones in some of the most unexpected places and using them for more than just staying in touch while on-the-go, according to results of a new nationwide survey released by LG Electronics.

Conducted by Kelton, the "Smartphone Secrets" survey of 1,152 Americans age 18 and over found that nearly one in five would never hide the fact that they are using their mobile device, no matter where they are. Some of the most shocking and surprising places in which Americans are not afraid to whip out their smartphones include:

° Places of worship: 48% of smartphone owners confess they would be comfortable using their devices in a place of worship.

° In the bedroom: 77% of smartphone owners admit they would openly use their phones...

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Dec 05
Gartner: personal worlds, Internet of Everything are...

With the digital world upon us, digitalization will significantly change the technology market through the Internet of Things, according to Gartner, Inc. (www.gartner.com). While IT spending in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) will show an average annual growth rate of 2.2 percent through 2017, the Internet of Things (things, people, places and systems) will create new markets and a new economy, according to the research group.

"The traditional IT market is not going to grow at a faster rate any time soon, if ever. Increased growth will come from the non-traditional IT market," says Peter Sondergaard, senior vice president at Gartner and global head of Research. "While in 2015 the combined IT and telecom market will hit nearly US$4 trillion, the incremental revenue generated by the Internet of Things’ suppliers is estimated to reach $309 billion per year by 2020. Half of this activity will be new start-ups...

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Dec 04
Russia records massive mobile app growth

Game Insight (www.game-insight.com), a publisher/developer of mobile/social games, and J’son & Partners has presented new market research on the Russian mobile market, comparing growth in mobile applications and devices in Russia against global figures.

According to the study, the mobile application market volume in Russia will exceed US$330 million for 2013. In addition to calculating total mobile app market volume, the study also compares key trends and figures in the Russian mobile market against those of different countries, as well as against global aggregates. 

For instance, for the last two years, the average percentage of Russian mobile internet users has increased by a factor of 10. In fact, mobile internet expansion in Russia has outpaced that of other developing mobile markets by a sizeable margin, with penetration three times higher than in China and nine times higher than in India....

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Dec 03
Mobile broadband modem, router markets decline

Over the first half of 2013 about US$2.5 billion worth of mobile broadband modems and routers for computing and consumer electronics connectivity have shipped. For the full year, market intelligence firm ABI Research (www.abiresearch.com) forecasts 92.1 million of these 3G and 4G modems and routers will be shipped worldwide to mobile network operators, retailers, and device manufacturers.

This represents 0% growth year-over-year from the 92.4 million modems shipped during 2012. The mix of modem form-factors is changing due to declining USB volumes, offset by increased mobile hotspot routers and embedded modem modules.

"The use of USB for the addition of mobile broadband to portable computers has peaked," says ABI Research Senior Practice Director Jeff Orr. "The diversification of choices for the new era of computing can be seen by these trends in modems sold through the aftermarket."

Modem...

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Dec 02
The Northern Spy: curmudgeonly yours

By Rick Sutcliffe

Following up on comments in this space last month, the Spy still has had none of the issues reported by others who've adopted Mavericks. Apart from the need to upgrade a handful of programs, all continues smooth. However, iTim's elves are busy at work releasing betas of the first incremental upgrade to fix issues some have seen. Of greater interest might be what they're doing with system XI.

And, the reader will recall the troubles reported here with his own hosting company's mail server (another millisecond older and deeper in spam with faked to, from, and reply-to addresses). Enabling MCP (Message Content Protection) in MailScanner to scan and delete on specific content did blue list and refuse much of the offending mail, which on that change alone declined from 80% of all arriving messages to about 20%.

But, subject, content, and other characteristics kept changing, and even adding more block lists to the scanner only...

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Dec 02
Mobile augmented reality users to approach 200 million...

New findings from Juniper Research (www.juniperresearch.com) shows that the mobile Augmented Reality (AR) market, is set to increase dramatically from 60 million unique users this year to nearly 200 million in 2018.

The market will expand from the early adopting gaming segment and navigation based utility to becoming an integral part of the consumer’s ecosystem, according to the research group. Despite initial trepidation and single use applications of the technology, Juniper forecasts AR to become a key future platform for communication and commerce.

AR has a potential to engage a new generation of consumers in a unique manner, combining the personal nature of mobile devices with the Internet’s wealth of accessible information. Juniper’s report finds that as the market matures, the app ecosystem is set to expand rapidly over the forecast period.

Initial innovations will stem from...

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Nov 27
Game consoles, tablets competing for holiday shopping...

New research from Parks Associates (www.parksassociates.com) finds tablets and game consoles are virtually tied among U.S. consumers for planned purchases in the 2013 holiday season.

Parks Associates' research reports purchase interest in game consoles has rebounded after tablets surged ahead in the 2012 holiday season. The research group's analysts say comparable percentages of U.S. broadband households purchased tablets and game consoles in 2011, and if current intentions reflect 2013 purchases, game consoles will soon be back on an equal footing with tablets.

"Tablets are poised to be a big seller this Black Friday and holiday season, with Apple, Microsoft, and Nokia announcing new models, but the launch of new game consoles from Microsoft and Sony may steal their momentum," says Harry Wang, director, Health & Mobile Product Research, Parks Associates. "2013 will not be a repeat of...

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Nov 26
Enterprise small cell installations set to increase 70...

The femtocell market has continued its steady growth in 2013 with the number of installations rising by 70% over the last year in the enterprise market with some notable deployments recently, including Telefónica in Germany and Free in France, according to ABI Research (www.abiresearch.com).

The femtocell ecosystem is also developing with more equipment providers looking to capture a share of the market which has attracted vendors from different backgrounds including ICT, core network, and in-building/DAS providers. This is reflected by the number of femtocell shipments which will increase tenfold by 2018, jumping from 3.75 million in 2013 to 37.45 million.

Now that Wi-Fi has entered the gigabit era with the new 802.11ac standard delivering total data rate of 1.3 Gbps and femtocells migrating from 3G to LTE which offers considerably higher data rates than 3G, new applications and business models are...

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Nov 25
Gartner: limit data centers to two per continent of...

Most global organizations have too many data centers in too many countries, according to Gartner, Inc (www.gartner.com). The research group said that in order for enterprises to save costs and optimize service delivery, they need a twin data center topology for each continent of major business activity.

"It's a fact that most global organizations run too many data centers in too many countries. This is normally the result of business expansion, either organically or through acquisition over many years," said Rakesh Kumar, research vice president at Gartner. "While the logic of business growth makes sense, having too many data centers results in excessive capital and operational costs, an overly complex architecture and, in many cases, a lack of business-IT agility." 

Many companies have stated that having too many data centers inhibits their ability to respond quickly to business changes. This is because of...

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Nov 21
Broadband users are paying less for services

The most recent mobile broadband price benchmarking results from Strategy Analytics (www.strategyanalytics.com) shows that while service speeds have grown dramatically over the past year, users are paying less for them.

The average monthly cost for a tablet user needing 2GB per month has fallen 4% since the same period last year, to USD PPP 17.79, while average advertised speed for the same basket has risen by a massive 123%, to 26 Mb/s. For a laptop user requiring 5GB per month, the cost has fallen by 9%, and currently averages USD PPP 25.24, while the speed has risen by 35%over the year, and now stands at just under 24 Mb/s.

"We are seeing some very dramatic movements with mobile broadband pricing," says Strategy Analytics Teligen Director Halvor Sannaes. "The impact of 4G rollouts on speed is very evident, with some providers offering download in excess of 100 Mb/s. What is perhaps...

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Nov 20
Cloud-based security services market to reach $2.1...

The cloud-based security services market will be worth US$2.1 billion in 2013, rising to $3.1 billion in 2015, according to Gartner, Inc. (www.gartner.com). The search group says that growth in cloud-based security will remain strong, but revenue opportunities will vary.

"The cloud-based security market remains a viable one, offering providers many opportunities for expansion," says Ruggero Contu, research director at Gartner. "Encryption will be a new area of growth, but it remains a complex activity. The strongest interest will be in encryption products from cloud security brokers, which are relatively easy to deploy and have options for on-premises encryption management."

Gartner predicts that the top three most sought-after cloud services moving forward will remain email security, web security services and identity and access management (IAM). However, in 2013 and 2014, the highest growth is forecast to...

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Nov 19
Notebook market's annual plunge continues

How far have expectations fallen for the mobile personal computer (PC) business this year?

So far that single-digit sequential growth in the third quarter comes as the best news the notebook market has heard in many months — even as shipments plunged on a year-over-year basis. The year-over-year decline is making it increasingly apparent that the mobile PC market is headed for a second consecutive year of contraction in 2013, according to a new PC Dynamics brief from IHS Inc. (www.isuppli.com).

Mobile PC shipments worldwide are estimated to have reached 47.9 million units in the third quarter, up 6% from the second quarter. This represents the largest sequential growth since two years ago when the market rose 7% in the third quarter of 2011, as presented in the graph.

On the other hand, the third-quarter results show the market has now shrunk for five consecutive quarters on a year-over-year basis,...

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Nov 18
Cellular M2M device installed based to near 500...

A new report from Juniper Research (www.juniperresearch.com) has found that the installed base of cellular M2M devices will approach 500 million modules by 2018, driven by more open M2M ecosystems and improved cloud-based APIs (application programming interfaces).

According to the report, the M2M space is seeing an increasing focus on the development of open platforms that simplify connectivity to a wide range of isolated devices through the cloud. It found that "Big Data" emerging from M2M service provision will, in time, allow for improved interrogation of M2M data, opening the door to new revenue streams for companies and M2M operators.
Towards the Internet of Things

The Juniper report found that M2M roll-outs have become increasingly global, with Mobile Network Operators facilitating M2M roaming and tailoring services and approaches to industry verticals.

"Mobile...

| Read more »
Nov 14
NPD DisplaySearch: there's an increased demand...

As 5-inch full-high-definition (FHD, 1920 × 1080 resolution) smartphone panels continue to gain traction and demand increases, manufacturers are beginning to implement new technologies to reduce power consumption at higher resolutions, according to NPD DisplaySearch (www.displaysearch.com). More than 100 million 5-inch FHD smartphone panels will be shipped in 2013, 5% of all smartphone displays.

There are several manufacturing technologies that can produce the active matrix TFT backplane for 5-inch FHD smartphone panels: traditional a-Si TFT, oxide TFT, and low temperature polysilicon (LTPS) TFT, all of which are used with LCD. LTPS TFT can also be used as a backplane for AMOLED (active matrix OLED) displays.

"While Apple iPhone suppliers are focused on the production of LTPS LCDs, others with experience in oxide TFT are trying to address the issue and gain a competitive advantage," said Yoonsung...

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Nov 13
Cellular connectivity to deliver nearly 60% of M2M...

M2M connectivity will be embedded in more than 2 billion devices across nine key industries by 2018, but it will be cellular that will bring the bulk of the value and the connectivity revenues, according to ABI Research.

A new generation of smart devices is set to have embedded connectivity and manufacturers have a number of technologies to select to deliver network connectivity. ABI Research has examined the demand and appeal for M2M connectivity across cellular, satellite, fixed-line and short-range wireless technologies within nine key industry verticals. Each technology has specific advantages and appeal, but cellular is the best placed to deliver the most value, he

"Looking at demand for connectivity, while cellular will not have the highest number of connections, or the highest average revenue per connection, it will provide the greatest opportunity to drive the most overall value from those connections," says Jonathan Collins, principal analyst and author of...

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Nov 12
Mobile device platforms continue toward more...

There are many trends simultaneously affecting the market for mobile device semiconductors. Two have been the shift towards multicore application processors and the addition of x86 and MIPS to what used to be purely an ARM play. Two newer trends are the addition of heterogeneous processing functionality and 64-bit processors for mobile devices, according to ABI Research.

The trend towards more integrated platforms is the most crucial; however, it is because the revenue of standalone components is folding into integrated platforms and the revenue for mobile device semiconductors lie with the higher cost components — mostly the application processor, says the research group. So while the shift from standalone components to integrated platforms is drastic over the next five years in terms of shipments, this shift is even more radical in terms of revenue.

From 2013 to 2018, the share of integrated platforms compared to all application processors in terms of shipments...

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Nov 07
Mobile security services to drive billion dollar...

Mobile authentication and encryption services for enterprises are growing dynamically with the saturation of cloud-based applications and BYOD trends, according to ABI Research (www.abiresearch.com).

Organizations are looking to maximize the benefits of these technologies while maintaining a level of security that satisfies compliance and the protection of corporate resources, according to the research group. These need to be further balanced against flexibility and manageability; without these guarantees, even the most secure solutions are useless.

For mobile encryption technology, this means effective key management. For authentication, it may be SSO or tokenless access. The field of application for mobile authentication and encryption services is wide, and the demands are varied.

ABI Research says an innovative market in mobile-specific services for authenticating users and devices has...

| Read more »
Nov 06
Gartner: cloud computing to be the bulk of new IT...

The use of cloud computing is growing, and by 2016 this growth will increase to become the bulk of new IT spending, according to Gartner, Inc. (www.gartner.com). 2016 will be a defining year for cloud as private cloud begins to give way to hybrid cloud, and nearly half of large enterprises will have hybrid cloud deployments by the end of 2017, the research group says.

Gartner describes cloud computing as a style of computing in which scalable and elastic IT-enabled capabilities are delivered "as a service" using Internet technologies. It heralds an evolution of business in positive and negative ways. It has also become a hot industry term that has been used in many contradictory ways.

"Overall, there are very real trends toward cloud platforms, and also toward massively scalable processing. Virtualization, service orientation and the Internet have converged to sponsor a phenomenon that enables individuals...

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Nov 05
NFC to enable $48 billion in in-store mobile payments...

Strategy Analytics (www.strategyanalytics.com) has lowered its outlook for NFC-based mobile payments to reflect the slow pace at which operators are pushing NFC payment services, limited NFC payment deployments by handset makers, and the continued slow adoption of contactless payments by retailers.

The research group estimates that 115 million NFC handset owners will spend just over US$48 billion using their NFC phones by 2017. Although that's a large amount, it represents a drop in the ocean of the multi-trillion dollar global retail sector. 

The healthy growth in sales of NFC handsets has yet to be matched by the adoption and use of handset based NFC payments services, with many mobile operators pushing back the launch of NFC-based mobile payment into the final quarter of 2013 or in to 2014 and beyond.

"With the exception of China, where we see some momentum from China Mobile...

| Read more »
Nov 04
Tablet shipment forecast lowered through 2017

The forecast for global tablet shipments has been lowered as short-term build plans are being reduced, according to the NPD DisplaySearch research group.

NPD DisplaySearch (www.displaysearch.com) says shipments are still expected to be up 30% year-over-year, but projections between 2013 and 2017 are being scaled back by roughly 9% every year. The main factor in the forecast reduction is white-box tablet production in China, which is being pulled back following overly aggressive build plans that out-paced demand.

Despite the current situation in China, much of the future growth for tablet PC shipments will come from the China and Asia Pacific regions. These regions will make up nearly 50% of the worldwide tablet PC segment by 2015, increasing to nearly 60% by 2017. In comparison, North America and EMEA, which combined will make up 50% of the market in 2013, will fall to 36% in 2017, says NPD...

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Nov 01
Northern Spy: Surf's Up

By Rick Sutcliffe

The wave of Apple's future was supposed to be a simplification of the user interface, a de-skeuomorphism of visual elements, and a unification of MacOS and iOS. The most recent version of the latter went a long way toward this mark

However, MacOS 10.9, a.k.a. Mavericks, is, on the whole, a stay-the-course mild enhancement of Mountain Lion 10.8, nothing radical. Thos who want radical change will have to wait for MacOS 11.

The important changes are in the upgrade process itself. First, it is free to anyone who has Snow Leopard or higher (i.e. can access the Apple Store). This will increase adoption rates and customer satisfaction, and give IT departments at most organizations hissy fits, because they will not be able to prevent their user base from doing independent upgrades. Second, iWork is also free--at least if you are new to the eco-system, or you have a previous version of Pages, Keynote, and Numbers installed. But even...

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Nov 01
Most organizations running cloud apps -- even if they...

More than 55% of organizations are running Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) applications on their corporate devices whether they know it or not, according to new research by Softchoice, a North American technology solutions and services provider.

The challenge isn't necessarily that these apps are being used predominantly for file sharing, storage, and remote access. It's that many of them are being used without proper oversight by IT departments, posing a serious threat to the security of corporate data, according to Softchoice.

"Shadow IT in the Enterprise: Softchoice SaaS Study 2013" examines the presence of SaaS on 7,200 corporate devices across 23 distinct organizations. The study reveals the most common apps in use today, the benefits and security risks posed by certain apps, and offers recommendations on how IT departments can best manage their use without squelching the benefits they deliver in terms of employee productivity and engagement.

"As the front...

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Oct 31
Which city is the U.S.'s highest for smartphone,...

New research from app tester SOASTA (www.soasta.com) shows which city in America has the highest smartphone and tablet adoption. It’s not the San Francisco Silicon Valley area. 

The home of Apple, Facebook, Twitter, and Google comes in at number six for smartphone adoption. It’s not New York either.  Out of 10 major metropolitan American cities, it’s the nation’s lowest in smartphone adoption.

The city with the highest smartphone adoption is… Dallas. Here’s the ranking:

Dallas – 76%
LA – 66%
Washington, D.C. 64%
Philadelphia 62%
Houston – 62%
San Francisco 61%
Atlanta – 60%
Chicago – 57%
Boston – 55%
New York – 48%
 
The city with the highest tablet adoption is… also Dallas. Here’s the ranking:
 
Dallas – 48%
Washington, D.C. – 43%
Chicago – 39%
New York – 39%
Boston – 38%
LA – 38%
...

| Read more »
Oct 29
Microsoft edges Sony in ABI Research’s Game Console...

Microsoft just edged Sony for the top position in ABI Research’s game console Competitive Assessment, based on expectations for the impact of Sony’s PS4 and Microsoft’s Xbox One game consoles.

ABI Research (www.abiresearch.com) evaluated a number of companies across three device categories: game consoles, smart set-top boxes, and TVs/Blu-ray players. Several factors were used to score each company based on two main axes of Innovation and Implementation. The assessment provides deep insight into consumer electronics ecosystems and modern video experiences in the connected home.

"With the hardware specs between Microsoft’s Xbox One and Sony’s PS4 so similar this leaves Nintendo’s Wii U on the outside," says ABI Research Senior Analyst Michael Inouye. "If not for Nintendo’s wider distribution network, console heritage, and first party titles it would start to find itself in closer competition with many...

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Space Colors – Tips, Tricks, Strategies,...
Hello Cadets: Want to know what we thought about this hectic space combat/roguelike? Check out our Space Colors review! Space Colors is a cool shooter/roguelike from Team Chaos. You travel from planet to planet across a huge galaxy and complete a... | Read more »
Tap Sports Baseball – Tips, Tricks, and...
Tap Sports Baseball is a pretty simple game to learn, but that doesn’t mean it’s an easy game to master, by any means. To start your batting career off well, we thought we’d give you the heads up on some handy tips and tricks. Hey Batter-Batter:... | Read more »
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Tap Sports Baseball Review By Jennifer Allen on August 20th, 2014 Our Rating: :: LET'S PLAY BALLUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Tap Sports Baseball is briefly fun but lacks some important features.   | Read more »
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Frontier Heroes Review
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Apple now offering certified refurbished 2014...
 The Apple Store is now offering Apple Certified Refurbished 2014 MacBook Airs for up to $180 off the cost of new models. An Apple one-year warranty is included with each MacBook, and shipping is... Read more
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MacBook Airs on sale for $100 off MSRP, free...
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15-inch 2.2GHz MacBook Pro on sale for $1899,...
Adorama has the new 15″ 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro on sale for $1899 including free shipping plus NY & NJ sales tax only. Their price is $100 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price available for this... Read more
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Save up to $140 off MSRP with Apple refurbish...
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