Is the Answer to Phone Addiction a Worse Phone?

from NYTs I’ve gone gray, and it’s great. In an effort to break my smartphone addiction, I’ve joined a small group of people turning their phone screens to grayscale — cutting out the colors and going with a range of shades from white to black. First popularized by the tech ethicist Tristan Harris, the goal of sticking to shades of gray is to make the glittering screen a little less stimulating. I’ve been gray for a couple days, and it’s remarkable how well it has eased my twitchy phone checking, suggesting that one way to break phone attachment may be […]

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In Carpenter Case, Justice Sotomayor Tries to Picture the Smartphone Future

from The New Yorker “I am not beyond the belief that someday a provider could turn on my cell phone and listen to my conversations,” Justice Sonia Sotomayor said on Wednesday, in the oral arguments in the case of Timothy Ivory Carpenter v. United States. She is correct; indeed, there have been indications that that day may have already arrived. And yet the government argued that when prosecutors—without a warrant—looked at some of the most intimate information that a cell-phone company can collect about its customers, they were not doing anything distinctly intrusive. The Carpenter case began with a string of […]

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China’s Mobile Revolution (pt. 1)

from The Startup In February 2016, I went to China to celebrate Lunar New Year with my relatives. Having emigrated to North America over 14 years ago, I’ve always been amazed by China’s continuous transformation. As my life in the West became interweaved with services provided Google, Facebook, Snapchat, Uber, Youtube, and Amazon, I realized that my relatives in China couldn’t access any of these services (with the exception of Uber and Amazon in some cities). This is due to China’s Great Firewall, which blocked off most Western Internet technologies. Though I had read about the rise of WeChat, Alibaba […]

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The War for Mobile Search

from Medium There’s a war being waged in mobile. A war to control the final lucrative frontier that will shape how mobile is monetized. The battle is for mobile search, and its outcome is uncertain. Today, mobile search is a wild landscape of competing and contradictory technologies, unfulfilled promises, and 800 pound gorillas strategically positioning themselves without any centralized regulation or governance. It should be no surprise that the war for search has gone mobile as people spend more and more time on their phones. In May 2015, Google confirmed that mobile search queries overtook desktop queries. By all indications this trend […]

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Five Ways Mobile Is Changing the World

from <RE/CODE> Mobile is about more than a device or platform. The combination of immediacy, personalization, scale and global reach mobile provides has democratized content, commerce and culture. It has given unlimited power to consumers who spend on average 11 hours per day on mobile devices. Those who view mobile as simply an extension of their advertising program are wrong. Mobile is becoming core to all consumer-brand efforts, both in terms of time spent with these devices and because they are home base for search and social media and, increasingly, all things video. For marketers, mobile is our industry’s greatest […]

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The Revolution Will Not Be Televised (on television)

from COMtalk It was 2013, but Chuck Saftler’s head was in 2020. If he didn’t get creative, the FX exec realized, the deal he was about to cut could prove a bust. He was not about to buy traditional airing rights to every episode of The Simpsons—as well as those to come—only to have the Netflixes of the world cannibalize the arrangement by snagging on-demand rights a few years later. So, Saftler says, he asked Simpsons creator Matt Groening and others at the show’s production company, Gracie Films: Would they grant FX exclusive video-on-demand rights, too? The answer was yes—on one condition. “They asked that we not […]

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Verizon’s Mobile ‘Supercookies’ Seen as Threat to Privacy

from NYTs For the last several months, cybersecurity experts have been warning Verizon Wireless that it was putting the privacy of its customers at risk. The computer codes the company uses to tag and follow its mobile subscribers around the web, they said, could make those consumers vulnerable to covert tracking and profiling. It looks as if there was reason to worry. This month Jonathan Mayer, a lawyer and computer science graduate student at Stanford University, reported on his blog that Turn, an advertising software company, was using Verizon’s unique customer codes to regenerate its own tracking tags after consumers […]

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Disruptive Innovation: Estonia Will Do To Citizenship What Uber Is Doing To Taxis

from The Ladder A term that seems to be thrown about in the technology sphere, and indeed in the mainstream press these days is ‘disruptive innovation’. It’s the thing that every start-up, entrepreneur and venture capitalist strives towards. In the never-ending quest for convenience, consumers wholeheartedly buy products and services that save us time. So, when Uber came along and started providing a quicker and more efficient way to hail a taxi, the only people who properly objected were the cabbies themselves. With the growth of the internet, distances are shrinking, the level of consumer choice is many times what it was twenty […]

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