tracking Stories March 23, 2016

AAPL: 106.13

-0.59

Many have long wondered just how many users are actively watching content on the Apple, and starting soon we’ll get a deeper look into those numbers. Nielsen, the company behind tracking statistics related to all sorts of entertainment, has announced today that it soon plans to start breaking out metrics for connected devices, including the Apple TV (via Variety).

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tracking Stories January 28, 2016

AAPL: 94.09

0.67

We learned this week that Apple shipped 74.8 million iPhones globally during the recent holiday quarter, which is just slightly up from the 74.4 million shipped during the same quarter the year prior and just under the 75 million that analysts expected.

Today Strategy Analytics has released new data showing how Apple’s last two years of shipments compare to competitors like Samsung and Huawei. The data also breaks down how Apple’s global smartphone marketshare stacks up to those same competitors.

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The best 4K & 5K displays for Mac

tracking Stories February 12, 2015

Visa hopes to track smartphone locations to prevent credit card fraud for travellers

Currently most of us have to inform our bank by phone when we’re travelling to avoid purchases in other countries appearing as red flags for fraud and being declined. That could soon change as Visa looks to track smartphones with a service called Mobile Location Confirmation in order to help their security systems become smarter and reduce declined purchases by as much as 30%.

tracking Stories August 26, 2014

Ralph Lauren introduces iPhone-connected ‘Polo Tech’ fitness tracking shirt

Ralph Lauren has announced it’s about to introduce a new iPhone-connected, sensor-filled Polo shirt capable of tracking and sending biometric data directly to your smartphone.

The Ralph Lauren Polo Tech shirt features sensors knitted into the core of the product to read biological and physiological information. With Ralph Lauren’s leadership in the design community, the compression shirt also has a sleek look in black with a signature yellow Polo Player logo. The second-skin fit enhances comfort and agility.

The company described a bit about how the technology it’s using from Canadian company OMsignal works:

With OMsignal, the data collected by the shirt is stored by a “black box,” which includes an accelerometer and gyroscope, which capture movement and direction. That ”black box” transmits the data into the cloud, where it is plugged into a number of algorithms that gauge important performance-oriented biometrics, including heartbeat and respiration, as well as some psychometrics, such as stress level and energy output.

While you can’t buy one yet, the product will be making its debut on ball boys and players during the US Open where Ralph Lauren is an official outfitter for the event. There’s no word on when exactly you’ll be able to get one for yourself, but Ralph Lauren is taking sign-ups for those interested in learning more when it officially launches next year.

tracking Stories June 19, 2014

Nike+ FuelBand app gets push notifications for challenges, upcoming events, more

Nike updated its Nike+ FuelBand companion app today with one notable new feature: the ability to receive push notifications for a number of different features within the app. Those include things like challenges, upcoming Nike events, exclusive video content, and more.

The new push notifications, along with bug fixes and some other minor improvements are available now in version 2.3 of the app. Nike might be planning to get out of the hardware side of its FuelBand business in the near future, but for now the FuelBand is still available for sale and the update a welcomed one by users.

What’s New in Version 2.3

• You can now stay connected to Nike via push notifications – receive the latest info on challenges and upcoming Nike events as well as exclusive video content. • Bug fixes and other improvements.

tracking Stories June 9, 2014

iOS 8 randomizes MAC address while scanning WiFi, blocks marketers tracking you

One iOS 8 feature Apple hasn’t talked about much is its ability to randomize the device’s MAC address while scanning for WiFi networks.

In iOS 8, Wi-Fi scanning behavior has changed to use random,locally administered MAC addresses… The MAC address used for Wi-Fi scans may not always be the devices real (universal) address… Once the iOS device is done scanning it will give the real MAC ID.

This appears to be a security and privacy precaution as marketing and analytics companies routinely use this unique identifier to collect data about nearby devices scanning for WiFi networks. The New York Times published a story last year about a similar experiment at Nordstrom and several marketing companies selling data to retailers and more use the same method of picking up the MAC address from devices scanning for WiFi networks. One of those companies, Euclid Analytics, explains how it currently uses the MAC address of iPhones to help clients. While it notes “the MAC address does not disclose the device owner’s real-world identity nor any other personal data,” it also uses the data it collects to help clients “improve store layouts, determine timing for promotions and sales, measure the effects of advertising, and set staffing levels and store hours.” 

These marketing companies do the same for Samsung and Android devices, which also do not currently automatically randomize the MAC address, but it looks like Apple might put an end to that with iOS 8.

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