I tell companies to plan on multiple releases of their innovation – because competitive advantage is fleeting and they better be thinking of next wave.
Proof positive of that comes from this gallery – several cars for under $ 20,000 now boast technology which till a couple of years ago was only available in $ 50,000+ cars
They include the enhanced iPhone integration via Siri Eyes Free, on-screen navigation functionality via a $50 smartphone app, and GM's OnStar telematics system in its Chevy Spark (pictuerd), Around View Monitor in the Nissan Versa, Honda's Lane Watch blind-spot camera, HondaLink apps, and a swipe-enabled touch screen in its Civic.
Some people have a lot of trouble waking up in the morning, especially when the bedroom blinds are keeping the room dark. Motorized window coverings can be programed to automatically open when your alarm goes off, or, if you don’t need to wake at a specific time, they can be synced with a smart home system that triggers the blind to open at sunrise (based on an astronomical clock). You can use the sun to warm your living room in the morning, and insulate it in the evening, by setting your shades to automatically open when the sun is shining on one side of the house, and close when the sun has moved away. If you’re worried about furniture, rugs or art fading from sun exposure, automated shades can keep those damaging rays away without you having to be home to close anything.
Nearly 90% of those over age 65 say they want to remain at home as long as possible, and many companies are trying to make it easier–or more pleasant–for them to live on their own. This summer a small company called Stitch launched a simple social network for seniors seeking companionship, trying to eliminate the loneliness that can lead to poor health. The company employs identity checks and opt-in messaging to protect users from fraudsters who trawl sites like Match.com.
Other companies are trying to make virtual connections and checkups easier. In September, Boston-based Oscar Tech launched two apps. Grandma downloads one of them, Oscar Senior, onto a tablet, and it condenses her operating system into a few basic functions like making video calls, and her grandson downloads the other, Oscar Junior, which allows him to manage her device remotely. Bay Area startup True Link Financial is offering a replacement for Grandma’s checkbook, a common target of swindlers. Its Visa debit card allows an older person’s child or caregiver to set limitations or get text-message alerts about suspicious activities, such as a $1,000 payment to QVC or a hefty cash withdrawal.
The inventor behind RocketSkates has endeavored to sidestep the Segway’s flaws while revisiting its basic idea, with battery-powered, motorized roller skates. Peter Treadway, the Los Angeles-based designer, came up with something that’s fairly unobtrusive, relatively affordable, and not painfully dorky. You strap RocketSkates onto regular flat-soled shoes before floating down the street at 10 mph. Acton, Treadway’s startup, bills the skates as the “world’s first smart wearable transportation.”
PlaySight is also the only service that tracks the speed of each shot, its height over the net and its depth. A software update scheduled for later this year will allow the system to track a ball’s revolutions per minute. In theory, that means players will be able to compare different rackets and even string patterns to see how they affect spin.
Of course, just because players have access to PlaySight’s intel doesn’t mean they’ll suddenly be dropping 120-mile-per-hour (193-kilometer-per-hour) serves into the corners of the service box.
“But when you can see where the ball lands,” Bloom says, “you can work on your weaknesses and try to increase your percentages. One of the most-boring aspects of practice becomes fun.”
The future of K-12 education is arriving fast, and it looks a lot like Mr. G’s classroom in the northern foothills of California’s wine country. Last year, President Obama announced a federal effort to get a laptop, tablet or smartphone into the hands of every student in every school in the U.S. and to pipe in enough bandwidth to get all 49.8 million American kids online simultaneously by 2017. Bulky textbooks will be replaced by flat screens. Worksheets will be stored in the cloud, not clunky Trapper Keepers. The Dewey decimal system will give way to Google. “This one is a big, big deal,” says Secretary of Education Arne Duncan.
That’s one reason Krzanich is haunting maker faires and tinkering at home after work. He’s looking for the Next Big Thing in tech and taking a kitchen-sink approach, putting Intel chips into data-driven devices that fall under the banner “Internet of Things.” “We missed the impact of how big tablets are going to be. Shame on us for that,” says Chief Financial Officer Stacy Smith. “Now we’re off looking—even before we know if a market is going to form.” Early Intel-driven products on the market include a wheelchair, endorsed by physicist Stephen Hawking, that collects biometric data about the user; a cloud-connected scale that can also measure body fat; and a PepsiCo-branded fountain machine that can concoct custom soda flavors.
Coca-Cola South Africa has partnered with bottler Coca-Cola Fortune and communications company BT Global Services to provide underserved South African communities with free Wi-Fi ... which will be built into Coke vending machines.
Initially, the Wi-Fi will be available at machines located in two outlets – the Sasol Integrated Energy Centre in the village of Qunu in the country's Eastern Cape province; and the Thokozane Fast Food store, in the city of Bushbuckridge in Mpumalanga province. Both locations are reportedly near schools and shopping centers, and are popular with locals.