MediAvataar's News Desk

MediAvataar's News Desk

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A New YouGov survey explores what resolutions people are likely to make in 2019 with respect to their phones, WhatsApp and social media

Since we all spend a large time of our day online on our phones and use multiple social media platforms to stay connected, it was only natural to see what kind of New Year’s resolutions do Indians make with regards to their social media lives. Fake news is a hotly debated topic worldwide as well as in India.

In the recent times, WhatsApp has emerged as one of the fastest and most common sources of spreading fake news. With the 2019 general elections around the corner, the frequency of fake news is expected to rise. But what would be interesting to see is whether Indians consider this to be a menace and the manner in which they respond to such hoaxes.

From all the apps present in the social universe, WhatsApp emerged as the most commonly found app on people’s phones, followed by Facebook. A higher percentage of men are more likely to have Facebook app on their phones compared to women (90% vs 82%).

3 in 5 people actively use WhatsApp

Not only is WhatsApp the most commonly found app on people’s phones, but it also is the most actively used app. Comparatively, it is most actively used by those who are over 30 years of age (66%) than those under 30 (49%). It is also interesting to note; that women are more indulgent on WhatsApp than men (62% vs 56%). This stands true across all age groups.

Naturally, ‘WhatsApp addiction’ emerged as the winner when asked what addiction people think they have or could have in future. This was followed by ‘Phone addiction’ (37%) and ‘Facebook addiction’ (31%).

WhatsApp addiction is the strongest among 30+ year olds (56%), who are also the most active users of the service. While for the younger generation under 30 years of age, phone addiction stands ahead of WhatsApp addiction (42% vs 38%), for the 30+ generation, WhatsApp and Facebook addiction surpasses their addiction to phone.

With respect to their phones, top new year resolutions that people are most likely to make in 2019 are ‘I will not check my phone during my meals’ (37%), ‘I will not check my phone while driving’ (35%), ‘I will not check my phone every few minutes’ (34%) and ‘I will not sleep with my phone next to me’ (34%).

Talking about social media resolutions, a little over a third (34%) said they will be more selective in adding friends on Facebook or Instagram. Close to 30% also admitted to wishing people personally rather than on social media, not expressing their emotions on social media and not sharing random posts without actually verifying the source of information.

When speaking specifically about messaging app, WhatsApp, most respondents claimed to make this resolution in 2019 – ‘I will not believe everything I read’. This speaks of the people’s resistance towards fake news and random forwards and the effort they are likely to make in this regard. This view is further reinforced with 41% claiming to not forward messages without verifying the source of information. Apart from this, people have also demonstrated an intent to take a more personal approach in greeting people, instead of wishing them on WhatsApp. These sentiments have come out in their social media resolutions as well.

Lastly, when asked about the social media app that respondents are most likely to remove/deactivate in 2019, Facebook topped the charts with a fifth of people wanting to remove it from their lives. It seems like Facebook’s popularity may be on the decline. Although most people have the app on their phones, only 1 in 5 people are actively using the app.

Data collected online by YouGov India among 732 respondents in India between December 31st, 2018 and 3rd January, 2019 using YouGov’s panel of an online representation of India

New Services, Acquisitions Disrupt as well as Evolve the Smart Home Market

Strategy Analytics’ smart home analysts have made their predictions for the smart home market in 2019, and they foresee even more potent pushes from big consumer technology brands into the smart home market, and a stronger emphasis across the board on services versus hardware.

New roads into existing markets, whether through hardware-as-a-service sales models or smart home service providers partnering with insurance companies, are certain to disrupt established business, but are also crucial for the market to evolve beyond its device-centric roots. Lines between many facets of the smart home market are blurring, especially for telecommunications companies and internet service providers.

“The evolution of the smart home market, and the emergence of the intelligent home, will take time, and 2019 will showcase some big steps forward,” said Jack Narcotta, Senior Industry Analyst, Strategy Analytics’ Smart Home Strategies research service.

“Less than 10 years ago many asked what the smart home market would look like,” said Bill Ablondi, Director, Strategy Analytics’ Smart Home Strategies research service. “Now, we’re identifying which companies and what marketing and technology strategies are going to win.”

Strategy Analytics’ predictions for the smart home market in 2019 are available here. Key predictions for 2019 include, among others:

Facebook entering the smart home market through its Portal video calling device

Amazon partnering with a major US home insurance provider

Apple introducing a lower-cost HomePod to expand HomeKit’s footprint

Monitoring of elderly and disabled people emerges as an important smart home service

Service providers replace individual offerings with blends of entertainment and smart home control

During the Consumer Technology Association (CTA) State of the Industry Address at CES® 2019, CTA announced 16 out of 61 countries are leading the world in having the best environment for innovation according to its new 2019 International Innovation Scorecard.

This year’s Innovation Champions are Australia, Canada, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Israel, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Singapore, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States.

During the CTA keynote, the Netherlands’ State Secretary for Economic Affairs and Climate Policy Mona Keijzer, the U.K.’s Secretary of State for International Trade Dr. Liam Fox and Estonia’s Minister of Education and Research Mailis Reps joined Gary Shapiro, president and CEO, CTA, onstage to accept the Innovation Champion awards on behalf of their countries.

“These countries are world-class leaders in growing innovation,” said Shapiro. “When it comes to technology and policy, they value disruptive innovators. To be leaders in innovation, nations must drop protectionist rules and end barriers that limit them from creating the next great startups that will change the world for the better.”

The new Innovation Champions include first-time honorees Germany and Israel. Germany climbed into the highest tier thanks to improved new business growth and widespread access to telecommunications and online services. In Israel, over half (51.5 percent) of its workforce is employed in high-skilled jobs, almost half (46.8 percent) of its college students earn degrees in STEM fields — second only to Singapore – and 4.3 percent of its gross domestic product (GDP) goes toward research and development (R&D), more than any other country on the Scorecard.

Overall, Innovation Champions typically outperform other countries in measures of Freedom, Broadband, Entrepreneurial Activity, Resiliency – a new category to quantify the degree to which a country’s government and society are sustainable – and Self-Driving Vehicles.

Meanwhile, three former Innovation Champions dropped in the 2019 rankings. Austria’s top individual tax rate of 55 percent, the Czech Republic’s 15 percent year-over-year decline in R&D investment and Portugal’s decision to pressure short-term rental websites to share their data with the government moved them down to Innovation Leaders this year.

Other 2019 trends include:

Small countries tend to lead in R&D investment. Israel and South Korea spent the most of their GDP on R&D, with more than four percent, followed by Switzerland (3.4 percent), Sweden (3.3 percent) and Austria (3.1 percent).

On each continent, the countries with average download speeds above 18 mbps also ranked highly overall.

Eight of the 10 most resilient countries — graded on criteria including the visibility of supply chains and strength of digital and physical infrastructure — are European.

None of the 38 returning countries saw its Self-Driving Vehicles grade drop. In fact, many have further encouraged self-driving vehicle development by deploying self-driving public transit vehicles or preparing to build international test tracks. Year-over-year, we have seen more countries adopt laws allowing SDV testing.

The U.S. and China dominate in unicorns – domestic startups valued at USD 1 billion or more – created in the past decade, per 10 million people in population. The U.S. leads with 133, China has 120 and the third-ranked U.K. has 12.

Sunday, 20 January 2019 00:00

Top Trends From CES 2019

CES is about showcasing the latest tech innovations, which doesn’t always correlate well with what people want. Yet this year the key gadgets seemed more aligned to the current zeitgeist.

Digital Serenity

People today seem more stressed, tired, overwhelmed and distracted than ever because we’ve added more media and choices to our lives. From brain wave radiating massage chairs to brain calming headsets to apps aiding mindfulness, there seemed to be a range of products to help us retain calmness. Brands that help us decide and navigate choice will be more important than ever.

Chinese Imagination

Historically, we’ve seen Chinese companies mirroring what was developed elsewhere, but this year we saw them offering more innovative products – TV companies like Changhong and TCL, drone makers like DJI and handset makers like Huawei seemed to have some of the most outlandish, interesting, bold and pioneering designs – proving brands need to look east for inspiration and in all sectors.

Modular Upgrades

Software can improve products overnight, but not hardware. This year we saw an array of physical add ons to enhance older devices – from parking sensors and adaptive cruise control to FIBARO which connects older devices to Z-Wave, a wireless communications tool used for home automation. Brands should think about the long-term feeling of ownership vs. what they buy once.

Assisted Living

Technology has primarily focused on the young, healthy, wealthy and curious. Changing demographics have led to more tech solutions for the fragile/vulnerable – new wearables for the elderly, an array of personal safety devices (smart canes; Hyundai’s walking car) and the rise of voice as an interface. Brands should work with technology to help solve problems faced by the many, not the lucky few.


Written by Tom Goodwin, Head of Innovation, Zenith

The Gender-Equality Index identifies companies committed to advancing women in the workplace

WPP was today named an industry leader in the 2019 Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index (GEI) which recognises companies committed to transparency in gender reporting and advancing women’s equality.

Bloomberg’s 2019 index includes 230 firms from 10 sectors, headquartered across 36 countries and regions. Assessing information against a globally-established threshold, the GEI looks at how companies promote gender equality across four separate areas: company statistics, policies, community engagement and products and services.

WPP is the only company among its peers to be included in the list.

Mark Read, CEO of WPP said: “As we continue to build a culture at WPP that is inclusive, collaborative and diverse in our talent and in the work we create, we’re proud to be recognised in the Gender-Equality Index as a leader in our industry.”

Peter T. Grauer, Chairman of Bloomberg and Founding Chairman of the U.S. 30% Club said: “WPP’s GEI inclusion is a strong indicator to its employees, investors and industry peers alike that it is leading by example to advance ongoing efforts for a truly inclusive workplace.”

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