tracking Stories March 23, 2016

apple-tv-siri

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

iPhone lineup 21

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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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.

tracking Stories November 5, 2013

smartkey

Low-energy Bluetooth is really starting to take-off in a big way, with seemingly every other product on the main crowdsourced-funding sites using it. One product that actually exists, though, is the Elgato Smart Key – which appears good value at just $40.

If you can’t remember where you last saw your keys, the Elgato Smart Key iPhone app will tell you the GPS location of where the two devices were last in contact. Through the app you’ll also be able to make the Smart Key play a sound to help you find your keys when they are down the back of the sofa. Not only that, but attach them to your keys and your iPhone will alert you when you walk off and leave them somewhere. Leave one in the glove compartment of your car, and the app will show you were you parked a if you need reminding …  expand full story

tracking Stories May 16, 2013

UPS finally releases iPad app for tracking & scheduling deliveries

UPS announced today that it is finally rolling out a native iPad app that brings the ability to track and schedule deliveries as well as access to features of UPS My Choice® and enhanced mapping features. These features were previously available to users in the free UPS Mobile app for iPhone, but today they come to iPads through the UPS for iPad app available on the App Store now. 

Some of the features below will require enrollment in the UPS My Choice program:

Without logging in, you can: 
– Track packages and freight shipments
– Save up to 5 tracking numbers in your tracking list
– See the current location of your package on a map
– Find UPS service locations via GPS

When you log in, you can also: 
– Sync your recent tracks from ups.com
– Nickname tracked shipments
– Enroll in UPS My Choice
– Use UPS My Choice to take action on your incoming deliveries
– Set your delivery preferences

Research firm IDC is out with its latest numbers for Q1 2013 today tracking worldwide smartphone shipments by OS and OEM noting Android and iOS combined accounted for 92.3% of all shipments during the quarter.

IDC noted that Apple and Android  shipments combined increased year over year approximately 59.1% with a total of 199.5 million units shipped worldwide during Q1. That’s up from just 125.4 million a year ago. Apple is clearly a large driver of the growth with the report pointing out that iPhone had its “largest ever first quarter volume.” However, despite that, Apple also saw a decline among usage of iOS compared to growth of the industry as a whole, allowing Android to keep its top spot by OS and Samsung to remain number 1 by OEM.

How far is iOS behind Android? According to IDC it accounted for 17.3% of the market in Q1 compared to 75% for Android. Of course this is likely taking shipments (not sales) into account and also doesn’t represent tablet usage that we know iOS continues to dominate.  expand full story

tracking Stories April 10, 2013

‘LookAway Player’ brings Samsung’s Smart Pause-inspired feature to iPhone

Samsung’s new eye-tracking features on its Samsung Galaxy S IV are arguably some of its coolest yet.

One of them, Smart Pause, is built right into the video player on the device and recognizes when you are watching a video. If you look away from the screen while it is playing, the GS4 automatically pauses the video for you and starts playing it again when you look back.

Many are wondering when or if a similar feature will launch on iOS. While Apple may never implement such a feature, iOS users can try out the feature.

LookAway Player for iOS is a YouTube player that includes the same look-away-pause, look-back-play features found on the Galaxy S IV. LookAway uses a technology developed by Cube26, which utilizes the front-facing camera to track eye movement.

While it is not yet clear how well the player actually works, it is available to try out yourself on the App Store.

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