INNOVATION \ CHANGE

Latest Features

How many things?

19 December 2014 in -e.online

internet of thingsHow many ‘things’ in the Internet of Things? Gartner reckons 4.9 billion connected devices will be in use in next year – up 30% on this year – reaching 25 billion by 2020. This spurt will power up the economic impact of the IoT as consumers, businesses, city authorities, hospitals et al find new ways in which to exploit the technology. Gartner reckons that the IoT will support total services spending of $69.5 billion in 2015, rising to a whopping $263 billion by 2020.

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Future road

18 December 2014 in -e.showcase

future transportFuture road surfaces could feature advanced solar panels that generate clean, renewable power and wirelessly charge electric cars as they drive, or are parked. These panels would also feature LED lighting and heating elements to melt snow, according to Arup’s Future of Highways report, which considers how developments such as rapid urbanisation, climate change, resource depletion and changes in human behaviour will shape our roads in 2050.

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No buzz for BuzzFeed

18 December 2014 in -e.social

Online publishingSometimes much-hyped Buzzfeed just doesn’t measure up. A new Top 25 publishers list based on social affinity includes the venerable likes of The Economist, The Guardian, Vogue and The Financial Times, but Buzzfeed is nowhere to be seen. The results demonstrate the difference between ‘social velocity’ and ‘social affinity’ where many publications with a high volume of online users still lack a personal relationship with their readers, says Intent HQ, which carried out the survey.

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Incubate me

17 December 2014 in -e.online

UK incubator and accelerator programesThe UK’s accelerators and incubators supported more than 1,100 start-ups in 2014. The average survival rate? Well, for these businesses it is an impressive 90%+ which is at a level almost 20 percentage points higher than for small businesses choosing to go it alone. And of the start-up programmes operating within the UK in 2014, more than half were launched within the last three years – representing a 110% increase since 2011, according to The Rise of the UK Accelerator and Incubator System report from O2.

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Open, connected

16 December 2014 in -e.online

Open Web of ThingsNow Google is pushing the Open Web of Things, part of a drive towards the ‘connected society’. What does it mean? Well, it’s a lot do to with open standards and people being willing to share, of course, and in this case Google is in the midst of establishing an open innovation and research programme around the Internet of Things. The online giant is asking for research proposals relating to the IoT in user interface and app development, privacy and security, as well as systems and protocols research, saying it is open to ‘new and unorthodox’ solutions.

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Data for sharing

16 December 2014 in -e.showcase

Beyond pricingStart-up watch: If you’re part of the sharing economy which makes a bit of cash renting out a property, it’s not enough to simply lean on Airbnb alone. You need data. That’s where Beyond Pricing comes in. The number-crunching outfit wants to give rental owners the ability to tap into the same info that hotels and airlines use to determine pricing and maximise the performance of their sharing economy assets. In fact, Beyond Pricing views this as nothing less than the ‘democratisation of data’.

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Hola Hailo

15 December 2014 in -e.showcase

hailo taxi appWhile Uber gets itself thrown off Spanish roads, Hailo is getting mileage out of Iberia with end-of-year sales growth of 200%. Hailo puts its success down to a focus on the business market, having signed up over 1,000 firms in one month – one of the company’s biggest coups is landing airline Iberia for business customers. Hailo points out that it has made efforts to build relationships with local drivers and taxi industry regulators.

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Pay mobility

12 December 2014 in -e.mobile

plastc mobile paymentsThe world is set to have some 450 million mobile payment users by 2017, up from 61 million last year. While Africa unsurprisingly accounts for around a half of all mobile money usage, one quarter of US and UK millennials made a payment using a mobile app in the last year, while 45% of that demographic is comfortable connecting payment information to a wearable device to make hassle-free payments. That’s according to the Looking Further with Ford: 2015 Trends report from Ford.

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Latest News

Mobile obsession

19 December 2014 in -e.mobile

Friday metric: Close to 10% of consumers look at their smartphones more than 100 times a day, nearly a quarter check more than 50 times, and almost half do so over 25 times daily.

Off Grid taps into finance

19 December 2014 in -e.showcase

US start-up Off Grid Electric has just received $16 million in new funding and will use the money to expand its prepaid solar energy service in Africa.

VW car game leads way

18 December 2014 in -e.mobile

Volkswagen China’s Sports Car Challenge branded mobile game series has generated close to 340 qualified sales leads in just 10 weeks.

Less App-etite

17 December 2014 in -e.mobile

Wednesday metric: Consumers have cut the number of smartphone apps they download by almost one third, with a number of people reporting that they downloaded zero apps in the last 12 months.

Amazon’s German definition

16 December 2014 in -e.online

Amazon is struggling to make it a Merry Christmas in Germany where some 2, 300 workers at five of the online behemoth’s nine distribution centres in the country have gone on strike.

Xiaomi gets fresh

12 December 2014 in -e.showcase

Chinese smartphone brand Xiaomi has gone somewhat off-piste with the launch of its smart air purifier, the Mi.

Shazam’s platinum sound

12 December 2014 in -e.showcase

Friday metric: Most Shazam-ed track ever? That would be Wake Me Up from Avicii on over 19 million, ahead of Robin Thicke’s Blurred Lines (18 million).

Cinematic blast

11 December 2014 in -e.showcase

China’s Wanda has cut a deal with South Korean multiplex outfit CJ CGV to put 4DX cinema tech in Chinese cinemas.