Slyce Challenges Amazon Flow with its New Image Recognition Technology

Slyce’s new technology aims to utilize the increased use of mobile phones in taking and sharing of pictures on social media and buying items online. The product recognition technology allows consumers to take pictures of something that they spot, and enables them to compare that with other similar or same products available in retail shops. They can also make online purchases. This will change our previous perceptions of the retail market. The possibilities it will bring forth are limitless. The technology comes in form of an app and a website.

Slyce will be working behind big retailers. The technology will be integrated in the websites of the retailers. You are not likely to practically see the Slyce app as a result. As of now, the company is already in talks with major retailers in the United States.

The technology presents limitless opportunities for consumers especially those who like shopping. Whether they spot a cute dress worn by a friend while walking in the streets, or they are just looking at images on social media, they will be able to spot something they like, take a picture of it, and immediately buy the same item or a similar one from the retailer.

This is not the first time that this type of technology is entering the retail market. Amazon is the pioneer in the field with their Amazon Flow. Amazon Flow is similar to what Slyce has come up with. Users of Amazon Flow are able to take pictures of something that they spot and get the Amazon listing instantly.

But Slyce’s new technology is not just a carbon copy of Amazon Flow. While it works around the same concept, it comes with additional features that aim to better the service experience. Unlike Amazon Flow, it allows users to take pictures of items in any state. For Amazon Flow to work, the product must be in its original packaging, therefore limiting consumers to the stores.

When the picture is taken, the technology first identifies the type of the product; it could be a shirt or vase for example. It then looks for specific details. In the case of a shirt, it could look at the color or the print pattern. It then compares the item with other products available in the database of the retailers. Consumers either get a perfect match or a product that is similar to the item.

Retailers will also greatly benefit from this technology. Driving sales is not the only focus here; they will get to know what the consumer needs. They will also know the exact moment that the consumer needs to buy a particular product. This kind of information will be very helpful now and in future.

Skout: GPS Based Dating

Skout is a very revolutionary application which mixes social networking with dating. One other feature that is worth checking out on this network is the GPS feature. This helps the site match the user with a possible date within the area that the user is located in. Skout is available as an app for mobile devices as well. Among the other features that Skout carries is Nixter and Fuse.

Nixter is a nightlife app that shows users where they can go to enjoy a fun night out. Fuse is another useful app for group messaging. Skout has seen a successful year in 2013. As a matter of fact, it has been reported that there have been 500 million connections made as a result of the Skout app.

Skout originated in 2007 as a mobile internet social network. One thing that was noticed by the founders is that many people were using it to find dates. As a matter of fact, 8 out of ten people were using it for dates. As a result, the founders revamped and relaunched Skout in 2009 as a people discovery and dating app. It also launched the app for Apple devices in 2009. A little over a year later, Skout released an app for Android.

Throughout the years, Skout has grown in revenue. It has been funded with $4.6 million in the beginning. Later on, it has raised $22 million in 2012.

The nightlife app, Nixter, has joined with Skout in 2014. Nixter helped users find events and buy tickets for the events that they were interested in. they could go to events in L.A. New York and San Francisco. 2014 also saw the launch of fuse which allows people to form their own network based on addresses. Fuse is a global app.

Another great feature is called Skout travel which allows users to visit and meet with people in a different city while traveling. Skout really makes it easy for people to meet new people and increase their social circle. Skout has provided an unmatched social networking experience for users and will continue to do so for years to come.

3D Printing Saves the Horns

3d printing is perhaps one of the biggest steps that technology has taken in the last few years. Many companies who work in 3d printing are using their tools of expertise to fight local and global problems with the use of 3d printing. A biotech startup located in San Francisco is printing fake 3d rhino horns that carry the exact genetic makeup of an actual rhino’s horn. The company is planning on unleashing as many fake rhino horns as possible to curb poaching on wild rhinos. The company uses keratin and Rhino DNA to produce a powder which gets printed into a synthetic rhino’s horn. The rhino’s horn is spectro graphically and genetically similar to natural rhino’s horns. According to Handy, Chinese and Vietnamese poachers are roaming through Africa and Asia to hunt rhinos for their much-sought-after horns. The wild rhino is on the brink of extinction because of these methods. Almost 80% of Africa’s wild rhinos were killed in 2000 and 14. The 3d company is looking to halt and reverse this process. The company will release the horns at 1/8 of the price of natural rhino horns. This will undercut the price that poachers are putting on the wild rhino horn and will force them out of business. While some conservative groups are unsure of whether the sale of the fake rhino horns will actually work or not, only time will be able to give us the answer.

Benefits Of Visual Search Applications

Many businesses are now using visual search technology in their e-commerce apps. Although the technology is not new, it is gaining popularity because big retailers are designing numerous marketing campaigns for visual search apps.

The Benefits

A visual search app can detect shapes, proportions, sizes, and colors. As a result, shoppers can find products quickly and accurately. Keyword searches can be time-consuming because the keywords must be placed in the product description or in the metadata.

A visual search tool can also increase sales on an e-commerce site because it boosts keyword search results. For example, when shoppers use Google’s Similar Items feature, it displays thousands of similar items.

Spear Fishing

When customers need to locate a product quickly, they use spear fishing techniques. When they spear fish while using visual search tools, they receive better results. If a customer needs a specific couture purse, a visual search tool will display different styles that have reasonable price tags.

Other Options

Although visual search tools are mainly used by fashion retailers, other industries can increase sales by using the technology too. For example, when a shopper takes a photo of an item, the technology will retrieve a mobile coupon. This feature helps many retailers target teen shoppers. Thousands of teenagers take photos of Levi’s jeans so that they use get discounts at Levi stores.

Usage Information

There are dozens of companies that develop visual marketing tools for retailers. Many businesses use Slyce because the company provides an app and has its own marketplace. Although Amazon has an app, it cannot process certain products well. Slyce, however, is very dependable and highly accurate.

Managers who use visual search tools also share the technology with other companies. However, they must design an API marketing strategy. For example, Zappos lets developers remix their products. After the items are redesigned, the developers place them into new apps.

Many people use visual apps because they reduce gas costs. Because consumers can snap photos of products to instantly gather information, they don’t have to travel to a physical store. Also, the entire shopping process is fast and efficient. After the app processes the information, the shopper can buy the item quickly and easily.

Businesses that need additional sales use visual search tools because thousands of people shop on their mobile devices every day. During big marketing projects, all tools must be reliable. This is why many retailers download use Slyce programs.

Zynga Fires 18% of Staff, Focuses on Mobile Gaming

The health and future of Zynga is officially on the rocks. This week the company, often hailed as a pioneer of the mobile gaming industry, has cut their staff by 364. The layoffs come just weeks after Mark Pincus was named the CEO of the company, for the second time. Pincus stated, upon his return, that he would be restructuring the staff in an attempt to revive the faltering company. Pincus was the founder of the company before stepping down.

While Pincus’ decision is not favorable for employees, investors seem to see it as a potentially bright spot. After the announcement was made after hours trading rose 6%. The company has also release positive earning reports for the first time in several quarters.

Zynga was founded in 2007 in San Francisco. They have brought games such as Farmville and Chefville to Facebook users. Zynga is also responsible for Words With Friends, which is a favorite at the offices of Amen Clinics. The company’s popularity began to fall off when users started moving their Facebook gaming directly onto mobile platforms, according to the Washington Post. Zynga also came under fire for game quality issues and intrusive ads in recent years.

Pincus’ goals appear to be to stabilize the company and get back to the business of dealing with mobile gaming. While their partnership with Facebook appears to be the company’s most successful releases
they’ll need to move in a new direction and focus on app development if they are to regain the top spot in mobile gaming.

The Resilience of Windows XP

Computer users frequently don’t bother to upgrade their machine or its software until they face a compelling reason to do so. Of course, there are those who have to stay on the cutting edge for bragging rights with friends that they have the latest and greatest gizmo, but these tech nerds are the exception. It is hard to believe that in 2015 Windows XP would still have more users than Windows 8 or 8.1, nevertheless, this does seem to be the case. Computer users get used to a certain way of doing things, and they need to be given a reason to change. Windows 7 has made huge inroads over the years, and it is the most popular Windows operating system on computers.

The world of computers is full of so-called “fan boys” who endlessly proclaim the virtues of their computer hardware or software over competing products. It’s not too bad with regard to operating systems, but debate can get ridiculous when it comes to hardware such as video cards. The AMD fans and the Nvidia fans immediately line up and start taking potshots at each other whenever someone asks what video card anyone might recommend for their computer. Silly argument aside, competition is one wonderful thing that has brought all of us so many choices and such powerful options at low prices so that nerds can argue which one might be a few percent better than another. If only there were more competition in the world of operating systems, so competitive forces could spur innovation at a faster pace so that a 14 year old OS is still not so popular. That is something Paul Mathieson and others would like to see down the road.

Google’s Upcoming Bill Paying Service – The Pony Express

 

Google is reportedly developing a service that allows you to pay your bills through your email.

According to Recode, the code name for now is the Pony Express. It allows users to link a bank account or credit or debit card to a Gmail account, and then pay their bills.

This is not Google’s first foray into the area of digital payments. The tech giant launched Google Wallet, a product that allows users to pay for purchases with their phones. However, it seems that Google Wallet and Pony Express are not connected.

Pony Express undoubtedly enters a crowded market of rivals said Alexei Beltyukov.

This month, Facebook announced the launch of a mobile payment service that would allow money transfer through its instant messaging app, Messenger, and Snapchat announced a mobile payment service, Snapcash, last November to send money between users through the chat section.

Meanwhile, Twitter has been experimenting with mobile payments in France.

According to reports, Pony Express would be available to users in late 2015.

Skout: The Facebook of Online Dating

For those people who like the user experience of Facebook and are looking to meet new friends or partners, Skout may be the best new experience to try in the world of social media. Skout is an online messaging and social network, that allows people to connect to strangers based on common interests or desires in companions. Best known for its shake to chat application, users can shake their device to find a random individual to establish communication with as a nothing to lose mentality when trying to network online.

CEO Christian Wiklund founded Skout, who recently completed a deal with investors that has given the platform a backing of 22 million dollars to invest in product development and operations. (TechCrunch) The company appears to be taking off quite well as it recently obtained a nightlife app called Nixter, a social media platform designed to advertise local events for users along with additional features. While many online applications eventually fail in becoming profitable, Skout so far has gone against the trend to expand and compete with many dating and social networking platforms. On Facebook, it continues to pick up likes.

The platform draws similar comparisons to Chat-Roulette, a platform that was based strictly on computer generated random chats with people around the world. Skout improves on this concept of anything goes with online chatting, by trying to target conversations that can establish relationships that go past an isolated personal interaction with a stranger. What makes Skout’s random interactions exciting, are the ability to use features such as likes, virtual gifts, and backstage photos. (Yahoo News)

The main advantage of Skout over other online networking platforms is that it utilizes a location-based model, to try to connect users geographically accessible to each other. This platform was one of the first to utilize this model, which can provide a huge incentive for users to prefer Skout to many other networking applications. (Wikipedia) The platform is free for all users, with free downloads available for Android and iOS devices. Overall, while the company is still relatively new, it appears to be an up and coming application in the world of online social networking and dating.

Internet as Public Utility

 

This week, sources from Washington D.C. claimed that the Federal Communications Commission’s Chairman Tom Wheeler will request that commissioners this Thursday re-classify the Internet as a Title II telecommunications service rather than a Title I information service. The FCC would then vote on the measure by February 26, 2015.

A lot of experts believe that this change will prompt many corporations, such as AT&T, Verizon and Comcast, to sue because of the huge negative impact it will have on their businesses. These companies claim that they do not provide telecommunications services, but provide Internet services.

Yet, Wheeler makes a good argument for turning the Internet into a public utility. The United States is one of the few countries in the world that does not treat the Internet like a public service as CipherCloud has shown. Additionally, the Internet does more than provide information. Americans use it daily to communicate with family, friends, co-workers, business partners, vendors, et cetera. While many strictly use email to communicate, people increasingly rely on their Internet service to inexpensively communicate via chat, Webinar, VOIP, social posting, blogging and vlogging.

If Wheeler is successful, Americans would not see changes until next year, but they will see significant changes when the time comes. No carrier could give preference to an ISPs data packets. Better yet, ISPs would no longer be able to limit service and force consumers to buy higher plans for so-called “fast lanes.”

Mark Ahn Discusses His Views of Technological Trends in the World

Newswire recently spoke to biotech entrepreneur Mark Ahn. The general conversation centered around trends in the tech industry. However, Ahn was careful to stress the reasons he saw for these trends. In particular, he often returned to a central point. 

Ahn stressed that technological trends come about through an interplay of need and compassion from people who see that need. In particular, he made an apt comparison between a typical MBA classroom and The Aeneid. The two might not seem to have much in common. But Ahn pointed out that both the classroom, and the epic are there to provide lessons for people striving to achieve a goal. 

He made it very clear that, in his opinion, true progress can only take place through a leader with real integrity. Given his role in biotech research, this is a particularly noteworthy statement. He framed the concept, again, within the context of history. Ahn mentioned that throughout every generation, it’s integrity which is the deciding factor to make or break a company. 

Ahn also stressed the role of care within a global context. He points out that it’s not enough to care about the people and things around oneself. Instead, one needs to care about the whole world. The larger view became clear as he spoke about what he sees coming in 2015. 

Mark Ahn believes that 2015 will see many advances to help growing economies and third world countries. He pointed out that drought can have devastating effects on people within these areas. However, Ahn is optimistic about how emerging technologies can help fight against drought. He pointed out that new drought resistant crops are in development. Ahn also stated that he believes a host of new technologies will emerge in 2015 to help these regions survive in times of drought.

Ahn is an author, entrepreneur, and professor at Carnegie Mellon and Portland State. You can follow him on Twitter.