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Study: Annual Internet of Things spending to increase 375% by 2018

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A recent IDC survey commissioned by TELUS has revealed that only a small portion of Canadian businesses have an Internet of Things solutions in place. This is despite the fact that IoT spending is expected to grow by 375 percent in the next four years.

Right now, only six percent of Canadian businesses have an IoT solution in place. A further seven percent will deploy solutions this year. According to IDC, annual IoT spending in Canada sat at $5.6 million in 2013. That number will apparently jump to $21 billion in 2018. (more…)

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Bootloader unlock process for the Xperias just got easier

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Smartphone manufacturers generally believe that the custom UI they slap on top of their phones’ Android install is perfect. It’s the best possible experience you could have on a phone and you would never, ever want to change it, right? Well, not quite. Many companies  recognise that devs and enthusiasts like to tweak the software, root their devices and flash custom ROMs. Though unlocking the boot loader actually voids the warranty in a lot of cases, a lot of manufacturers are happy to tell you how to do it, and Sony today announced that it would be  making its Unlock Boot Loader service even easier to use. (more…)

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RBC Express Mobile app now available for Android, iOS and BlackBerry

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RBC already has its every day banking app available on Android, iOS, BlackBerry and Windows Phone, and now Canada’s largest bank has targeted its mobile business customers. The RBC Express Mobile app for business owners offers the ability “to stay on top of important business banking tasks.”

Business owners can view balances and transactions, transfer funds between accounts, approve payments and find branches and ATMs.

RBC notes they are the “first financial institution in Canada to offer a mobile business banking app on all major platforms.” However, the RBC Express Mobile app is currently only available on Android, iOS and BlackBerry, with Windows Phone 8 not even scoring a mention (latest comScore stats showed WP8 at 2% market share in Canada). We asked RBC about a pending Windows Phone 8 app and representatives noted “we want to make sure our mobile offerings are available to a sizeable portion of our business clients and also offer the great user experience and security that RBC is known for. We will continue to monitor client usage on the prevalent mobile devices and will prioritize accordingly. ”

Source: App Store, Google PlayBlackBerry World
Via: CNW

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Samsung reportedly in talks to acquire SmartThings for $200 million

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The connected home is gaining traction this year as we’ve recently seen several major acquisitions in the category. In January, Google acquired Nest for $3 billion, known for its the popular Learning Thermostat and Protect Smoke Detector. More recently, Apple announced its first Internet of Things-based projects with HomeKit.

Now, according to a report on TechCrunch, Samsung has purchased Washington-based SmartThings for $200 million “to get out ahead of Google’s Nest efforts.” Samsung has previously delved into home automation through its Samsung SDS subsidiary, providing the building blocks for a smart home in the form of smartphone-enabled door locks and custom lighting solutions, among others. (more…)

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Contest: Win a Rogers Samsung Galaxy S5 and a Gear 2 Neo

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Fancy yourself a new smartphone and smartwatch? Here’s something for you! Up for grabs in the first of many summer contests is a Rogers Samsung Galaxy S5 and a Samsung Gear 2 Neo!

Both devices were released earlier this year and the LTE-enabled GS5 runs KitKat, has a 5.1-inch Super AMOLED HD display (1920×1080, 432ppi), 2.5 Ghz quad-core processor, 2GB RAM, built-in heart rate monitor, 16MP camera with a 2MP front-facing camera, 2800 mAh battery and are both water and resistant. The Gear 2 Neo, which is exclusive to Rogers, is one of the latest smartwatches to arrive in Samsung’s lineup. (more…)

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You can now pay for your Grooveshark with Bitcoin

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Earlier this year, Stripe announced that its users would soon be able to accept Bitcoin payments from their customers. The private beta program was launched in the spring, and it looks like Grooveshark is one of the first eager businesses to adopt the new form of payment.

Reddit user cloud109 this past weekend posted a message he received from a community developer at Grooveshark. This developer said that the company was now accepting payment for premium subscriptions via Bitcoin. A quick glance at the Bitcoin website confirms that anyone upgrading to Bitcoin premium is now offered the opportunity to pay with Bitcoin along with the usual credit card or PayPal options. (more…)

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Yahoo app for Android gets updated with Canadian content

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Previously only available to Android users in the United States, Yahoo has rolled out an update to its official app that brings Canadian-specific content. Yahoo notes that those who install the app will experience “the best of the web” on their device.

Yahoo’s app is compatible with Android devices running 2.3.3 and higher and offers the latest local Canadian news, as well as the ability to search via 12 different categories: World News, Business, Celebrities, Entertainment, Finance, Health, Media, Politics, Science, Society, Sports, Technology. Information is visually displayed in a card format with large feature images that remind us of Flipboard, along with adjustable text sizes. Also embedded within the app are a number of options for sharing articles via mail, Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr.

Alongside support for content for international regions, this latest version of the app (version 4.1) offers an improved news stream layout as well as access to the aforementioned news categories from the navigational drawer.

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Apple and IBM announce enterprise software and device partnership

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Apple and IBM have announced a partnership that will see the two companies team up in an enterprise push involving IBM software and Apple hardware. This exclusive partnership will see IBM’s big data and analytics capabilities arrive on Apple’s iOS devices.

The deal covers more than 100 industry-specific enterprise solutions and will include native apps designed exclusively for the iPhone and iPad from the ground up.  There’s also going to be new a new breed of AppleCare tailored to the needs of enterprise customers as well as packaged offerings from IBM covering device activation, supply, and management. (more…)

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Vancouver’s Faraday cage cafe closes tomorrow

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Most smartphone owners would argue that while the devices make our lives far more convenient, it comes with a certain level of sacrifice. Every where you turn, people are staring into those tiny screens with no care or caution for the people around them. Understandable, then, that some people have the urge to disconnect completely.

Earlier this month, Vancouver got its very own cellphone-free cafe in the form of the Faraday Cafe. The cafe is a space free of cell phone service or any kind of digital connection. By enclosing the entire cafe in a mesh that shields electromagnetic fields, social artists Julien Thomas and Hughes Condon Marler Architects have created a place where people can go to get away from the buzz of their electronics. And it sounds like the people of Vancouver have embraced the idea.
(more…)

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Tory Burch launches fashionable but expensive line of Fitbit Flex accessories

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At last month’s We Are Wearables event in Toronto, IDC Canada identified fashion as one of the main barriers for wearables when it came to mainstream adoption. Krista Napier commented that consumers needed to be able to walk into their favourite store, be it Michael Kors or Hugo Boss, and buy wearable devices that fit their style and taste. While we might not be quite there yet, things are moving in that direction. Tory Burch and Fitbit today announced that their new line of accessories for the Fitbit fitness tracker is available for pre-order now. (more…)

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