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Want to Make Your iPhone Indestructible This Case Might be the Answer

first_imgJanuary 26, 2013 Free Workshop | August 28: Get Better Engagement and Build Trust With Customers Now Kevin Smith/Business InsiderWe’ve been testing a lot of iPhone 5 cases lately.While we picked out our favorite one here, there’s another worth singling out for those of you who want complete protection for your phone, including against spills and liquids.After sifting through several different companies, styles, textures, and sizes it was easy to select LifeProof as the most protective case out there. LifeProof’s iPhone 5 case fully protects your phone without adding any unnecessary bulk, drastically improving on its model for the iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S. This hands-on workshop will give you the tools to authentically connect with an increasingly skeptical online audience. Enroll Now for Freecenter_img LifeProof is based around four “proofs”: water, dirt, snow, and shock (drops).The best by far is the LifeProof’s waterproofing ability, which can protect your phone for up to 30 minutes when submerged as deep as six feet under water.LifeProof can also protect your phone from falls from as high as six feet.Even if you don’t fear dropping your phone in a body of water, using the LifeProof in the rain is pleasant, since you don’t have to worry about water sneaking into the headphone jack or charging port.LifeProof has tested its case to meet or exceed Military Standard 810F-516, which means that the case can physically and functionally withstand relatively infrequent, non-repetitive shocks encountered in handling, transportation, and service environments.Here is a short video of what it’s like to snorkel with a LifeProof-protected iPhone. (The case they’re using in this demo is for iPhone 4, but the iPhone 5 case works the same in a drastically thinner body).The LifeProof for iPhone 5 is a solid buy, and it’s the case we use almost every day. LifeProof for iPhone 5 is available in five different colors and retails for $79.99. This story originally appeared on Business Insider min readlast_img read more

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Driving Innovation With Crowdsourcing

first_img Register Now » Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Technical innovation over the past few decades has been staggering. How people communicate is being transformed every few years by changes in computing, mobile devices and digital media.Most of these innovations seem to have been sparked by individuals or small groups. HP, Apple and Facebook are often cited, but even within large organizations and the military, it’s often the process of one person or a small team focusing on solving a particular problem that results in something revolutionary.But a new strategy for innovation is taking shape. Companies ranging from digital media firms to consumer-packaged-goods concerns are using crowdsourcing to rapidly drive innovation, improve products and increase customer satisfaction. Using the crowdsourcing model, companies might break big-data projects into micro tasks that are then farmed out to the “crowd.”  Related: Need a New Design? 5 Reasons to Crowdsource It.While this may seem like a relatively new phenomenon, the idea of harnessing the power of the collective and the wisdom of crowds is extremely old. Science and academia have long relied on individuals making incremental additions to research, enabling the greater community to have access to an ever-growing knowledge base that can drive innovation. More recently, the development of open source software has proliferated, with many individuals making small contributions to a large project from which innovations arise that benefit the community.Companies have used crowdsourcing in these ways: To create Black Crown, a new beer, Anheuser-Busch surveyed 25,000 consumers for feedback on 12 possible flavors developed at regional breweries and produced the top three varieties for limited distribution.Through its open innovation project, Unilever invites consumers to contribute ideas for improving products or fashioning new ones. The company also publishes a list of challenges it wants help in solving.Poptent, a digital media company, uses crowdsourcing to provide clients with access to a community of more than 50,000 video creators. Related: Artfully Managing the Work of Your Creative Team — But From a DistanceAt my company, Dell Boomi, crowdsourcing is integral to the development strategy for the cloud-based application integration platform offered. By collecting data related to a subscriber’s integration activity (without accessing or viewing any data from the customer’s business processes), my team can gain deep insight into issues that cause problems and then use the aggregated and analyzed information to make improvements. (Customers can opt out from participating.)The idea is that my company looks at a large number of user experiences and strategically decides which issues should be resolved first to benefit the greatest number of community members. This process of automatically and dynamically collecting information requires no effort from users but provides them with value. With this form of crowdsourcing, the greater the number of users and the longer they use the system, the greater the insight that can be gained.Related: Market Research Has Lost Its Mojo. But Here’s How It Can Get It Back.Some companies may not understand how to take advantage of crowdsourcing. But the ability to collect and analyze huge amounts of data from customers and employees — whether directly or via statistics and software — creates a vast strategic opportunity to experiment with ways to mine small, individual ideas to drive major innovation, problem solving, efficiency and cost savings. While careless use of information can increase the risks associated with data protection and the company’s reputation, a well-designed crowdsourcing program need not compromise an organization or violate regulations.Do the same as for any IT or marketing initiative: Get a detailed plan in writing and get a buy-in from all information and data stakeholders, including the legal department. A mature IT solution will provide flexibility and proper controls for customers and other organizations for any data used for crowdsourcing scenarios.Every business invests in the “crowd” in some way. Crowdsourcing is an opportunity to accelerate the return on that investment. The particular beauty of crowdsourcing is that the longer a company does it, the more data collected. And the more data gathered, the greater the potential benefit to the organization.Here are some tips about how companies can use crowdsourcing for innovation: Related: Inventing Made Easy: Go Straight to the (Crowd)Source1. Be prepared for the deluge of data. Depending on the company’s use case, the organization may suddenly be collecting huge volumes of data. Is the IT department prepared?2. Have an analytics solution in place. Benefiting from all the collected information will likely require some form of analytics. Ensure that the analytics solution is up to the task.3. Consider integrating multiple data sources. Determine whether it’s necessary to integrate data from multiple sources (such as from the crowd and a customer-relationship management system), and select an integration solution with swift processing. A data integration project that takes months to complete may doom a crowdsourcing strategy before it starts.4. Address security and compliance issues. Short-circuit any objections to the strategy by anticipating the needs of the data security, legal and compliance teams.5. Make it about the customers. When asking customers or partners to participate in a crowdsourcing project, be clear about how they will benefit. Allow consumers to opt out, but be clear in explaining the benefits they will miss out on by not contributing. Related: Disrupting the Disruption Myth Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global 5 min read August 12, 2014last_img read more

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Why mobile VR sucks

first_imgIf you’re following the news, chances are you’ve heard about Virtual Reality or VR headsets like Oculus, Samsung Gear, HTC Vive etc. Trending terms and buzzwords are all good for a business or tech that’s novel and yet to be adopted by the majority of consumers. But the proof of the pudding is when people have started using the tech. And the first reactions to mobile VR are not at all good. This has even made the founder of Oculus Rift, John Carmack to give a statement, “We are coasting on novelty, and the initial wonder of being something people have never seen before”. The jury is out on present day Mobile VR technologies and headsets –  ‘It Sucks’ in its present form. If you want to know why and what can make it better then read ahead. Hardware are expensive Mobile headsets are costly, mostly in the $399- $799 range. The most successful VR headset till date is Google Cardboard. The reason – it’s dirt cheap and it doesn’t need too much set up and customization. Such a high price at the initial launching phase of any tech is going to make the users worried. Not many people would want to buy an expensive new toy without knowing exactly how it’s going to be. VR games don’t match up to video game quality The initial VR games for mobile were very poor. There are 13 billion mobile gamers across the world, undeniably a huge market to tap into. But we have to keep in mind that these gamers have already access to high quality games which they can play just by tapping their mobile screen. For them to strap on that headset and get immersed in VR games, the incentive needs to be too alluring to resist. The current crop of VR games lack complexity, their UI design is not intuitive enough to hold the attention of a user for longer duration of time, especially when playing a VR game means strapping up that head gear. These VR games also take too much time to load which is a huge negative for VR games. The hype vs reality gap is improving, but it’s painfully slow The current phase of VR is the initial breakthrough stage where there are lot of expectations from it. But the games and apps are not upto the mark and hence those who have used it are giving it a thumbs down. The word of mouth publicity is mostly negative and this is creating a negative impact on mobile VR as a whole. The chart below shows the gap between initial expectation and the reality of VR and how it might shape up in the near future according to Unity’s CEO John Riccitiello. AR vs VR vs MR: A concoction for confusion The popularity of Augmented Reality ( AR) and the emergence of Mixed Reality – an amalgamation of both AR and VR have distracted the developers as per which platform and what methodology to adapt. The UX and UI design are quite different for both AR and VR and MR and hence all of these three disciplines would need dedicated development resources. For this to happen, these disciplines would have to be formalized first and until that time, the quality of the apps will not improve drastically. No unified VR development platform Mobile VR is dependant on SDKs and primarily on the two game engines Unity and Unreal Engine that have come up with support for VR game development. While Unity is one of the biggest names in game development industry, a dedicated and unified VR development platform is still missing in action. As for Unity and Unreal Engine their priority will not be VR any time soon. Things can change if and when some tech giant like Google, Microsoft, Facebook etc. will dedicate their resources to create VR apps and Games for mobile. Although Google has cardboard, Facebook unveiled React VR and support for AR development, Microsoft has their own game going on with Hololens AR and MR development, the trend that started it all still seems to be lost among its newer cousins. I think, VR will be big, but it will have to wait till its implementation by some major business or company. Till then, we will have to wear our ghastly headsets and imagine that we are living in the future. Read Next Game developers say Virtual Reality is here to stay Microsoft introduces SharePoint Spaces, adds virtual reality support to SharePoint Build a Virtual Reality Solar System in Unity for Google Cardboardlast_img read more