Study Shows Consumers Worldwide Are Warming to AR, VR

According to new research released at CES this week, consumers are warming to the idea of virtual and augmented reality, but their interests are more focused on practical daily applications than gaming. Harris Interactive conducted a study for Accenture across 19 countries and learned that 47 percent of online consumers would be interested in using AR or VR headsets to play games, while percentages jumped into the 50s and 60s regarding consumers interested in learning about travel and new skills, visualizing how clothing would fit, and shopping for household items and furniture. Continue reading Study Shows Consumers Worldwide Are Warming to AR, VR

Amazon Introduces New ARKit Shopping Feature to iOS App

Amazon’s new AR addition to its iOS app, called “AR View,” allows customers the ability to visualize products in their own home. Thousands of products are viewable across a range of categories for both the office and home. By utilizing Apple’s ARKit, the experience unfolds in real-time, allowing the customer to rotate both the object and change its perspective. By introducing the new feature, Amazon joins other retailers such as Target and IKEA that have all recently introduced augmented shopping experiences to their mobile platforms. Continue reading Amazon Introduces New ARKit Shopping Feature to iOS App

Ultra HD: Consumer Adoption on the Rise with Lower Prices

New data from analyst IDC finds that shipments of 4K televisions have reached over one million per month and are projected to reach upward of 15.2 million for 2014. Consumer adoption is on the rise as the average selling price has dropped 85 percent worldwide in the last two years, from $7,851 in 2012 to $1,120 in 2014. A new report from BI Intelligence predicts a faster adoption curve than HDTV, with 4K TVs to be found in more than half of North American homes within 10 years. Continue reading Ultra HD: Consumer Adoption on the Rise with Lower Prices

Study Predicts 4K Adoption Will Be Faster Than That of HDTV

New research by Parks Associates suggests that 4K televisions will trace a similar trajectory in terms of price and consumer adoption that played out with HDTVs over the last 15 years. However, the study’s findings point to a slightly quicker progression for 4K. While HDTVs took about 15 years to achieve a certain level of affordability and ubiquity, Parks predicts that 4K will reach mass market prices within two to three years and exceed 80 percent penetration of households in 10-12 years. Continue reading Study Predicts 4K Adoption Will Be Faster Than That of HDTV

Pay TV Registers Decline for First Time Over Full-Year Period

According to a new report from research firm SNL Kagan, the U.S. pay-TV industry registered a decline in subscriptions during 2013. While the loss of 251,000 subscribers among cable, satellite and telco TV providers was quite small (just 0.02 percent of 110.2 million total pay-TV households), it raises concerns that cord-cutting may have a greater impact in the future. The report notes that younger American consumers are less likely to have pay TV than their parents. Continue reading Pay TV Registers Decline for First Time Over Full-Year Period

Google Takes On Broadband Giants with Fiber Expansion Plans

Google is looking to expand its fiber network to compete with cable operators that currently dominate the broadband market. Google is in talks with 34 cities in nine areas, such as Atlanta, Nashville, Phoenix, Salt Lake City, San Antonio and Portland, Oregon. Google’s new network is currently offered in Kansas City and Provo, and is expanding into the Austin, Texas area. Google Fiber provides download speeds of up to 1 GB per second for $70 per month. Continue reading Google Takes On Broadband Giants with Fiber Expansion Plans

Should Industry Be Concerned with Decline in TV Households?

According to a new report from Forrester Research, the percentage of U.S. households with cable or satellite television is projected to dip from the current 82 percent to 79 percent by 2018. However, Forrester’s Jim Nail suggests that the television industry should not worry about cord-cutters, since those who opt to unsubscribe from cable services do not watch much TV anyway, and are not turning to online options but simply avoiding the cost. Business Insider counters that a decline is difficult to view as a win. Continue reading Should Industry Be Concerned with Decline in TV Households?

Satellite Providers Pair Up to Provide Targeted Political Ads

Political ads are about to get much more personal. Dish Network and DirecTV are coming together to offer microtargeted advertising spots for politicians hoping to reach specific audiences with specific messages during campaigns. Audiences will be identified all the way down to the individual household, and political advertisers will pay big money to reach those households with tailored messages. “Addressable advertising” will start small, but likely have a big impact on the industry. Continue reading Satellite Providers Pair Up to Provide Targeted Political Ads

IHS Says More Than 70 Percent of U.S. Homes Have Broadband

According to a new Broadband Media Intelligence report by IHS, 86.1 million U.S. households had broadband Internet access at the middle of 2013. That figure represents a 70.2 percent penetration of American households. IHS estimates a 71.3 percent penetration by the end of the year, up from 69.6 percent the previous year. IHS also forecasts coverage will reach 74.1 percent by 2017 (about 94.7 million homes). Cable is currently the leading mode of access. Continue reading IHS Says More Than 70 Percent of U.S. Homes Have Broadband

Pew Research: Tablets and E-Readers See Significant Increase

According to new figures released by the Pew Internet & American Life Project, the number of Americans 16 and older who now own a tablet or e-book reader currently stands at 43 percent. The number of tablet owners has grown to 35 percent, while the share of e-reader devices has grown to 24 percent. Pew Research notes that device owners tend to live in upper-income households and have relatively high levels of education. The numbers also indicate that women are more likely to own e-readers. Continue reading Pew Research: Tablets and E-Readers See Significant Increase

Augmented Reality App Offers Custom Views of IKEA Catalog

IKEA is launching an augmented reality app that works in conjunction with its AR-capable catalog. Consumers can visualize virtual furniture layouts by essentially superimposing furniture on top of the live view of a smartphone or tablet camera. Consumers select a piece of furniture from the catalog, and point their mobile device toward the physical catalog as a reference point for angle, light, position and size. A virtual version of the furniture will then appear on the device. Continue reading Augmented Reality App Offers Custom Views of IKEA Catalog