Would you buy a $2000 phone?

Samsung Fold is back 

After a false launch and reboot, Samsung’s almost $2000 foldable phone, the Fold, will be available for purchase in September. The first near launch revealed some problems with the screen, which was easily damaged. The initial flaws are reportedly fixed. CNET

dis-rup-shun: With sales of smartphones slowing, and Apple’s revenues in trouble, one must ask, how many people will buy a $2000 smartphone? First, we need to look at this as a new computing form factor. It is less of a phone and more of a pocket tablet — a tablet sized screen that can easily be carried in a pocket. Who will buy it? People with a lot of money that want to be the first with a hot new device — we will call them the Tesla crowd. Secondly, it may have some training and sales applications. People whose job is to quickly access people who are not likely to sit down and show them something are good candidates — people who need to show a quick video or drill down on price lists or instructions. Mobile gamers will love the device, but at $2000, it is the price of a game console, so again, that is the Tesla crowd.

Digital hotel keys are a win win

The percentage of hotels now offering a Bluetooth-powered virtual key has risen to 17%. The virtual key improves customer experience, saves money and enhances customer engagement: guests don’t spend time with the front desk clerk, plastic keys are not required, and guests must access the hotel’s loyalty app for room access. New York Times

dis-rup-shun: As we know, the Internet of Things is all about data, and now hotels have detailed data about who, when and how often guests are going and coming to their rooms. Expect the hotel lobby, without the need for a registration desk, to begin to look more like a living room, with fewer clerks who are not front and center, and who may perform multiple tasks such as concierge. 

Ransomware leads to State of Emergency in Louisiana

Governor Edwards has responded to ransomware that has shut down the IT infrastructure of three Louisiana school districts by declaring a state of emergency, enabling the schools to get help from the Louisiana National Guard, Louisiana State Police, the Office of Technology Services, the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness among other agencies. ZDNet

dis-rup-shun: Ransomware is a very expensive problem. The state of Louisiana will probably spend more by deploying its emergency and enforcement agencies than the hackers are asking in ransom, but maybe the officials can thwart the criminals. The question, however, is how do individuals and small businesses protect themselves from these threats, which could bankrupt many. Malware insurance may be a new must have for consumers and businesses alike.

Sonos and Ikea release their speaker products

Homes are getting smaller. The National Association of Builders reports that average new home sizes have shrunk for the past three years. Ikea and Sonos have just released two interesting products for compact living: one that is a speaker/lamp combo ($179), with the lamp base being a Sonos speaker. The other product is a slim bookcase speaker ($99). The Symfonisk line will be shipping in early August. Wired

dis-rup-shun: Combination furniture/appliance products have been around for decades. Everyone remembers the wooden console TV. It is nice to see technology improve the quality of appliances and the efficiency, as they get smaller, cheaper and better and Sonos products have generally provided stellar experiences.

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