Wearable Tech Market Could Grow Fast

A report from Berg Insight is betting that wearable tech will continue to proliferate in the coming years. They are forecasting that by 2017, 64 million units will be sold worldwide, making wearable tech on track for the next tech boom.

The report shows that between 2011 and 2012, devices like smart glasses, watches and wearable fitness trackers like the Fitbit and Nike’s FuelBand were snatched up, with sales growing by almost 168 percent.

While sales of these smart devices are growing at breakneck speed, so do the concerns over privacy and it’s easy to see why. When these watches can monitor your heart rate, the caloric content of your food and act as your windows for everyday life, the fusion of oneself to so many computers can be approached with caution.


A poll in September of this year from Survey Sampling International showed that about one in three Internet users in certain countries were trepidatious about the invasion of privacy that wearable tech could pose. Australia is the most concerned of these countries, with 46 percent wary of the wearable tech invasion, with France and the UK a little bit more open to the idea.

Source: eMarketer

[Sponsored] How ‘New Influencers’ Are Changing Online Marketing

This sponsored post is produced by Ayzenberg Group and was originally published on Venture Beat on December 2, 2013.

As advertisers struggle to increase engagement with their online and digital campaigns, a solution is needed, which may involve a new approach to social and earned media.

Heavy social users are gravitating towards niche nets and have become selective about what they post and share. Brands are also placing greater importance on the content they create, making sure it’s entertaining, timely, useful, and easy to share – but still that’s not enough to drive up engagement.

The key lies in how digital natives, especially millennials, increasingly seek out product information from online experts with common interests. Online bloggers/vloggers, commentators, product reviewers, social media gurus, and even bona fide celebrities have gained online clout and have increasing reach and authority on the Internet.

They’re the new influencers.

For many, these influencers have become celebrity product endorsers, speaking directly to an audience through the various channels they’ve come to trust for information, often playing a pivotal role in their purchase decisions.

We’ve seen proof that harnessing digital influencers can propel campaigns to far exceed expectations.

We recently ran a digital campaign for Warner Bros.’ Injustice: Gods Among Us, a fighting game based on the DC Comics universe. We mixed digital influencers with comic book experts and celebrities to promote a virtual tournament dubbed “Injustice Battle Arena,” where the game’s superheroes and villains squared off in face-to-face battles and fans voted on the outcomes. The campaign garnered nearly 19 million views over 10 weeks and more than 850 percent ROI in earned media value.

For another campaign we ran for a large interactive entertainment company, we supported the launch of four of their products with an online video and social media program built around four YouTube stars. Each ‘YouTuber’ delivered a live cast show featuring one of the products, with promotions targeting their subscriber base and social networks.  Engagement was through the roof, and two of the games set launch sales records for the company.

As a result of these and other campaigns, we’ve charged up a new weapon aimed at the new influencers – the Influencers Outreach Network, or [ion]. It’s the product of three years of experience running these types of programs, but it’s more than a wrapper on proven methodology. It’s a proprietary platform designed to first connect brands with the right influencers, then accurately measure results.

There are currently more than 7,000 affiliate influencers who are part of the [ion] program – and this number is growing daily.  These are YouTubers, bloggers, industry professionals, theatrical, television, and other social media influencers. Their reach is staggering, with audiences in the hundreds of millions and engagement metrics measured in billions.

To support our growing network, we’ve expanded our technology platform to include content curation, sharing, gamification and analytics – resulting in an online media exchange for our premium inventory of influencers to amplify results.

We know how fast targets move when it comes to digital and social media. Influencer outreach isn’t a silver bullet, but it’s a powerful way to engage consumers. It’s a system that sets the community up to not only generate significant awareness but to engage and grow through its own volition.

Pantene Ad Fights Gender Labels

While the Philippines is ranked in the top ten globally on gender issues, gender inequality is still very much an issue in the country. In support of the #WhipIt movement, Pantene released this ad to emphasize that there’s nothing wrong with looking good and being successful as a woman.

{video link no longer active}

Axe Effect Hits ‘Battlefield 4’

Axe is working with EA to cross promote Battlefield 4, and that includes specially marked AXE packages at Walmart giving away free stuff. Additionally, there’s this great ad put together in the style of Axe ads (though somewhat apocryphal, since female soldiers aren’t in Battlefield 4).

{video link marked “private”}

Spike VGX Award Winners Revealed

This past Saturday, Spike aired its yearly Spike VGX Awards show online, with hosts Joel McHale and Geoff Keighley revealing new projects and exclusives, while also handing out a number of awards to 2013’s most noteworthy games.

The full list of winners is as follows:

Game of the Year: Grand Theft Auto V

Studio of the Year: Naughty Dog (The Last of Us)

Best Shooter: Bioshock Infinite 

Best Action/Adventure Game: Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag

Best Sports Game: NBA 2K14

Best Independent Game: Gone Home

Best Role-Playing Game: Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch

Best Fighting Game: Injustice: Gods Among Us

Best Driving Game: Forza Motorsport 5

Best Downloadable Content: Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon

Best Xbox Game: Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons

Best PlayStation Game: The Last of Us

Best Nintendo Game: Super Mario 3D World

Best PC Game: Gone Home

Best Handheld Game: The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds

Best Casual Game: Animal Crossing: New Leaf

Best Voice Actor: Troy Baker (The Last of Us)

Best Voice Actress: Ashley Johnson (The Last of Us)

Best Soundtrack: Grand Theft Auto V

Best Song In a Game: “Will the Circle Be Unbroken” by Courtnee Draper and Troy Baker (Bioshock Infinite)

Most Anticipated Game: Titanfall

Character of the Year: The Lutece Twins (Bioshock Infinite)

Best Mobile Game: Plants vs. Zombies 2: It’s About Time

Congrats to all the winners!

Source: Shacknews

Activision Finds ‘Destiny’ In September 2014

It’s been a long wait for Activision/Bungie’s huge sci-fi project Destiny, but this past weekend, the companies announced an official release date for the game.

Destiny will make its way to store shelves on September 9, 2014 for Xbox One, Xbox 360, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3 and PC. A pre-announced beta will go live for PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 3 during the summer of next year.

“We first shared the design pillars of Destiny less than one year ago. We promised to redefine what players should expect from a Bungie game. We said we waned to change the way people play games together. We set our bar high. For us, Destiny represents a once in a lifetime opportunity,” said Bungie in a blog update.

“Since then, Destiny has continued to reveal its promise. Every new build brings us closer to our original vision. With those goals in sight, we intend to use every moment from now until the release of the game to ensure that Destiny lives up to your expectations, and our own.”

Source: GamesIndustry International


EA Donates Funds For Cancer Research

Coming off sales of $10.5 million from its recently released package of downloadable games via Humble Bundle, Electronic Arts has donated $1.65 million to the American Cancer Society.

“So proud of Team EA in raising $10.5 million from the Humble Bundle, $1.65 million of which goes to the American Cancer Society,” tweeted EA COO Peter Moore.

The Humble Bundle for EA Origin games included quite a number of hit titles for dirt cheap, including a trio of Dead Space games, as well as Mirror’s Edge, Crysis 2: Maximum Edition, Medal of Honor and Burnout Paradise: The Ultimate Box.

In addition, EA has also donated to other charities with the proceeds, including the Human Rights Campaign, Watsi, San Francisco AIDS Foundation and the American Red Cross. No specific amounts were given for these groups.

Source: GameSpot

iPhone 5s, 5c Growing Fast

Ever since its launch just a few weeks ago, the fancy yet efficient iPhone 5s has managed to gain quite the foothold in unit sales. The iPhone 5s now accounts for over 10 percent of iPhone usage.

A report from the team at Mixpanel indicates that the number of adopters for the device is approximately two to three times that of those who picked up the iPhone 5 at launch. The iPhone 5c, while not as high in sales, is doing quite well, too.

Growth for the iPhone 5 progressed at about .25 to .5 percent per week, while the iPhone 5s, by comparison, sits at about .75 to 1 percent increase per week. Mixpanel CEO Suhail Doshi stated that Apple’s new device is “doing a reasonable job of taking over the mid-end part of the smartphone market.”

Source: TechCrunch