Banjo Raises $16 Million, Aims to Become TiVo for Social Media

Banjo Inc. has raised $16 million in Series B funding in its pursuit to become like a DVR for compelling social media content and conversations. Banjo offers a way to view aggregated, relevant social conversations about news and events attached to specific geographic locations or venues, all in one convenient stream. The startup recently released Android and iOS versions of its mobile app with a new Banjo Rewind feature that lets users access a past event to learn what people were discussing about it. Continue reading Banjo Raises $16 Million, Aims to Become TiVo for Social Media

Prime Focus Technologies to Acquire DAX in $12.5 Million Deal

Prime Focus Technologies (PFT) has agreed to acquire DAX in a deal valued at nearly $12.5 million. PFT is known for CLEAR, its cloud-based content and workflow management platform, while Culver City-based DAX develops media asset management applications and cloud-based production software, including the Emmy-winning Digital Dailies. DAX is actively engaged in the ETC’s Cloud Project, sharing both expertise and development resources. Continue reading Prime Focus Technologies to Acquire DAX in $12.5 Million Deal

Apple Acquires Burstly to Provide Support for App Developers

Burstly and TestFlight provide support for developers and the App Store ecosystem in the form of beta testing services, app monetization, and analytics. TestFlight began as a technical hack that included over-the-air updates for enterprise apps. In 2011, the two companies merged to become Burstly, which Apple has now acquired. Development support is a much needed component of Apple’s system. Apple App Store customers spent more than $10 billion in 2013, with 3 billion app downloads in December alone. Continue reading Apple Acquires Burstly to Provide Support for App Developers

Internet of Things: Technicolor Brings Qeo to AllSeen Alliance

The AllSeen Alliance has announced that Technicolor is joining the organization as a premier member and will contribute its Qeo technology. According to the press release, Technicolor will work with Qualcomm Connected Experiences and the AllSeen Alliance to accelerate the unification of ecosystems related to the “Internet of Things.” Qeo was developed as a secure and future-proof communication framework that enables a user-friendly experience for connected devices and services. Continue reading Internet of Things: Technicolor Brings Qeo to AllSeen Alliance

Info Sharing: Companies on the Verge of Becoming More Open?

Lee Lanselle of Entertainment Development Group and AsiaParks Partners Limited forwarded us a write-up from The New York Times regarding how the information-sharing habits of open source software may soon become a standard in other parts of business. Many companies are discovering the benefits of exposing things once kept secret to a larger population. The pursuit of efficiency, speed and positive change may soon even lead to companies sharing information among competitors. Continue reading Info Sharing: Companies on the Verge of Becoming More Open?

CES 2014: Public and Private Cloud Solutions to be Featured

At the Consumer Electronics Show next week, we expect to see a host of companies, large and small, offering backend cloud integration services. These range from the startup Active Video, with its signature HTML5-powered Cloud TV app, to the publicly-traded prime mover Akamai, offering its Terra enterprise solution. In recent months, we have reported significant cloud-related news from major players such as Amazon, Google, Oracle and Verizon. We anticipate this wave to continue in Las Vegas. Continue reading CES 2014: Public and Private Cloud Solutions to be Featured

BlackBerry Calls Off Company Sale, CEO Heins to Step Down

BlackBerry announced yesterday that it will abandon a sale of the company, following two months of talks with potential buyers including Facebook, Lenovo and private equity firms. Instead, the struggling smartphone maker plans to raise $1 billion by issuing convertible notes to long-term investors including Fairfax Financial Holdings, the company’s largest shareholder. Additionally, BlackBerry said CEO Thorsten Heins will step down. The news resulted in a 16 percent drop in share price. Continue reading BlackBerry Calls Off Company Sale, CEO Heins to Step Down

Gartner Outlines the Top Ten Strategic Tech Trends for 2014

During the Gartner Symposium/ITxpo 2013 in Orlando, Florida, the IT leaders at Gartner identified the Top 10 Strategic Technology Trends expected for 2014: mobile device diversity and management, mobile apps and applications, the Internet of Everything, hybrid cloud and IT as service broker, cloud/client architecture, the era of the personal cloud, software-defined anything (SDx), Web-scale IT, smart machines, and 3D printing. Continue reading Gartner Outlines the Top Ten Strategic Tech Trends for 2014

Verizon to Launch Public Beta of Cloud Platform This Year

Verizon is planning to roll out a public beta of its Verizon Cloud “Infrastructure as a Service” platform and cloud-based object storage in the fourth quarter of this year. Verizon Cloud, which includes two primary components — Verizon Cloud Compute (the IaaS platform) and Verizon Cloud Storage (an object-based service) — will target enterprises, mid-size companies and development shops. The launch will initially involve a few hundred new users per month. Continue reading Verizon to Launch Public Beta of Cloud Platform This Year

Verizon: Big Corporations Still Moving to the Public Cloud

Verizon recently released a study that found that NSA surveillance concerns have not decreased the adoption of public cloud services by large corporations. Companies have been increasing their amount of data stored in the cloud. Public clouds remain attractive as they allow companies to decrease or increase the scale of resources, and to share the cost of ownership among users. But some big companies are looking to vendors outside the U.S. to avoid the NSA. Continue reading Verizon: Big Corporations Still Moving to the Public Cloud

SIGGRAPH: Canon Previews Handheld Mixed Reality Technology

Canon has been demonstrating a handheld version of its MREAL Mixed Reality technology at SIGGRAPH this week. According to Canon, the technology merges virtual objects with the real world, at full scale in three dimensions. The company launched its MREAL Mixed Reality headset earlier this year. The handheld version functions similarly to the headset, by enabling the use of markers or sensors to render images in real space. Continue reading SIGGRAPH: Canon Previews Handheld Mixed Reality Technology

BYOD: Companies Encourage Employees to Bring Their Own

Many companies plan to lower costs by encouraging employees to bring their own electronic devices to work. Gartner released a study that predicts the number of workers using mobile apps in the workplace will double by 2015. “BYOD strategies are the most radical change to the economics and the culture of client computing in business in decades,” claims David Willis, VP and analyst at Gartner. “The benefits of BYOD include creating new mobile workforce opportunities, increasing employee satisfaction, and reducing or avoiding costs.” Continue reading BYOD: Companies Encourage Employees to Bring Their Own

Samsung Preps Android to Take On BlackBerry in Enterprise

Samsung Electronics has another target in its ever-growing sights: the BlackBerry. Until recently, Samsung has marketed its smartphones very successfully to consumers worldwide, but never to businesses. That’s been changing over the past year, as the South Korean manufacturer has been beefing up the Google Android software that runs its phones, in an effort to give businesses a phone with increased security. Continue reading Samsung Preps Android to Take On BlackBerry in Enterprise

Big Data Predictions for 2015: Are We Ready to Manage 8 Zettabytes?

  • CenturyLink has released an infographic illustrating that 1.8 zettabytes of data will be created this year — and by 2015, that number will be 7.9 (equal to 18 million times the digital assets in the Library of Congress).
  • By the end of 2012, 50 percent of consumer Internet traffic will be devoted to video, making the largest contribution to the data boom. However, in 2015, most of the traffic will come from wireless devices.
  • Much of the data produced by consumers is “shadow data,” things like search history.
  • The infographic also details resource growth and notes “even as IT costs are dropping, capital expenditures are rising.”
  • “Naturally, enterprises hold most of the data, whether it’s created by consumers or by knowledge workers on company time,” reports ReadWriteWeb. “That’s a lot of responsibility for managing data: What’s your company’s data strategy to handle the incoming deluge of data?”

Forty-One Percent of Enterprises Block Access for Employee-Owned Macs

  • Ars Technica reports: “Forty-one percent of enterprises do not allow employee-owned Macs access to any company resources, even Web-based e-mail, according to the results of a new Forrester survey of IT executives at North American and European companies.”
  • Some companies will offer a stipend to employees to buy Macs if they prefer, but the enterprise seems to stay away because of higher prices and ingrained IT Microsoft traditions.
  • Forrester suggests that productivity is linked with the freedom to choose personal computers. Many employees prefer the “uncluttered Macs — especially those with solid-state drives, which are more responsive and boot in seconds,” according to Forrester analyst David Johnson.
  • Problems arise with the need for Mac-specific management software and file sharing, but Johnson points out tech departments that stand in the way “will eventually get run over.”