March 15, 2013

Weekly Roundup: Virtual immortality, China’s love hunters and DIY biohackers

Posted by: in North America

-The Economist examines India’s next generation of tech entrepreneurs and why the sector hasn’t evolved faster.

-The New York Times looks at the crushing impact of Italy’s severe recession on its smaller businesses.

-“Russians, Asians and Arabs are rewriting the rules of European tourism,” reports The Guardian, with the continent hosting a new cohort of tycoons and middle-class visitors.

-A WHO study finds that European men are a generation behind women in life expectancy, the BBC reports.

-Ad Age takes a look at why “sugar is shaping up to be the next public enemy No. 1.”

-The Wall Street Journal takes a look at “How Big Data Is Changing the Whole Equation for Business.”

-Forbes outlines five trends that will drive the future of technology.

-A new Pew Research study on American teens and technology spotlights the always-on connectivity of Gen Z.

-Young Americans, hobbled by student loan debt and stagnant wages, lag previous generations in wealth accumulation, according to a new study covered in The New York Times.

-The Wall Street Journal spotlights “the new maze of subscriptions,” from mobile phones to Netflix, that tie grown children to parents footing the bill.

-In a special section on retirement, The New York Times spotlights the rise of “virtual immortality”—leaving a multimedia record of one’s life for the next generation—as well as housing trends among older Americans.

-As Germany’s elderly population expands, The Christian Science Monitor reports that Eastern European nursing homes are pitching the idea of “exporting grandma.”

-The New York TimesNick Bilton outlines his notion of digital etiquette, and gets plenty of feedback. GigaOM observes that etiquette dilemmas stem partly from having too many ways to communicate.

-The Wall Street Journal explores the future of typing, looking at how the keyboard is evolving on smartphones.

-Nielsen spotlights the rise of “Zero-TV” households in the U.S.

-Slate’s Will Oremus explores the “small but growing subculture of DIY biohackers, body hackers, grinders, and self-made cyborgs.”

-Artinfo outlines how art auction houses are evolving.

-USA Today reports that more employers are enabling on-the-job napping for today’s weary workforce.

-Mobile technology in the enterprise is slowly “spreading from ancillary functions to areas ingrained in employees’ workdays,” as The Wall Street Journal reports.

-McKinsey looks to Japan to understand electric car buyers more broadly.

-The New York Times explores China’s “love hunters,” companies that cater to newly rich singles looking to outsource the task of finding a spouse.

-This week we released a trend report, “Embracing Analog: Why Physical Is Hot,” which was the topic of a SXSW panel that included our own Ann Mack. Check out the panel recap here, and download the report here.

No Responses to "Weekly Roundup: Virtual immortality, China’s love hunters and DIY biohackers"

Comment Form

SIGN UP FOR OUR WEEKLY EMAIL NEWSLETTER:

New: 10 Years of 10 Trends

The Future 100

JWT AnxietyIndex

Things to Watch

  • The sharing economy grows up
    March 3, 2015 | 3:30 pm

    Screen Shot 2015-03-03 at 2.28.41 PM

    Hotel giant Starwood has bought in to the sharing economy. The group, which owns W Hotels, St. Regis and Sheraton, has announced a partnership with car service Uber in which every dollar spent by a guest on an Uber car earns points toward free rooms and other perks.

    Continue reading “The sharing economy grows up” »

  • Digital immersive exercise
    February 25, 2015 | 4:04 pm

    immersive-fitness-the-trip

    Equinox’s new revved-up cycle class speaks to a growing exercise trend—digital immersion. This month the gym brand unveiled Pursuit, an immersive cycling concept, to limited U.S. gyms. Equinox describes the program as “an immersive studio cycling experience that uses groundbreaking gaming and data visualization to drive competition and inspire peak performance.”

    Continue reading “Digital immersive exercise” »

  • Science fare
    February 20, 2015 | 2:07 pm

    Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 12.59.22 PM

    The worlds of science, gastronomy and art are continuing to cross-pollinate—from edible conceptual art to molecular gastronomy “lab cafés” to synesthetic dining events. Café ArtScience in Cambridge, Mass., is a recent example. Opened late last year by David Edwards, a Harvard engineering professor, the café serves whiskey “fogs” through a special carafe that turns the liquor into vapor (which means consumers don’t take in any of the calories and feel none of the intoxicating effects).

    Continue reading “Science fare” »

  • Aman’s authentic-luxe travel
    February 11, 2015 | 1:06 pm

    Amandira1_509

    As travelers continue to seek out authentic and unique experiences, hospitality brands keep raising the bar on hyper-localized offerings and exceptional access. Aman, for instance, is introducing a phinisi-style sailing ship in Indonesia, marrying the brand’s ultra-luxe sensibility with regional tradition. With an outdoor lounge and bar, the option to travel by motor, and air-conditioned cabins, the ship brings every modern comfort to an age-old means of navigating the Indonesian archipelago. Another Aman property, meanwhile, offers a dip into paleontology: Guests at Amangiri in southern Utah can join an official dig at the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, working alongside fossil experts for a half-day. The cost of getting one’s hands dirty starts at $600. (Resulting Instagram images: priceless.) —Marian Berelowitz

    Image credit: Aman

  • Adidas’ ‘virtual line’
    February 5, 2015 | 6:55 pm

    Adidas

    Adidas’ new Confirmed app cleverly harnesses the fervor of collectors who normally line up for limited-edition shoes, moving fans onto a mobile platform. App users create an account, then get push notifications when hot new releases are on the way. Interested buyers in a given metro area—only New York City at launch—indicate their size and, if approved, receive details on where and when to pick up the shoes. An Adidas exec calls it a “virtual line.” In addition to collecting data on these super-fans, the app lets Adidas control which influencers get various styles, drives traffic to selected stores, builds additional buzz and cuts out secondary-market sellers armed with bots that secure advance orders. —Marian Berelowitz

    Image credit: Bloomberg

  • Adventurous play
    February 4, 2015 | 1:09 pm

    Screen Shot 2015-02-04 at 12.00.22 PM

    Kids will slide through a “Tunnel of Terror” and get slimy on “Mount Mud” in Tough Mudder’s new obstacle course for the 7-12 set. The endurance-challenge purveyor is partnering with European soft drink brand Britvic on Fruit Shoot Mini Mudder, with events planned for the U.S., the U.K. and Ireland. The concept caters to parents looking to pry kids away from screens and get them moving—there’s now a CrossFit offshoot for kids, starting with preschoolers—in ways that are challenging and fun.

    Continue reading “Adventurous play” »

  • Rivals joining forces
    January 26, 2015 | 7:19 pm

    Volkswagen_5 2000px-BMW.svg

    Not long ago, a collaboration between two rival companies would have been seen as a counterintuitive and perhaps desperate measure. In 2015, however, BMW’s partnership with Volkswagen on fast-charging electric vehicle stations makes the automakers look self-confident, open and serious about sustainability and the common good.  Continue reading “Rivals joining forces” »

  • Virgin Hotels
    January 21, 2015 | 1:42 pm

    Screen Shot 2015-01-21 at 12.34.58 PM

    Taking a cue from private clubs like Soho House—which now has outposts from Berlin to Chicago and Toronto—and cool hotel hangouts like the Ace, the first hotel under Virgin’s affordable-meets-aspirational banner houses a Commons Club. Offering “exclusivity for all,” the Commons hosts a “roundtable of ideas and indulgence” at a nightly social hour and includes a restaurant, bar and study area. Virgin marketing also taps into easyHotel lingo with the promise of no surprise fees and free wi-fi.

    Continue reading “Virgin Hotels” »

  • Google’s Ara phone
    January 16, 2015 | 11:51 am


    A new video from Google shows the latest prototype of its modular phone, which will launch this year in Puerto Rico. Project Ara emphasizes personalization—“What if you could make thoughtful choices about exactly what your phone does, and use it as a creative canvas to tell your own story?”—but the sustainability implications are also important.

    Continue reading “Google’s Ara phone” »

  • Nike taps into urban exploring
    January 5, 2015 | 1:13 pm

    Screen Shot 2015-01-05 at 12.09.46 PM

    The city is the new terrain for Nike’s rebranded all-conditions gear, now named NikeLab ACG. Taking a cue from the urban exploration trend (“urbex”)—which involves venturing into unseen and generally off-limits structures and documenting the adventure—Nike says that “For today’s athletes, the city is the ultimate landscape,” complete with “modern obstacles” and many microclimates. Images show an intrepid explorer on a rooftop amid skyscrapers. The urban environment is now as challenging, intriguing and adventurous as the natural landscape.

  • RSSArchive for Things to Watch »