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Smartphone maker Xiaomi reportedly met with No. 1 social networking site Facebook about potential investment opportunities in late 2014. It appears a deal between Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Xiaomi CEO Lei Jun didn't happen, but reveals how serious Xiaomi is to expand into the United States and other lucrative western markets.
Xiaomi, the No. 3 smartphone manufacturer in the world, and Facebook showed initial interest - but political and commercial roadblocks would have occurred, as Facebook is banned inside of China. Since the deal couldn't be put together, Xiaomi collected $1.1 billion from Chinese investors - and the company's valuation is now estimated at $45 billion.
"Facebook wants to get into China, and Xiaomi is keen to expand outside, so they both recognize the importance of working together," an unnamed source told Reuters.
Eight years is a really long time in the technology world, because around this time in 2007, Steve Jobs was unveiling Apple's first addition to the smartphone market and little did we know what it would amount to today.
With Samsung and BlackBerry running rampant in the smartphone community and with many users still using their trusty flip phones, Apple came in with a bang, instantly winning over millions of devout fanatics and birthing Apple fanboys - but at the same time providing a decent product at a respectable price point.
On January the 9th at MacWorld 2007, the late Jobs unveiled his first addition to the smartphone community - aiming to steal the thunder from CES 2007, he certainly did a good job. Teasing the release by claiming that Apple had produced a "widescreen iPod with touch controls" and a "breakthrough Internet communication device," Jobs produced a 3.5-inch touch-screen offering - set to rock the technology world.
Panasonic has announced the Toughpad FZ-R1 7" all-in-one mobile point-of-sale tablet, powered by Microsoft Windows 8. Announced during the National Retail Federation (NRF) Big Show, the device has a PIN pad, mag stripe reader and NFC compatibility, a Toshiba statement notes.
The Toughpad FZ-R1 runs an Intel Celeron N2807, 10-finger touch display on a 7" screen, 2 or 4GB SDRAM, 64GB eMMC storage, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, USB 3.0, and Windows 8.1
"The retail world is changing dramatically," said Dan Diliberti, senior product development manager of the tablet and payment systems at Panasonic System Communications of North America. "Fraud liability is shifting from credit card companies to retailers in the US this fall if they don't adopt EMV, and the widespread adoption of smartphones has upended brick and mortar retail strategies."
The tablet market will see its sales growth continue to shrink in 2015, with just eight percent market gain expected in 2015. There will be 233 million tablet units sold worldwide, and Google Android will continue to lead the way.
As expected by Gartner and other analyst groups, tablets weren't a significant draw during CES 2015 - while tablets will continue to sell, they've largely lost lost momentum gained over the past four years.
"The collapse of the tablet market in 2014 was alarming," said Ranjit Atwal, research director at Gartner, in a press statement. "In the last two years global sales of tablets were growing in double-digits. The steep drop can be explained by several factors. One is that the lifetime of tablets is being extended - they are shared out amongst family members and software upgrades, especially for iOS devices, keep the tablets current. Another factor includes the lack of innovation in hardware which refrains consumers from upgrading."
CES 2015 - We've released a few news articles on Rapoo's new gaming branch, VPRO, bringing out brand new PC gaming peripherals, but now it's time to take it back a notch.
Rapoo have just announced their first range of protective tablet cases, offering built-in Bluetooth keyboards into the mix. Suitable for a wide range of models including Samsung's 8", 8.4", 10.1", 10.5" and Tab Pro 12.2" models, these cases feature an ultra-slim design.
This line of keyboard cases is set for launch in Spring 2015 and will be listed at between $49.99 - $99.99 in major retail stores.
Children using smartphones before bed leads to later bedtimes, less sleep, and increased fatigue, a study from UC Berkeley recently confirmed. Kids who have "small screen" electronics in the same room they sleep in get an average of 21 minutes less sleep than children who don't have access to electronics before bed.
More than half (54 percent) of fourth and seventh graders reported sleeping near their smartphone, as parents are being urged to keep smartphones away from children close to bed time.
"Kids need to learn to deal with fear of missing out and they need to learn to give their brains a real rest," said Dr. Catherine Steiner-Adair, author of "The Big Disconnect: Protecting Childhood and Family Relationships in the Digital Age," in a statement to Yahoo Parenting. "Sleep is so important, and having that phone next to the bed - when they get up to go to the bathroom, they check it, which can lead to 10 minutes or two hours online. Their psychological dependency on the phone is increased if they have it with them all the time."
The quarter ending November 2014 saw drastic change thanks to the Apple iPhone 6 and 6 Plus launch, with iOS able to chomp into Google Android's lead. The iPhone 6 was the highest selling phone during that specific quarter, accounting for 19 percent of all US smartphone sales, according to the Kantar Worldpanel research group.
"A decline in Android market share does not necessarily translate into bad news for all the ecosystem's players," said Carolina Milanesi, Chief of Research at Kantar Worldpanel ComTech, in a statement. "The choice of brands and devices within the ecosystem empowers consumers to drive different fortunes for the players in it."
Apple iPhone sales racked up 47.4 of smartphone sales in the United States, 4.3 percent higher year-over-year - and iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus are reportedly still going strong. Android still controls 69.9 percent of the mobile OS lead in Europe, dropping 3.2 percent year-over-year.
CES 2015 - Chinese electronics company Lenovo has successfully led its PCs and laptops into the United States and Europe, hoping to mimic that success with its smartphones.
"The next step for Chinese smartphone makers is to go overseas," said Yang Yuanging, chairman and CEO for Lenovo, in an interview with Sina news at CES. "But whether they are able to compete in the global market remains an issue."
Based on global smartphone shipments alone, Lenovo was No. 4 in the world after shipping 16.9 million units during Q3 of 2014, according to IDC figures. However, its acquisition of Motorola will bump its market share from 5.2 percent in Q3 2014 up to 7.4 percent currently, leapfrogging Xiaomi and now trailing behind Samsung and Apple - though will face a tough road to try catch up to either company.
Storage Visions 2015 -Shawn DuBravac from the CEA stopped by the booth to discuss market trends and challenges facing the broader PC market. The emergence of mobile devices has challenged the PC market, but growth has returned as users are upgrading their computers to new operating systems. Tablets were projected to kill the PC market, but sales of tablets have actually began to decline.
CEA organizes CES, the world's largest tradeshow, but is also an ANSI accredited standards body. They also feature several policy groups and research firms. As the internet of things expands, CEA is tracking market trends. There are many theoretical uses for embedded sensors, and this will eventually result in over 50 billion devices connected to the internet. Shawn discusses some of the emerging trends.
CES 2015 - Our first official meeting of CES 2015 this year was with Analogix, who always have something to impress us. This year, they have the new Nano-Console, which is a tiny little device that connects your smart device (Android and iOS) to your TV. This little device has a smart touch pad that can be used as a remote, with hardware Android buttons for back, home, apps and much more.
As you can see, the Analogix Nano-Console is not a big device by any means.
Here we have the touch pad remote that is super useful, with a massive range. We tested this in the suite Analogix were staying in, at around 15-20 feet and it was still operational, even through a very thick wall. It started slowing down, but it was still working. Another impressive part of the Nano-Console.