January 4, 2013

Weekly Roundup: Geekiness, the quantified self and 100 Things to Watch in 2013

Posted by: in North America

-CES 2013 will be all about the gadget startup, reports TechCrunch. Fast Company outlines four tech trends to watch at CES, and an Ad Age column spotlights five trends marketers should watch for at CES.

-A BBC graphic spotlights the odds of what will happen when in tomorrow’s world.

-Skift outlines “13 Global Trends That Will Define Travel in 2013.”

-The New York Times predicts 10 U.S. food trends for 2013.

-The Wall Street Journal’s Walt Mossberg looks at four personal technology items that could be big in 2013.

-The New York Times ponders what the American economy’s “new normal” will look like in 2013.

-A Harvard Business Review blog post looks at four innovation trends to watch in 2013, including badges and “recofriendations.”

-The Wall Street Journal outlines six medical innovations set to “transform the way we fight disease.”

-The future according to Google’s Larry Page, via Fortune.

-Gartner analyst Thilo Koslowski muses about the future of connected cars in Wired.

-The BBC examines the “quantified self” trend.

-Business professor Arun Sundararajan looks at the rise of the sharing economy in the Harvard Business Review blog network.

-The FT examines research that’s seeking to determine whether gadgets are changing our brains and affecting empathy and human interaction.

-“An epidemic of science geekiness seems to have broken out,” says The New York Times, noting a boom in science-related social media postings in 2012.

-Writing in The Atlantic, Dan Slater argues that online dating is threatening monogamy.

-Retailers and manufacturers are retooling for a world in which men do more shopping, reports the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

-The Economist reports that simultaneous translation by computer is becoming a reality, and that technology is changing language education.

-A few companies are encouraging employees to take time off from their electronic devices, reports The New York Times.

-The Wall Street Journal asks if the e-reader revolution has come to an end.

-The New York Times looks at how Russia’s expanding middle class is driving a boom in malls.

-The Atlantic reports on the growing narcotics problem in China.

-The New York Times looks at how Chinese immigrants have managed to thrive in Spain even as many Spaniards face economic hardships.

-The Wall Street Journal examines how online prices can vary based on information that sellers have about different consumers.

-The Wall Street Journal looks at the growing market for tools that help organize cluttered cars.

-The Guardian spotlights the rise of “seasonless style,” a trend driven by a globalized fashion market.

-Has the bikini lost its mojo? The New York Post says the one-piece bathing suit is coming back.

-Adult Playgrounds, Chia Seeds and Instant-Erase Apps—just a few items from our annual list of 100 Things to Watch for the year ahead. See more here.

1 Response to "Weekly Roundup: Geekiness, the quantified self and 100 Things to Watch in 2013"

1 | Kenji Wellman

January 5th, 2013 at 2:24 am

Avatar

Thanks for the links. We’re all becoming geekier, and the future looks bright.

Comment Form

New: 10 Trends for 2014 and Beyond

The Brazil Opportunity

Updates

Sign up for Email Updates

JWT AnxietyIndex

Blog Authors

Ahmed Mahjoub - Dubai
Lindsey Stafford - New York
Vannya Martinez - Mexico City
Christine Miranda - New York
Aaron Baar - Chicago
Russell Martin - Cape Town
Geri Kan - Singapore
Katerina Petinos - New York
Marian Berelowitz and Maria Orriols - New York
Marian Berelowitz and Will Palley - New York
Alex Pallete and Ramon Jimenez - Madrid
Ana Hernandes - Sao Paulo
Kimberly Douglas - London
Will Palley - New York
Marian Berelowitz and Nick Ayala - New York
Juliana Cubillos and Jessica Vaughn - Bogota and New York
Jessica Vaughn - New York
Jordan Price - Tokyo
Gonzalo Franseca - Buenos Aires
Andres Colmenares - Bogota
Soh Chin Ong - Singapore
Marian Berelowitz and Sarah Siegel - New York
Patty Orsini - New Jersey
Andrew Hwang - Emerging Media
Sharon Panelo - New York
Megan Foley - New York
Alec Foege - New York
Thomas McGillick- Sydney
katerina
christine
Dylan Viner - New York
Ramon Jimenez - Madrid
Meghan McCormick - Emerging Media
Ceren Coskun - Istanbul
Deanna Zammit - New York
Marina Bortoluzzi - São Paulo
Michael Koenka - Amsterdam
Rasika Fernandes - New Delhi
Alex Brousseau - New York
Alex Morrison - New York
Nina Hammerling Smith - New York
Aparna Jain - Calcutta
Nina Yiamsamatha - Emerging Media
Sarah Siegel - New York
Deborah Frenkel - Melbourne
Sean Aaron - Emerging Media
Hajime Kato - Tokyo
Ann Mack and Jessica Vaughn - New York
Carlos Fernandez - New York
Pam Garcia – Manila
Harsha Prag - Johannesburg
Nick Ayala - New York
Ben Hopkins - London
Yael Shpiller - Tel Aviv
Peta Bassett - Bangkok
Susie Uzel - London
Mariko Kataoka - London
Davina Wertheimer - Johannesburg
Maria Orriols - Barcelona
Katie Fitzgerald and Jessica Vaughn - New York
Anil Bharadiya - Singapore
Katie Fitzgerald - New York
Sigrid Jakob and Rodrigo Maroni - New York
James Richardson - London
Mollie Hill
Colette Henry - Dublin
Marian Berelowitz - New York
Alexandra Stieber - Atlanta
Lois Saldana - New York
Marian Berelowitz and Aaron Baar - New York and Chicago
Jessica Vaughn and Sarah Siegel - New York
Andrew Knight and Jessica Vaughn - New York
Marian Berelowitz and Christine Miranda - New York
Ann Mack - New York
Ken Fujioka - Brazil
Mennah Ibrahim - Beirut
Adrian Barrow - New York
David Linden - Emerging Media
Tal Chen - Tel Aviv
Marian Berelowtiz and Patty Orsini - New York
Lina Maria Aguirre - New York
Tobei Arai - Atlanta

Things to Watch

  • Uniqlo, H&M and Retail As the Third Space
    April 15, 2014 | 4:30 pm

    “Retail As the Third Space,” one of our 10 Trends for 2011, is rapidly accelerating: As digital commerce becomes habit for consumers, brick-and-mortar is increasingly focused around experiences, unique environments and customer service, giving shoppers new reasons to visit retail spaces. Uniqlo’s flagship in New York is a good example. A newly renovated floor incorporates a Starbucks (a favorite brand among teens) and, as MarketWatch reports, “lounge sofas, tables and chairs and an iPad station, allowing shoppers to stay and mingle.” Thanks to a partnership with the nearby Museum of Modern Art—resulting in a range that uses images from famous artists—the floor’s design is museum-like, with T-shirts in framed display cases.

    Another recent example in Manhattan is H&M’s flagship, which opened in late 2013, which one writer dubs “The most retail fun you can have with your clothes on.” For more on Retail As the Third Space, find our 2103 report Retail Rebooted here. —Marian Berelowitz

    Image credit: Uniqlo

  • Bitcoin middlemen
    April 10, 2014 | 2:45 pm

    Given its volatility, security issues and legal concerns, merchants interested in accepting bitcoin have a lot to worry about, especially with the possibility (as some see it) that looming regulation could upend the entire system. To mitigate the risk and open merchants up to new revenue streams, startups such as BitPay and Coinvoice make it easier for companies to accept the cryptocurrency.

    These payment processors act as middlemen: A shopper pays in bitcoin, but the merchant can decide whether to be paid in bitcoin, fiat currency, or a combination. This allows companies to shield themselves from the uncertainty of the currency or to dip a toe into accepting it as payment. Until bitcoin becomes more stable and regulated, payment processors such as these will be a safer option for merchants. (For more on bitcoin, see also our post on the Inside Bitcoins conference.) —Nick Ayala

    Image credit: BitPay

  • Delta’s Innovation Class
    April 3, 2014 | 2:15 pm

    Delta’s new Innovation Class allows the influencers of tomorrow to spend a flight with a current industry leader—the airline calls it a “mentoring program at 35,000 feet.” The first mentor was Pebble smart watch creator Eric Migicovsky, on his way to Vancouver for the recent TED conference, who was paired with visual artist James Patten, a 2014 TED senior fellow. The next flight, in May, will feature chef Sean Brock as he heads to the James Beard Awards.

    While Innovation Class isn’t the first such initiative, it’s the first to leverage existing social networks on LinkedIn, where potential seatmates apply to Delta. The program illustrates creativity in using the plethora of touch points marketers have access to and can leverage to create valuable experiences both online and off. —Matt Goldenberg

  • Virtual reality rugby
    March 27, 2014 | 1:00 pm

    While the Oculus Rift headset doesn’t yet have a launch date, brands are already using the virtual reality platform to amaze consumers. To promote Game of Thrones, HBO made fanboys’ dreams come true at this year’s SXSWi with an experience that took viewers on an immersive trip up the show’s famed “Wall.” And U.K. phone company O2 has created “Wear the Rose,” a rugby training experience that combines footage from GoPro cameras with an Oculus headset to give fans the experience of training with England Rugby.

    “Rugby balls are thrown at you to catch, charging players run at you to teach you tackles, and at one point you find yourself in the middle of a scrum,” writes Eurogamer. O2 recently debuted “Wear the Rose” at a stadium match and will showcase it in select U.K. stores starting in June. —Aaron Baar

  • Security as a USP
    March 20, 2014 | 12:45 pm

    As we note in our wrap-up of SXSWi, security is fast becoming a unique selling proposition. Rather than treating it as an afterthought and scrambling to compensate if user data is compromised, more tech companies will build highly secure environments for their users from the start—selling security as a point of differentiation until it becomes a right of entry.

    The secure-communication app Wickr is offering up to $100,000 to any hacker who can crack its defenses and is selling a suite of six privacy features to developers and apps like Snapchat and WhatsApp. Another such app, Telegram, offers a bounty as high as $200,000 to anyone who can crack it. Meanwhile, the upcoming Blackphone is described as “the world’s first smartphone which places privacy and control directly in the hands of its users.” —Ann Mack

  • Watson, AI and customer service
    March 13, 2014 | 1:45 pm

    IBM has been promoting the commercial applications of Watson, its artificial intelligence service, with CEO Ginni Rometty announcing a Watson challenge for mobile developers at the recent Mobile World Congress. Rometty also noted that North Face is testing a website that incorporates Watson intelligence to answer customer queries, as seen in this video of an IBM demo at the MWC. Watson could serve as a “personal shopping concierge” for e-commerce brands, as Ad Age put it.

    At this week’s SXSW in Austin, where IBM has Watson powering a food truck to demonstrate its multifaceted potential, an IBM exec talked up Watson’s potential in the customer-service arena. We’re seeing the beginnings of a world where artificial intelligence powers (and personalizes) an array of brand interactions with consumers. —Marian Berelowitz

     

  • Spritz
    March 7, 2014 | 5:00 pm

    Slate may have to adjust the Minutes to Read feature on its articles. In line with our Age of Impatience trend for 2014, Spritz is a new reading app that uses a new visual technology to help people read at Evelyn Wood speeds or faster.

    Pinpointing the “Optimal Recognition Point,” at which the brain begins to recognize numbers and letters, the program highlights that space for each individual word and places it at the same place on the screen, reducing eye movement. The program can push reading speeds up to 500 words a minute. (You can see it in action here.)

    Sprtiz will be available on Samsung’s new line of wearable technology. —Aaron Baar

    Image credit: Spritz

  • Virtual fitting rooms
    March 4, 2014 | 11:45 am

    PhiSix, a 3D virtual technology company recently acquired by eBay, plans to bring more of the outside world into physical stores’ dressing rooms in an effort to increase sales. We’ve reported before on websites that offer 3D virtual try-ons at home and brick-and-mortar stores that have become living, breathing websites. But PhiSix’s technology takes the virtual fashion experience one step further, allowing shoppers to see how specific items of clothing look on them, in a variety of sizes and contexts, without actually trying them on. With PhiSix’s computer graphics, which will be made available to third-party retailers, shoppers will be able to enter a store dressing room and view themselves wearing clothing in a number of active settings (e.g., swinging a golf club, walking down the street). The technology also recommends other items to consumers, based on a few basic measurement inputs. Although virtual try-on technologies, which have existed for a while, haven’t succeeded in displacing trying on actual clothing, PhiSix’s sexy timesaver may draw more shoppers into physical retail outlets. —Alec Foege

    Image credit: PhiSix

  • Daily Mail’s Just the Pictures app
    February 25, 2014 | 3:15 pm

    The U.K.’s Daily Mail, whose digital content is dominated by photographs, is planning to release an app called Just the Pictures that strips out the text for smartphone readers—or non-readers, in this case—who are looking for snackable content while on the go. At a Mobile World Congress panel in Barcelona, Melanie Scott of the Mail Online said the app will be out in March. Per Scott, the Daily Mail’s current iOS app attracts about a million daily users in the U.K., and they’re opening it four or five times a day for 12 minutes at a time, largely for the pictures. 

    Just the Pictures is another sign of images replacing words in our increasingly visual culture, one of our 10 Trends for 2014. For more on how this trend is affecting the mobile platform, watch for our annual mobile-trends report in April. —Marian Berelowitz

    Image credit: Daily Mail

  • Full-fat comes back
    February 20, 2014 | 6:00 pm

    Bring on the brie! Last week NPR reported on two studies finding that “whole-fat dairy is linked to reduced body fat,” research likely to boost a recent shift away from lower-fat dairy products. Butter has been bullish lately: Annual sales in the U.S. have increased 65 percent since 2000, with per-capita consumption reaching a 40-year high. And while milk sales in the U.S. declined in 2013, full-fat fared relatively well (with sales declining 0.8 percent vs. 4.1 percent for reduced-fat). 

    The trend ties into a growing preference for foods that feel less artificial or newfangled, as well as the ongoing urge to Live a Little (one of our 10 Trends for 2012).  —Marian Berelowitz

    Image credit: liz west

  • RSSArchive for Things to Watch »