E-Commerce Times 12/11/13
Viber on Monday launched v4.1 of its eponymous VoIP chat application. It includes Viber Out, a feature that lets users call anyone mobile phones or landlines anywhere. Calls to other Viber users are free; otherwise, a fee is assessed. The company also unveiled additions to its line of stickers. Viber, which has 200 million or so users, is targeting Skype, which is aiming for 1 billion. "Viber's user base is not bad, but it's not going to beat out Skype," said Ronald Gruia, director of emerging telecomms at Frost & Sullivan.
Smartwatches have dominated many of the tech headlines in 2013, but a new project now counting down the final hours of a successful crowdfunding campaign promises wearable computing of a different kind. Dubbed the "Smarty Ring," this new device features an LED screen and is designed to be worn on the finger and to stream data from an Android or iOS mobile handset. Connectivity is provided via Bluetooth 4.0, allowing the Smarty Ring to alert the wearer to incoming calls, texts and email messages.
Microsoft will stop security support for Windows XP this coming April, meaning that more than a few remaining users of the long-standing OS need to come up with an alternative plan. Almost a third of desktop computers still run Windows XP, according to Net Applications. Perhaps even more concerning, more than 15 percent of midsize and large enterprises will still have Windows XP running on at least 10 percent of their PCs after Microsoft support ends, Gartner estimates.
CRM Buyer 12/11/13
We are nearing year-end, and that means it's time for my annual year in review. This is not an attempt at a quantitative inventory -- just my assessment of things that happened that will matter in the long run. From my spot, it looks like marketing took a big step toward greater relevance in 2013, the importance of being a partner in an ecosystem increased -- as did the significance of software platforms -- and reports of CRM's demise were greatly exaggerated.
The challenge for any fun-loving youngster old enough to party in dark places is that the quality delivered by iPhone cameras just doesn't match up with the memories of the moment: Smiling faces are washed, vague or blurry, and the color tones, it seems, are never what your mind remembers. Of course, depending on the scope of low-light fun, the photo might be the only thing remembered -- just entirely after the fact. Enter Lightstrap, a new project by Brick & Pixel looking for funds on Kickstarter.
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