A rapid uptake of new technology is quickly shifting the payment landscape. Advances in different technologies has given way to new consumer devices, such as smartphones and tablets, as well as new ways of sharing information such as NFC chips, QR codes, Bluetooth technology and cloud computing. All these factors, as well as new regulations, revamped business models and shifting payments habits will reshape the payments industry for years to come.
Across the world, mobile phones have become the necessary communications tool both in developed and emerging markets. In developed markets, PCs and laptops are taking a backseat as smartphone owners use this smaller, more convenient device to surf the internet everywhere they go. In emerging markets, the mobile phone has become a leapfrog technology. The lack of infrastructural development in fixed-line telephony, which is costly to set up in vast and remote areas have led to the faster uptake of mobile telephones in emerging markets compared to fixed-line telephones. Mobile phones are no longer a luxury item, but also a lifestyle aid in both developed and emerging markets.
Continue reading "Smartphones Become Major Conduit for Payments Evolution" »
Map navigation has become an integral part of a
smartphone user's daily usage. Data from comScore Inc showed that more than one
third of users from five Western European markets surveyed accessed maps via their smartphones.
Apple Inc replaced Google Map with its own Apple Maps on its iOS6, which is preloaded on the
newly launched iPhone 5. Globally, there has been feedback of how
poorly Apple Maps fared against Google
Map and Nokia Map, which are from
competing software platforms.
Nokia Inc has been quick to
showcase its Nokia Map and Nokia Drive
capabilities and carries a comparison of the map features found on the three
competing platforms on its company's blog. Nokia's
key advantages are mainly its broad coverage spanning more than 110 countries
and offline navigation capabilities. With mobile subscriptions in emerging
markets like Nigeria exploding and mobile data yet to gain substantial
traction, offline navigation is a must-have in these markets.
Continue reading "Nokia Maps to Drive Windows Market Shares in Smartphones" »
Analyst Insight By Mykola
Golovko, Consumer Electronics Analyst at Euromonitor International
As leading indicators point to a looming sharp slowdown in economic
growth in China, attention is focused on the steps that the Chinese government may
take to spur economic activity, like accelerating technology adoption and introduction
of subsidy programs.
Stimulus measures are likely to be a combination of monetary easing and
fiscal intervention, with the latter doing much of the heavy lifting.
International pressures to raise the value of the Yuan, combined with
historically high savings rates and prevalence of potentially bad loans in the
market, is likely to severely limit the government’s monetary response options.
Continue reading "Chinese Government’s Efforts to Spur Consumer Electronics Sales" »
Photokina brings together the biggest
names in imaging products in Cologne, Germany where the latest upcoming cameras and camcorders are showcased. The
September 2012 event brought out an unusually large and variable array of full-frame censor cameras. Is this a one-off coincidence or part of a macro trend
in digital imaging?
A real camera
have countless advantages over their 35mm predecessors in terms of convenience
of use and shooting feature sets. One disadvantage shared by the vast majority
of digital cameras in the market today
compared to their analogue predecessors is that the sensor is smaller than the
35mm film frame. Lens and mirror designs (in DSLR models) have been changed
over the years to minimise drawbacks of smaller sensors, but the laws of optics
are unforgiving and the smaller-sensor cameras
have reduced depth of field and angle of view among other optical limitations,
hence professional-grade digital cameras
were outfitted with full frame sensors. However, the cost of these sensors has
been too high for consumer-grade cameras,
and they were featured mostly in large-body, professional-grade DSLRs.
Continue reading "Photokina 2012: Full-Frame Cameras Next on the Price Chopping Block" »
is the latest buzzword from the virtual world. In real-world translation –
SoLoMo is an amalgam for social, local and mobile allowing people to interact
(social), find (local) and access (mobile) information easily bridging the gap
between user and the web. In essence mobile devices allow users to connect to
the Internet wherever they are and to interact with their social networks on
the move and marketers can use this to target them with localised offers. Great
examples of SoLoMo in action include Foursquare and Groupon – platforms that
use social marketing and mobile check-ins as a way to drive business to locally
Continue reading "SoLoMo: Combining the Real and Virtual Worlds" »