Not So Smart Watches | Tech Talk Today 30

Not So Smart Watches | Tech Talk Today 30

Are you excited about Smart Watches? Or does the current crop fall to far below expectations to be a serious item? Plus a look at how hackers remotely owned a Tesla, and the broader ramifications as computer systems are further integrated into our cars.

Plus the interesting secret buried in Google’s quarterly results & more!

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Tesla Model S hack reportedly controls locks, horn, headlights while in motion | Ars Technica

The hacks were carried out at the Syscan 360 security conference in Beijing, an article published by Bloomberg News reported. The report cited a brief post on Chinese social media site Weibo from a representative of China-based Qihoo 360 Technology Co., which said the experiment was carried out by members of the company’s information technology department.

Tesla Motors officials vowed to investigate reports that its Model S sedan is susceptible to hacks that can remotely control the car’s locks, horn, headlights, and skylight while the car is in motion, according to a published report.

Google beats Q2 2014 revenue estimates with $15.96 billion, misses on EPS | Ars Technica

Google announced its earnings for Q2 2014 today. The company reported $15.96 billion in revenue, a 22 percent increase over last quarter, and earnings of $6.08 per share. This is a mixed bag compared to what Wall Street was expecting, which was a net revenue of about $15.62 billion and earnings of $6.25 a share.

Selling hardware and apps on the Play Store now makes up 10 percent of Google’s revenues, up 53 percent over last year for 1.60 billion in revenue.

CPC was down 7 percent in the quarter, but for network sites it was down almost twice as much at 13 percent. The growth of mobile usage has been a big part of this decline, since mobile ads tend to cost less.

Continued erosion of the CPC number (down 2% Q2Q, 6% y/y) so for those who haven’t been following this like I have here are the last fourteen quarters:

Paid Clicks Cost Per Click Paid Distribution
Q-2-Q Y-A-Q Q-2-Q Y-A-Q In $M
2011Q1 18 4 8 -1 337
2011Q2 18 -2 6 12 355
2011Q3 13 28 -5 5 383
2011Q4 17 34 -8 -8 442
2012Q1 7 39 -6 -12 468
2012Q2 1 42 1 -16 507
2012Q3 6 33 -3 -15 556
2012Q4 9 24 -2 -6 634
2013Q1 3 20 -4 -4 680
2013Q2 4 23 -2 -6 706
2013Q3 8 26 -4 -8 755
2013Q4 13 31 -2 -11 824
2014Q1 1 26 0 -9 845
2014Q2 2 25 -2 -6 893

Cost per click is the money that Google gets per click, it keeps going down suggesting to me that the “value” of this advertising is going down.

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Google’s quarterly infrastructure spending has been skyrocketing for several quarters now, and the past three months were no exception. Google spent nearly $2.65 billion on data centers during the second quarter — more than $1 billion over last year’s second quarter and more than triple what it spent two years ago.

Does Anyone Even Want a Smartwatch?

Fewer than half of the respondents to a recent Accenture survey said they would consider buying a smartwatch, and even the most optimistic experts predict only 20 million smartwatch sales this year, a pittance compared with phone and tablet sales.

To understand the smartwatch hype, it helps to know that the consumer-tech world is going through an identity crisis. Smartphones and their affiliated apps have powered Silicon Valley’s profit engines for years, but growth in the phone market is slowing as more people make do with the devices they already have. (Research firm IDC expects smartphone growth to fall to single digits by 2018.)

Since at the moment smartwatches need to be tethered to your phone’s data connection in order to work properly, they actually don’t allow you to streamline at all. And while it was convenient not to have to reach into my pocket every time I got a Facebook message, Twitter reply, or email, the constant buzzing raised my stress level considerably. Then there’s the matter of having a $300 gadget strapped to my wrist, which creates anxiety of its own.

Android Wear Review: Putting the Smartphone on Your Wrist – YouTube

WSJ Personal Tech columnist Joanna Stern reviews the first truly “smart” watches.

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