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Archive for the ‘Google’ Category

Goodbye Google Reader: what’s the next big thing?

Monday, March 18th, 2013

google_readerYesterday’s announcement to shut down Google Reader in July sparked protests on the Internet, but why?

Since 2009 the industry has predicted the demise of RSS, and everyone’s banking on social reading.

While there are other feed aggregators, it’s clear that RSS – like dial-up – is headed into obscurity.  Internet users should not be asking “how do we save this?” , but instead, “what’s next?”

In yesterday’s New Yorker, Joshua Rothman waxed poetic about lost knowledge and noble pursuits with the decline of Reader, but pointed out how feeds can overwhelm users. Reader’s value was organizing web content, not having an endless stream of articles reminding you that your commitment to home gardening is not what you thought it was.

The next big thing?

Content curation is unquestionably the next big thing, and personal collection, organization and publication is driving this movement.

RSS feeds deliver “push” content – a passive experience wherein subscribed or relevant content is automatically delivered. We still see traffic coming to the TechJournal from our RSS feed and were seeing hits from Google Reader as well.

However, “pull” content is what the user has gathered. It’s collected, organized, and presented for utility or perspective – personal curation is personal power.

Some Reader users will opt for other news feeders such as NetVibes, NewsBlur, and Feedly . Content aggregators we use here at the TechJournal include Trove and Scoop.it, and there are many others out there. We admit, we stopped using Google Reader sometime back as apparently, too many others did as well.

Looking outside the box

Others may kick it old school and use browser bookmarks.  But others are going to look outside the box for what’s next.

Jenna Gavin , CEO of Surfdash.com, states, “Our online lives are becoming more complex. Information we access on a regular basis – email accounts, banking, social media, health providers, local services, and news –  is overwhelming, and the industry is rethinking content access and organization.”

There are curation tools available for professional marketers, bloggers, or high octane “sharers.”

Put together pictures to tell a story and you have Pinterest, or publish your ideas with content on GetPocket.

What do you use? Are you waiting for the next big thing or do you have content aggregation and curation tools that meet your needs now?

Google funds research into the “social” of Social Networks

Thursday, March 14th, 2013

GoogleGoogle has awarded a multi-year grant to Polytechnic Institute of New York University’s (NYU-Poly) Oded Nov to further his study of the role of design in shaping online behavior.

Nov, an assistant professor in the Department of Technology Management and Innovation, has long focused on social media, and the behavioral aspects of information systems. Working with Mor Naaman of the Rutgers University School of Communication and Information, he will embark on an ambitious new two-year project to examine the factors that impact users’ interactions with and contributions to social media.

“In particular, we will focus on the impact of social traces created by users’ feedback and inputs – the social cues about the attributes of the users, their opinions and the community they form,” Nov said. “As in the physical world, your behavior online changes depending on the others around you.”

While in no way connected, this comes on the heels of Facebook reporting that your “likes” on the site reveal much about you – possibly your I.Q., sexual and political persuasion, and even drug use. It’s becoming increasingly apparent that social media’s interactive nature affects much as other communities we may belong to in the real world.

We’ll be interested to see if this study addresses how the apparently never-ending design changes on Facebook, Google+ and other social networks affects their use (other than sparking cries of protest).

Google bestows the Focused Research Award, as the unrestricted grant is known, upon scientists working in areas of key interest to the company as well as to the broader research community.

Ad Age Digital “A” list includes a few surprises

Monday, February 25th, 2013

Ad AgeAdvertising Age editors threw in a few surprises with the 2013 Digital A-List, out today in print, online and on the AdAge iPhone and iPad apps. The list is the centerpiece of the its annual Digital Issue.

All of the top three on the list are somewhat surprising. They are the humor site, The Onion, The Weather Company, and statistics maven Nate Silver, who correctly predicted outcomes in last year’s political races.

But something that isn’t a surprise: it’s clearer where the value is in the digital world, the magazine says.

“What a difference a year makes,” said Abbey Klaassen , editor of Advertising Age. “The digital ability of our industry is finally maturing. A year ago, things felt dark. Breakthroughs that were supposed to be big didn’t turn out that way, and business models that were supposed to save the world didn’t.

“Google was the only one making money in digital and our A-List pretty much wrote itself. This year, things have settled. And it’s clearer where the real value is.”

Each year, the closely watched Digital A-List names the companies, things, and one person the AdAge editors believe drove progress for digital over the past 12 months.

Nate Silver is high on the Advertising Age Digital A list for 2013. Photo from Ad Age.

Nate Silver is high on the Advertising Age Digital A list for 2013. Photo from Ad Age.

The Digtal A list for 2013:

  • The Onion
  • The Weather Company
  • Nate Silver
  • Oreo
  • General Electric
  • First Round Capital
  • Google Apps
  • Deadspin
  • 3D printing
  • Samsung Galaxy

Deep Dives on Facebook, Twitter, Google & Hiring

The issue also includes AdAge‘s second exclusive assessment of marketers’ sentiments toward Facebook. A series of charts and other analytics show that most brands have yet to sample things like Sponsored Stories or use the Facebook Exchange.

“We can see that as either an indictment or an opportunity,” summed Michael Learmonth , assistant managing editor at Advertising Age.

Also in the issue, a look at Twitter’s coming of age.

Twitter bird

“Twitter created a new real-time window for marketing and they own it, but until this year, there was a real question of whether the company would be able to capitalize on the business opportunity,” added Learmonth.

“We now see brands’ newsrooms operating continuously, and going into high alert around things like the Grammys, the Academy Awards and the Super Bowl.

“Nothing existed with this urgency before Twitter. It’s an amazing opportunity for Twitter, and there are real risks. The value of real-time content expires very quickly compared to search’s very long tail and permanence.”

Google/Samsung tensions brewing

Samsung pixon m8800In a third look at leading digital platforms: the story of the tensions brewing between two longtime Silicon Valley allies, Google and Samsung.

In the wake of Google’s hiring of Samsung’s top marketer, the story delves into how the relationship has turned acrimonious.

“There are real indications that the united front of these two companies is crumbling and that united front is vital to competing with Apple,” added Learmonth.

New to the Digital Issue for 2013 – and providing some of the most interesting twists to the issue’s coverage: The Eight Best Digital Hires over the past year.

“You’ll see people you’d expect on the list, like Marissa Mayer . But you’ll also see people you’ve never heard of,” Learmonth said. “It gives you a sense of who to watch in 2013.”

Google+ posts stunning 9,400 percent increase in users, brands active

Wednesday, February 13th, 2013

Google PlusDespite initial skepticism toward Google+, the social network is quickly becoming mainstream. It saw a 9,400 percent increase in users in just one year, says the BrightEdge January 2013 Social Share Report. Three of four top global brands now have active profiles on Google+, the report says.

If you use Google+ personally or professionally, you have probably noticed an increasing level of activity and the number of people and brands on the network. It’s much more active than our Facebook page and we have literally thousands of people and brands in our Google+ circles.

It’s much easier to acquire large numbers of followers relevant to your interests on Google+ than on any of the other social networks. Also, a post that garners attention on Google+ will collect many more plus 1s, shares and comments than the same comment on most other networks if our own experience is any guide.

The Social share report tracks social media adoption trends for the BrandZ top 100 global brands including Apple, BMW, RedBull and Samsung. The report also includes insights into how YouTube is performing as a social media network.

Key insights include

·      The top 10 brands on Google + account for 4 out of 5 followers

·      The Auto Industry accounts for 40% of the top 10 spots for followers on Google

·      20% of brands now have their Google+ pages show up in SERP results

·      87% of top brands now have a YouTube channel

·      Google, Red Bull and Samsung lead the way with breakaway numbers of subscribers on YouTube

The full report can be downloaded here http://www.brightedge.com/social-share-january-2013

Google hangouts changes making it more available

Tuesday, February 12th, 2013
Richard Gorman

Richard Gorman

According to technology expert and Google enthusiast Richard Gorman, the Google Hangout feature has come a long way. When the real-time chat function first launched, it was met with skepticism in some circles, despite having the almighty Google brand name affixed to it.

With time, however, Google Hangout has become a popular tool; celebrities and even political figures have used Google Hangouts to host conferences and meet-and-greets. Despite its burgeoning popularity, the Google Hangout is still not accessible to anyone and everyone—but the Google development team is seeking to change that.

The company has announced some major changes to the Google Hangout technology, all designed to bring more users into the fold. These Google Hangout changes have won the attention of Gorman, who has responded with a statement to the press.

Internet connections a problem

“These changes are very much in keeping with Google’s typical passion for making all of their products as accessible, to as many different people, as possible,” Gorman says. “Something like Gmail may be fairly universal in its efficacy, but, for many users, Google Hangout remains untenable, simply because of Internet connectivity issues.”

Indeed, while those with stellar Internet connections can make good use of Google Hangout, the feature is much less useful in third-world countries, or even in busy, public places with crowded Wi-Fi networks. Google has been upfront in saying that the new changes to its Hangout feature are all designed to offer greater accessibility, specifically by allowing users to have more control over their Hangout connections—thus making them less helpless against the ebb and flow of a volatile wireless network.

Audio-only mode slashes bandwidth needed

Google PlusOne of the changes to Google Hangout is an audio-only mode. By sending audio only, and not video, users can significantly cut down on the bandwidth they need to participate in a Google Hangout. To other members of a Hangout, audio-only participants will be visible simply as static profile pictures.

“The audio-only option will surely come in handy to users for whom bandwidth is shaky,” offers Gorman. Still, the more significant advance is the introduction of a new “slider” at the top of each Hangout screen. This slider allows users to take full control over their own bandwidth preferences.

“Google Hangout users used to rely on the default bandwidth settings, but now, they can use the slider to move from high bandwidth to low, and all the way down to audio-only,” Gorman explains. “The bottom line is that, if your connection starts to go bad or you are taxing the network too much, you can easily cut down on your bandwidth without disrupting the Hangout.”

New features only on desktop now

Currently, these new features are available for desktop user only, but Gorman sees a real opportunity for Google to serve mobile users. “The audio-only feature would be an immense boon for those who participate in Hangouts via their mobile devices,” Gorman says.

“It would allow users to participate in Hangouts even while on the go, or in crowded public settings.” He notes that video takes up a lot of bandwidth and is often too much for a mobile device to handle, whereas audio is much easier for smartphones to deal with.

As if these technological improvements were not proof enough of Google’s commitment to making its products as universally accessible as possible, the company has also launched Hangouts in India, for the first time ever.

The bottom line, according to Gorman, is that Google is doing everything it can to make its products second-nature, to anyone and everyone. “Google continues to innovate new ways to make its technology accessible to users everywhere,” he concludes. Richard Gorman is a technology pundit and online marketing professional, and can be found on Quora.

What can companies learn from those earning great reputations?

Tuesday, February 12th, 2013

The Harris PollAmazon is on a roll. In addition to topping a list of 25 retailers with the best mobile satisfaction ratings during the recent holiday shopping season, it also edged out Apple as America’s most reputable company, according to the 2013 Harris Poll RQ Study which engages over 14,000 members of the general public to measure the reputations of the sixty most visible companies in the country.

And companies can learn from how the leaders gain their stellar reputations.

This is Amazon’s first time earning the top ranking, but the fifth consecutive year with a great reputation score. The Walt Disney Company, Google, and Johnson & Johnson complete the top five. This is Google’s eight consecutive top five appearance, an incredible achievement for a fourteen year old company.

AIG and Goldman Sachs return to the bottom two reputation positions on the list of the most visible companies, joined by Halliburton, American Airlines, and Bank of America. With a full six point increase in RQ score though, Bank of America had the highest year-over-year increase in the 2013 study. Best Buy and Honda experienced the greatest decline in RQ scores, 6.76 and 4.73 points, respectively.

RQ measures six dimensions that comprise reputation and influence consumer behavior.

The dimensions and the 2013 leaders are:

  • Social Responsibility – Whole Foods
  • Emotional Appeal – Amazon.com
  • Financial Performance – Apple
  • Products & Services – Amazon.com
  • Vision & Leadership – Apple
  • Workplace Environment – Google

graphicAmazon’s reputation strength runs wide and deep as it ranked in the top five in five of the six dimensions of reputation. Amazon had a five point advantage over any other company in the study in the dimension of Emotional Appeal, despite an entirely virtual relationship with the public. Amazon also achieved the top rating in the dimension of Products & Services.

Amazon earned nearly 100 percent positive ratings on all measures related to Trust. More than 50 percent of respondents also recall discussing Amazon with friends and family in the past year, and nearly 100 percent of these conversations were positive.

“Our results show that Amazon has managed to build an intimate relationship with the public without being perceived as intrusive,” adds Fronk. “

Nine of ten would recommend it

And as the company that is so widely known for its personal recommendations, more than nine in ten members of the public would recommend Amazon to friends and family.”

The results for Apple and Google are equally as impressive as those for Amazon and continue a compelling trend that has been developing for the past few years – companies that begin in the technology sector, which is by far and away the highest-rated industry when it comes to reputation, absorb the reputation equity from the industry, then transcend the industry to become a more multi-faceted business.

Companies that are able to do this are perceivedto “Play A Valuable Social Role,” a characteristic, which according to the RQ study, has become a key driver of reputation.

Kindle

The Kindle’s eInk technology frees you from LED glare and eye-strain – and you can make the fonts as large as you like.

As a longtime Amazon customer, we can understand why it has such a great reputation, despite moves such as encouraging “showrooming,” viewing products in stores to buy later online.

It’s customer service is beyond first rate. We dropped and broke our first Kindle e-reader when it was out of warranty and they still replaced it free, overnight, and we didn’t even have to pay postage. When a large package of books went awry and never showed up, they simply resent the order.

Banking industry shows gains, still low ranked

The banking industry is not so lucky. It showed some encouraging signs in 2013. Positive ratings of the industry are now 25 percent, a more than 50 percent increase from 2012.

Wells Fargo became the first of the four big banking companies in the past four years to move from negative to positive equity in the dimension of Emotional Appeal. Harris’s fourteen years of conducting the RQ study show that a company cannot build or maintain positive reputation without this positive equity. Wells Fargo also received significantly higher marks on attributes related to its people and work environment, and it is possible that these may be the first signs of a bank once again being seen as trusted.

But in our conversations with sources, the banking industry is still most often cited as having abysmal customer service and is viewed as frequently predatory. The continuing mortgage default problem hasn’t helped.

What can companies learn from the 2013 Harris Poll RQ Study?

Companies need to evaluate and understand the increasing importance that playing a valuable social role has on reputation, purchase consideration, advocacy and positive word of mouth. This is about a business having a purpose, not just checking the box on social responsibility or sustainability.

Additionally, companies need to adapt to a major trend in consumer behavior. More than 60 percent of consumers now “pro-actively try to learn more about how a company conducts itself” before they are willing to consider that company’s products or services. This group, which Harris calls Seekers:

  • Proactively engage in conversations with others about what they find out about a company;
  • In 60 percent of cases, decide NOT to do business with a company because of something they learn about that company; and
  • Actively try to influence friends and family on whether to do business or not with a company based upon what they have learned about that company’s conduct.

 

Who’s been reading your gmail to target ads?

Thursday, February 7th, 2013

email graphicDid you know that Google uses the contents of your gmail accounts to target ads to you?

Microsoft has just launched a campaign touting the fact that its Outlook email product does not do that.

According to a public GfK Roper study, commissioned by Microsoft Corp., 70 percent of consumers don’t know that major email providers routinely engage in the practice of reading through their personal email to sell ads — something that 88 percent of people disapprove of once they are informed

To help consumers have their voice heard, today Outlook.com launched a petition to help them get the message to Google that going through personal email messages to sell ads is unacceptable. Outlook.com encourages consumers to sign the petition at Scroogled.com and tell Google to stop going through their emails to sell ads.

In a news release, Microsoft says, “Google goes through every single word of personal Gmail messages and uses that information to sell and target ads. As Google explains on its website, ‘In Gmail, most of the ads we show appear next to an open email message and are related to the contents of the current email conversation or thread.’ For example, if you write a friend to let her know you are separating from your husband, Google sells ads against this information to divorce lawyers, who post ads alongside it.”

Google does not let users opt-out of this email ad-targeting.

Microsoft OfficeThe GfK Roper poll, commissioned by Microsoft, shows that only 30 percent of Americans are aware that any email service goes through the content of personal emails to sell ads, and 88 percent of consumers disapprove of this practice.

Key results from this survey include the following:

  • 88 percent of Americans disapprove of email service providers scanning the content of your personal emails in order to target ads, and 52 percent disapprove strongly.
  • 89 percent of Americans agree that email service providers should not be allowed to scan the content of personal emails in order to target ads.
  • 83 percent of Americans agree that email service providers scanning the content of your personal emails to target ads is an invasion of privacy.
  • 70 percent of Americans didn’t believe or didn’t know that any major email service provider scans the content of personal emails in order to target ads.
  • 88 percent of email users believe that email service providers should allow users to “opt out” if they prefer that the content of their emails not be scanned in order to target ads.

Personally, we switched from Outlook to gmail several years ago because at the time, you could not get to your Outlook mail without access to the computer on which is was installed. We also had other problems with Outlook’s responsiveness and carrying folders and old email over to new machines.

We think this is a clever and telling marketing campaign, but it’s not getting us to switch back to Outlook.

Net-go-round: video console resurgence? Connected cars, social media stock tracker

Wednesday, January 9th, 2013

Sony game consoleInternational Data Corporation predicts that video game sales for console systems will rebound from a tough 2011-2012 as new platforms hit the market.

“2011 and 2012 were tough for many console game disc developers and publishers,” says IDC’s Lewis Ward, manager of its gaming service.

“With the advent of eighth-generation consoles, starting with the Wii U, historical norms strongly imply that game disc revenue will stop bleeding in 2013 and rise substantively in 2014.”

“The console ecosystem is in a state of flux since these platforms need to support an ever-growing array of non-gaming features and services at the same time that game distribution and monetization is moving in a digital direction,” said Ward, research manager of IDC’s Gaming service.

“At the same time, it doesn’t appear that alternative platforms — set-top boxes from cable companies, Web-connected smart TVs, and so on — are positioned to materially disrupt the trajectory of the ‘big 3′ console OEMs in 2013 or 2014. Discs will remain the console game revenue mainstay for years to come.”

Key takeaways from the new forecast include:

  • In December 2012, PS3 system shipments eclipsed the number of Xbox 360’s shipped worldwide, despite the PS3 launching a year later than the Xbox 360 (an estimated 77 million bundles versus approximately 76 million bundles shipped)
  • Nintendo’s Wii U will find an audience; global bundle shipments will exceed 50 million by year-end 2016
  • The volume of packaged game discs shipped will decline an average of roughly 3% per year through 2016, as console spending shifts into digital channels

Consumers want car connections

hi-tech carConsumers want digital connections in their vehicles, says a study of more than 2,100 US adults by Johnson Controls.

Some of the key findings from the study include:

  • Interest in greater connectivity via one’s vehicle is high. 84% of vehicle owners1 would like to control the features in their vehicle via a touch-screen infotainment system; 83% want to get updates to vehicle infotainment systems delivered wirelessly; 76% would like to connect to the Internet using their vehicle as a Wi-Fi hotspot; 67% would like to download applications directly to their vehicle; and, 61% would like to pay for something using a debit or credit card linked to the infotainment system in their vehicle.2
  • Safety is the single most important feature3 in the selection of a vehicle (75%). The delivery of vehicle infotainment safely will be critical to consumer adoption and consumption. The second tier of important features includes vehicle diagnostics (49%) and navigation (42%).4
  • Smartphone apps most associated with a vehicle include: Maps/navigation = 52%; News = 45%; and, finding locations = 34%.
  • When it comes to downloading smartphone apps to a vehicle via an interactive screen, vehicle owners who use downloaded apps on a weekly basis would prefer traditional channels. 62% have a preference for where they would download an app for their vehicle, and of those with a preference, 60% would prefer downloading from an existing app store (e.g., App Store for iOS, Amazon Appstore for Android), 38% would prefer a new app store for vehicle-specific applications, and 37% would prefer the app maker’s website (e.g., Pandora, Google Maps).
  • When it comes to accessing a vehicle app, vehicle owners who use downloaded apps regularly want apps they know and are comfortable with. Two-thirds (64%) want the menu options in their vehicle to be the same as on their smartphone (i.e., a full list of menu options available).

Social media stock tracker launched

Google+WebMediaBrands Inc.’s (Nasdaq: WEBM) SocialTimes launched the Social Media Stock Tracker covering the weekly stock performance of companies within the social media and Internet sectors such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Google, Zynga, and Groupon.

Each weekly report, published on Saturday mornings, discusses key developments and provides analytical commentary on the most interesting and controversial events that impact the public companies in these sectors.

The Social Media Stock Tracker is prepared by Nathan Drona, a former senior analyst in equity research with coverage of the Internet and media sectors and the former director of a global hedge fund focused on technology and life sciences.

He was also a senior investment banker focused on M&A for international companies in technology and life sciences, and has been a board director for several public and private companies.

Tips for staying safe on Android mobile devices in 2013

Thursday, December 13th, 2012

Android logoGlobally, at least 18 million Android users will encounter mobile malware from the beginning of 2012 to the end of 2013 according to Lookout’s 2013 Mobile Threat Predictions, a forecast that identifies mobile threats people and businesses may face in the coming year.

In addition, the global likelihood of a new Lookout user encountering a mobile threat, such as malware or spyware, is .84% on average from June to October 2013. The US likelihood remained low at .40% in October 2012.

Web-based mobile threats like phishing links or malicious websites, continue to be the most prevalent and relevant threat to smartphone users. Nearly four in ten people encountered a web threat over the course of 2012 and we expect this trend to continue.

Highlights for the 2013 Predictions include:

  • Toll fraud continues to grow: 72% of all of Lookout’s malware was classified as toll fraud in 2012. This class of premium SMS fraud will continue to dominate the 2013 mobile threat space despite improvements made on the Android platform. Toll fraud is the easiest and least technical path to monetization and provides considerable ROI that is built into most mobile networks via pre-existing billing channels. In addition, while more recent versions (Jellybean 4.2) of Android devices provide updated protection against premium SMS abuse, older versions of Android remain vulnerable.
  • Spam harvests personal data: SMS-based spam will increase in its volume across mobile networks in 2013. Lookout recently observed a number of malicious applications toll fraud-based and otherwise, actively collecting contact information from infected devices. It’s not a stretch to expect that malware writers will seek to monetize these datasets via spammers. It’s only a matter of time before writers send spam in-network, infecting devices to appear they have come from inside as the have on PCs in the past.
  • Businesses strike a balance between control and employee empowerment: Finding the right balance between protection and employee empowerment will be the business mobile threat challenge of 2013. As corporate IT administrators seek to manage the various mobile threats, there is the potential that by over-correcting for the problem, employees will seek new ways to subvert processes and policies that constrain the pure consumer experience.

For in-depth information, tips and graphics, read the complete 2013 Mobile Threat Predictions on the Lookout blog.

How Individuals Can Stay Safe in 2013

  1. Avoid toll fraud, regularly check your phone bill: Always review your monthly phone bill statements for suspicious charges. Contact your carrier if you identify something you believe to be fraud.
  2. Double-check URLs on your mobile: After clicking on a web link, pay close attention to the address to make sure it matches the website it claims to be, especially if you are asked to enter account or login information.
  3. Protect your privacy, understand app permissions: Be cautious about granting applications access to personal information on your phone or letting the application have access to perform functions on your phone. Make sure to check the privacy settings for each app before installing it.
  4. Be smart about device settings: Keep network connectivity such as NFC / WiFi, or Bluetooth ‘OFF’ when not in use. Be sure to disable settings such as debug mode that can open a device up to illicit access.
  5. Download a security app: Download a security app that scans the apps you download for malware and spyware, helps you locate a lost or stolen device, and protects you from unsafe websites.
  6. Update your phone and apps: Make sure to download and install updates from your mobile operator as soon as they are available for your device. The same goes for apps, download app updates when they are available.

How Businesses Can Stay Safe in 2013

  1. Raise employee awareness: Help employees understand the threats and risks in the wild so that employees can take action to safeguard their phones.
  2. Protect employees’ phones. Ensure that every phone – personal or business – is protected with a mobile security software that finds malware, scans apps, and locates and remotely wipes the device.
  3. Patch known vulnerabilities: Keep employee phones’ operating system software up-to-date by enabling automatic updates or accepting service provider’s updates when prompted. Stay up to speed on what vulnerabilities are not patched across device types and carriers to maintain a proper threat model. The National Institute of Standards and Technology offers a database of device vulnerabilities.

A quarter of Android apps pose security risks (infographic)

Friday, November 2nd, 2012

Bit9More than 100,000 Android applications in the Google Play store—25 percent—pose a security risk to mobile device users and the enterprise networks to which they connect, according to a research report by security firm Bit9.

Bit9 examined the security permissions of more than 400,000 Android applications. The company focused on Google Play applications because more smartphones today run Android than any other operating system.

“When a seemingly basic app such as a wallpaper requests access to GPS data, this raises a red flag. Likewise, more than a quarter of the apps can access email and contacts unbeknown to the phone user, which is of great concern when these devices are used in the workplace.”

Criteria for defining an application as “questionable” or “suspicious” included the permissions requested by the application, categorization of the application, user rating, number of downloads, and the reputation of the application’s publisher. In its examination of the more than 400,000 Android apps, Bit9 found that 72 percent use at least one high-risk permission.

In addition, the company found that:

  • 42 percent of applications access GPS location data, and these include wallpapers, games and utilities
  • 31 percent access phone calls or phone numbers
  • 26 percent access personal data, such as contacts and email
  • 9 percent use permissions that can cost the user money

This report follows previous Bit9 research on the most vulnerable mobile devices.

“A significant percentage of Google Play apps have access to potentially sensitive and confidential information,” said Harry Sverdlove, chief technology officer for Bit9.

“When a seemingly basic app such as a wallpaper requests access to GPS data, this raises a red flag. Likewise, more than a quarter of the apps can access email and contacts unbeknown to the phone user, which is of great concern when these devices are used in the workplace.”

In addition to this comprehensive research, Bit9 conducted a survey of IT security decision makers who collectively influence mobile device usage policy for more than 400,000 employees.

Almost three quarters of those surveyed said their organization allows employees to bring your own device (BYOD) to work and access company email, calendar and scheduling—a risky decision given the significant percentage of applications Bit9 found with access permissions to these programs.

Of the IT security decision makers surveyed:

  • 78 percent feel phone makers do not focus enough on security
  • But 71 percent allow employees to bring their own smartphones to the workplace
  • 68 percent rank security as their most important concern when deciding whether to allow employees to bring their personal devices to work
  • But only 24 percent of companies employ any sort of application control or monitoring to know what applications are running on employees’ mobile devices
  • Only 37 percent have deployed any form of malware protection on employee-owned devices
  • 84 percent of respondents believe iOS is more secure than Android.

These results spotlight an interesting—and disturbing—policy contradiction: While the majority of organizations allow employees to bring their personal devices to work and connect to the company network, the organizations have little visibility into the privacy and security risks the mobile applications on the devices pose to the companies’ networks.

Convenience, and not security, drives the growing trend to allow BYOD policies.

The survey highlights a clear call to action for companies to realize that when employees access company data from a smart device, their intellectual property is being put at risk.

The company created this infographic detailing its findings:

© 2012 Bit9

Where can you get the latest on mobile and digital marketing?

Wednesday, October 31st, 2012
Internet Summit crowd

The 2012 Internet Summit in Raleigh, NC, Nov. 6-8 offers unparalleled networking opportunities and speakers from top digital brands such as Google, Twitter, AOL, Klout, Pando Daily, comScore, Mashable and IBM among many others.

Want to know how to make sure your business is mobile ready without spending a fortune? Concerned about how social media can be a legal landmine? Need insight into the science of Facebook engagement? Those are just a few of the topics on the agenda at next week’s Internet Summit in Raleigh, NC, which is quickly filling available seats.

The 2012 Internet Summit, this year including the Startup Summit, brings more than 120 technology and digital marketing thought-leaders to the Raleigh, NC, Convention Center next week (Nov. 6-8) but fewer than 150 seats remain if you want to join them.

This year the Internet Summit features speakers from brands that include Google, Twitter, Adobe, The Weather Channel, AOL, Cisco, IBM, Forrester, PBS, Klout, Mashable, bing, and many others.

Here at the TechJournal, we’ve interviewed a number of speakers participating in the event, which draws up to 2,000 attendees annually.

CIO challenges, mobile app development, riding the startup roller coaster

From past experience we know these previews offer only a taste of the banquet of take-away insights offered each year:

CIO challenges include several balancing acts – From Chad Smith at 3 Birds Marketing, who was named this year’s CIO of the Year by the North Carolina Technology Association. He’s on the CIO/CTO challenges panel.

How You Can Get More Results from Your Business Website (first of several articles from Boostsuite with great tips on creating, optimizing, and promoting your business website. Successful serial entrepreneur Aaron Houghton, CEO and founder of Boostsuite will discuss how to drastically lower the risk you take when you launch your new startup.

 

Joe Procopio

Joe Procopio

Fasten Your seatbelt: three tips on riding the startup roller coaster. Serial entrepreneur Joe Procopio, a networking expert and software developer who runs Triangle-based Exit Event, on keeping your eye on the ball.

Get your ground game down with mobile before you try trick plays – Bill Leake, CEO of Apogeeresults, has a wealth of practical advice on how to tackle what a business really needs in the mobile arena.

Vince Baskerville of Atlanta’s Trip Lingo on Tracking the mobile wild west: engagement is key.

 

Elizabeth Johnson

Elizabeth Johnson, Attorney with Poyner Spruill, is among the 120 digital media experts participating in the Internet Summit, Raleigh, NC, Nov. 6-8.

You’ll also learn that Social Media Can be a landmine for businesses,” from Poyner Spruillattorney Elizabeth Johnson, who discusses legal issues of concern.

Robert Hancock of Smart Online, which has reinvented itself as a mobile app firm, will offer some best practices for mobile app development.

Randy Brown, director of the Virtual Heroes division of Applied Research Associates, will talk about “Serious games now invading the military, medical and corporate worlds.

Matt Peters, co-founder & creative director, Pandemic Labs, during his presentation at the Internet Summit in November. His company has done significant research since then on how brands can increase their Facebook engagement.

Matt Peters, co-founder and director of Pandemic Labs, a Boston-based firm that sells social media marketing and analytics services. Peters will present his “Science of Facebook engagement,” and tell you about Two changes that will boost your Facebook numbers, among other inside information based on data. (Peter’s will also speak at the Dallas Digital Summit in December.

Stephen Wellman, editor in chief at Geek Media, which publishes Slashdot, will discuss how to engage with online communities.

Stephen-Wellman

Stephen-Wellman, editor-in-chief at Slashdot and other Geeknet sites.

Other top speakers slated for the event include:

  • Jodi Kahn – President, iVillage
  • Duane Forrester – Sr. Product Manager, Bing
  • Scott Calise – Director of Digital Research, MTV Networks
  • Don Hoang – Director of Business Development, Klout
  • Liz Thorington – VP, Ad Sales, The Weather Channel
  • David Perry – Biz Development Executive, Google
And that’s just a sample.

This year’s event includes a new new mini-conference — the Startup Summit – focusing exclusively on digital entrepreneurship.

  • Over 120 top thought leaders & industry innovators sharing insights on topics that matter to you
  • More than 60 presentations & panels covering topics like Customer Engagement, Social Media Trends, Mobile Apps, Analytics, User Experience, Big Data, Gamification, Cloud, Search Marketing and much, much more!
  • Network and connect with around 2,000 of your peers
  • Dedicated Tech Track for IT Professionals, from the cubicle to the C-suite
  • IS Rocks – our new Music Festival at the conclusion of the conference featuring more than a dozen bands to close down IS12 in style!
  • 16 in-depth workshop sessions in our Pre-Conference led by expert interactive and marketing pros.

Register now.

 

Internet, digital media job growth slows in New York & Boston

Tuesday, October 30th, 2012

New-York skylineJob growth in Internet and digital media jobs slowed in New York and Boston over the last six months, including sharp declines in the third quarter. But growth does continue in the sector and some top firms such as Google continued to add headcount in both cities, though at a slower rate.

Amazon, Mashable, LinkedIn, and eBay also all continued to add to staff.

Cook Associates Executive Search, a retained executive search firm, reports in its quarterly East Coast Internet and Digital Media Jobs Index, which tracks job creation at more than 470 companies in New York and Boston, that New York showed 3.6 percent growth for the third quarter, following on the heels of 5.6 percent growth in the past quarter.

Boston, on the other hand, showed lower growth of 1.9 percent after a 3.2 percent increase in jobs in the second quarter.

Growth much stronger in New York

Index creator John Barrett said, “It’s now clear that a slowdown in hiring has been occurring in this sector over the past 6 months.  Things began getting soft in Boston by the second quarter.

“There were some signs that it was also getting a little soft in New York, but hiring is now definitely slowing down in New York.  Overall, Internet and digital media jobs growth is still much stronger in New York and I expect that trend to continue.”

Barrett added, “Things are even worse than they appear in Boston.  All of the net new hiring came from just 10 companies out of the approximately 150 companies being tracked in the city.  Without those 10 companies, employment in Boston was flat at best and perhaps declined slightly.”

Overall, New York added about 900 new Internet and digital media jobs while Boston added about 260.  Approximately 55% of New York’s job growth came from publicly-traded companies while about 75% of Boston’s job growth was derived from public companies.

“This illustrates the continued strength of private company hiring in New York that’s resulting from high levels of venture investing occurring there,” according to the report.

New York/Boston jobs chart

Where the jobs are

Top 10 companies showing largest headcount gains in New York include: Google, Rent the Runway, Amazon, AppNexus, eBay, Facebook, LinkedIn, Gilt Groupe, Etsy, Warby Parker.

Up-and-coming companies showing large headcount gains in New York included: Foursquae, Fab.com, ZocDoc, Magnetic, Tumblr,Thrillist,BuzzFeed, HowAboutWe.com, Mashable, SignPost, Yext, Moda Operandi and Outbrain.

The top ten firms showing the largest headcount increase in Boston include: Hubspot, Wayfair, Amazon, TripAdvisor, Vistaprint, Rue La La, Google, Constant Contact, Karmaloop, and Jumptap.

Up and coming companies showing large headcount gains in Boston include: Visible Measures, DataXu, Naigans, Care.com, Gemvara, NetProspex, WordStream, Fiksu, and ClickFuel.

 

 

Business leaders trust news media more than politicians

Monday, October 22nd, 2012
Warren Buffett

Business leaders admire Warren Buffett by a wide margin in Speakeasy Trust Survey.

Business people tend to trust the news media more than politicians, according to the 2012 Speakeasy Trust Survey, and that’s saying something, considering that news media only scored 3 percent of the votes.

Politicians? No one voted for them.

The survey showed that the most trusted business leader is Warren Buffet, no surprise there, considering his public candor, and the most trusted company is Google.

Speakeasy, Inc., a nearly 40-year old executive communication consultancy that helps business leaders to develop more powerful and strategic communication, conducted the 2012 Trust Survey among business people at varying levels of responsibility within a broad range of industries, in September 2012.

asked to select who they trust most when receiving communication, respondents were given a choice between business associates, politicians, salespeople, celebrities or news media. The most votes were received for people we know personally, with 97 percent of respondents selecting business associates.

“Given the choices, it stands to reason that people would most trust the coworkers they see and interact with on a daily basis,” said Scott Weiss, CEO, Speakeasy.

“The real surprise is that politicians scored no votes while the news media scored three percent of the vote. What this says to me is that politicians need to take a good look at what they really represent in the public eye. Exacerbating the issue is the disturbing need to run every word uttered by a politician through a fact-checking process in order to validate their honesty.”

Buffett top business leader

Asked to provide a write-in answer for which business leader they trust most and why. Warren Buffett was the overwhelming winner, with 14 percent of respondents writing in his name. Among the reasons: “he is plain spoken,” “he is authentic,” and “it’s clear that his motivation is not just about money.

Other business leaders named in the survey include S. Truett Cathy (Chick-Fil-A), Bill Gates (Microsoft, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation) and Richard Branson (Virgin), each of whom earned six percent of votes. Regardless of the leader who was named, the reasons why didn’t differ much. The most common themes, says Speakeasy, were the leaders’ abilities to inspire people, their authenticity, their transparency, and their abilities to connect on a human level.

asked to provide a write-in answer for which company they trust most and why. Google, scoring eight percent of votes, edged out Starbucks, which was named six percent of the time. A common theme around Google was its customer focus. Google is “motivated to create useful products,” “is focused on the customer” and “values honesty.”

“Delivering consistently high quality products and customer service is the hallmark of a successful company, but in order to build enough equity to be named the most trustworthy, companies must bring something more to the equation,” added Weiss.

“Google and Starbucks are ubiquitous and reliable, and both have very public social programs with which people like to align themselves.”

Other companies that received multiple write-in votes in the survey were American Express, Target, State Farm, Chick-Fil-A and Amazon.

Get your ground game down with mobile before trying trick plays

Thursday, October 18th, 2012

By Allan Maurer

Bill Leake

Bill Leake, CEO of ApogeeResults, is a veteran of McKinsey & Co. and Dell Computers. He is one of 120 digital marketing thought-leaders participating in the Internet Summit in Raleigh, Nov. 6-8.

Ad agencies may try to sell on the idea of letting them build you an expensive mobile app. That’s fine for some companies, “But others might not need to spend that money,” says Bill Leake, CEO of ApogeeResults.com.

Leake has created one of the 20 largest independent online marketing agencies in the United States. Apogee has been instrumental in building dozens of “Internet Retailer 500” and “Software 500” and venture capital backed companies. It works with top global brands such as Whole Foods, IBM, SAP and Hewlett Packard.

While iPhones and tablets have made mobile much more of a real thing, “There is still a lot of hype about mobile,” says Leake. “It’s more of a real thing, but still not for everyone. Folks don’t do a lot of hard core research or interactivity that takes a lot of typing on a smartphone. You have to keep in mind how everything changes on mobile.”

Leake is one of 120 thought-leaders, game changers and marketing gurus participating in this year’s Internet Summit in Raleigh, NC, Nov. 6-8, which this year includes a Startup Summit sponsored by TechMedia’s 2013 Southeast Venture Conference set for Charlotte, NC in March.

Back to marketing basics

Leake suggests the way to approach mobile is to “Get back to the basics of marketing. Who is your customer and how does he like do things? Do you want a mobile app or just a mobile web site? The Google Places piece of Google Plus offers a free mobile web site and probably 50 percent of businesses would do just fine with setting up a Google Places profile.”

“People are getting snookered with mobile apps instead of microsites. Sometimes a mobile app is a game changer, but many get lost in the Apple store. The world is littered with mobile apps no one can find.”

Instead of spending $100,000 on a mobile app, he suggests, “Spend $20,000 on the app and $80,000 on media so people find it.”

You need to be in the mobile pool, he adds, “But it may not be time to dive in from the 50-foot high board. Stay in the shallow end unless you have the budget top learn and fail.”

Get your ground game down

Putting it another way, he says, “Get your ground game down before doing trick plays. Really complicated apps are trick plays with a high failure rate.”

One of the best approaches to a mobile strategy, he says, is to “Let it be an extension of what works well in other places. It’s going from beach volleyball to indoor. It’s not a new game. The form factor just changes a little.

Too many ad agencies tend to view their clients as their artistic patrons, Leake says. “I’ve run into so many creative types who believe the client lives to support their art.”

When a client asks how much they need to spend on a web site, the agency says, “How much was your SBA grant? That’s how much you need to spend.”

They use expensive, slow-loading flash art work. “It’s the height of arrogance,” says Leake. “Flash can be good if embedded in a humble way that downloads a quick bit of HTML saying we have this other thing to show you, but you can bypass it if you want to. But just waiting 20 seconds with no explanation? It’s like the news networks telling you what to believe every night.”

They will judge you on speed

Similar arrogance leads to overdone mobile projects. “A lot of times,” Leake says, “you just need a first level mobile app. People on mobile will judge you on speed. Have things far less graphic with fewer functions.”

All of which, he notes, “Flies in the face of what the typical creative agency wants. They can’t build as much with text as they can with moving pictures.”

Focus, he says, “On what you are trying to do and what your clients are doing. It doesn’t need to be award-winning; it needs to be good enough.”

Think about building something “reasonably” stable that doesn’t need to be replaced every six months, he suggests.

Consider such elements as how to minimize data input challenges. “Thumbs are a pain in the rear,” he says. You have to realize that typing is not the same as on a regular keyboard.

Bring hyper local to the fore

Right now a lot of retailers should be thinking about how to use mobile to defend against the Amazons of the world. So a mobile app or web site should let users know, can they get a certain product? Is it in the store? Will they match lower prices?

“What we’re not seeing enough of is sending mobile ads to someone sitting in a coffee shop within walking distance of a store.”

Also, he says, “Mobile should not be viewed as an isolated silo. It needs to integrate into a full marketing strategy. It’s mission critical for some, but in a lot of cases it’s not. You’re not going to choose what car to buy on a smartphone.”

Marketers also need separate strategies for smartphones and tablets, he adds. “People toss around the word “mobile” casually and apply it to both.”

Yahoo! news named Harris Poll news service brand of the year

Wednesday, October 17th, 2012

YahooWhere do you get your online news? We grab ours from a multitude of services, but we have noticed that Yahoo! news consistently catches our attention with a headline or three.

Others must agree, because Yahoo! News is the 2012 Harris Poll EquiTrend® News Service Brand of the Year.

The free, online news service performed well on equity metrics such as Fit, Trust, and Positive Emotional Connection—psychological components which reflect internal decision-making more than external decision-making—are indicative of a highly personalized relationship between a news service organization and its consumers.

Harris Poll EquiTrend is an annual brand health assessment of over 1,500 product, service, and lifestyle brands from Harris Interactive.

Yahoo! News makes its debut appearance in Harris Poll EquiTrend’s News Service category this year; it and nine other newcomers join three veteran brands: Associated Press (AP), Reuters, and United Press International (UPI).

“We expanded the News Service category to reflect the abundance of media choices facing consumers. These inclusions let us monitor a bigger slice of the market and see how well the veteran brands perform against new rivals,” says Jill Gress , vice president, Harris Interactive .

“Overall, AP is holding strong; however our Brand Momentum metric gives us a hint as to which brands may be contenders next year.” Google News has the top Brand Momentum score this year, followed by Yahoo! News, AP, USA Today, BBC News, and CNN Online.

Business and Weekly News

When it comes to business and weekly news magazines, Money Magazine and The Economist are the only two brands to rank above their respective category averages, earning each of them the 2012 Harris Poll EquiTrend Brand of the Year distinction.

Google’s Nik Software buy heats up Google+ vs. Facebook battle

Monday, October 8th, 2012

Google PlusGoogle is heating up the battle between Google+ and Facebook for social media domination with Google acquiring Instagram look alike Nik Software.

Samuel Junghenn founder of Online Marketing Agency Think Big Online says the move cements Google’s intentions to become a major player in social media.

Just a few weeks ago Google Senior Vice President Vic Gundorta announced via his Google+ account that they’ve now reached 400 million users. While this is still significantly lower than Facebook it’s the most successful social network that Google’s released to date.

The acquisition of Nik Software should help to bolster that position as well, Nik Software offers photo services similar to the popular Instagram. Facebook users upload an average of 300 million photos per day via Instagram and associated photo services, so the Nik Software acquisition should be a positive move for Google+.

“Google+ has proven to be a success thus far for Google and part of that success is due to the search engine benefits it offers to businesses. Businesses are being forced to engage on Google+ as it boosts rankings, which is a smart move by Google.” Said Junghenn.

Here at the TechJournal, we suspect that Google’s integration of Google+ into its search results may be a bigger driver of any potential success than the acquisition of Nik.

“I think the Nik Software acquisition is just further proof that Google+ is here to stay and I’m strongly recommending businesses start engaging sooner rather than later. I expect to see user numbers to continue to grow over the coming months as Google+ cements it’s position.” Said Junghenn.

But we agree with Junghenn, who says businesses should engage with Google+ now rather than later. In our own experience with G+, it is easy enough to acquire thousands of followers, but much tougher than other networks to get much active engagement. The G+ stream sails by quickly (which is why many social media marketers say posting at different times – not just on G+, but also on Twitter and Facebook, may be effective).

Will Facebook disrupt search and online review sites?

Monday, October 1st, 2012

FacebookWill Facebook’s move into search disrupt the search business?

Facebook amasses a huge amount of information about people and businesses, and is looking to use what it calls “friend mining” to provide more accurate and detailed search results.

The move could  put it into direct competition with search engines such as Google, question service Quora, as well as with local search and review sites like Yelp, according to CNET.

Google

The current king of internet search engines is Google. The California-based search engine and advertising company was founded in 1998 and has grown to be the largest search engine, and one of the most visited websites on the planet. Google owns a 66.4 percent share of the search engine market in the United States, and posted a $2.79 earnings report in the second quarter of 2012.

Here at the TechJournal, we seriously doubt that Facebook search will hamper Google search. Can you imagine saying “I Facebooked it?” when you look something up online?

QUORA

Quora, founded in 2009 by two former employees of Facebook, is a site with the goal of providing answers for every question that someone may have.

People can register for the site, and then either search for the answer to a question, or post one themselves. Other users can then post answers for that question, and the members of the community can positively or negatively vote for them.

Facebook could compete with Quora due to  its already huge amount of data, and circumvent the need for live answers.

YELP

Since its beginnings in San Francisco in 2004, Yelp has grown to have more than 78 million monthly users. It has become a prime online and mobile source of information and reviews of local businesses. Users can find information on a local business, and also read or write a review of that business.

Each company is also rated between one and five. This system gives users a way to search for highly-rated businesses in their area. It can also be a source of local internet marketing, as local establishments can advertise through Yelp.

Facebook’s “friend mining” could certainly slash inroads into business reviews. People still trust word-of-mouth from their friends more than any other source of information.

A CNET article recently concluded that Facebook launching into the search engine arena could have many consequences for existing companies, consumers, and small businesses. It highlights how important online reputation can be for small businesses, as potential customers have more and more opportunities to discover information online. A foray by Facebook into searching may see Facebook attack the likes of Google, Yelp, Foursquare, and Quora head on.

Editor’s note: comments by Allan Maurer

Appcelerator report: A mobile startup could disrupt Facebook

Tuesday, September 25th, 2012

By Allan Maurer

Lyla McInerneyUPDATEd – Mobile developers think that a mobile-first social startup could disrupt Facebook and grab market share from the current top dog in the social media pack. So says Appcelerator’s Q3 2012 mobile developer report, which is chock full of surprises.

In the largest mobile developer survey ever conducted, Appcelerator and the IDC surveyed 5,526 Appcelerator Tianium developers on their feelings about current debates in mobile, social and the cloud and about their development priorities.

The report warns that history shows major technology shifts can transform businesses and industries. It happened with the introduction of the web and “mobile will be not exception.”

Mobile has the power to disrupt entire industries

Mobile has the power to reshape entire industries and changes can be swift. But it is not enough to just port elements of an existing business model over to mobile, the report says.

And, if a billion dollar company with more than three-quarters of a billion users like Facebook could be disrupted, “Other mature, stagnant companies should take note,” says Lyla McInerney, vice president of marketing at Appcelerator.

McInerney tells the TechJournal, Developers believe someone can take a mobile first approach and disrupt any industry. It’s a cautionary note, but also a real opportunity.”

She points out that Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg admitted recently that Facebook is not doing as well as it wants to in mobile and has to do better, saying building its mobile on HTML 5 was a mistake.

The Appcelerator report notes that developers expressed dissatisfaction with nearly every aspect of HTML 5.

“Facebook didn’t think about how to deliver on mobile,” says McInerney. “They just carried it over. As Zuckerberg said, ‘Good enough is not good enough.’ Companies need to think about how to do mobile best.”

Jonathan Rende

Jonathan Rende.

Build mobile differently

Jonathan Rende, vice president of products at Appcelerator, adds, “This underscores the debate about whether mobile is an extension of the web or something completely different.”

It needs to be built completely differently, Rende suggests. Otherwise, “A startup can come in, take a fresh look at your business and take market share away from you.”

Lots of businesses and industries heard that about the web itself more than a decade ago, now, and the ones that ignored it paid a high price.

The speed at which mobile is happening, though, “Is much faster” with mobile, Rende says.

Developers not as interested in Android

Yet another surprise in the report is that developers have lost some interest in developing for Google’s Android mobile operating system. Considering the increasing number of devices running Android, we thought that was odd.

Rende explains that much of the problems developers have with Android is due to “fragmentation. Developers have to deal with all the different flavors of Android rather than build it once and have it run on various platforms. If you implement your app for one particular device, there is no guarantee that it work the same way on another device.”

Nolan Wright

Nolan Wright.

Nolan Wright, Appcelerator’s CTO and co-founder adds, “Another thing is that the (Apple) iOS system is really successful and a better way to monetize mobile apps. And Enterprises are more interested in iOS than in Android. The Apple ecosystem is so tight it is a seamless experience for developers and consumers.”

Among the report’s findings:

Mobile developers predict demise of Facebook. Mobile Developers believe that Facebook is at risk of being disrupted by a mobile-first social startup. A resounding 66% of mobile developers state that it is likely to very likely that a mobile-first social startup will disrupt the market for social applications on mobile devices and take market share from Facebook.

Top predictions for mobile in 2015. The mobile market is evolving at breakneck speed, with developers predicting that by 2015 they will be building mobile applications for more than smartphones and tablets. Televisions, connected cars, game consoles, GoogleGlasses, and foldable screens all ranked high on the list of form factors in 2015.

RIM declines to all-time low, providing an opportunity for Windows 8 to become a strong third OS for which to develop mobile apps.Mobile developers “very interested” in building apps for the Blackberry phone fell to an all-time low of 9% from almost 40% in our January 2011 survey.

Developers remain excited about cloud storage and Backend as a Service, specifically citing the capabilities for applications and data to move across different devices and for secure access to information from anywhere at anytime. The potential remains wide open, however, as only 17% currently implement mobile BaaS.

Developers are excited about new Apple features. The iOS features developers are most looking forward to using are Apple Maps (over 37%) and enhanced Siri (22%). Faster processors, LTE conductivity, and a larger screen are the advances developers most hope for in the next version of the iPhone.

Apple continues to reign as the platform of choice for developers. Apple maintained its dominance at the top of developers’ list for mobileapp development this quarter, with 85% of developers very interested in building apps for iOS smartphones and 83% equally focused on iPad apps.

Android development declines for a fourth quarter. Android’s return to decline in developer interest levels is disconcerting, with now fewer than 65% of developers very interested in developing for that tablet platform.

HTML5 Still Not Good Enough. Developers ranked their satisfaction with nearly every feature of HTML5 as neutral to dissatisfied, including user experience, performance, monetization, fragmentation, distribution control, timeliness of new updates, and security.

The new Wall Street Journal’s list of the top 50 venture-backed companies expected to become the “Next Big Thing,” includes Appcelerator. The Wall Street Journal considered more than 5,900 candidates for inclusion in this year’s list. Appcelerator was selected for its ability to reduce development time and costs for mobile applications.

Fewer than 90 seats left for Digital East: speaker interviews

Friday, September 21st, 2012

Digital East 2012Digital East, a major Mid-Atlantic conference, says fewer than 90 seats remain for the third annual event Oct. 2-3 just outside Washington DC at the Westin Dullas Airport, Herndon, VA.

The event includes more than 60 thought-leaders, speakers and panelists from top brands such as Google, Mashable, National Geographic, PBS, The Economist, IBM, comScore, The Travel Channel, Huffington Post/AOL, Slashdot, The American Red Cross, McAfee and many more.

Topics include social media, email, and search marketing to digital advertising, mobile apps, online fundraising, web analytics, customer engagement, online branding, ecommerce, online video, big data for marketers, design.

For just a sample of what you’ll experience, here are TechJournal interviews with a handful of the thought-leaders who will appear at this year’s event:

IAB Rising Stars units out perform traditional digital ads

Search and Social: SEO tips from AOL’s Simon Heseltine

Two changes that will boost your Facebook engagement numbers

A formula for social media success and 4 great content tips

Social media marketers need business sense, not just technical skills

Three tips for using Pinterest successfully

To measure engagement, you need more than numbers, you need context

Paid ad campaigns on social media need targeting strategy

Seek quality, not quantity when gathering social media marketing data

Americans turning to mobile apps and social media in emergencies

Speakers at Digital East include:

  • Anthony Melchiorri, Host & Exec Producer-Travel Channel’s Hotel Impossible
  • Greg Robleto, Director of Community & Social Media -The Motley Fool
  • Jessica End, Industry Manager, Non-profits & Religion -Google
  • Criag Oldham, VP of Digital Engagement -American Red Cross
  • Melanie Phung, Director of New Media -PBS
  • Gadi Ben-Yehuda, Social Media Director -IBM
  • Michael Aldana, Sr Manager of Mobile Design -McAfee
  • Sean Murphy, EVP e-Commerce -CustomInk
  • Khurrum Malik, VP Product Marketing -comScore Inc
  • Steve Harris, Sr Director Web Analytics -Capital One
  • Simon Heseltine, Director of SEO -AOL/Huffington Post
  • Anthony Douzet, COO & Co-founder -TheLadders
  • Stephen Wellman, VP & Editor-in-Chief -Slashdot
  • Brian Dreseher, VP of Business Development -Mashable
  • David Plotz, Editor -Slate
  • James Kobielus, Big Data Evangelist -IBM
  • Nick Schaper, Exec Dir, Digital Strategic Comm -US Chamber of Commerce
  • Leigh George, PhD., Director of Digital Strategy -R2Integrated
  • Stanton Fish, VP of Customer Insights & Analytics -The Economist
  • Andy Wiedlin, CRO -BuzzFeed
  • Andrea Fishman, VP of Strategy -BGT Partners
  • Cory Siansky, Manager, Business Consulting -Sapient
  • Jeff Allen, Director of Product Marketing, Digital Analytics -Adobe
  • Miguel Monteverde, Vice President, Digital Media -Discovery Communications
  • Matt Peters, Co-Founder & Creative Director -Pandemic Labs
  • Daniel Maloney, CEO & Co-Founder -PinLeague
  • Susan Cato, Director of Business Development -Balance Interactive
  • Kevin Dando, Director of Digital Marketing & Communications -PBS
  • Matthew Shevach, Director of Product Marketing -TRUSTe
  • Chi-Chao Chang, President of Products & Technology -xAd
  • Jed Williams, Program Director, Social Local Media -BIA/Kelsey
  • Michael Renner, VP Solution Design -3Pillar Global
  • Robert Hancock, VP of Sales and Marketing -Smart Online
  • Jon Brendsel, VP Products -PBS
  • Joe Gizzi, Senior Strategy Manager -New Media Strategies
  • Bill Leake, CEO -ApogeeResults.com
  • Joel Sucherman, Senior Director, Digital Products -NPR
  • John Backus, Co-Founder, Managing Partner -New Atlantic Ventures
  • Teresa Spangler, Founder & CEO -Plazabridge Group
  • Ori Hoffer, Social Media Strategist -General Services Administration
  • Leo Dalakos, Vice President of Strategy & Analytics -Performics
  • Mark Cooper, Co-Founder and CMO -Offerpop
  • Cameron Brain, Co-Founder -XYDO
  • Stephanie Slobodian, Senior Information Architect -NPR
  • Adam Landrum, President & CEO -Merge
  • Matt Kaplan, Vice President, Sales -Mail Online
  • Sam Kimball, Exec VP, Advertising & Brand Sales -Livestream
  • Will Elliott, Vice President, Sales and Marketing -Contactology
  • Marc Shull, Sr. Director, Customer Insights -YesMail
  • David Favero, Southeast Sales Director -Shoutlet
  • Todd Marks, Founder -Mindgrub
  • Chris Brooks, Manager, Social Engagement -Hilton Worldwide
  • Ryan Steelberg, CEO and Co-Founder -Brand Affinity Technologies
  • Brian Dalessandro, VP of Data Science -Media6Degrees
  • Devon Smith, Director of Social Media -Threespot
  • Michael Goldberg, Director of Marketing Communications -Martini Media
  • Mick Winters, Creative Director -Threespot
  • Brandon Hess, Sr. Product Marketing Manager, ReadyTalk
  • Daniel Backhaus, Vice President, Marketing -Infuz
  • Eric Evans, SEO Specialist -Merge
  • Adam Figueira, Product Marketing Manager -Monetate
  • Alex Lustberg, Vice President of Marketing -Lyris
  • Justin Freid, Director of Digital Media -TPG
  • James Wong, Co-Founder & Partner -Empowered Ideas
  • Virginia Johnson, Co-Founder and Managing Partner -Empowered Ideas
  • Andrew Taylor, Vice President, Business Development -Grab Media
  • Justin Spring, Co-Founder of BringShare.com and Adept Marketing
  • Eric Shoicket, Director of Brand Partnerships -Kiip
  • Andrew Beranbom, VP of Business Development & Co-Founder -Extole
  • Christine Borgia, Senior Director, Email Intelligence Group -Return Path
  • Andrew Ray, Partner -Bingham McCutchen
  • Joseph Olesh, Emerging Media Director -Tier10 Marketing
  • Saya “Sally” Behnam, Creative Director -Design 4UX
  • Tom Grossi, Partner -NEA
  • Josh Freeman, CEO -TeamVisibility
  • Frank Reed, Director of Sales -Edgeworks Group
  • Gill Haus, SVP, Technology -RideCharge
  • Angela Hausman, Owner -Hausman and Associates

Register for the event.

Is Google the world’s most attractive employer?

Thursday, September 20th, 2012

GoogleIs Google the “World’s Most Attractive Employer?”

It is for the fourth consecutive year according to the preferences of over 144,000 career seekers, with a business or engineering background from the world´s 12 greatest economies. So says the Universum  global talent attraction index: “The World’s Most Attractive Employers 2012″.’

KPMG keeps the second place and Procter & Gamble is now on the third position.

Here at the TechJournal, we find it interesting that Apple shows up on in the 8th spot on the engineering employer list.

“The Google fever is still hot! Students are attracted by Google´s relaxed and creative work environment, international atmosphere and innovative products. Google offers great benefits and opportunities that are hard for other companies to match.” says Petter Nylander, Universum’s CEO.

Also in the engineering category, Google takes the first position for the fourth consecutive year and is followed by IBM and Microsoft.

“The giants in the software industry are seen as great places for the launch of an engineering or IT career. They offer training, networking and future career possibilities. Moreover, they are global,” says Nylander.

World’s Top 10-Business

  1. Google (1)
  2. KPMG (2)
  3. Procter & Gamble (7)
  4. Microsoft (6)
  5. Deloitte (5)
  6. Ernst & Young (4)
  7. PwC (3)
  8. J.P. Morgan (9)
  9. The Coca-Cola Company (12)
  10. Goldman Sachs (10)

World’s Top 10-Engineering

  1. Google (1)
  2. IBM (2)
  3. Microsoft (3)
  4. BMW (4)
  5. Intel (5)
  6. General Electric (8)
  7. Siemens (9)
  8. Apple (7)
  9. Sony (6)
  10. Procter & Gamble (10)

In parenthesis is the company’s position in 2011. For the full ranking, go to http://www.universumglobal.com/IDEAL-Employer-Rankings/Global-Top-50