Not so long ago, I came across a Kickstarter project named “Remix Mini – The World’s First True Android PC” by Jide Tech, where they were offering a fully operational personal computer for $ 20 (1 GB version) & $ 40 (2 GB version). It definitely caught my eyes for two reasons:
# 1: World’s First Android PC
# 2: Insanely low price
I got my hand on Remix Mini in November 2015, wasn’t disappointed at all. They delivered as they promised. It was cool in design, easy to set up and fast android operating system that the market has to offer.
Well, the Jide team didn’t just stop there. A few weeks ago, in CES 2016, they had announced that, they will release the Remix OS for FREE for everyone. On 12th of January, 2016, they opened the door for everyone to download the Remix OS for free. Before, I go into detail about its features, allow me to explain what is Remix OS?
Remix OS is a fully customized Android. But unlike other Android OS, it has a user interface. What does it mean? Imagine you are using an Android OS on your PC or Laptop or even on your TV, but it feels like a desktop operating system. In other terms, it’s like a Windowed Android OS. It has a task bar, a desktop, and support for running Android apps, like Windows OS or OS X.
Now getting back to its features, it basically runs on any Intel based PCs, even on Macs. One of the coolest things about using an Android based OS, is you can download / use over 1.6 million of Android apps available on Google Play Store. For example, you can run adobe applications. Microsoft office, Chrome browser and what not. Just like other operating systems in the market, it offers start menu, multi-window features, ability to minimize, maximize, drag & drop etc. All you need to do is to download the Remix OS on a USB 3.0. Plug it in and run. It even gets better, you can use the Remix OS on a Windows or Mac PC. It will run without any interference. All these you get without spending a single penny. Just make sure your USB and Computer has the following minimum requirements:
The team behind Remix OS, is just not from any other company. This is just the beginning and they are here to change the world of technology. I am personally convinced after using my Remix mini and Remix OS. Try it out yourself. You can download it here:
Ask any marketer, what tool they use for reaching out B2B customers in the EU. Most of them are likely to say, direct mails, social media, emails, etc. We have already seen many B2C companies, News Agencies, magazines, event-management agencies in America have started using several mobile messaging marketing tools to reach out to their customers and to enhance their brand presence.
Am I the only one who thinks that marketers can reach their B2B customer more easily and effectively using Mobile Messaging Marketing Tools? B2B industry in the EU is still using old school methods of acquiring and retaining their customers. Nothing wrong in that. But in order to stand out in the crowd, I think it’s time to step up and use unconventional tools create that WOW factor. Here’s my Top # 3 mobile messaging marketing tool for B2B industry in the EU.
Number # 1 – Whatsapp
54,9% people in western Europe owns at least one smartphone and that’s the highest in the world. For example, the Netherlands has one of the highest smartphone penetration rate in the world with 61% WhatsApp adoption rate. Imagine the number of customers you can reach out in one go. Moreover, Whatsapp has recently introduced Web Version, where typing and managing the contacts are even more easily than before.
As a B2B Company all you need to do is to have a fixed number, which your customers can add as a contact. You will not only be able to take care of customer request quicker, moreover, be able to reach them proactively with your latest offers/products.
Number # 2 – Snapchat
Snapchat – photo-sharing app has expanded in recent times to go beyond sharing disappearing photos. Snapchat has recently signed up with several companies such as BuzzFeed, Daily Mail, Cosmopolitan, MTV, Fusion, CNN, Vice, Food Network, People etc. The core idea is simple, “Less is More”; the users get to view the videos, images, news items in a very compressed format.
In the EU, this trend is still limited. By Snapchat, B2B Marketers can promote their events, showcase employer branding (for example, how it’s to work at X, Y, Z company). If your company doesn’t have the budget for paying $ 750,000 (Approx € 683,932), then all you need to do is to install snapshot and ask your customers to add you (your company snapchat account). Just create your SnapCode and share it with your customers to add / follow you. Then you can regularly SHARE YOUR STORY and customers can view them whenever they want.
Create your SnapCode here: https://accounts.snapchat.com/accounts/snapcodes
Number # 3 – Viber
Viber allows for free calls to and from people using Viber, and you can use it ViberOut for your PC as well. As a B2B marketer, you can use the “Public Chats” option, which allows people to follow the charts of companies, or a specific topic, etc. Users can also download sticker collections from brands.
Moreover, you establish a single contact point for the customers where they can call / reach irrespective of the location. Moreover, you communicate High-Resolution images (such as Posters / Offers / Event news etc.) With customers proactively.
These apps are still relatively young. It’s still an unexplored territory for B2B marketers. Before jumping into it and destroying your brand reputation, it’s highly recommended to understand your customers, research what type of tool they use in their smartphones and make a clear communication strategy. After all, it’s about how to use the proper mobile messaging marketing tools customer specifically.
“New Horizons space probe”, “Pluto flyby” are the current buzzword. Tuesday, 14th July, 2015, was that historic moment; where we have proved once again the capability of you and me, us the humans. New Horizons blasted off in January 19 2006, and was the fastest launch recorded, reaching speeds of over 36,000 miles per hour. The spacecraft passed the Moon after just nine hours, around eight times quicker than the Apollo program, and reached Jupiter the following year. After 9.5 years, and traveling more 5 billion kilometers it had reached the orbit of Pluto and even sent back mind boggling images of the youngest planet in our solar system, Pluto.
The New Horizons project is a success. But, that success didn’t come over night. Just like any business projects we carry out in our professional lives, it was a project for NASA. In our business world, we do many projects every year. Some fails, some succeeds and some succeeds beyond expectation. After reading several articles, watching documentaries about New Horizons space probe projects, I personally thing, there’s 5 crucial factors which has lead this project to a successful project. We can surely learn from it and implement in our business projects to make them successful.
Factor # 1 : Team
Without the right team in place, any strategy and plan has the potential of completely falling apart. The New Horizons team comprised of 4 majors teams -Team Leaders, Science Team, Co-Investigators, and Team Leads with defined responsibilities and goal. It is important to assign the right people to each aspect of the project and make sure that they are working well together.
Factor # 2 : Planning
Proper and Detailed planning sets up a project for success from the start. It’s crucial that all the team members are involved in the planning process and always know in which direction the project is going to go. Planning can help the team to meet deadlines and stay organized. For example, New Horizons team planned way ahead in time to ensure that the probe was able to reach Pluto when it’s nearest to us. It’s crucial to remember that Pluto follows a highly elliptical orbit around the Sun. At the closest point of its orbit, called perihelion, Pluto gets to within 4.44 billion km from the Sun. The team planned way ahead in time to ensure that the New Horizons probe reached when Pluto is at the closest point of its orbit. Hence, the probe was able to reach Pluto in quickest time possible at a reliable and realistic time-scale.
Factor # 3 : Foreseeing Risk
During the planning phase, it’s crucial to produce probable list of risks with an action plan for the risks that the project could face. For example, the new Horizons probe is traveling at speed of 84,000 kilometers per hour. Even a small rice grain size space rock can damage the equipment’s on board. The new horizons team were able to take care of this ensuring that the radio antenna was always faced towards the path direction so that if any small objects will hit the large antenna and won’t damage the equipment’s behind it. This gave the team confidence and resulted in success in the project.
Factor # 4 : Improvising
Projects rarely go off exactly as planned. Even after identifying and going through probable risks, teams faces unforeseen risks. It doesn’t mean that that project should be stopped and restarted again. Stopping or restarting a project can be highly costly in terms of money and time. It important to improvise. It’s crucial to openly communicate within the team about it and trying to find a smart solution with least cost and time. Same happened with the New Horizons team. They launched the probe on January 19, 2006. They later realized that they had miscalculated the orbit of Pluto as they didn’t have a lot of information about the planet’s orbit. Later with improvement of technology and in combination with images captured by researchers, the team was able to find the accurate info about the orbit. Hence, they were able to send information to the probe in advance to save the project from total failure.
Factor # 5 : Project Continuation & Closure
If a project does not have strong closure or succession planning, then it has the potential to continue to consume resources. The project team must be firm and agree that all critical success factors have been met. Some cases, projects turn into actions or evolves into daily routines of the team members. It has to be clearly defined in the project scope, whether the project will end once it has achieved a certain goal or will it continue and evolve to be part of daily work. For example, the New Horizons space probe has received his goal of taking images of Pluto and sending them back. But, it will now continue to go further and explore the universe beyond Pluto till 2030. It’s a classic example of project continuation even after it has completed its main goal.
Augmented reality (AR) is a live direct or indirect view of a physical, real-world environment whose elements are augmented (or supplemented) by computer-generated sensory input such as sound, video, graphics or GPS data
Yesterday, 21st January, 2015, Microsoft took this definition to another level when they introduced Microsoft Hololens. So, what is Microsoft Hololens?
Imagine you are having Google Glass with additional features which enables you to interact with three-dimensional holograms blended with your real world. As Microsoft quoted, “it’s more than a simple heads-up display, and its transparency means you never lose sight of the world around you. High-definition holograms integrated with your real world will unlock all-new ways to create, communicate, work, and play”
Check out this official video released by Microsoft Yesterday…
Future of Automotive Industry
I am working in the Automotive Industry as Specialist New Media at Koninklijke Nedschroef Holding B.V. and after watching the premier of Microsoft Hololens, I am quite optimistic that the years to come in this industry are going to be revolutionary. Here’s why…
Designed and Development Process
Well, you are right, the term “Augmented Reality” is nothing new in automotive industry. OEMs are already testing and using it via using laser projected augmented reality. Especially the designers using it during development process in order to visualize actual proportions and sizes, geometry etc. But, this required the OEM to build an initial model to project on and it requires expensive projection system.
But now the time has come to forget laser projected augmented reality system. With Microsoft Hololens, OEM’s can just play around with the holograms and even interact with them for just € 1,300- €1500
Go Inside the Problem & Find the Solution
Let’s take a simple example of Door Locking Assembly System. In a door locking system, there’s a small space inside the door necessitates precise preparation and movement of locking system. It has a little lever to be engaged in the lock which makes it impossible to see the lock and the lever adequate enough from that position. Also, the poor space between inside the door which makes it difficult for the workers to work. In order to solve this problem, the workers require a good three dimensional understanding of the space. With the help of Microsoft Hololens, the worker will be able to see through the door (via holographic projection) will be able to fix assemble with ease.
Fastening With Ease
I am working at Nedschroef, where we are constantly innovating and introducing new fasteners and solutions to the OEMs. Let’s take an example, of one of the product called Nedsonic® also known as Ultrasonic Tightening Bolt. When it comes to bolt, one thing is most important: clamp load. To ensure bolts hold components together, they are tighten to generate clamp load. This tightening causes the bolts to elongate. By sending an ultrasonic wave into the bolt and recording the duration of the wave’s travel, the length of the bolt can be determined. By using Microsoft Hololens, the line feeding workers will be able to view in real-time, measure, evaluate and indicate the achieved clamp load, which will result in reliable and profound clamp load.
Well, that’s just a few of limitless possibilities that Microsoft Hololens can bring to automotive industry and to the other industries. It’s just the beginning and I am sure, there’s limitless opportunities which will unfold in time to come.
What do you think about this product? What else can it do revolutionize this industry? Feel free to share this article and comment.
We all talk about innovation; every company wants to be innovative. But, do we actually know how to? Time has changed, so did the definition of innovation. It’s crucial for any company to adopt the new ways to be innovative in order to survive in today’s competition. Here’s my view towards the ultimate guide for becoming an innovative company.
It’s one of the most used words lately. Well, you must be wondering, that is this “Co-creation”. Let’s start with a formal definition, “Co-creation is a form of marketing strategy or business strategy that emphasizes the generation and ongoing realization of mutual firm-customer value.” The words to focus on here is “mutual Firm-customer value”. In today’s world it’s crucial for companies to break out of the box and work together with the customer or suppliers to generate innovation and provide better solutions to problems.
A perfect example would be, Nedschroef, a leading manufacturer of fasteners working with its customers like VW, Audi, BMW etc to create innovative fastener solutions.
It’s 2013 and we are still experiencing the aftermath of global financial crisis. The Euro crisis is taking a high toll on countries like Netherlands, Germany, once known as one of the strongest economy in the world. Getting funding for starting a business is really difficult these days. Even when it comes to produce innovative products it requires good amount of investment before theory turns to reality. Especially for SME’s and individual entrepreneurs, crowd funding has become the ultimate source for turning a great idea into a reality. Yes, crowd funding is the collective effort of individuals who network and pool their money, usually via the Internet, to support efforts initiated by other people or organizations.
The Pebble Watch has been the most famous example of crowd funding. The original team scored more than $10 million with a target of less than $1 million via crowd funding platform named “Kickstarter”
“Coming together is a beginning, Keeping together is progress, and working together is success” that’s definitely one of my favorite quotes anymore. When it comes to innovation, people from different background, different part of the world, even from different work experience can contribute to provide innovative solutions to any problem. Thanks to the rapid growth of the internet, people from different part of the world can share their knowledge and create innovative solution and products.
Recently, Facebook friends helped a scientist to identify nearly 5,000 fish specimens collected in Guyana in less than 24 hrs, YES less than 24 hrs. The majority of people commenting held a Ph.D in ichthyology or a related field, and hailed from a great diversity of countries including the United States, Canada, France, Switzerland, Colombia, Peru, Venezuela, Guyana and Brazil. By quickly tapping the collective expertise of their social network to help with the preliminary identification process, the expedition members were able to sort, pack and export the specimens to Washington, D.C in a timely manner.
Zipcar is a US membership-based carsharing company providing automobile reservations for its members, billable by the hour or day. Members can reserve Zipcars online or by phone at any time, immediately or up to a year in advance. Zipcar members have automated access to Zipcars using an access card which works with the car’s technology to unlock the door, where the keys are already located inside. Zipcar also offers an iPhone or Android application that allows members to honk the horn to locate a Zipcar and unlock the doors.
I was amazed by the overall idea behind such innovative car rental service when I first came to know about it in Marketing and Service Management Class during my MBA at Maastricht School of Management. And this is one of the best examples of innovation via collaborative consumption. In more formal terms, collaborative consumption is an economic model based on classical market behaviors of sharing, swapping, bartering, trading or renting access to products as opposed to ownership which both creates and adds value to existing products and services
California State University defined Creativity as the tendency to generate or recognize ideas, alternatives, or possibilities that may be useful in solving problems, communicating with others, and entertaining ourselves and others.
It’s no doubt creativity paves the way towards ultimate innovation. But, in order to be creative, you need to be able to view things in new ways or from a different perspective. Among other things, you need to be able to generate new possibilities or new alternatives. You can be from a totally different industry yet you can always add value and create innovative products to other industry just by able to see things in new ways. In fact, a research named “Innovation through diversity” by Forbes insight has proven that formula for success is in the diversity of people in the organization. People from different background when put together in a perfect environment produce creative and innovative solutions.