PC sales are up, maybe
PC sales have been slowing as users rely on smartphones and tablets, but both IDC and Gartner analysts report an increase in PCs. IDC reports an increase of 4.7% and Gartner 1.5%. The firms have very different definitions of what is a PC. IDC counts Chromebooks but not Microsoft Surface Tablets. Gartner does not count Chromebooks, but does count Surface products. ArsTechnica
dis-rup-shun: Microsoft Surface has single-handedly brought a fringe of users who were Mac users but not in love with the MacOS back into the Windows fold. Surface is cool enough that a user can walk into a conference room in Silicon Valley and not receive the usual taunts from the Mac glitterati. Surface devices, except for the Go units, have keyboards and Chromebooks, which don’t run Microsoft software, have keyboards and are hinged. That said, PC growth is fueled by classroom success of Chromebooks and by the excellent design of Surface.
HeroLabs helps fight homeowners biggest enemy: water damage
HeroLabs, a UK startup, is developing Sonic – a water leak detector that attaches to pipes inside the house (underneath the kitchen sink) and “listens” for water movements throughout the home to identify leaks. TechCrunch
dis-rup-shun: As leaks are the biggest cause of insurance claims, cost effective, easy-to-install leak detection systems are theoretically more likely to gain a discount from insurance providers than a home security system. Even more, leak detectors that are connected to the cloud could be monitored by insurance providers, as those providers are the ones responsible for paying claims when water damage occurs. Expect property and casualty providers to be big players in smart home technologies.
Facebook attempts to explain Libra to Congress
The Libra Association has been summoned to Congress to explain the currency. The sophisticated crypto currency will be based in Switzerland and will conform to international monetary rules and will not compete or interfere with governments’ fiscal policies, the pre-released testimony states. TechCrunch
dis-rup-shun: Congress has a tough challenge in that it must understand the impact, risks, and benefits of Libra or rely on consultants that do in order to properly respond, regulate, limit or prohibit the new venture. Like the rise of Uber, Libra will move far more quickly than legislators and will continue to redefine the rules of the monetary system. World governments need to rapidly understand from what dangers it must protect its own monetary systems.