Author Archives: Daniel Price

15 Promising Cloud-Based Video Conferencing Services

15 Promising Cloud-Based Video Conferencing Services

Video Conferencing Services

The video conferencing services market is expected to reach US$ 6.40 Billion by 2020 from the current $3.31 Billion.

However, there are also concerns for the equipment market – IDC reports – “The worldwide enterprise videoconferencing equipment market has been experiencing some downs lately — with consecutive quarters and two years of declining revenue growth in 2013 (-13.1%) and 2012 (-5.0%). This is mostly attributed to the impact of delayed customer buying decisions, lower-cost systems, more software-centric solutions, and the rise of cloud-based video services offerings for business. On the bright side, most or all of the videoconferencing equipment vendors are now offering cloud-based video alternatives for customers.

The good news is that there is still a huge market as video conferencing will continue to be one of the most relied upon forms of communication by businesses. There are a vast number of different services and competitors to choose from in the marketplace, and this article will aim to draw attention to some of the diverse options available to both large and small companies; it is not necessarily a list of ‘biggest’ or ‘best’. This list contains a combination of both cloud based video and conferencing services.

WebEx

 Video Conferencing Companies  

WebEx is both widely known and widely used. According to their website, 51 million people per month attend a WebEx meeting, there are 3 billion minutes of video conferencing a month on their service, and 93 percent of Fortune 100 companies use Cisco’s video collaborate services. The free account gives you three people per meeting, while up to 100 people costs £49 per month.

Blue Jeans

 Video-Conferencing-Service-Interoperable-Cloud

Blue Jeans’ customers include Facebook, Office Depot, Stanford University and Match.com, so you can be certain they are a trustworthy supplier. They were a ‘Top 10 Cloud Start-up’ in a recent feature by CIO Magazine, and have experienced more than 500 percent growth in the last two years. The biggest benefit of their service is that it enables interoperability between all major video platforms. 

Avaya

 AvayaLive-Video-Service

The AvayaLive Video service offers video collaboration in the cloud. Due to the lack of necessary capital investment and technical expertise to set it up, it makes the service perfect for small start-ups. The first thirty days are free, then the cost goes up to $99 minimum. 

Skype

 Skype

No list of video conferencing services would be complete without Microsoft’s ubiquitous offering. Businesses can benefit from Skype buttons on their website, Skype numbers that accept non-Skype calls, and a ‘Skype Manager’ which can create accounts, allocate credit, and manage features. 

StarLeaf

 Video Conferencing Services

Clients of StarLeaf include Dr Martens shoes, Mercedes Benz, and Carglass, all of who offer testimonials on their website. They offer alternative systems for meeting rooms, desktop users, and mobile workers. As with most cloud services, you’ll get all the benefits of video conferencing without the hassles typically associated with owning, managing and maintaining the system. 

Lifesize

 HD Video Conferencing Solutions for Small to Large Businesses-Lifesize

Lifesize isn’t cheap, and is typically aimed at larger firms. A 12 month contract for 100 users costs $12,999 per year ($11 per employee, per month), while a large scale deployment for 500 people costs $27,999 per year. It offers the best of point-to-point, multipoint, and streaming collaboration, without needing to configure anything yourself. 

Zoom 

Video Conferencing-Web Conferencing-Online-Meetings-Zoom

Zoom have 65,000 clients, including Texas A&M University, Drexel University, and DLA Piper. Their free plan, which is perfect for SMEs and start-ups, allows up to 25 users, unlimited 1-to-1 meetings, and an unlimited number of meetings – however, each meeting is limited to 40 minutes. Their paid plans are either $9.99 or $49.99 per user, depending on the features you require. 

Polycom

 Polycom-Video-Conferencing-Telepresence

Polycom claim to have “the industry’s most interoperable, scalable, and secure UC platform”, which offers business-to-business collaboration that’s independent of application, system, or device. It even integrates contacts directly from Facebook and Google Hangouts. Clients include Ireland’s Chamber of Commerce, the British National Health Service (NHS), and alcohol manufacturers Heineken. 

LoopUp

 LoopUp-Global-Conferencing-Collaboration

LoopUp was founded in 2003 and has entered the conferencing space in 2006. LoopUp sells direct to the enterprise market and via major distribution partners including Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise, BT, and Cable & Wireless Communications. They offer 24×7 global support,  Free Administrator tools, Dedicated account management and flexible Pay As You Go plans.

Google Hangouts

Google-Hangouts 

Along with Skype, Google Hangouts is the other ‘big hitter’, well-known to people around the world rather than solely in industry circles. If your company uses Google’s other services such as Calendar, Keep, and Drive, the app with integrate with them flawlessly. It lacks some of technical aspects of the other offerings in the list, but is great for very small teams and start-ups. 

Vidyo

 HD-Video-Conferencing-Telepresence-Vidyo

Vidyo aims to sell itself to the distributed workforce market. Forrester Research, the well-known market analysis firm, uses it to connect 2,200 staff around the world, while CERN, the research lab in Switzerland, uses it to connect a massive 20,000 employees globally. The entire system is web-based, meaning employees can use any device to plug into conferences regardless of where they are. 

Adobe Connect

Adobe-Connect

Adobe® Connect™ is one of the most recognized name in web conferencing platform for web meetings, eLearning, and webinars. It powers mission critical web conferencing solutions end-to-end, on virtually any device, and enables organizations from leading corporations to the U.S. Department of Defense to fundamentally improve productivity. Their pricing starts at $45 US per month.

GoToMeeting

Easy-Online-Meetings-HD-Video-Conferencing-GoToMeeting

One of the most recognized names in video conferencing. Gotomeeting owned by Citrix is no stranger to this competitive market. They’ve been in business for over 10 years and have a huge list of clients and options for both start-ups and Enterprise businesses.

IVCi

IVCI

IVCi’s cloud video service can include traditional endpoints, multiple software clients, and an assortment of desktop and mobile devices. They also offer ‘virtual meeting rooms’ that will allow multiple participants to meet face-to-face, and interoperability with Microsoft Lync and WebRTC. They’ve been in operation for 18 years.

OmniJoin

Brother-Online

Operated by tech giant Brother, OmniJoin is their cloud-based web conferencing service. The 14 day trial is free, and from there they offer three main plans; Omnijoin Lite for up to 8 users (but without file transfer) costs $15 per month, OmniJoin Main which costs $29 a month for up to 12 users and 1080p HD quality, and OmniJoin Pro for 20 users for $59 per month.

Have you used any of the services we discussed? Perhaps you have your own service that didn’t make our list? We love to hear from you – let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

By Daniel Price

Confused By The Cloud? A New eBook Reveals All…

Confused By The Cloud? A New eBook Reveals All…

Confused By The Cloud?

Cloud computing can be a difficult concept to grasp. For those who have not yet started to use the plethora of services available, either on a personal or enterprise level, it’s
difficult to know where to start. What’s the difference between SaaS and IaaS? How do you know whether your organisation needs a hybrid cloud or a private cloud? What level of support, service, and security do you need?

Luckily, an excellent new eBook has just been published by Dell which aims to explain some of these questions. Titled “Demystifying the cloud: A guide to understanding cloud computing”, the publication acts as a complete walkthrough of the industry, bringing the differing parts of cloud computing that you need to be aware of into focus.

dell-cloud-free-ebook

It is available in both web format and as a pdf download with no registration required.

What’s In The book?

The book is split into six chapters, each of which tackles a different aspect of cloud computing.

Chapter 1, “What makes cloud so mysterious?

The opening chapter looks at what exactly the cloud is, how it works, and the different ways of deploying it. As it tries to explain what the cloud is, it discusses the different models of computing (such as ‘Mainframe computing’, ‘Utility computing’, and ‘Grid/distributed computing’), before drawing the conclusion that “Cloud computing shares characteristics with [lots of models], but none of them – by themselves – completely describe cloud computing”. It then moves on to teach users about public clouds, private clouds and hybrid clouds, and the differences between IaaS, SaaS, and PaaS.

Chapter 2, “Why cloud technology is miraculous

The next section addresses the cloud’s benefits and talks you through what it can offer to companies. Topics covered include how the cloud can “reduce IT costs and increase business agility” by offering just the right amount of computing capacity, how innovation becomes easier thanks to the lack of need for a data centre, and how the cloud has become for catalyst for the phenomenal growth now being seen in the Internet of Things. It even includes a mini quiz!

Chapter 3, “Multi-cloud Challenges

Chapter 3 assesses some of the issues and problems that users need to plan for and tackle. The biggest takeaway from the section is in the opening line, “Those easily-acquired, amazing services can accumulate quickly, and if left unchecked, they may unleash chaos across your company. Plan for the big picture before you jump in”.

It then lists a series of helpful questions that would-be users need to consider; what kind of availability does your provider guarantee? Does your provider apply different security measures to different types of data? What plans are in place to recover from security breaches as well as man-made and natural disasters? Does your provider offer support 24/7 all year long? It concludes by saying that if you’re unsure how to create a fully unified cloud environment, you should use a cloud broker.

Infographic-cloud-adoption

Sponsored eBook Giveaway By Dell

By Daniel Price

12 Inspirational Stories of Animals Using Technology

12 Inspirational Stories of Animals Using Technology

12 Inspirational Stories of Animals Using Technology 

Pets bring so much joy to humans. Whether you’re a dog person, a cat person, or a hamster person, there is nothing better than taking time out of a hectic schedule to relax with our your furry friends. Given how much happiness animals bring to us, it’s fantastic that modern science and technology now allows us to give so much back to them – especially in the areas of protection, well-being, and health.

Read on to learn about some fantastically inspirational stories involving animals and tech:

1) Rabbit on wheels…

Lily was taken in by North Texas Rabbit Sanctuary with a broken back, a condition that required her legs to be amputated.

 

2) Bird with a man-made beak… 

Poachers shot this American Eagle’s beak off, but a mechanical engineer saved the day.

Beauty and the Beak

3) Famous pig uses K’nex

 This pig is so famous he’s become the subject of three children’s books.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Z-uO5TPQfM

 4) A 3D printed foot… 

Thanks to NovaCopy, this duck with a backwards foot can lead a normal life.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ewU8ZIf3Bg

 5) The goldfish that couldn’t swim… 

If you’re a fish that can’t swim you’ve got a huge problem, unless you’ve got an owner who secretly a genius!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qsRwn20xAco

 6) The dolphin with no tail…

Winter lives in a marine aquarium in Florida. She lost her tail after getting caught in the buoy line of a crab trap.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HbtMo3rhSgo 

7) Elephant with a prosthetic foot… 

Chhouk was found alone and unhappy in the Cambodian jungle. He could hardly walk after a poacher’s trap destroyed his foot.

8) A sea turtle with an artificial fin…

Prior to humans’ intervention, Allison the green sea turtle could only swim around in tight circles because she only had one flipper.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TpzATXGBIqQ

9) Double legged calf…

This calf was the first cow in the world to have two new limbs.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=99n1OdLDlPU

10) A sheep in a wheelchair…

Summer the sheep lost control of her back legs and it looked like she’d have to be put down.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G7ZzWTw7P_E

11) Cat with prosthetic legs…

Oscar was the first cat in the world with prosthetic legs after an incident on a farm.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NqUEraHGHvI

12) Tsunami dog…

Not a case of using robotics, but this dog was found floating on debris 1.2 miles out to sea after the Japanese tsunami in 2011.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1dNdbV2jJx4

Do you know of any inspirational stories about pets or animals? Let us know in the comments!

By Dan Price

12 WordPress CMS Managed Hosting Services

12 WordPress CMS Managed Hosting Services

WordPress CMS Managed Hosting Services

WordPress has exploded in popularity as a blogging tool and content management system in recent years, and is now used by more than 23.3 percent of the top 10 million websites worldwide. Due to its popularity, several web hosting providers have chosen to offer ‘managed WordPress hosting’; a concierge service where a wide range of technical aspects of running a WordPress site are managed by the host (for example, security, speed, WordPress updates, daily backups, website uptime, and scalability).

WordPress VIP

Wordpress-VIP

WordPress VIP is operated by WordPress itself. They are two levels of service – ‘cloud hosting’ and ‘support’. The prior (which includes unlimited traffic, backups, SaaS, and round-the-clock support) costs $5,000 per month, while if you want to host the site yourself and just want their support on optimising and scaling your site, it costs $1,250 per month. With a range of blue-chip clients, such as NBC, TED, CNN, Time, and UPS, you know you’re in good hands.

A Small Orange

Small-Orange

They offer six different plans to choose from (shared hosting, semi-dedicated hosting, business hosting, dedicated servers, cloud VPS hosting, and reseller hosting) which range from $5 per month for the cheapest shared plan (5GB storage, 50GB bandwidth), to $275 per month for the most expensive dedicated plan (a Dual Intel Xeon E5-2620 server with 12 Cores, a 12,947 CPUMark score, and 32GB RAM).

CloudWays

CloudWays

 

Clients such as Tecturized, Tarambuka, and ECOFYS all giving glowing testimonials about CloudWays. Standout features include the ability to deploy unlimited applications on top of ‘super-clouds’ (such as Amazon’s EC2), a VMAN stack configuration that guarantees 40-50 percent better page load times than a traditional host, and a dedicated security team. Prices range from $5 per month to $855 per month.

FlyWheel

flywheel

FlyWheel’s personal plan (25,000 monthly visits, 10GB disk space, 500GB bandwidth) starts at $30 per month, while their ‘Agency’ plan costs £250 per month but includes 30 WordPress installs, 600,000 monthly visits, 120GB disk space, and 8TB bandwidth. With well-known brands such as The Washington Post and Wyman on-board, they’re a name we can expect to hear a lot more about.

Kinsta

Kinsta

 

One of Kinsta’s biggest attractions is its ability to choose your location. They understand that the nearer the data centre is to a site’s core user-base the faster its page will load, and while WPEngine offer three data centres, Flywheel offer five, and Pagely only offer one, Kinsta have fourteen locations across four different continents. Prices start at $157 per month and go all the way up to $487. Existing clients include The Daily Banter, Sleeping Baby, and Bitcoinist.net.

LightningBase

lightning-base

 

LightningBase offer four plans – $9.95 per month for 1 WordPress site, 10,000 pageviews and 1 GB SSD storage, $19.95 per month for 3 WordPress sites, 25,000 pageviews and 3 GB SSD storage, $49.95 per month for 10 WordPress sites, 100,000 pageviews and 10 GB SSD storage, and finally $99.95 per month for 25 WordPress sites, 250,000 pageviews and 25 GB SSD storage.

MediaTemple

media-temple

 

MediaTemple’s web hosting and cloud services now power more than 1.5 million websites in 100 different countries, and boast some of the world’s biggest brands as their clients – including Samsung, Aiga, Obey, and a range of famous designers, artists, bloggers, and entrepreneurs. Their personal plan costs $20 per month, but for larger sites they will create a custom plan for you and then give you a quote.

Pagely

Pagely

 

Based out of Phoenix, Arizona and Bristol, England, Pagely was the first ever managed WordPress hosting platform. They have a hugely impressive list of clients, such as Microsoft, Twitter, Facebook, Vonage, and a string of other Fortune 500 companies, governments, and universities. Plans start at $99 per month (three sites, 10GB disk space) run up to $999 per month (35 sites, 50GB disk space).

Pantheon

pantheon

 

With large clients such as Cisco and the UN across sectors as diverse as financial services, government, healthcate, media, and technology they immediately demonstrate that they offer a viable solution no matter what your industry. They claim that recent tests demonstrated they had the fastest average response time out of all the benchmarked providers, and also came through with no errors, even under heavy load. Prices go from $25 per month to $400 per month.

PressLabs

Presslabs

 

Their cheapest plan is $149 per month and their most expensive plan is $299 per month, though they will give you an individual quote if you have special requirements. Clients include Fredo & Pid’jin, Motivation Grid, and Segment Next, and they have data centres in North America, Europe, and Oceania.

WebSynthesis

Synthesis

 

Websynthesis’ biggest clients are BlogWorld and GeekBeat TV. On their website they claim their five biggest selling points are a) superior uptime and page load speeds, b) keyword and social media research, c) enhanced security defences d) content and website optimization, and e) their influencer outreach tools. Their standard plan is $47 per month, while their most expensive one is $300 per month.

WPEngine

WP-Engine

 

WPEngine, one of the industries foremost managed WordPress hosts, has a personal plan available for $29 per month (25,000 traffic, one install), a professional plan for $99 per month (100,000 traffic, 10 installs), and a business plan for $249 per month (400,000 traffic, 25 installs). Clients include WP101.com, WPMayor.com, and Kalzumeus Software.

By Daniel Price

City Network Brings OpenStack IaaS To Europe

City Network Brings OpenStack IaaS To Europe

OpenStack IaaS To Europe

Sweden’s City Network have today announced they will become the first European provider to offer OpenStack in multiple data centres around Europe. The firm is already one of Europe’s fastest growing infrastructure as a service (IaaS) providers and has 25,000 customers worldwide, but this will be the first time their clients will be given the ability to benefit from OpenStack’s transparency, security, and scalability. The service will be called City Cloud.

Johan Christenson, CEO of City Network, said in a recent press release that they are “the first European vendor to make the infrastructure platform of the future available to businesses in multiple European data centres”, claiming that they are now becoming a “clear alternative for all companies and organizations that are looking for an open and secure infrastructure platform based on open APIs”.

170px-OpenStackA report recently published by IDC suggests that the public cloud services market will turn over $127 billion in 2018 and that IaaS sales growth will accelerate six times faster than the IT market in general. Furthermore, 451 Research estimates that revenue from services developed on the OpenStack platform will increase from the present-day $883 million to more than $3.3 billion in 2018; it all means that City Network are confident that the timing of their launch is perfect.

There has also been a major growth in the number and diversity of business and organisations that are taking advantage of its benefits. Jonathan Bryce, executive director of the OpenStack Foundation, thinks a broad set of companies are embracing OpenStack for both public and private cloud implementations – for example – the vast majorities of major universities and research organisations around the world support it, and several large multi-national companies take advantage of it for various business critical apps, both cloud-based and premise-based.

For Christenson, the benefits of switching to City Network’s OpenStack solution is obvious. “In today’s changing digital economy, it’s critical to any business to be able to quickly adjust to infrastructure needs—regardless of whether the requirements are related to new projects or to establishing operations in new markets,” he said. “Being stuck in inflexible, proprietary and less transparent solutions is expensive and can be downright devastating for businesses. With the infrastructure delivered based on OpenStack, we remove these business risks”. The available research certainly supports his beliefs; a recent survey by the firm found that 36 percent of the respondents emphasised OpenStack’s scalability and 31 percent emphasised its cost effectiveness as being the main benefits. Crucially, a mammoth 76 percent said that they are “likely, or very likely, to use the OpenStack platform for most of their IT infrastructure”.

City Network’s customers benefit from only paying for the server capacity, storage, backup and monitoring that they require. They can then easily scale up or down depending on their situation. Their service can be easily managed via a web interface.

Have you used OpenStack? What did you think? Perhaps you’re in the 76 percent and thinking about converting? Let us know in the comments below.

By Daniel Price

Industry Expert Says Cyber-Security Is Not Fit For Purpose

Industry Expert Says Cyber-Security Is Not Fit For Purpose

Industry Expert Says Cyber-Security Is Not Fit For Purpose

Several people have been claiming for a long time that anti-virus needs a major re-imagining, and after Mandiant released its annual M-Trends report on data breaches yesterday, that chorus of voices is only getting louder. Kowsik Guruswamy, CTO for Menlo Security, is responsible for one of those voices:

CTO-Kowsik-200x200I’d say a new approach to cyber security is well overdue, but perhaps from a different perspective”, said Kowsik. “As the man from Symantec said, ‘antivirus is dead‘.  That’s pretty significant given that nearly all security technologies today are essentially antivirus by another name – they all ultimately try to tell the good from the bad

He claims the current approach is failing badly, asserting that even ‘cutting-edge’ security products incredibly take an average of 205 days to uncover breaches. “The take away is we’ve got to get smarter about eliminating malware all together”, he adds. “Not just invest more time and resources in post-breach detection technologies.

In addition to the 205-day average, 69 percent of breaches were reported to the target organizations from an external source rather than by their own products and surveillance. It means that faced with what Kowsik terms ‘data breach fatigue’, the public are increasingly demanding answers as to who are behind the hacks and who had been effected. “Symantec’s Senior Vice President for Information Security came out last year in an WSJ interview saying anti-virus is dead… and the Mandiant report confirms just that”, said Kowsik. “If security software completely fails to detect a piece of attack software whose source code is out in the open, what are the odds of it having any hope against zero days or closed source malware?

security-breach

We instinctively know that malware is malware and all forms are bad for an organization, but it turns out the lines are getting blurrier between nation-state attacks and financially motivated cybercrime” he says. “First it was Regin, then it was QWERTY, and then turns out it they were the same. It’s one of the reasons why the ‘whodunnits’ are get harder to pin point”.

Whatever the future may hold for anti-virus, changes are needed. It’s people like Kowsik and reports like Mandiant’s that are going to be the drivers behind those changes, as companies and governments wake up to the realisation that their clients and customers will no longer stand by passively as their data is stolen, often from organisations who’ve criticised for amassing the vast amounts of information in their first place.

What do you think? Is Kowsik right or do you have a different interpretation of the report? We’d love to hear from you. Let us know in the comments below.

By Daniel Price

3 Ways The Internet Of Things Is Effecting The Design Of Our Cities

3 Ways The Internet Of Things Is Effecting The Design Of Our Cities

3 Ways The Internet Of Things Is Effecting The Design Of Our Cities

The internet of things is changing everything about the world around us. Never before in human history has the world been changing so quickly. In truth, the rate of growth in the technology world has been growing exponentially for a long time, but since the advent of smartphones in the last decade, things that we never consider to be ‘technological’, like parks, waste collections, and sidewalks are all falling under the spell of the internet of things.

Some of the biggest changes aren’t taking place in the home, on our computers, or in high-end cyber companies, but in the very cities we inhabit. The internet of things is changing the way we interact with around urban surrounds, and in tandem, tech in our urban surrounds is changing our habits and the way we conduct our lives.

Here we take a look at a few areas:

1) City Lighting

NYC-blackfriday-shopping

Exciting? No. Vital? Yes. Street lighting is one of the most important aspects of city design. It can change the routes people take to get from A to B, can give a feeling of security, and can drastically effect the mood and feel of a place.

Now, there are initiatives around the world to turn street lights into Wi-Fi hotspots, thus further subconsciously altering the routes we take if we know we’ll be ‘on the grid’ for the duration of our journey. New York is one example of a city that’s trying it out. “This administration has committed to making New York City work better for every community, and this free outdoor Wi-Fi is a down payment on that promise,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio at the time of the project’s launch. The city is introducing a network of 7,000 hotspots which they hope will bring in $17.5 million for the city annually through various revenue streams associated with them.

2) Public Space

Public spaces such as parks and sidewalks are also beginning to utilize the internet of things in a bid to make city life easier and more efficient.

Kelly Johnson, co-founder and design partner at Future Cities Lab, says “There’s a huge potential for public space to communicate all sorts of things to phones – social content, political content, things related to energy consumption, and much more”.

He believes that ideas such as information delivery, surveillance, danger management, and emergency vehicle path clearing can all be improved by using these spaces more effectively and connecting them to the IoT.

3) Infrastructure

Imagine a world where all cars are driverless, congestion is managed in real-time, and public transport routes and frequency are dynamic. It would mean infrastructure no longer has to be planned to allow for human error. Instead of making traffic lanes wider, they can become narrower, bike lanes can be added, and there becomes more free space.

Paul Salama, senior planner at WXY – an urban planning firm – says “I see a future where, if you don’t have to worry about human error, then you can design these spaces in the way that is the most comfortable for a person. It’s an exciting vision”. John Picard, an architect and sustainability expert, agrees with Salama “we’re moving toward a ‘demand response’ smart grid, with which we can determine how much power or how much of a specific resource is required at a given time”, he says.

What do you think? Have you noticed the IoT start to affect your urban environment? Let us know in the comments below.

By Daniel Price

Venture Capitalists’ Growing Interest In The Internet Of Things

Venture Capitalists’ Growing Interest In The Internet Of Things

Venture Capitalists’ Growing Interest In The Internet Of Things

Investors, even venture capitalists, can be a cautious bunch. While they may have a reputation for throwing money at a sector or industry just to see what sticks, the reality of their approach couldn’t be further from the truth. As we reported back in August last year, venture capitalists have been using big data for a long time to spot their next investment, but now the time to actually invest in the technology they are using appears to be edging closer.

CFO-Invest

As markets for wearables, smart TVs, connected cars and the smart home begin to mature, the venture capitalists are sensing the time for them to take the plunge is ripening. “The connected car and home are as big an opportunity as the connected phone,” said Venky Ganesan, a managing director at Menlo Ventures. “When the iPhone came out in 2007 we had a difficult time seeing all the things that would emerge out of that platform. Similarly, it will be tough to envision and predict all the innovations that are going to emerge out of this platform, but I am sure they will and it will be equally transformative”.

Ganesan’s observations are reinforcement by the reality on the ground. Undoubtedly a shift is taking place; increasingly investors are thinking less about hardware and more about software, infrastructure and security – the primary enablers of the internet of things. As Gartner expects the IoT market to double in the next two years and almost triple in the next three, the challenge for potential investors becomes when to ‘place their bets’, rather than if.

Dominate Fund Managing Partner Ben Parr is less cautious, and believes that it’s not too early to get involved. “I think we probably will make our first investment this year,” Parr said. “We know companies have trouble getting traction and getting prices down … but there will only be a small set of winners and we want to be one of them”.Jason Krikorian, a Partner at investment firm DCM is cautious. “The points of connectivity are proliferating”, he said, “but it’s imperative that all these devices and systems work together in a way that is comprehensive”.

invest

As we’ve discussed before on CloudTweaks, this lack of standards and interoperability is one of the biggest challenges facing the internet of things and wearable tech over the next two years. It means competing formats such as Bluetooth, ZigBee, HomeKit, Iris and SmartThings aren’t likely to converge this year, making investment bets complicated to time. Eventually one may emerge as the ‘winner’, but with the current market that is almost impossible to predict.

What do you think? Are you an investor? Would you put your own money into some of the smaller start-ups and young companies who have a chance to become the leader in Wed 3.0, or is the market still too immature and the risk too great? Let us know in the comments below.

By Daniel Price

CloudTweaks Comics
Infographic: IoT Programming Essential Job Skills

Infographic: IoT Programming Essential Job Skills

Learning To Code As many readers may or may not know we cover a fair number of topics surrounding new technologies such as Big data, Cloud computing , IoT and one of the most critical areas at the moment – Information Security. The trends continue to dictate that there is a huge shortage of unfilled…

Containerization: The Bold Face Of The Cloud In 2016

Containerization: The Bold Face Of The Cloud In 2016

Containerization And The Cloud “Right now, the biggest technology shift in the cloud is a rapid evolution from simple virtual machine (VM) hosting toward containerization’’ says the CTO of Microsoft Azure, Mark Russinovitch, a man who deals with the evolving cloud infrastructure every day. In his words, containerization is “an incredibly efficient, portable, and lightweight…

The Internet of Things Lifts Off To The Cloud

The Internet of Things Lifts Off To The Cloud

The Staggering Size And Potential Of The Internet of Things Here’s a quick statistic that will blow your mind and give you a glimpse into the future. When you break that down, it translates to 127 new devices online every second. In only a decade from now, every single vehicle on earth will be connected…

Public vs. Private vs. Hybrid: Which Cloud Is Right for Your Business?

Public vs. Private vs. Hybrid: Which Cloud Is Right for Your Business?

Public vs. Private vs. Hybrid The debate surrounding the deliverability of cloud computing is coming to a close. Businesses have begun to rapidly adopt the use of cloud services, courtesy the ROI this disruptive technology brings to the table. They have finally realized they cannot afford to ignore the cloud. A Forrester study found that…

Why Hybrid Cloud Delivers Better Business Agility

Why Hybrid Cloud Delivers Better Business Agility

Why Hybrid Cloud Delivers Better Business Agility A CIO friend of mine once told me that a hybrid cloud model enables him to “own the base, rent the spike” when it comes to unplanned events. Let’s face it – maintaining unused infrastructure for rare or random IT events is expensive and unnecessary in a cloud…

Cloud Computing – A Requirement For Greater Innovation

Cloud Computing – A Requirement For Greater Innovation

Cloud Computing Innovation Sao Paulo, Brazil has had trouble with both energy and water supplies as of late. Despite it is the rainy period. Unfortunately Sao Paulo is very dependent on its rain as a majority of its power is generated from large dams. No water, no energy. Difficult situation for a city of some…

Consequences Of Combining Off Premise Cloud Storage and Corporate Data

Consequences Of Combining Off Premise Cloud Storage and Corporate Data

Off Premise Corporate Data Storage Cloud storage is a broad term. It can encompass anything from on premise solutions, to file storage, disaster recovery and off premise options. To narrow the scope, I’ve dedicated the focus of today’s discussion to the more popular cloud storage services—such as Dropbox, Box, OneDrive—which are also known as hosted,…

4 Different Types of Attacks – Understanding the “Insider Threat”

4 Different Types of Attacks – Understanding the “Insider Threat”

Understanding the “Insider Threat”  The revelations that last month’s Sony hack was likely caused by a disgruntled former employee have put a renewed spotlight on the insider threat. The insider threat first received attention after Edward Snowden began to release all sorts of confidential information regarding national security. While many called him a hero, what…

Cloud Computing Then & Now

Cloud Computing Then & Now

The Evolving Cloud  From as early as the onset of modern computing, the possibility of resource distribution has been explored. Today’s cloud computing environment goes well beyond what most could even have imagined at the birth of modern computing and innovation in the field isn’t slowing. A Brief History Matillion’s interactive timeline of cloud begins…

Cloud Infographic – The Future Of Big Data

Cloud Infographic – The Future Of Big Data

The Future Of Big Data Big Data is BIG business and will continue to be one of the more predominant areas of focus in the coming years from small startups to large scale corporations. We’ve already covered on CloudTweaks how Big Data can be utilized in a number of interesting ways from preventing world hunger to helping teams win…

The Importance of Cloud Backups: Guarding Your Data Against Hackers

The Importance of Cloud Backups: Guarding Your Data Against Hackers

The Importance of Cloud Backups Cloud platforms have become a necessary part of modern business with the benefits far outweighing the risks. However, the risks are real and account for billions of dollars in losses across the globe per year. If you’ve been hacked, you’re not alone. Here are some other companies in the past…

How Formal Verification Can Thwart Change-Induced Network Outages and Breaches

How Formal Verification Can Thwart Change-Induced Network Outages and Breaches

How Formal Verification Can Thwart  Breaches Formal verification is not a new concept. In a nutshell, the process uses sophisticated math to prove or disprove whether a system achieves its desired functional specifications. It is employed by organizations that build products that absolutely cannot fail. One of the reasons NASA rovers are still roaming Mars…

Three Challenges of Network Deployment in Hyperconverged Infrastructure for Private Cloud

Three Challenges of Network Deployment in Hyperconverged Infrastructure for Private Cloud

Hyperconverged Infrastructure In this article, we’ll explore three challenges that are associated with network deployment in a hyperconverged private cloud environment, and then we’ll consider several methods to overcome those challenges. The Main Challenge: Bring Your Own (Physical) Network Some of the main challenges of deploying a hyperconverged infrastructure software solution in a data center are the diverse physical…

Using Cloud Technology In The Education Industry

Using Cloud Technology In The Education Industry

Education Tech and the Cloud Arguably one of society’s most important functions, teaching can still seem antiquated at times. Many schools still function similarly to how they did five or 10 years ago, which is surprising considering the amount of technical innovation we’ve seen in the past decade. Education is an industry ripe for innovation…

Choosing IaaS or a Cloud-Enabled Managed Hosting Provider?

Choosing IaaS or a Cloud-Enabled Managed Hosting Provider?

There is a Difference – So Stop Comparing We are all familiar with the old saying “That’s like comparing apples to oranges” and though we learned this lesson during our early years we somehow seem to discount this idiom when discussing the Cloud. Specifically, IT buyers often feel justified when comparing the cost of a…

How To Humanize Your Data (And Why You Need To)

How To Humanize Your Data (And Why You Need To)

How To Humanize Your Data The modern enterprise is digital. It relies on accurate and timely data to support the information and process needs of its workforce and its customers. However, data suffers from a likability crisis. It’s as essential to us as oxygen, but because we don’t see it, we take it for granted.…

Technology Influencer in Chief: 5 Steps to Success for Today’s CMOs

Technology Influencer in Chief: 5 Steps to Success for Today’s CMOs

Success for Today’s CMOs Being a CMO is an exhilarating experience – it’s a lot like running a triathlon and then following it with a base jump. Not only do you play an active role in building a company and brand, but the decisions you make have direct impact on the company’s business outcomes for…