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Samsung attaches screen to semi-truck to show the road ahead

Samsung attaches screen to semi-truck to show the road ahead | tech | Scoop.it
Samsung came up with a clever solution to passing trucks that often obstruct a view of the road ahead.
Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

Samsung said the truck used for testing isn't currently operational anymore, but it is working with government and non-government safety agencies to develop the tech further.


More: http://mashable.com/2015/06/22/samsung-truck-camera/?utm_cid=mash-com-li-main-link

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At Windows 10 Event, Microsoft Jumps Into Augmented Reality With HoloLens Headset

At Windows 10 Event, Microsoft Jumps Into Augmented Reality With HoloLens Headset | tech | Scoop.it
The HoloLens could help renew some of the luster Microsoft has lost in the last decade, when it reacted late to critical new technology trends.
Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

The company has seemed adrift in recent years. But on Wednesday, it unveiled an unexpected new headset that allows interaction with holographic images, enabling people to play video games, build 3-D models and hold immersive videoconferences with colleagues.


The headset can also display what is called augmented reality, inserting virtual 3-D objects into the real world around people wearing the device. Its lenses are see-through so that users can continue to view the physical environment around them. In October, Google invested $542 million in another company, Magic Leap, working on its own augmented reality technology.


James L. McQuivey, an analyst at Forrester Research, a technology research firm, predicted that the headset could have a profound impact on how people interact with technology.

“If successful,” he said, “HoloLens will ultimately expand the way people interact with machines just as the mouse-based interface did in the 1990s, and touch interfaces did after the introduction of the iPhone in 2007.”

 

from:

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/01/22/technology/microsoft-to-give-away-windows-10-in-move-to-woo-software-developers.html?_r=0


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33% of Users Discard Their Wearables in Disappointment

33% of Users Discard Their Wearables in Disappointment | tech | Scoop.it
A new report from PricewaterhouseCoopers found that 33 percent of consumers who purchased a wearable item in the past year either do not use them any more or use them infrequently. The reason consumers are putting down their smartwatches is because the items failed to meet expectations and not becasue they have given up on a wearables future.
Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

In PwC's report, The Wearable Future, more than half of millennials and early adopters said they were excited about where the category will go in the future. To get there, however, manufacturers have to overcome complaints about price, privacy and security. Even so, PwC believes there will be more than 130 million units sold by 2018, with others estimating sales could be as high as 180 million units.

PwC anticipates huge returns for brands. Media companies, in particular, were identified as having a huge amount of potential. "[Wearable technologies are] blank canvases for highly targeted message placements, especially in the form of content with greater relevancy and context to the user," PwC said. "But wearable devices won't just create more ad inventory and unleash more publishing subscription revenue—they'll provide a meaningful opportunity to drive product sales and e-commerce."

PwC sees brands connecting with consumers through richer, more interactive entertainment experiences, tighter integration with social media and rewards for loyalty. Brands could work closely with stores to push content to consumers as they shop and eat at restaurants.

"The media company of the future must combine insights with curated experiences and find new ways of monetization—not merely through conventional advertising and paid content offerings," Deborah Bothun, PwC’s U.S. advisory entertainment, media and communications leader, said in a statement. "Wearables offer media companies a huge new frontier of relevance and immersive experiences, helping to engage audiences by providing the most relevant content."

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An Apple-Like Valuation for a Chinese Rival

An Apple-Like Valuation for a Chinese Rival | tech | Scoop.it
A new funding round could give Xiaomi a valuation of as much as $50 billion, but the Chinese company lacks the market dominance and innovation that would justify such a price, Ethan Bilby of Reuters Breakingviews writes.
Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

It is not out of the question that Xiaomi could become China’s Apple. But there are two things it lacks. The Californian company is innovative – it helped introduce consumers to the PC and the touch-controlled smartphone. Many of Xiaomi’s products essentially follow in Apple’s footsteps, but at lower prices. Apple is also dominant in its niche, with a 42 percent share of the United States market, according to comScore. Xiaomi’s local market share is just 14 percent.

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Lenovo's new 'Yoga' tablets run Android and Windows, one has a built-in projector

Lenovo's new 'Yoga' tablets run Android and Windows, one has a built-in projector | tech | Scoop.it

Lenovo's original, kickstand-toting Yoga Tablet was kind of a flop, thanks to a poor display, sluggish performance and heavily skinned version of Android

Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

Not to be deterred, the company is going all in: Lenovo just announced new versions of the Yoga Tablet, including a big-screen model with a built-in projector, and two that run Windows (it's also still available with Android). Starting with that weird projector edition, called the Yoga Tablet 2 Pro, it's not the first gadget we've seen with a built-in lamp, but it's the first we've seen in quite some time. In this case, what we have this time around is a 13-inch Android tablet with a 2,560 x 1,440 screen sharp enough to play movies on its own, though you could also use the in-built Pico projector to create a 50-inch image on the wall.

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Lamborghini reveals 910-horsepower Asterion hybrid concept

Lamborghini reveals 910-horsepower Asterion hybrid concept | tech | Scoop.it

Lamborghini has announced its first plug-in hybrid showpiece, and it's quite beautiful. The Asterion LPI 910-4 packs in a 5.2-liter V10 with 610 horsepower, and its trio of electric motors beef up that latter figure another 300 (hence the 910 moniker). 

Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

Those numbers puts the hypercar in the same neighborhood as McLaren's P1 and the LaFerrari hybrid. In terms of speed, the blue machine can hit 0 to 60 MPH (0 to 100 km/h) in three seconds and tops out at just under 200 MPH (320 km/h). What's more, the Asterion can reach 78 MPH (125 km/h) using only electric power, traveling around 31 miles (50km) without firing up the main engine. As this is more of a proof of concept than anything else, there's no word on pricing and availability, or whether more than one will even be made. However, feel free to ogle the leather-wrapped cockpit after the break.

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Jawbone Makes Progress On Its $250 Million Funding Round As Apple Watch Looms Over

Jawbone Makes Progress On Its $250 Million Funding Round As Apple Watch Looms Over | tech | Scoop.it
Wearable device maker Jawbone has raised its next chunk of money as it looks to build a war chest this year in the face of new potential challenges led by Apple. The company authorized about $15.8 million shares of a new Series 6-A preferred stock this month under its official name [...]
Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

The company authorized about $15.8 million shares of a new Series 6-A preferred stock this month under its official name AliphCom that maintains the company’s value at $3.3 billion, according to a Sept. 15 filing recently uncovered by data provider VC Experts.

 

The relatively small amount of shares at play seems to be the latest step in the company’s pursuit of a massive funding round it began fishing for in February, when it was widely-reported (most recently through a Recode update) as seeking $250 million raise at a $3.3 billion valuation, with Rizvi Traverse as lead investor.

 

A spokesperson for Jawbone declined to comment. But according to the new filing, the company still has a long way to go to meet the $270 million cap it authorized back in Feb. The company’s closed on $147 million shares outstanding to date, leaving more than $100 million of room for new investors even after this authorization.

 

Forbes has heard that CEO Hosain Rahman spent several weeks in Asia earlier this year speaking to potential investors. But another (if less likely) possibility for this latest filing could be that it’s set aside for a new strategic partnership or small acquisition, as the shares are of a slightly different class than previous–Series 6-A preferred versus Series 6 preferred. The shares do have first liquidation preference, though, which could suggest it’s just a new investor in the round given slightly different types of stakes.

 

Jawbone’s continuing to raise, and justify its multi-billion price tag, in an environment that’s changing quickly. In recent weeks, the wearable community’s been shaken up by the arrival of Apple, which finally announced its Apple Watch on Sept. 9. The next day, Jawbone responded to the news with a blog post that argued for a healthy future for UP even in a wearable landscape dominated by Apple devices. UP is really a platform, the company maintained, which could integrate Apple Watch data as well as other wearable sources. And as a device, UP’s 14-day battery life means it’s more of an always-on device for constant tracking like of sleep patterns, whereas a Watch user may be more come and go.

 

Despite that argument, Jawbone and others like Fitbit have to demonstrate they will have a role to play in the wearable landscape that Apple cannot gobble up–and after one player, Nike, already bailed on hardware in April to focus on a software play.

 

 

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Consumers are more satisfied with desktop PCs than laptops, tablets, study says

Consumers are more satisfied with desktop PCs than laptops, tablets, study says | tech | Scoop.it

According to one study, consumers are happier with desktop PCs than they are with laptops and tablets.

Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

According to data compiled and published by the American Customer Satisfaction Index, consumers are more satisfied with their desktop computers than they are with laptops and tablets.

The ACSI says that, when it comes to laptops, consumer satisfaction is rated at 76, which is four percent less than what it was last year. Meanwhile tablets scored an 80, which is a decrease of one percent compared to 2013.

 

Between tablets, laptops, and desktop PCs, the latter is the only product type of the three to enjoy a surge in consumer satisfaction between 2013 and 2014. The ACSI’s findings indicate that consumers are three percent more satisfied with desktop PCs this year than they were last year, bringing that rating up to 81. That’s one point higher than tablets, and five points higher than laptops.

Of all the big-name computer manufacturers out there, Apple is number one in the hearts of many, carrying a satisfaction rating of 84 in the personal computing space. Cupertino is trailed by Acer (76), Dell (76), Toshiba (75), and Hewlett-Packard (74).

Interestingly, “All Others,” which is made up of companies that include Samsung, Asus, and Lenovo, is right behind Apple with a rating of 82. That’s up from 76 compared to a year ago.

The reasons behind the desktop’s increase in popularity aren’t exactly known, but ACSI exec Claes Fornell has a couple of theories.

“The increase in customer satisfaction for PCs could mean two different things,” Fornell says. “Either the product is seen as more attractive now and is poised for a comeback, or it has higher customer satisfaction simply because those who were less than happy with it have moved to other devices. If dissatisfied customers leave and satisfied customers stay, average satisfaction may well go up.”

Those satisfaction ratings may rise even higher if Windows 9 ends up winning over people who were turned off by Windows 8. Microsoft is widely expected to give the world its first official look at the OS during an event that’s scheduled to be held on September 30.

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noPhone. A technology-free alternative to constant hand-to-phone contact.

noPhone. A technology-free alternative to constant hand-to-phone contact. | tech | Scoop.it

With a thin, light and completely wireless design,
the noPhone acts as a surrogate to any smart mobile device, enabling you to always have a rectangle of smooth, 
cold plastic to clutch without forgoing any potential engagement with your direct environment. Never again experience the unsettling feeling of flesh on flesh when closing your hand. 

The noPhone simulates the exact weight and dimensions of your most beloved gadget in order to alleviate any feelings of inadequacy generated by the absence of a real smartphone

Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

Finally, there's a device with a spec sheet that'll let you feel good about leaving your other phone elsewhere. Enter the noPhone: a solid brick of plastic that stands in at the size and weight comparable to any of those popular handsets. What's more, the device has a 0-megapixel camera, infinite battery life and is both waterproof and shatterproof. All of that looks good on paper, but the real selling point is how the noPhone's features improve communication. Eye-to-eye contact and conversing with actual spoken words at dinner are on their way back to couples everywhere. That's because you won't be using this slab to text or call someone else, but you can leave it in your pocket to feel like the tether is still intact. No word on a release date or pricing just yet, but you can see the gadget in action on the other side of break.

source:

http://www.engadget.com/2014/08/25/nophone-specs/?utm_medium=twitter&utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_campaign=Engadget&ncid=rss_semi


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TabLatch - the smart solution for tablet security and maximum mobility

TabLatch - the smart solution for tablet security and maximum mobility | tech | Scoop.it
Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

TabLatch™ is the only iPad security solution that (wirelessly) secures, tracks, charges and alerts you to the status of your iPads with a digitally encrypted software app that provides a new level of protection over traditional physical security systems.

 

TabLatch is designed and produced by DCI-Artform, an industry-leading, full-service integrated retail marketing firm that has been providing award-winning marketing solutions for 70 years to an extensive list of Fortune 100 clients. DCI-Artform offers a wide range of expertise and decades of experience in retail merchandising and marketing for the automotive, cosmetics, grocery, packaged goods and consumer electronics industries.

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Dell develops mood-reading tech

Dell develops mood-reading tech | tech | Scoop.it
Dell Research says it is working on mood-reading software that could be ready for sale within the next three years.
Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

If I can sense the user is working hard on a task, an intuitive computer system might then reduce distractions, such as allowing incoming phone calls to go directly to voicemail and not letting the user be disturbed.

Similarly, if they've been concentrating for a long time, maybe it could suggest a break.

The kit could also be adapted for gamers - a market Dell already targets with its Alienware PCs.

If someone is playing a game and it senses they are bored, it could ratchet up the level of challenge automatically. If it senses they are frustrated, maybe it's time to offer them a clue about how to proceed.

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Jawbone UP24: Fitness Tracker Review

Jawbone UP24: Fitness Tracker Review | tech | Scoop.it
The Jawbone UP24 is a fitness tracker that tracks steps, distance walked, calories burned, and sleep patterns. Here's what I found after wearing the device for a week.
Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

Wear the Jawbone UP24 fitness tracker wristband to monitor your exercise and eating habits through the day and the quality of your sleep at night. The UP24 is a flexible band that wraps around your wrist, and is a newer version of the Original Jawbone UP.

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Smartphones are fading. Wearables are next

Smartphones are fading. Wearables are next | tech | Scoop.it
Wearable devices are tech's next big bet as smartphone and tablet sales decelerate.
Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

Some predict that 80% to 90% of current wearable products will fail but the category itself will succeed in the long run. The last gadgets standing might bear little resemblance to the early experiments we're seeing now. For example, smart glasses could take off for businesses and focus on augmented reality displays, while the consumer-targeted, at-a-glance Google Glass peters out.

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Hey, McFly! Hoverboard available on Kickstarter for $10,000

Hey, McFly! Hoverboard available on Kickstarter for $10,000 | tech | Scoop.it

Dreams of sailing through the air on a hoverboard finally realised – but only on certain surfaces.

Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

Want a hoverboard before Marty McFly (who looks just like Michael J Fox) arrives in October 2015 to fly one around his town square? Arx Pax, a small company from Los Gatos, California, is now offering the real thing - although don’t expect to do much travelling on it.

 

Ever since Michael J Fox took to the air in the 1989 classic, Back to the Future II, people have dreamed of hoverboards. Many have attempted to recreate that magic; Mattel even released a plastic replica. Sadly, it didn’t levitate.

 

Arx Pax’s product really does hover. There’s one small catch, though – it will only hover on special surfaces, because it uses magnets, just like a maglev (magnetic levitation) train.

 

From: http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2014/oct/21/marty-mcfly-hoverboard-available-on-kickstarter

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FINALLY: Nike Is Going To Sell Those Self-Lacing 'Back To The Future 2' Sneakers This Year

FINALLY: Nike Is Going To Sell Those Self-Lacing 'Back To The Future 2' Sneakers This Year | tech | Scoop.it

Now you can pretend to be Marty McFly. Nike has confirmed it is releasing Marty McFly’s self-lacing, light-up sneakers from "Back to the Future" to the public in 2015.

Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

Speaking at the #AgendaEmerge conference in Long Beach, California, this week, Tinker Hatfield, who designed the Nike MAG sneaker Marty McFly wore in the 1989 film "Back to the Future 2," said his team is working as hard as possible to release a line of the "power lace" shoes this year. No details yet on pricing, but given that they actually lace up by themselves, they are unlikely to be cheap.

 

The release date is a poignant one: 2015 is the year to which Marty McFly and Doc Brown are sent in the film.



Read more: http://uk.businessinsider.com/back-to-the-future-nike-mag-with-power-laces-to-launch-in-2015-2015-1?r=US#ixzz3OhcPWI70

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For French Giant Publicis, a Deal for Sapient to Expand in Digital Ads

For French Giant Publicis, a Deal for Sapient to Expand in Digital Ads | tech | Scoop.it
Publicis Groupe says it believes its cash deal with Sapient, a consulting firm based in Boston, will help it compete with Facebook and Google.
Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

The context for both deals is the fact that companies like Yahoo, Google and Facebook are revolutionizing the advertising business, gobbling up an ever-greater chunk of digital spending. The overwhelming information advantage the Internet companies have on consumer browsing habits has helped them in the growing online ad market, even as the traditional media that the agencies long depended on lose their sparkle.

 

The traditional advertising companies and global tech giants are fighting over an increasingly large online market.

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Smart deodorant applicator provides a high-tech way to keep B.O. at bay

Smart deodorant applicator provides a high-tech way to keep B.O. at bay | tech | Scoop.it
Have you become so dependent on technology that you need gizmos to remind you about personal hygiene? If your answer's yes, then you may want to take a
Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

Have you become so dependent on technology that you need gizmos to remind you about personal hygiene? If your answer's yes, then you may want to take a long hardlook in the mirror at ClickStick: a high-tech deodorant dispenser for people who either keep forgetting to put some on... or for those who want extremely precise deodorant application. Like many smart devices out there, it connects to a smartphone app that's in charge of reminding you to wear deodorant everyday and of how much product the device should dispense (at the push of a button), depending on your activity level. The applicator itself is refillable and comes with LED lights (because the best deodorants can double as rave glow sticks, right?), though its Kickstarter campaign offers a limited edition chrome version for those with refined tastes. You can get an ordinary ClickStick if you pledge at least $26 and a chrome version for at least $40 as early as May 2015, provided its makers meet their rather hefty $55,000 crowdfunding goal.

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To Reach China, LinkedIn Plays by Local Rules

To Reach China, LinkedIn Plays by Local Rules | tech | Scoop.it
The professional social network’s Chinese-language version, which lacks certain features of Western versions, seems to have the tacit approval of China’s government.
Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

For American technology companies from Microsoft to Facebook to Google, China is a difficult, even impossible, place to operate.

 

But one company, the social network LinkedIn, has found a way to do business — by being willing to compromise on the free expression that is the backbone of life on the Western Internet.

LinkedIn’s experience provides a blueprint, and perhaps a cautionary lesson, for Silicon Valley as it tries to crack the vast Chinese market. Other American tech companies are watching with great interest, wondering whether LinkedIn will find an equilibrium between free speech and Chinese law that it can live with.

 

“Over the next five years, things will continue to progress in a positive fashion over there, so it’s important to be there today,” said Kerry Rice, an Internet analyst at Needham, a brokerage firm. “If LinkedIn figures out how to navigate the operating environment in China, clearly other companies will try to imitate that.”

 LinkedIn’s global English-language site has attracted four million Chinese members without gaining much attention from the Chinese government. But the company wanted to reach more of China’s estimated 140 million professional workers, and so in February it introduced a Chinese-language version.

The Chinese-language site has attracted about a million new members and seems to have the tacit approval of the government. It is functioning without blockages even though the authorities have cracked down on other Internet services, including Instagram and Yahoo, in reaction to the pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong.

 

The secret to LinkedIn’s seeming success? Aside from its willingness to play by Chinese rules on expression, the company has relinquished 7 percent of its local operation to two well-connected Chinese venture capital firms. Having such a relationship with homegrown firms is crucial for foreign web companies seeking to operate in China, experts say.

 

“The government needs to know who they can call, and as a foreign company you need to know before your site gets shut down so you have a chance to do something about it,” said Duncan Clark, founder of BDA China, a consulting firm that advises foreign companies on China’s tech sector. “That’s worth a lot, to have that channel.”

 

A spokesman for LinkedIn, Hani Durzy, said the company opened a Chinese-language site because of its “belief that the creation of economic opportunity can have a profound impact on the lives of Chinese individuals, much as it has elsewhere in the world.”

“While we strongly support freedom of expression,” he added, “we recognized when we launched that we would need to adhere to the requirements of the Chinese government in order to operate in China. So the decision to proceed in China was one that we weighed heavily.”

 

On the Chinese- and English-language sites in China, the company censors content that the authorities consider politically sensitive, using a combination of software algorithms and human reviewers. People whose posts are blocked get an emailed form letter advising them that a posted item contains “content prohibited in China” and “will not be seen by LinkedIn members located in China.”

 

LinkedIn also does not provide Chinese-language users certain important tools — like the ability to create or join groups or to post long essays — that allow people elsewhere to have public discussions and form communities.

 

Although LinkedIn’s strategy has given it access to Chinese speakers, analysts say it poses risks for the company’s reputation and growth strategy.

 

Like many American tech companies, LinkedIn, which is based in Mountain View, Calif., has promoted itself as dedicated to free-market principles. Too much censorship could cause users to flee.

 

What’s more, if LinkedIn’s business grows larger in China, that could give the government more leverage to make demands about what type of content is permissible globally.

 

The company has already stumbled a bit in its entry into the Chinese market. It angered some non-Chinese customers, who found that posts they made in English while in China were blocked globally as part of the company’s effort to protect its Chinese users from anything that could attract unwanted government scrutiny. LinkedIn moved to loosen its policy last month, allowing posts blocked in China to be seen elsewhere.

Some also say LinkedIn has not communicated clearly how and why it is censoring content.

 

For example, Bill Bishop, a media commentator and tech investor in China, said content he posted about China from a connection in the United States was blocked by the service. When he inquired why, the company inaccurately responded that it was because he had posted the item from China, when the real problem was that he had listed China as his work location.

Other tech companies have weighed the risks of trying to satisfy the Chinese government and taken a different approach.

 

Google, which once acceded to China’s demands to censor content in the country, noisily reversed course in 2010, moving to deliver uncensored results to Chinese users from servers in Hong Kong and souring its relationship with the authorities to this day.

 

Twitter has been blocked in China for years and says it will not censor posts because to do so would “sacrifice the principles of the platform,” according to Colin Crowell, the company’s vice president for global public policy.

 

Vine, a short-video service owned by Twitter, operates freely in China without “any special arrangement,” Mr. Crowell said.

Although Facebook — the world’s largest social network, with about 1.3 billion monthly users worldwide — is blocked in China, it hasn’t given up on getting in the country. But it is trying to use commerce to pry open the door, selling ads to Chinese companies and government organizations that want to reach consumers outside China.

 

Facebook is also studying the experience of Instagram, its separately operated photo-sharing app, which is growing quickly with only occasional blockages by the Chinese government. 

“We think this is an exciting opportunity,” Dan Neary, the company’s vice president for Asia and the Pacific, said in a statement.

 

Analysts say LinkedIn is well positioned to be acceptable to Beijing because it can argue that it makes the employment market more efficient, ultimately spurring the economy. China’s Internet regulators often argue that the main goal of development of the Internet should be to bolster economic growth.

 

China’s closed markets have given a huge head start to four homegrown companies, which dominate the Internet there: Alibaba in e-commerce, Baidu in search, Tencent in video gaming and instant messaging and Sina in social networking.

LinkedIn itself faces competition from local rivals like Zhaopin and 51Jobs.com, which both have more users than it does in China.

 

LinkedIn’s partnership with two local players — China Broadband Capital and a Chinese affiliate of Sequoia Capital, an American venture capital firm — has helped it manage its relationship with government officials.

 

C.B.C. was founded by Edward Tian, a well-connected investor and former entrepreneur who once ran a telecommunications company with the son of a former Chinese president, Jiang Zemin. The company has helped bring at least one other Silicon Valley company, Evernote, into China.

 

“There have been a lot of problems with companies like Facebook and Twitter,” said Kevin Wang, a C.B.C. spokesman. “We think one of the key reasons is the lack of communication, even the absence of communication, between these companies and the Chinese government.”

 

The local partners have a strong incentive to help LinkedIn succeed. Under the partnership agreement, they can buy an additional 21 percent of the joint venture for $20 million if certain conditions are met.

 

LinkedIn does retain control of the venture, securing the bulk of the profit as well as the risk.

 

Under Chinese law, the joint venture will eventually need to obtain an Internet content provider’s license to keep operating. The license has some benefits, but also some downsides; once granted, the company will be required to store information about its Chinese users in China.

 

Doing so would make it much easier for the government to demand information on, say, dissidents who use the service — a conundrum that tripped up Yahoo nearly a decade ago and prompted that company to essentially pull out of the country.

Despite the challenges, LinkedIn is optimistic about its efforts in China.

 

“In the end, the most important consideration for us was providing an opportunity for millions of Chinese professionals to significantly expand their economic opportunities,” said Mr. Durzy, the LinkedIn spokesman. “We want to get it right in China, so we will continue to listen and learn."

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Windows 10 is Microsoft's big fat apology for Windows 8

Windows 10 is Microsoft's big fat apology for Windows 8 | tech | Scoop.it
With Windows 10, it's almost as if Microsoft so desperately wanted to distance itself from Windows 8 that it skipped an entire version number.
Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

The Start Menu is back!

 

Since Windows 95, Microsoft has trained Windows users to head to the Start Menu button on the bottom-left of their screen. But in Windows 8, Microsoft changed the Windows experience entirely by replacing the Start Menu with the Start Screen, a full-screen launcher with Live Tiles (carried over from Windows Phone).

 

Windows 10 is made for multitaskers

 

There was a lot of talk about “experienced” Windows users during today’s unveiling, whereas I can’t remember Microsoft ever mentioning its fans when discussing Windows 8. Several features throughout Windows 10 are entirely devoted to more hardcore users: A new “task view” will let you set up different desktops for different uses (for example, you may use a different setup at home than you do at school or work); the Start Menu’s search bar is more powerful, with integrated web searching; and even the lowly command line gets a few upgrades (you can finally copy and paste directories using the CTRL + V command!).

 

The desktop is once again the focus of Windows

 

This is perhaps the biggest takeaway from what we’ve seen of Windows 10 so far: Your core environment is once again the desktop — not the Start Screen or some fullscreen app. While Windows 8 made the desktop feel like a ghetto for all those ugly, ancient, non-touchscreen Windows programs, Windows 10 seems to embrace the desktop entirely.

 

Microsoft cares what you think!

 

For once, Microsoft is actually listening to its fans. Tomorrow it’s kicking off the Windows Insider Program, which will give you access to a preview build of Windows 10. You’ll also be able to send feedback about your experiences. It’s not clear how Microsoft is going to manage all of this information, but it’s at the least a nice gesture for Windows users who felt let down by Windows 8.

 

 

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iPhone 6 Plus Review: How Big Is Too Big?

iPhone 6 Plus Review: How Big Is Too Big? | tech | Scoop.it
Apple has finally joined the phablet party. How does it stack up?
Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

If you’re wavering between the larger iPhone 6 Plus and the “regular” iPhone 6 — which are both larger than earlier iPhones, and have the same powerful A8 chipset — then you’ll want to read Walt Mossberg’s full review here. (You should also read Katie Boehret’s column on iOS 8, which will be released on Wednesday, and Bonnie Cha’s keyboard review here.)

 

The iPhone 6 Plus’s Retina-display resolution is actually not as high, nor its pixel density as great, as some of its competitors. But the display still looks clear and bright. (I’m not convinced that the average human eyeball can really detect much of a difference in PPI past a certain point.)

 

Both new iPhones now work in landscape mode, but one difference between the two is that landscape mode in the iPhone 6 Plus is a little more tablet-like. So when I held the phone horizontally and opened Messages, I could see my list of recent messages on the left and a dialogue box on the right. Same with Mail. And the virtual keyboard shows extra keys.

 

Of course, there are downsides to a phone this big.

It didn’t fit well in pockets. And it was too big to hold in my hand, or even wear on my arm, during fitness activities. This is key for me.

I usually take my test phones on at least one distance run; with this one, I didn’t even try. I did carry it during a hike, and it slipped out of my hand and hit the dirt before I hit the two-mile mark.

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Samsung is ending sales of all its laptops in Europe

Samsung is ending sales of all its laptops in Europe | tech | Scoop.it
Samsung will stop selling laptops in Europe due to "market demands", according to a statement from the company obtained by PC Advisor . As the Samsung spokesman said: "We quickly adapt to market...
Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

The move follows several years' worth of declining PC sales globally and Sony's sale of its own laptop business. Yet it also comes after Samsung announced a new Ativ Book laptop running Windows at CES 2014 and a Chromebook 2 later in the year, and in spite of the fact that Western Europe has been one of the better performing markets for laptop sales worldwide over the past decade. Market research firm Gartner also noted that PC sales had recently stabilized and had projected huge growth in Chromebook sales in the coming years, so the timing of Samsung's exit from Europe may be premature. Still, the company's statement leaves room for it to resume laptop sales in the region should market conditions change.

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The Maker's Mark

The Maker's Mark | tech | Scoop.it

"Yves Behar is the man behind Silicon Valley's most beautiful gadgets. But can his good taste conquer the world?"

Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

Since moving to California in 1990, Behar has become one of the leading industrial designers of his generation, creating iconic objects for Jawbone, Herman Miller, General Electric, and Puma, among many others. The objects often have a socially progressive bent: light fixtures that promote energy conservation, say, or cheap but durable laptops that offer poor children improved access to education. Behar’s designs tend to be practical rather than flashy, and they have a history of predicting — or dictating — mass-market trends. His design for the Jambox, first released in 2010, launched a multibillion-dollar wireless-speaker market.

 

In public Behar speaks softly, and his sentences bear the occasional hesitation of someone for whom English is a second language. (His first is French, and he is also fluent in Italian and German.) In English, Behar will sometimes cut off a sentence halfway through and begin again, or give up after conveying the general idea. Onstage and in interviews, Behar’s attitude is one of polite forbearance — the child made to sit still for a portrait. When he listens, he sometimes removes his Up band and turns it over in his hands. If a question particularly interests him, he grows more animated, illustrating his thoughts with gestures. His hands roll forward like waves, one thought proceeding neatly to the next, a tide of answers coming in to shore.

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Smartphones: Samsung in China nur noch Nummer 2

Smartphones: Samsung in China nur noch Nummer 2 | tech | Scoop.it
Kein iPhone, kein Galaxy. Der Chinese greift immer mehr zu Xiaomi, dem heimischen Smartphone, das nur ein Fünftel kostet.
Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

Analysten erklären den Erfolg des Unternehmens vor allem damit, dass die Geräte deutlich preiswerter, aber auch mit leistungsfähiger Technik ausgestattet sind. Xiaomi-Geräte werden in China üblicherweise zu Stückpreisen von umgerechnet mehr als 75 Euro angeboten, die qualitativ hochwertigen Samsung Galaxys kosten ab 370 Euro aufwärts. Xiaomi betreibt zudem eine eigene Verkaufsplattform, entwickelt eigene Software und betreibt erfolgreiches Marketing. Auch das hat nach Ansicht von Marktbeobachtern dazu beigetragen, dass sich das Unternehmen von den anderen Billiganbietern in China abhebt.

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Samsung wants to dial down mobile marketing for a change

Samsung wants to dial down mobile marketing for a change | tech | Scoop.it
Samsung on Friday told analysts that it plans to cut its mobile marketing this year in order to keep it relative to revenue, Reuters reports, a move which may mark a change from the company’s marke...
Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

The company posted lower than expected profits for the fourth quarter of 2013, even though the whole year brought in record revenues and profits. Previous reports revealed that Samsung may have spent a cumulated $14 billion on marketing its products (mobile devices included) in 2013

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Smartphones are fading. Wearables are next

Smartphones are fading. Wearables are next | tech | Scoop.it
Wearable devices are tech's next big bet as smartphone and tablet sales decelerate.
Enoal Le Roc'h's insight:

Some predict that 80% to 90% of current wearable products will fail but the category itself will succeed in the long run. The last gadgets standing might bear little resemblance to the early experiments we're seeing now. For example, smart glasses could take off for businesses and focus on augmented reality displays, while the consumer-targeted, at-a-glance Google Glass peters out.

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