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  • THE TRANSFORMATION OF THE AUTOMOBILE 2016: Forecasts, trends, and analyses on the disruption of the automotive industry

    Estimated Connected Car Shipments

    Over the past year, there has been a significant uptick in the number of connected cars on the road. And as internet integration becomes more commonplace, the automobile as we know it will transform.

    Over the next five to 10 years, this internet integration is expected to change the car ownership model, create a new platform for consumers to access content, lead to fully autonomous vehicles, and revolutionize the auto industry.

    The market position of the car today is similar to where the smartphone was in 2010 — it's just taken off and is ready to explode. 

    In a new report from BI Intelligence, we examine the transformation of the automobile. We examine all areas of the changing automotive market, including the market size for connected cars, automakers benefits and connection strategies, market leaders, consumer demand, and more.

    Here are some of the key takeaways from the report:

    • Over 380 million connected cars will be on the road by 2021. The market has seen a significant increase in automakers plans to connect the majority of the vehicles they sell and as a result, we've increased our 2015 forecast.
    • Automakers are connecting the vehicles they sell because the connection offers clear business opportunities.
    • Consumers are adopting the connected car faster than expected. We identify the 3 factors that causing the increase in demand.
    • Tech companies will play a major role in the future of the automotive market. The big question is whether tech companies will eventually manufacture cars?
    • Fully autonomous cars are only a few years away. Technological, regulatory, and consumer adoption hurdles still remain, but there have been many strides towards a car that can drive itself from point A to point B with little to no human interaction.

    In full the report:

    • Forecasts connected car shipments
    • Identifies automakers strategy for connection
    • Analyzes consumer interest in the connected car
    • Examines Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
    • Discusses the potential changing car ownership model
    • Describes the evolution of the self-driving car
    • Identifies top connected car and fully autonomous car barriers

    Interested in getting the full report? Here are two ways to access it:

    1. Subscribe to an All-Access pass to BI Intelligence and gain immediate access to this report and over 100 other expertly researched reports. As an added bonus, you'll also gain access to all future reports and daily newsletters to ensure you stay ahead of the curve and benefit personally and professionally. >> Learn More Now
    2. Purchase & download the full report from our research store. >> Purchase & Download Now

    Join the conversation about this story »

  • There's a secret Google feature that makes it incredibly easy to set reminders (GOOG)

    android nexus 6p home screen

    There are countless apps for organization and productivity that let you set reminders for things you need to do, but it's actually super easy to simply set yourself a reminder using Google.

    What makes Google so good at reminders? You can set a reminder simply by typing in the Google search box, just like you would if you were actually searching something.

    It's insanely easy because there's nothing easier than performing a Google search. 

    It's especially useful if you need to set a reminder while you're in the middle of something and you want minimum interruption of your workflow. 

    The only app you need is Google Now. It comes standard with all Android phones, but if you haven't activated it already, it's time to do so. 

    Just type "remind me to X at Y time/place" in the Google search box, and a box will appear with your reminder and the options to choose when or where you want to be reminded.

    google now remind me

    After setting that up, click "Remind me on Google Now," and you'll get a notification on your mobile device with your reminder at the time or place you set the reminder for.

    google now reminder alert

    Unfortunately, despite the fact that iPhone users can use Google Now, I haven't managed to get a reminder alert notification on my iPhone. The reminder did show up in my notifications shade, but I didn't get an audible or visible alert.

    Also, you can't set a reminder within half an hour of setting it, and it won't work if you type in the web address bar. You have to type "remind me ..." in the Google search box.

    Otherwise, this is the best and easiest way to set up a reminder, and it might actually help me get more organized. 

    SEE ALSO: Why Google's smart assistant doesn't have a name like Siri, Alexa, or Cortana

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: You can modify your iPhone's logo so it glows like the one on your MacBook

  • 10 million self-driving cars will be on the road by 2020

    SDC Installed Base

    Self-driving cars are no longer a futuristic idea. Companies like Mercedes, BMW, and Tesla have already released, or are soon to release, self-driving features that give the car some ability to drive itself.

    Tech companies are also trying to pioneer the self-driving car. Recently, Google announced that it would be testing its prototype of a driverless car on roads this summer in California. 

    In an in-depth report from BI Intelligence, we analyze the self-driving car market by analyzing the current state of the self-driving car and provide an in-depth analysis for how we see the self-driving car progressing over the next five years. Our in-depth analysis describes the economic impact that self-driving cars can have and look at the current barriers preventing the self-driving car from coming to market. 

    Here are some of the key takeaways from the report:

    • Self-driving cars are not some futuristic auto technology; in fact there are already cars with self-driving features on the road.  We define the self-driving car as any car with features that allow it to accelerate, brake, and steer a car's course with limited or no driver interaction.
    • We divide the self-driving car into two different types: semi-autonomous and fully autonomous. A fully autonomous vehicle can drive from point A to point B and encounter the entire range of on-road scenarios without needing any interaction from the driver. These will debut  in 2019.
    • By the end of the forecast period, we expect there will be nearly 10 million cars with one of our defined self-driving car features. 
    • Fully autonomous cars are further divided into user-operated and driverless vehicles. Because of regulatory and insurance questions, user-operated fully autonomous cars will come to market within the next five years, while driverless cars will remain a long ways off.
    • The biggest benefits of self-driving cars are that they will help to make roads safer and people's lives easier. In the UK, KPMG estimates that self-driving cars will lead to 2,500 fewer deaths between 2014 and 2030.
    • But the barriers to self-driving cars remain significant. Costs need to come down and regulations need to be clarified around certain self-driving car features before the vehicles fully take off among mainstream consumers. 

    In full, the report:

    • Explains our definition of a self-driving car and breaks down the self-driving car into five levels of possible capabilities
    • Sizes the current and expected self-driving car market, including shipment forecasts and expected installed base
    • Analyzes how both car and tech companies are approaching the self-driving car
    • Determines the benefits of the self-driving car
    • Assesses the costs and regulations preventing the self-driving car from coming to market

    Interested in getting the full report? Here are two ways to access it:

    1. Subscribe to an All-Access pass to BI Intelligence and gain immediate access to this report and over 100 other expertly researched reports. As an added bonus, you'll also gain access to all future reports and daily newsletters to ensure you stay ahead of the curve and benefit personally and professionally. >> Learn More Now
    2. Purchase & download the full report from our research store. >> Purchase & Download Now

    Join the conversation about this story »

  • A recent experiment at Google suggests there's a simple way to stop mindless snacking at work

    snacking at work

    They looked like any other Googlers, tapping away on their laptops while sitting in a common area in the Google New York office.

    But in reality, they were spies.

    Scientists had sent them there on a single reconnaissance mission: Observe the snack choices people made while walking through the nearby "micro-kitchen," or the break room.

    The micro-kitchen was designed so that one beverage station was located about six feet from a snack bar containing M&Ms, nuts, and other treats. The other beverage station was located about 18 feet away.

    The team of scientists, which included Google's global food, health, and wellness program manager, wanted to know: Was the setup of the micro-kitchen affecting people's snacking behavior?  Specifically, would Googlers who took a drink from the station closer to the snacks be more likely to grab one than those who used the beverage station farther away?

    After analyzing over 1,000 beverage choices, the researchers concluded that the design of the micro-kitchen did, in fact, have a big effect on snacking behavior.

    Googlers who visited the beverage station closer to the snacks were a whopping 69% more likely to snag a snack than those who used the beverage station farther away. The findings, cited by the Association for Psychological Science, will be published in the August issue of the journal Appetite.

    Of course, it's possible that people chose a specific beverage station because they wanted a snack or wanted to avoid temptation — and not just because their desk was located closer to one beverage station or the other. But the researchers effectively ruled out that possibility because they only observed a few employees walking past one beverage station to use another.

    Another interesting finding: Men were much more influenced than women were by the proximity of snacks. Men were about twice as likely to grab a snack when they used the beverage station nearby; women were only about 25% more likely.

    The researchers put these results in perspective by calculating that a 180-pound man who drinks three beverages a day and uses the station closer to the snacks could wind up eating an additional 81 snacks a year. That means he could gain at least 2.5 pounds a year.

    Google Snacks Campus TorontoThis study is hardly the first time Google's experimented with tweaking its office environment to help employees develop healthy habits.

    For example, according to The Washington Post, a few years ago Google decided to conceal M&Ms in opaque jars and display healthful snacks like dried fruit in glass jars. Possibly as a result, New York Googlers ended up consuming 3.1 million fewer calories from M&Ms over the course of seven weeks.

    In another experiment, reported in The Harvard Business Review, researchers promoted relatively unpopular vegetables as the "vegetable of the day" with photos and trivia facts next to a dish featuring that vegetable. The number of employees who tried the dish increased by 74%.

    These solutions might seem ridiculously simple — like something out of a kindergarten class — and they are. That's the beauty.

    If you're looking to avoid mindless snacking and packing on the pounds at work, consider advising your office manager to rearrange the food and drinks in the kitchen or the break room. If that's not possible, at least be aware of the fact that you're more likely to snack when the good stuff is right in front of your face.

    SEE ALSO: The 19 best snacks to eat at your desk

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Scientists figured out a simple trick that makes people eat less

  • Google and Facebook are using automation to remove extremist content

    People are silhouetted as they pose with laptops in front of a screen projected with a Google logo, in this picture illustration taken in Zenica October 29, 2014.   REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/File Photo

    SAN FRANCISCO/WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Some of the web’s biggest destinations for watching videos have quietly started using automation to remove extremist content from their sites, according to two people familiar with the process.

    The move is a major step forward for internet companies that are eager to eradicate violent propaganda from their sites and are under pressure to do so from governments around the world as attacks by extremists proliferate, from Syria to Belgium and the United States.

    YouTube and Facebook are among the sites deploying systems to block or rapidly take down Islamic State videos and other similar material, the sources said.

    The technology was originally developed to identify and remove copyright-protected content on video sites. It looks for "hashes," a type of unique digital fingerprint that internet companies automatically assign to specific videos, allowing all content with matching fingerprints to be removed rapidly.

    Such a system would catch attempts to repost content already identified as unacceptable, but would not automatically block videos that have not been seen before.

    The companies would not confirm that they are using the method or talk about how it might be employed, but numerous people familiar with the technology said that posted videos could be checked against a database of banned content to identify new postings of, say, a beheading or a lecture inciting violence.

    isis twitter

     The two sources would not discuss how much human work goes into reviewing videos identified as matches or near-matches by the technology. They also would not say how videos in the databases were initially identified as extremist.

    Use of the new technology is likely to be refined over time as internet companies continue to discuss the issue internally and with competitors and other interested parties.

     In late April, amid pressure from U.S. President Barack Obama and other U.S. and European leaders concerned about online radicalization, internet companies including Alphabet Inc's YouTube, Twitter Inc, Facebook Inc and CloudFlare held a call to discuss options, including a content-blocking system put forward by the private Counter Extremism Project, according to one person on the call and three who were briefed on what was discussed.

    The discussions underscored the central but difficult role some of the world's most influential companies now play in addressing issues such as terrorism, free speech and the lines between government and corporate authority.

    None of the companies at this point has embraced the anti-extremist group's system, and they have typically been wary of outside intervention in how their sites should be policed.

    “It’s a little bit different than copyright or child pornography, where things are very clearly illegal,” said Seamus Hughes, deputy director of George Washington University’s Program on Extremism.

    Extremist content exists on a spectrum, Hughes said, and different web companies draw the line in different places.

    Most have relied until now mainly on users to flag content that violates their terms of service, and many still do. Flagged material is then individually reviewed by human editors who delete postings found to be in violation.

    The companies now using automation are not publicly discussing it, two sources said, in part out of concern that terrorists might learn how to manipulate their systems or that repressive regimes might insist the technology be used to censor opponents.

    “There's no upside in these companies talking about it,” said Matthew Prince, chief executive of content distribution company CloudFlare. “Why would they brag about censorship?” 

    The two people familiar with the still-evolving industry practice confirmed it to Reuters after the Counter Extremism Project publicly described its content-blocking system for the first time last week and urged the big internet companies to adopt it.

    Wary of outside solution

    The April call was led by Facebook's head of global policy management, Monika Bickert, sources with knowledge of the call said. On it, Facebook presented options for discussion, according to one participant, including the one proposed by the non-profit Counter Extremism Project.

    The anti-extremism group was founded by, among others, Frances Townsend, who advised former president George W. Bush on homeland security, and Mark Wallace, who was deputy campaign manager for the Bush 2004 re-election campaign. 

    ISIS Twitter

    Three sources with knowledge of the April call said that companies expressed wariness of letting an outside group decide what defined unacceptable content.

    Other alternatives raised on the call included establishing a new industry-controlled nonprofit or expanding an existing industry-controlled nonprofit. All the options discussed involved hashing technology.

    The model for an industry-funded organization might be the nonprofit National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, which identifies known child pornography images using a system known as PhotoDNA. The system is licensed for free by Microsoft Corp.

    Microsoft announced in May it was providing funding and technical support to Dartmouth College computer scientist Hany Farid, who works with the Counter Extremism Project and helped develop PhotoDNA, "to develop a technology to help stakeholders identify copies of patently terrorist content."

    Facebook’s Bickert agreed with some of the concerns voiced during the call about the Counter Extremism Project's proposal, two people familiar with the events said. She declined to comment publicly on the call or on Facebook's efforts, except to note in a statement that Facebook is “exploring with others in industry ways we can collaboratively work to remove content that violates our policies against terrorism.”

    In recent weeks, one source said, Facebook has sent out a survey to other companies soliciting their opinions on different options for industry collaboration on the issue.

    William Fitzgerald, a spokesman for Alphabet's Google unit, which owns YouTube, also declined to comment on the call or about the company's automated efforts to police content.

    A Twitter spokesman said the company was still evaluating the Counter Extremism Project's proposal and had "not yet taken a position."

    A former Google employee said people there had long debated what else besides thwarting copyright violations or sharing revenue with creators the company should do with its Content ID system. Google's system for content-matching is older and far more sophisticated than Facebook's, according to people familiar with both.

    Lisa Monaco, senior adviser to the U.S. president on counterterrorism, said in a statement that the White House welcomed initiatives that seek to help companies “better respond to the threat posed by terrorists’ activities online.

     

    (Reporting by Joseph Menn in San Francisco and Dustin Volz in Washington; Additional reporting by Yasmeen Abutaleb and Jim Finkle; Editing by Jonathan Weber and Bill Rigby)

    SEE ALSO: To the early Google employee who invested $250 million in Uber, seeing Uber's growth is like 'looking in a mirror'

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: There's a 'danger triangle' on your face that could kill you if you're not careful

  • Leading Chinese mobile company Huawei is developing its own OS (AXP)

    People walk past a sign board of Huawei at CES (Consumer Electronics Show) Asia 2016 in Shanghai, China May 12, 2016. REUTERS/Aly SongThis story was delivered to BI Intelligence Apps and Platforms Briefing subscribers. To learn more and subscribe, please click here.

    Huawei, one of the leading Chinese mobile hardware vendors, is developing its own operating system as a potential “contingency measure” if Google decides to exert more control over its Android operating system, according to The Information.

    Huawei’s smartphones currently operate on EMUI, an adapted version of the Android system that requires certain Google features.

    Huawei has hired Abigail Brody, a former Apple user interface executive, as well as numerous ex-Nokia employees, to develop this OS in Scandinavia. Previously, Huawei had been criticized for employing a similar interface to iOS, so the addition of these new employees could help to set their OS apart.

    This would be a bold and potentially risky move by Huawei.

    • There’s little evidence of consumer demand for another third-party OS to rival Android or iOS operating systems, which control the vast majority of global platform market share.
    • Other tech giants, including Microsoft and BlackBerry have famously failed to threaten the Android-iOS duopoly.
    • Creating a new OS would also dramatically reduce the number of apps available to Huawei’s users who’d also have to get use to a whole new interface.

    On the other hand, Huawei has some good reasons to consider building an OS.

    • Google seems set on asserting more control over its own platform, which has sprawled over the past few years in response to the growing number of vendors (particularly in China) using forked versions of its OS. That could limit Huawei’s ability to innovate on its own devices.
    • As the third-largest global handset vendor, with 27.5 million shipments or 8.2% of the smartphone market in Q1 2015, Huawei may have a large enough customer base to actually build a viable new OS.
    • As the global smartphone market begins to slow, many vendors, including Huawei, are beginning to think about shifting their business to focus on software and services rather than hardware.

    Of course, there is still a chance that Google, Huawei, and the other OEMs that may be thinking about building their own OS platforms can work out their differences. For now, Huawei’s decision seems to be more of a “Plan B” contingency if the company’s relationship with Google goes south. 

    To receive stories like this one directly to your inbox every morning, sign up for the Apps and Platforms Briefing newsletter.Click here to learn more about how you can gain risk-free access today.

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  • How a couple of rides in a junky car with Yahoo's founder had a big impact on young Sergey Brin (GOOG, GOOGL)

    sergey brin

    Yahoo's cofounder had a big role in Google's success.

    Larry Page and Sergey Brin, who built their Google search-engine prototype while at Stanford University, wanted to try to license out their technology to other companies, so they showed it to Stanford alumni David Filo, who had started Yahoo.com.

    Filo recommended launching a search site themselves based on their technology instead of licensing it. He even eventually introduced them to Michael Moritz, of venture-capital firm Sequoia Capital, who became one of Google's original backers.

    Apparently, some of those conversations happened in Filo's beat-up old car.

    Brin called Filo out on Friday as a person who has had one of the biggest impacts on his life, professionally and personally, during an interview at the Global Entrepreneurship Summit at Stanford.

    He recalled:

    "In the early days when we had the little prototype and we were shopping it around he [Filo] said, 'Why don't you just go out and build this thing?' And I took his advice to heart. And that worked out pretty well. And kudos to Dave."

    But Filo's influence on Brin went beyond just business advice:

    "I met him a couple times back then and he drove me around in his falling-apart, 20-year-old car that didn’t have a working fuel gauge so we almost ran out of gas, and this was at a time when Yahoo was already quite a valuable company. Certainly on paper he was very wealthy. But Dave never really was affected by money at all pretty much. He always had a normal house, I'd say maybe an abnormal car, in that few people of normal income would tolerate that ... But I think that it was great to see how he didn't let his wealth or notoriety affect him that much."

    Brin, appearing on stage in a pair of Crocs, cracking jokes, and casually spitballing on quantum mechanics and nanotechnology, seems to have taken Filo's example at least partially to heart.

    That said, Brin does co-own several private planes and a fancy new Tesla. And according to a Bloomberg report from April 2015, he employs at least 47 people, including a yacht captain, a fitness instructor, a photographer, and an archivist through a family office called Bayshore Management to help run various aspects of his life.

    Brin also had his own advice to give out. When asked for his thoughts on failure and entrepreneurship, Brin told attendees to "enjoy the dream."

    "Failure doesn't matter, nor does success," he said. "It's really the privilege to pursue your dreams that matters."

    SEE ALSO: The insanely successful life of Google cofounder Sergey Brin

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Google is using these seven-person tricycles for team-building

  • Sergey Brin: Don't come to Silicon Valley to start a business (GOOG, GOOGL)

    Sergey Brin

    If you're itching to start a company out of a garage, then you shouldn't pick up and move to Silicon Valley, according to Google cofounder Sergey Brin.

    It's easier to start a company outside the Valley than in it, he said onstage at the Global Entrepreneurship Summit.

    "I know that sort of contradicts what everyone here has been saying," he said with a laugh.

    Google got started at Stanford University, where the conference is taking place. But he argues that the Valley can be very expensive.

    "During the boom cycles, the expectations around the costs — real estate, salaries — the expectations people and employees have ... it can be hard to make a scrappy initial business that's self-sustaining," he said. "Whereas in other parts of the world you might have an easier time for that."

    What Silicon Valley is better for, he says, is that second step, once you've already started to gain some traction.

    Silicon Valley "is good for scaling that opportunity," he said. "It's good for providing more capital and allowing more risk."

    SEE ALSO: The latest robot from the company Google bought can load your dishwasher and bring you drinks

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: How to see everything Google knows about you

  • Google has an idea for robots to roam around warehouses

    Google is interested in building robots to work in factories, according to a patent awarded to the tech giant Friday.

    google patent warehouse robot

    The patent, earlier spotted by Quartz's Mike Murphy, outlines a way to make sure the robots aren't overloaded with cargo that may restrict the machine's movements or fall off altogether. 

    However, just like with any patent filing, there's no guarantee that Google warehouse robots will materialize. "We hold patents on a variety of ideas – some of those ideas later mature into real products or services, some don't. Prospective product announcements should not necessarily be inferred from our patents," a Google spokesperson told Tech Insider. 

    The patent inventor is Kevin Watts, a software engineer at Google who used to work as an engineer for robotics group Willow Garage. Willow Garage has two spinoff companies, Industrial Perception and Redwood Robotics, that were both acquired by Google in 2013.

    There have been some tension with some of robotics companies Google acquired in 2013.

    As we reported last month, Toyota is in final talks to acquire Boston Dynamics. And Nikkei reported that the Japanese automaker is also eyeing a purchase of another Google robotic group, Schaft. 

    While Google may be trying to get rid of some of its robotic companies, it's still actively investing in some areas of robotics. 

    For example, the tech giant is interested in delivery drones and robots, as part of its Project Wing division. And the company continues to develop its self-driving cars. 

     

    SEE ALSO: To the early Google employee who invested $250 million in Uber, seeing Uber's growth is like 'looking in a mirror'

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Pizza Hut is using this robot to wait tables in Singapore

  • UK voters are Googling 'What is the EU?' — right after voting to leave the EU (GOOG)

    brexit panic

    Seems like some UK voters might have a case of Brexit buyer's remorse.

    After the UK narrowly voted to leave the European Union, which sent stocks tumbling and social media panicking, Google Trends noted that the second most searched phrase in the UK was, "What is the EU?" 

    Another popular search? "What happens if we leave the EU?"

    The search spike seems to suggest that UK voters weren't exactly sure what they were getting into. 

     

     

    And, on Friday morning, just as Prime Minister David Cameron announced his resignation, there was a 100% spike in searches for "How to get an Irish passport."

     And others aren't sure how "Leave" ended up winning the referendum at all. 

     

     Oops?

    SEE ALSO: The characters of HBO's 'Silicon Valley' are inspired by real people in the tech world — here they are

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Here’s one type of pimple you should pay attention to

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