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The Woz, Randi Zuckerberg, and Siri headed to Dallas Digital Summit 2013

Monday, December 2nd, 2013
The young Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak.

The young Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak.

A star-studded lineup of Internet mavens,  digital media icons, and top brands such as Google, Twitter, Bing, AOL, Advertising Age and Forrester are headed to Dallas next week (Dec. 10-11) for the 2013 Dallas Digital Summit. Headliners at the event include Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, best-selling author Randi Zuckerberg, and Susan Bennett, the voice of Apple’s Siri.

The two-day event at the Irving Convention Center presents more than 75 speakers on topics such as content strategy, usability/design, mobile marketing, customer engagement, social media, ecommerce, email, search, marketing automation, video, the multi-screen experience, and a great deal more. Preconference intensive workshops provide five hours of insights into best marketing practices from roll-up-your-sleeves professionals.

Woz quoteSteve “The Woz” Wozniak, an iconic figure in the history of the digital era, designed the first Apple computers for the company he founded with the late Steve Jobs. His quotes get boxed and go viral on social media.

Randi_ZuckerbergRandi Zuckerberg has enjoyed a wave of media exposure over the last month since publication of her two new books. “Dot Complicated, Untangling our Wired Lives,” discloses that even at Facebook she had some difficulties with social media when she posted so many pictures of her new baby they asked her to stop.

She argues that we should share “authentic details” of our lives online – but nothing that we wouldn’t be comfortable seeing appear in a newspaper.

Ugly comments on social networks have driven her to tear, she admits. “Don’t be a jerk online,” she says, which is advice we wish more people would follow.

She also advises taking breaks from our overwhelming digital lives.

As an early marketing executive at Facebook, Randi created and ran the social media pioneer’s marketing programs. She led the company’s U.S. election and international politics strategy and created Facebook’s live streaming initiatives during the 2008 Presidential Inauguration. Randi was nominated for an Emmy Award in 2011 for her innovative coverage of the 2010 mid-term elections that integrated online and TV coverage in unique formats.

Since starting Zuckerberg Media, Randi has produced shows and digital content for BeachMint, the Clinton Global Initiative, Cirque du Soleil, the United Nations, Bravo and Conde Nast, with many other projects in the works.

Susan Bennett is the funny and personable voice actress who the users of Apple iPhones and iPads have heard as the voice of Siri.

Susan BenettBennett appeared at an earlier TechMedia event, The Internet Summit in Raleigh in November.

The Big Bang Theory, the popular TV comedy, plans several episodes built around Siri later this season, we hear.

You’ve more than likely heard Susan’s voice on a number of commercials and productions as one of the most active voice-over artists working with such clients at Ford, Coca-Cola, Fisher Price, McDonald’s, The Home Depot, Goodyear, VISA, Macy’s, Club Med, Delta Airlines, and The Cartoon Network.

Also on this year’s agenda:

AOL’s “Digital Prophet,” David Shing. Engaging, witty and  candid, Shing provides both historical perspective and current context as he lays out his vision of the brave, new world of marketing to come – one he believes will belong to those willing to embrace change and take risks now, and that he dearly hopes will suck a great deal less than it does at the moment.

 

Brent Herd, director of Southeastern US sales for Twitter, began his digital career at Yahoo in 1998.

Simon Dumenco, the Editor-at-large adn “media guy” at Advertising Age, has worked at and consulted for a wide range of media companies, including Condé Nast, Hearst, IAC, Time Warner, Viacom, and Wenner Media. He was founding editorial director of New York magazine’s NYmag.com and founding editor-in-chief of VeryShortList.com. At New York magazine, he was business/technology editor, editor of the National Magazine Award-winning media column, and advertising critic and pop-culture columnist.

Here is a full list of speakers.

We’re told a limited number of tickets remain. If you’re quick, you might grab one here.

Industries and companies MBA students see as ideal employers

Friday, June 7th, 2013
Google

Google ranks number one among MBA students asked to name ideal employers.

MBA students no longer see the financial industry as the golden path to riches, apparently. It has seen a steady decline in the ranking of ideal employers by Universum Global since 2009.

The 2013 rankings saw just one bank, Goldman Sachs; hang on to its coveted Top 10 spot – no other bank made the Top 10.  Of the students who still consider banking a top industry, one of the top three employer attributes attracting them is prestige.

Technology is still an attractive industry, if the MBA student rankings of their ideal employers is a guide. Among the top ten are Google, Apple, and Amazon.

 

The most preferred industry for MBA students, Management and Strategy Consulting, sees prestige as the 10th most important attribute, behind others such as leadership opportunities, a creative and dynamic work environment, and challenging work.

Consulting secures the top industry title

Management and Strategy Consulting is the top industry of choice for MBA students and elite strategy consulting firms McKinsey & Company, Bain & Company and The Boston Consulting Group have all retained their Top 10 positions this year, but broader professional services firms are gaining ground.

Deloitte“What is interesting as you look at the data is that the elite strategy consulting firms have stayed stable or decreased in the rankings; however, other professional services and consulting firms (Deloitte, IBM, PWC, Accenture) have all risen in the rankings,” saidMelissa Murray Bailey, Universum President of the Americas.

“As leadership opportunities are one of the key attributes attracting MBA students to this industry, this trend could be a result of the larger firms’ concerted focus on offering a greater variety of career paths than before.”

Strong consumer brands make an impact

AppleApple’s MBA ranking stayed steady at #3 this year and Amazon was right behind after having jumped two ranks from #6 to #4. Nike, Johnson & Johnson, Proctor & Gamble, LVMH, and Unilever also featured within the 2013 Top 30. Similar to Management and Strategy Consulting, the attributes attracting MBA students to Consumer Goods (the second most preferred industry) are leaders who support development, leadership opportunities and a creative and dynamic work environment.

While all of the Top 30 consumer goods organizations obviously have strong consumer brands, this doesn’t always correlate with a strong employer brand.

“A strong consumer brand is a blessing and a challenge when it comes to managing an employer brand,” advised Bailey. “I would go as far as to say that when a company has a strong consumer brand, it needs to work even harder to make its employer brand known to potential candidates.

“Otherwise, there is the risk of disappointment and high turnover when students have jumped to the wrong conclusions based on what they know about an employer brand. The two can and should complement each other, but the messaging needs to be focused and deliberate to ensure success.”

Top 10 Ideal Employers for MBA students:

1. Google, 2. McKinsey & Company, 3. Apple, 4. Amazon, 5. The Boston Consulting Group, 6. Bain and Company, 7. Nike, 8. Walt Disney, 9. Deloitte, 10. Goldman Sachs. Please visit CNN Money for full list:http://money.cnn.com/news/economy/mba100/2013/full_list/

Milestone: Majority of Americans now own smartphones

Thursday, June 6th, 2013

PewInternetA majority of Americans now own a smartphone of some kind, a milestone finding by Pew Research Center’s Internet and American Life Project says.

Because 91% of the adult population now owns some kind of cell phone, that means that 56% of all American adults are now smartphone adopters. One third (35%) have some other kind of cell phone that is not a smartphone, and the remaining 9% of Americans do not own a cell phone at all.

Younger adults have consistently led the way in smartphone adoption, the new Pew report notes.

But, it also says, every major demographic group experienced significant year-to-year growth in smartphone ownership between 2012 and 2013, although seniors—defined as those 65 and older—continue to exhibit relatively low adoption levels compared with other demographic groups.

Some 18% of Americans age 65 and older now own a smartphone, compared with 13% in February 2012.

Smartphone ownership does vary significantly by household income.

However, that variation is unevenly distributed across different age groups. Younger adults—regardless of income level—are very likely to be smartphone owners. Conversely, for older adults smartphone ownership is more of an “elite” phenomenon: smartphones tend to be quite prevalent at the upper end of the income distribution but much less common among those with lower income levels.

Additional details are available with charts in the full report (see link in first paragraph).

Figure 1

Figure 4

Figure 5

Most businesses had a costly mobile security incident

Thursday, June 6th, 2013

mobile devicesThe majority of businesses (79%) had a mobile security incident in the past year, and the costs are substantial. The new report found mobile security incidents tallied up to over six figures for 42 percent of businesses, including 16 percent who put the cost at more than $500,000.

From smartphones to tablets, mobile devices continue to cause ongoing concern for IT teams responsible for information security. Sensitive corporate information can be easily transported, leaked, or lost while the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) movement has dramatically increased the number of expensive security incidents.

Even so, corporate information, including sensitive customer information, are increasingly stored on personal mobile devices and not managed by corporate IT.

Based on a survey of nearly 800 IT professionals, the report quantifies the dramatic growth of BYOD, exposes the frequency and cost of mobile security incidents, and identifies the main challenges faced by businesses of all sizes.

Key findings include:

  • Surge in Personal Mobile Devices Connecting to the Corporate Network - Among companies that allow personal mobile devices, 96 percent say the number of personal devices connecting to their corporate networks is growing, and 45 percent have more than five times as many personal mobile devices as they had two years ago.
  • Mobile Security Incidents Common and Costly for Businesses Large and Small - More than half (52%) of large businesses report mobile security incidents have amounted to more than $500,000 in the past year. Even for 45 percent of SMBs with less than 1000 employees, mobile security incidents exceeded $100,000 in the past year.
  • Android logoMobile Platform with the Greatest Perceived Security Risks - Android was cited by 49 percent of businesses as the platform with greatest perceived security risk (up from 30 percent last year), compared to Apple, Windows Mobile, and Blackberry
  • Corporate Information Not Managed on Mobile Devices - Despite costly mobile incidents, 63 percent of businesses do not manage corporate information on personal devices, and 93 percent face challenges adopting BYOD policies.
  • More Mobile Devices Store Sensitive Customer Information - More than half (53%) of all businesses surveyed report there is sensitive customer information on mobile devices, up from 47 percent last year.

“Without question, the explosion of BYOD, mobile apps, and cloud services, has created a herculean task to protect corporate information for businesses both large and small,” said Tomer Teller, security evangelist and researcher at Check Point Software Technologies.

“An effective mobile security strategy will focus on protecting corporate information on the multitude of devices and implementing proper secure access controls to information and applications on the go. Equally important is educating employees about best practices as majority of businesses are more concerned with careless employees than cybercriminals.”

For a full copy of the new report, The Impact of Mobile Devices on Information Security, please visit:
http://www.checkpoint.com/downloads/products/check-point-mobile-security-survey-report2013.pdf

Android tablets poised to overtake Apple’s market lead

Friday, May 31st, 2013

Android logoApple has been able to maintain its tablet lead by delivering a quality experience at a premium price, but Android devices are poised to overtake the firms lead.

The iPad maker exited the first calendar quarter of 2013 with 50 percent share of all tablet shipments, though, according to market intelligence firm ABI Research, the Android ecosystem is poised to overtake iOS.

The big variable for Android is China. The Middle Kingdom is passionate about the Apple brand as well as the masses’ ability to afford technology devices.

Smaller, 7-inch Android tablets have become popular though most lack the Google suite of apps and Android Play marketplace. A push for sub-$200 tablets is keeping Android relevant in both developed and emerging markets.

“It’s inevitable that Android tablets will overtake iOS-powered slates, though we see no single vendor challenging Apple’s dominance anytime soon,” says senior practice director Jeff Orr. “With media tablets commercially available for more than 4 years, momentum is shifting toward value and affordability, putting tablets in more of the population’s reach.”

IPad Mini becoming dominant

Average selling price (ASP) and size have been moving down-market since Android tablets started honing in on the opportunity in 2012. Rather than try to unseat Apple in the 10”-class space, tablet vendors sought a defensible area they could own; the result is the 7”-class devices.

Steve Jobs was wrong in asserting that tablet computers had to have screens at least 10 inches in size. Consumers are clearly expressing a preference for small tablets. Anyone who has hefted a 10-inch tablet knows why. The small tablets are much easier on the hands and lose little in terms of the experience.

Apple iPad3s

Apple iPads

Facing manufacturing limits in its first quarter of offer, the 7.9-inch iPad mini put a dent in the larger iPad sales and Apple profits. The first quarter of 2013 saw Apple cover its backlog and approach the typical 4-6 weeks of sales channel inventory while recording its second-best ever quarter for total iPad shipments.

ABI Research estimates that iPad mini represented 49% of units and 39% of total iPad revenues. “Expect iPad minis to become the predominant iPad model after the June quarter,” adds Orr.

These “Media Tablet Market Share” findings are part of ABI Research’s Media Tablets, Ultrabooks & eReaders Research Service(http://www.abiresearch.com/research/service/media-tablets-netbooks-ereaders/).

Tablets to overtake laptop shipments this year, PCs by 2015

Tuesday, May 28th, 2013

tablet computersAccording to a new forecast from the International Data Corporation (IDCWorldwide Quarterly Tablet Tracker, tablet shipments are expected to grow 58.7% year-over-year in 2013 reaching 229.3 million units, up from 144.5 million units last year. IDC now predicts tablet shipments will exceed those of portable PCs this year, as the slumping PC market is expected to see negative growth for the second consecutive year.

In addition, IDC expects tablet shipments to outpace the entire PC market (portables and desktops combined) by 2015. (A press release summarizing IDC’s latest PC market forecast can be found here.)

“What started as a sign of tough economic times has quickly shifted to a change in the global computing paradigm with mobile being the primary benefactor,” said Ryan Reith, Program Manager for IDC’s Mobility Trackers. “Tablets surpassing portables in 2013, and total PCs in 2015, marks a significant change in consumer attitudes about compute devices and the applications and ecosystems that power them.

 

IDC continues to believe that PCs will have an important role in this new era of computing, especially among business users. But for many consumers, a tablet is a simple and elegant solution for core use cases that were previously addressed by the PC.”

These findings have implications for marketers as well as device makers.

Low cost Android devices fueling expansion

Personally, here at the TechJournal, while we like tablets and find them useful, we think it will be quite a while before they replace either desktop PCs or laptops. They just are not yet really suited as tools for many jobs – particularly those which require significant amounts of writing.

Once voice operation and dictation is perfected, however, we suspect that smaller devices may indeed replace many more uses of PCs and laptops.

While Apple has been at the forefront of the tablet revolution, the current market expansion has been increasingly fueled by low-cost Android devices. In 2013, the worldwide average selling price (ASP) for tablets is expected to decline -10.8% to $381. In comparison, the ASP of a PC in 2013 is nearly double that at $635.

Over at Walmart, we’ve seen numerous Android devices selling for under $100, some as low as $59. While reviews for these 7-inch tablets are not sterling, neither are the prices.

 

IDC expects tablet prices to decline further, which will allow vendors to deliver a viable computing experience into the hands of many more people at price points the PC industry has strived to meet for years.

Here at the TechJournal, we expect the price on Google’s initial Nexus 7 models will drop when it introduces new models, which some say are due to launch in July. The same thing generally happens with Apple’s iPads.

Apple iPad3s

Apple iPads

“Apple’s success in the education market has proven that tablets can be used as more than just a content consumption or gaming device,” said Jitesh Ubrani, Research Analyst for the Worldwide Quarterly Tablet Tracker. “These devices are learning companions, and as tablet prices continue to drop, the dream of having a PC for every child gets replaced with the reality that we can actually provide a tablet for every child.”

In addition to lower prices, another major shift in the tablet market has occurred around screen sizes. Apple’s first generation iPad, which included a 9.7-inch display, was perceived by many as the sweet spot for tablets.

That is, until 7-inch Android-based tablets began to gain traction in the market. Apple responded with the iPad mini in the fourth quarter of 2012, and in the space of two quarters the sub-8-inch category exploded to overtake the larger-sized segment in terms of total shipments.

Worldwide Tablet Market Share by Screen Size Band, 2011 – 2017
Screen Size 2011 2013 2017
< 8″ 27% 55% 57%
8″ – 11″ 73% 43% 37%
11″+ 0% 2% 6%
Total 100% 100% 100%

Source: IDC Worldwide Tablet Tracker, May 28, 2013.

Despite breaches, cyber crime fight on right track, PandaLabs says

Friday, May 24th, 2013

Panda SecurityDespite the numerous security incidents that took place during the first quarter of the year, the fight against cyber-crime is on the right track, says security firm PandaLabs.

Though there is still a long way to go, international co-operation among security agencies is paying off and criminals around the world are being brought to justice. The quarterly report is available here and on the PandaLabs blog.

“The start of the year has been witness to serious cyber-attacks, including the hacking of the Twitter accounts of major organizations such as the BBC or Burger King, and one of the biggest attacks ever, targeting some of the world’s leading technology companies: Apple, Facebook, Microsoft and Twitter. But there have been victories for security forces as well, including the arrest of a group of hackers accused of extortion using the infamous ‘Police Virus’,” said Luis Corrons , technical director of PandaLabs.

Police Virus Scams

cyber security imageOne of the most infamous cases of malware in the last year was the ‘Police Virus,’ but in February, this virus once again hit the headlines, but for a very different reason. The Technological Investigation Brigade of Spain’s National Police, together with Europol and Interpol, dismantled the cyber-crime ring responsible for the Police Virus.

“The news mentioned the arrest of ‘the gang’ of cyber-criminals, yet the information we have at PandaLabs points to the existence of several gangs responsible for these attacks. We reached this conclusion after analyzing numerous variants of the malware over time, and observing significant differences between them. In short, we are afraid the Police Virus is not likely to go away anytime soon and users shouldn’t lower their guards,” said Corrons.

Social Media Attacks

Twitter birdDuring Q1, various Twitter accounts were also hacked, including celebrities and companies, one of the most notable was Burger King. The attackers managed to work out the account password and take control of the account. They changed the background image to that of McDonald’s and claimed that the company had been taken over by its main rival.

The Twitter account of car company Jeep was also the victim of a similar attack, in this case stating that the company had been bought out by Cadillac. Other attacks on Twitter accounts had a more political slant.

A group of cyber-crooks calling themselves the “Syrian Electronic Army” managed to hack accounts belonging to several organizations. Phishing attacks were first launched to get the passwords and then the accounts were hijacked. Their victims included Human Rights Watch, the French news channel France 24 and the BBC weather service.

Android, Top Target for Mobile Malware

smartphonesNearly all news regarding malware attacks on mobile platforms involved the Android operating system, which has the largest share of this market. In addition to the usual attacks, this quarter saw new techniques that deserve mention. A strain of Android malware – hidden inside Google Play – not only infected cell phones but could also infect computers via smartphones and tablets.

According to Corrons, cyber-war and espionage is becoming more interesting. “Many countries are looking suspiciously at Chinaregarding its suspected involvement in attacks on large organizations and public institutions around the world, and this could lead to real world consequences. There are those who argue for international agreements, a type of Geneva Convention, to attempt to establish limits to these activities,” he said.

For more detailed information on malware activity and trends in the first quarter of 2013, you can access the full report here and on the PandaLabs blog.

Systamatic approach needed to build successful mobile apps

Wednesday, April 17th, 2013

mobile devicesBuilding and marketing an app is becoming increasingly complex and will demand a systematic fact-based approach to handle market turbulences in the coming years.

Over the last few years, there has been something of a ‘developers gold rush’ as almost every software developer on the planet has tried to leap into the apps market looking to make a fortune off the next smash hit like Angry Birds.

Angry Birds

Angry Birds has both free and paid versions of its popular game.

The reality is that only a very small percentage of developers create multi-million dollar smash hit apps.

With over 1.5 billion people regularly downloading mobile apps, users have downloaded more than 46 billion apps on their smartphones.

The fast-growing apps market generated revenues of $12 billion in 2012, and that figure is set to grow to $20.4 billion in 2013. Annually, revenues are growing at 35% in Europe, 50% inAsia and 30% in North America.

Learn where the money is coming from and how it will be generated in a new report published by Portio Research, “Strategies for Creating Best-In-Class Mobile Apps

Smartphone App Market Monitor

Volume 9 Historical Data Package

AppleWhile Apple’s market share of app downloads constantly fell from 81% in 2008 to 39% at the end of 2012, Android’s app downloads increased year over year reaching 42% at the end of 2012.

Both platforms now combine 82% of all app downloads. Will this duopoly last for the next years or will the market see another major change in the market structure as witnessed 5 years ago when the dominance of Symbian started to fade away?

The most likely scenario is that the duopoly will give way to a more heterogeneous mobile operating system landscape. There is evidence that already in 2013 the market will enter a new phase with more relevant mobile app platforms which would be the beginning of the end of the duopoly.

Compared to the world today, where most of the app publishers and developers are concentrating on iOS and Android, the need for adding at least Windows Phone and BlackBerry to the “served platform list” will increase over the next 2 years. If companies want to reach out to the community of early adopters they would even have to include new OS platforms like Ubuntu or Jolla to the list.

Adding HTML5 makes 7 platforms to watch and/or maintain.  That is good news for the app development industry and multi-platform tool vendors but starts to become a real management task for companies trying to reach their customers with the help of mobile apps.

By comparing and evaluating different sources, the “Smartphone App Market Monitor” seeks to provide the most comprehensive picture of the app market available. the market monitor is designed to support internal discussions and business decisions, content is presented as much as possible in graphs and tables to make a key tool for any app publisher, app developer, app store and platform owner.

More information about this report and a free sample are available at http://www.giiresearch.com/report/r2g254556-smartphone-app-market-monitor-vol-7.html

Tablet sales to hit $64B, tide turning to Android

Friday, April 12th, 2013

tabletsThe convenience and mobility benefits afforded by tablet computers are showing no signs of slowing interest after record unit shipments and revenues were reported by device vendors in 2012.

In 2013, approximately 150 million tablets (up 38% year-over-year) are forecasted to ship globally worth an estimated $64 billion (up 28% from 2012) in potential end-user revenues, according to market intelligence firm ABI Research.

Apple shipped 60 percent of total

So far, Apple has reigned since the introduction of its iPad in 2010, though Samsung and others continue to erode its early success.

About 60% of last year’s tablet shipments used Apple’s iOS operating system software while 37% were based on Google’s Android OS (or development forks of Android, such as found on Amazon’s Kindle Fire slates).

The remaining 3% OS share consisted of Windows (Windows 7, 8, or RT), BlackBerry Tablet OS, and unidentified OS implementations.

Tide turning toward Android

Android logo“The tide is definitely turning toward Android-based tablets, though Apple will not slouch as it feels the competition approaching,” says mobile devices senior practice director Jeff Orr.

“The iPad mini was a timely introduction in 2012, though ABI Research remains cautious about the bottom line impact this is having for Apple.

Here at the TechJournal, we think the late Steve Jobs was wrong when he said tablets needed those 10-inch screens. The 7-inch models are much handier and with the exception of all those regular sized iPad sales, we think they’ll dominate the market.

Personally, while we enjoy our Kindle Fire, we are waiting to see what Google offers in its upcoming new Nexus 7 tablet release expected in July. We suspect Apple will release an updated iPad mini in the not too distant future as well.

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: what will make tablets even more useful, salable and dominant is better voice control – something Apple’s Siri and the dictation features on the Nexus are approaching. Better accuracy and true dictation ability are crucial to easy control of these devices without a keyboard.

The first quarter of 2013 should be the first time where production was able to meet market demand and a better sense of how much 9.7” iPad volume has switched to the smaller, lower-cost mini will be understood.”

Samsung could challenge Apple

ipad4

iPad 4

The next opportunity is for a vendor challenger to break away from the pack and move closer to Apple. Most would consider Samsung the likely pursuer, though the company was mired in legal proceedings during much of 2012.

The success Samsung has seen during the past year with smartphones, Android OS, and the Galaxy Note II is expected to migrate across to tablets in 2013.

“A well-executed Samsung tablet strategy could double the company’s market share this year,” adds Orr.

Unfortunately, there are few “fast followers” capable of emulating the ownership of technology that Samsung has, suggesting that more innovation is necessary within the Android OS that pulls tablet OEMs closer to Apple.

These “Media Tablets and eReaders” Market Data findings are part of ABI Research’s Media Tablets, Ultrabooks and eReaders Research Service (http://www.abiresearch.com/research/service/media-tablets-netbooks-ereaders/).

Which computer makers earn top experience ratings?

Friday, March 22nd, 2013

 AppleApple and HP earned the top spots in the computer sector of the 2013 Temkin Experience Ratings. At the other end of the spectrum, Sony and Lenovo were the lowest-rated computer makers.

“Apple continues to be the customer experience leader in computers, but HP has narrowed the gap,” states Bruce Temkin , managing partner of Temkin Group.

The Temkin Experience Ratings evaluates three areas of customer experience: functional (can customers do what they want to do), accessible (how easy it is to work with the company), and emotional (how consumers feel about their interactions).

The ratings include 10 computer makers: AcerAppleCompaqDelleMachinesGatewayHewlett-PackardLenovo,Sony, and Toshiba.

Here are some additional highlights from the ratings:

  • The computer industry has been steadily improving over the last three years, from an average Temkin Experience Rating of 54% in 2011 to 60% this year.
  • Apple is the highest-ranked computer maker for the third straight year, ranked #134 across all industries. It’s rating of 64%, is one percentage point below its 2012 rating. It also led the industry in the accessible and emotional components of the ratings.
  • HP is in second place in the industry with a rating of 62% and leads in the functional component. The company’s ratings increased three percentage points since last year, narrowing the gap with Apple.
  • Dell showed the largest improvement over 2012, with an increase of six percentage points.
  • The lowest-ranked computer makers are Sony and Lenovo, with ratings of 54%. Both of those firms had the largest declines in the industry.
  • Sony is the lowest rated in functional and accessible components and Lenovo is the lowest rated in the emotionalcomponent.
  • The average rating for computer makers places the sector tied for 13th out of 19 industries.

The 2013 Temkin Experience Ratings along with other ratings can be accessed at the Temkin Ratings website,www.TemkinRatings.com.

Smartphone makers may be losing billions in revenue (infographic)

Tuesday, March 12th, 2013

iPhone 5sAre smartphone makers losing billions of dollars a year due to poor revenue management?

According to Gartner, Inc., a leading IT research and advisory company, given that chargeback credits can exceed millions of dollars per month, wholesale distributors can severely undermine profitability through inaccurate and inefficient processes, with revenue leakage accounting for as much as 1-2 percent of gross revenue.

Manufacturers also face similar revenue leakage exposure and although the percentage might seem small, for technology giants such as Apple and Samsung, this could mean billions of dollars in lost revenue each quarter.

Why does this matter to anyone but a manufacturer? It’s pretty basic: if the manufacturer’s costs are higher, so is the price consumers will have to pay for devices.

Here’s an infographic detailing the problem from Revitas, which, not surprisingly, sells  solutions for contracts, pricing, and compliance.

Wi-Fi still the dominant mobile data network

Tuesday, March 5th, 2013
WiFi icon

Researchers say they can boost the speed of public WiFi networks by up to 700 percent.

Wi-Fi remains the leading data network for on-the-go data consumption in the five leading Arbitron Mobile-based smartphone panels.

People on Apple iOS devices use the most data and the most WiFi.

Even as carriers aggressively promote their newest generation of cellular data networking, the Arbitron smartphone panelists in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, France, and China, still consume nearly two thirds of their mobile data through public and private Wi-Fi networks.

Wi-Fi Data Consumption by Arbitron Mobile-based Smartphone Panelists
Sorted by average mobile data consumption per month (cellular +Wi-Fi)
% via Wi-Fi Cell + Wi-Fi Data

MB/User/Month

% of panelists
> 1,000 MB/month
U.S. 61% 1,496 49%
U.K. 69% 1,181 37%
Germany 63% 861 37%
France 53% 730 24%
China* 70% 719 25%
Source: Arbitron Mobile Index: Executive Summary Reports, 4th quarter 2012
* Operated by iResearch using Arbitron Mobile technology
iPhone 5

The iPhone 5

The United States and United Kingdom have the heaviest users of mobile data in their Arbitron smartphone panels. A substantial share of the data consumption—61 and 69 percent respectively—relies on Wi-Fi networks.

China and France have the lightest users of mobile data in their Arbitron Mobile-based smartphone panels, both in terms of the average monthly data consumed and the share of the panel who consume more the 1,000 MB a month.

However, their respective share of Wi-Fi networks as a data source stands at a polar opposite.

China panelists consume the largest share—70 percent—on Wi-Fi networks.  French panelists, consume the smallest share—53 percent—of mobile data on Wi-Fi.

In all five of the Arbitron Mobile panels, Apple iOS users are heaviest consumers of mobile data and are the heaviest users of Wi-Fi for their on-the-go data needs.

Data Consumption by Leading Mobile Operating Systems
Sorted by average mobile data consumption per month (cellular +Wi-Fi) on iOS
Apple iOS Android
MB/User/Month % via Wi-Fi MB/User/Month % via Wi-Fi
U.S. 2,512 66% 821 57%
U.K. 2,216 80% 740 64%
China* 1,636 81% 347 65%
France 1,527 70% 635 52%
Germany 1,203 71% 566 56%
Source: Arbitron Mobile Index — Executive Summary Reports, 4th quarter 2012
* Operated by iResearch using Arbitron Mobile technology

Apple iOS was the predominant operating system among the heavy data users in these five smartphone panels.  Seventy-two percent of iOS users in the U.S. and German panel were in 1,000+ MB/month club; in the U.K., 76 percent, and in China 60 percent. In stark contrast, only 29 percent of the iOS users in the France panel consumed more than 1,000 MB/month in the fourth quarter 2012.

Smartphone, tablet growth driving mobility market

Thursday, February 21st, 2013

mobile devicesLooking at a holistic view of smartphones, tablets, and PCs, one thing is clear – smartphones and tablets are driving mobility growth.

According to the International Data Corporation (IDCWorldwide Quarterly Smart Connected Device Tracker, vendors shipped 367.7 million desktop PCs, portable PCs, tablets, and smartphones – a collective view IDC refers to as “Smart Connected Devices” – the fourth quarter of 2012 (4Q12), up 28.3% from the prior year.

As desktop PCs and portable PCs declined (-4.1% and -3.4%, respectively), the overall smart connected device space continued to surge to just over 1.2 billion shipments cumulatively in 2012.

Tablet shipments see largest growth

Tablet shipments experienced the largest year-over-year growth in 2012, up 78.4% over 2011, while smartphones grew 46.1% but accounted for 60.1% of all smart connected devices shipped throughout the year.

After finishing 2011 second to Apple in the smart connected device market, Samsung arose to the number one position in 2012 with just over 20% share across the four device categories. Samsung shipped 250.0 million PCs, tablets, and smartphones in the past year, up 119.3% from the previous year, driven largely in part by its surge in the smartphone space.

Average tablet selling price declined

While Samsung managed to ship more smartphones and portable PCs than Apple in 2012, Apple led all in tablet shipments, was eighth in portable PC shipments, and fifth overall in desktop PC shipments.

“Smartphones and tablets are growing at a pace that PCs and tablets can’t realistically keep up with because of device prices and to some extent disposability,” explained Ryan Reith, program manager, Worldwide Mobile Device Trackers at IDC.

“The average selling price (ASP) for a tablet declined 15.0% in 2012 to $461, and we expect that trend to continue in 2013. However, smartphone APSs are still lower at $408. We expect smartphones to continue to carry a shorter life cycle than PCs for the years to come based on price, use case, and overall device size.”

Rounding out the top 5 smart connected device vendors in 2012 was Lenovo at number 3 with 6.5% share. Lenovo’s strong point is still in portable PCs where it shipped just over 30 million units in 2012.

Fourth quarter saw Apple resurgence

However, smartphones are a growing space for the Chinese vendor as shipments grew from 3.7 million in 2011 to 23.7 million in 2012. In the fourth position was HP with 4.8% share, however shipments of smart connected devices were down 8.5% year over year primarily for the lack of smartphone and tablet offerings.

And in the fifth position was Dell with 3.2% share, down 12.9% from 2011 as it also struggles with a lack of presence in the smartphone and tablet markets.

“The fourth quarter market share numbers showed a fairly dramatic resurgence for Apple,” said Bob O’Donnell, program vice president, Clients and Displays.

“After falling well behind Samsung early in 2012, Apple came roaring back in final quarter of the year thanks to its latest hits – the iPhone 5 and the iPad Mini – and reduced the market share gap to less than a single percentage point. The question moving forward will be whether or not Apple can maintain its hit parade against the juggernaut of Samsung.”

Top 5 Smart Connected Device Vendors, Shipments, and Market Share, Q4 2012
(shipments in millions)
Vendor 4Q12 Unit
Shipments
4Q12 Market
Share
4Q11 Unit
Shipments
4Q11 Market
Share
Year-over-
year Change
1. Samsung 77.9   21.2 % 41.9   14.6 % 86.0 %
2. Apple 74.8 20.3 % 57.7 20.1 % 29.7 %
3. Lenovo 24.3 6.6 % 16.5 5.8 % 47.2 %
4. HP 15.1 4.1 % 15.1 5.3 % -0.2 %
5. Sony 11.1 3.0 % 9.2 3.2 % 19.6 %
Others 164.5 44.7 % 146.2 51.0 % 12.5 %
Total 367.7 100.0 % 286.7 100.0 % 28.3 %
Source: IDC Worldwide Quarterly Smart Connected Device Tracker, February 20, 2013.
Top 5 Smart Connected Device Vendors, Shipments, and Market Share, 2012
(shipments in millions)
Vendor 2012 Unit
Shipments
2012 Market
Share
2011 Unit
Shipments
2011 Market
Share
Year-over-
year Change
1. Samsung 250.0 20.8% 114.0 12.3% 119.3%
2. Apple 218.7 18.2% 151.5 16.3% 44.3%
3. Lenovo 78.3 6.5% 48.5 5.2% 61.4%
4. HP 58.2 4.8% 63.6 6.8% -8.5%
5. Dell 38.8 3.2% 44.6 4.8% -12.9%
Others 557.1 46.4% 508.1 54.6% 9.6%
Total 1201.1 100.0% 930.4 100.0% 29.1%
Source: IDC Worldwide Quarterly Smart Connected Device Tracker, February 20, 2013.
Smart Connected Device Market by Product Category, Shipments, Market Share, 2012

(shipments in millions)

Product
Category
2012 Unit
Shipments
2012 Market
Share
2011 Unit
Shipments
2011 Market
Share
Year-over-
year Change
Smartphone 722.4 60.1 % 494.5 53.1 % 46.1 %
Tablet 128.3 10.7 % 72.0 7.7 % 78.4 %
Portable PC 202.0 16.8 % 209.1 22.5 % -3.4 %
Desktop PC 148.4 12.4 % 154.8 16.6 % -4.1 %
Total 1201.1 100.0 % 930.4 100.0 % 29.1 %
Source: IDC Worldwide Quarterly Smart Connected Device Tracker, February 20, 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

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.

 

Amazon dominates list of top 25 retailers in mobile satisfaction study (infographic)

Tuesday, February 12th, 2013

AmazonAmazon extended its ecommerce domination into the mobile arena during the recent holiday shopping season,  according to the ForeSee Mobile Satisfaction Index: Holiday Retail Edition, released today by customer experience analytics firm ForeSee.

In a survey of more than 6,200 consumers collected during the peak holiday shopping season between Thanksgiving and Christmas, the retail juggernaut scored highest among 25 of the top mobile commerce companies. The report shows that consumer satisfaction with the mobile retail experience is improving, as the Index climbs two points since last holiday season to 78 on a 100-point scale.

Amazon tops the list at 85, with Apple (83), and QVC (83) close behind. Rounding out the top five are NewEgg (80) and Victoria’s Secret (80). The retailers with the biggest improvements over time include Target (+5), Victoria’s Secret (+5), and Barnes & Noble (+4).

Individual satisfaction scores for the top 25 mobile retailers measured are listed below.

Mobile Experience Satisfaction
Aggregate Satisfaction for Top 25 Mobile Retailers 78
Amazon.com 85
Apple 83
QVC 83
NewEgg 80
Victoria’s Secret 80
Barnes & Noble 79
Footlocker 79
HSN 79
Costco 78
Hewlett Packard 78
Kohl’s 78
SportsmansGuide.com 78
Best Buy 77
Buy.com 77
J.C. Penney 77
Macy’s 77
One King’s Lane 77
Staples 77
Target 77
Walmart 75
Gilt.com 74
Overstock 74
RueLaLa 74
Sears 74
Shop NBC 73

PR Newswire (http://s.tt/1zGew)

“The mobile platform is maturing much faster than the PC platform. We see it in the rate of consumer adoption, and fortunately we are seeing it in how well the top retailers are adapting to multichannel consumers who are embracing yet another powerful tool,” said Larry Freed , president and CEO of ForeSee.

“But retailers shouldn’t get too comfortable because change is just about the only thing you can count on. Consumers expect retailers to provide a consistent and seamless experience, regardless of the channel.”

Here’s an infographic detailing the findings:

A majority of enterprises support Apple devices, but they have gripes

Wednesday, February 6th, 2013
Apple iPad3s

Apple iPads

A large majority of Enterprises are either supporting iPhones and iPads at work now or plan to, says InformationWeek Reports. And, while they give them high marks for user satisfaction, they nevertheless have gripes: they’re too expensive and hard to upgrade.

Findings: 

  • 85% of decision-makers report they support iPhones, with an additional 4% planning to do so; 90% currently or plan to support iPads.
  • 87% of those supporting or planning to support Apple smartphones or tablets give the devices high marks for end-user satisfaction, but 45% say the upgradability is poor or very poor.
  • 64% of decision-makers report having no Apple servers in their organizations.
  • 45% say their top gripe with Apple products is the devices are too expensive for the value provided.
  • 23% of decision-makers rate Apple’s enterprise security and device management excellent or good; 31% say it’s poor or unacceptable.

The report author, Richard Hoffman , is owner of Geomancy Consulting, an InformationWeek contributor and former technology editor for Network Computing.

Sales of Microsoft & Blackberry phones enough to interest developers

Thursday, January 31st, 2013

smartphonesThe global installed base of smartphones will total 1.4 billion by the end of 2013, according to the latest forecasts from ABI Research. Of this base, 57% will run on Android and 21% on iOS.

Meanwhile, there will be 268 million tablets in active use, with 62% of them built on iOS and 28% on Android.

The annual growth rate against 2012 will be 44% for smartphones and 125% for tablets. Despite of Apple’s and Google’s strong hold of the market, ABI Research anticipates that the future won’t be quite as duopolistic as it may seem now.

A relative success for Microsoft and Blackberry?

Outside of the leading two operating systems, how will the world look for the two main challengers, Windows Phone and BlackBerry 10?

Senior analyst Aapo Markkanen comments, “2013 should be seen as relative success for both Microsoft and BlackBerry.

For the end of the year, we expect there to be 45 million Windows Phone handsets in use, with BlackBerry 10 holding an installed base of close to 20 million. Microsoft will also have 5.5 million Windows-powered tablets to show for it.”

Importantly, the figures refer to actively used devices, which is what app developers – with certain caveats in mind – should generally treat as an addressable market for their releases.

As Markkanen points out, “The greatest fear for both Microsoft and BlackBerry is that the initial sales of their smartphones will disappoint and thereby kill off the developer interest, which then would effectively close the window of opportunity on further sales success. Our view is that the installed bases of this scale would be large enough to keep these two in the game. It will definitely also help that both firms have actively kept the developers’ interest in mind while designing and rolling out their platforms.”

Know when the first virus was sent? The first spam? (infographic)

Monday, January 21st, 2013

internet2Do you know when the first network virus, “Creeper” was created? When the first spam message was sent? Who used the first emoticon?

While the Web’s infrastructure stretches back to the 1970s, many of the features we rely on today are a decade or less old.Even those of us who saw the Internet evolve step by step sometimes feel as if instant messaging, social media, and shopping online are just part of the fabric of modern life and forget its brief history.

Here’s an infographic from AVG.com detailing the history of the Internet. 

History of the Internet:1969-2012

Net-go-round: 10 most memorable marketing campaigns, Windows 8

Monday, January 7th, 2013

Hubspot

Capitalizing on current news and trends is one of the most successful marketing campaign tactics for any business – if done right. In 2012 a number of companies successfully capitalized on news stories by leveraging social media, while others did things that were a little bit more unconventional.

From Samsung to JetBlue, Hubspot has highlighted 10 companies whose campaigns were  remarkable and unforgettable – they are definitely worth a second look!

Read full story here - http://blog.hubspot.com/blog/tabid/6307/bid/33931/10-of-the-Most-Memorable-Marketing-Campaigns-of-2012.aspx

Holiday shopping peaked early

Consumers skewed their consumer electronics shopping to the first few weeks of the holiday season, according to global information company The NPD Group.

U.S. consumer electronics sales* were strongest at the beginning of the holiday season and declined through the remainder of the five week holiday period (November 18 – December 22, 2012) according to NPD’s Weekly Tracking Service**.

Forty-six percent of sales took place in the first two weeks, the highest share in the past four years, while the last three weeks of sales accounted for 54 percent of sales. Sales for the first two weeks declined 3.7 percent over 2011 while the last three weeks fell more than 11 percent.

Sales worsened late for third straight year

“For the third consecutive year sales trends worsened in the later part of the holiday season,” said Stephen Baker, vice president, industry analysis at NPD.

“The hyped-up promotion of Black Friday, Cyber Monday and now Thanksgiving Day has proven remarkably effective in moving sales into the early part of the holiday season.  Trends like online shopping and self-gifting have intensified the focus on the more event -driven early part of the holiday season.”

Most categories struggled, as they have done all year but sales of notebook computers and flat-panel TVs both exceeded $2 billion in total dollars sales, while no other single segment accounted for over $1 billion in revenue.

Windows 8 was no help

Windows 8Windows 8, which is not faring as well as XP did, failed to boost holiday sales. Windows notebook holiday sales fell 11 percent.

“Consumer electronics remain trapped in a weak product cycle,” said Baker.  “Despite undeniable success in segments like soundbars, headphones with microphones, interchangeable lens cameras, cellular accessories and tablets, the inability of the CE market to find substantial new pockets of revenue looms menacingly over the industry’s future.”

*Consumer electronics excludes: Amazon Kindle products, iPad, Surface, mobile phones, and video games.

App store tops 40 billion downloads

Apple iPad3s

Apple iPads

Apple today announced that customers have downloaded over 40 billion apps*, with nearly 20 billion in 2012 alone. The App Store  has over 500 million active accounts and had a record-breaking December with over two billion downloads during the month.

Apple’s developer community has created over 775,000 apps for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users worldwide, and developers have been paid over seven billion dollars by Apple.