Category: Innovation

Varjo Unveils New, Powerful Business-Level Virtual Reality Headsets

Colin McMahon
Oct 15, 2019

Finland-based head-mounted display (HMD) developer Varjo today announced its new virtual reality (VR) headsets, the VR-2 and VR-2 Pro. For those unfamiliar with the company, Varjo operates primarily in the enterprise-level VR hardware market, providing solutions for many companies in the automotive and aviation industries. Prior to this announcement, its primary piece of hardware was the VR-1, a VR headset released last April.

VR-2 and VR-2 Pro Virtual Reality Headsets

Source: Varjo

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New Artificial Skin Expands Possibilities for Virtual Reality Control

Colin McMahon
Oct 8, 2019

Researchers from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne have created a new silicone-based material that, when worn over the human body, simulates a sort of “second skin,” according to a recent article published in the Soft Robotics science journal. According to the preliminary findings this material, when used as a feedback device, marks a vast improvement over haptic feedback technology – which is a leading form of virtual reality (VR) control.

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Apple Quietly Reveals AR Headset Development

Colin McMahon
Sep 16, 2019

On September 10, Apple hosted its annual Fall event – unveiling its product plans for the coming year. For the most part, everything went as expected. The iPhone 11 was announced (along with Pro versions), as well as the Apple Watch Series 5. A new iPad was also unveiled – one especially designed for entry-level customers. Apple also gave updates to its Apple Arcade and Apple TV plus platforms, pledging continued support and attractive price points. Overall, there really wasn’t much to write headlines about…or was there?

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What Print Service Providers Can Learn from Netflix’s Personalization Strategy

Colin McMahon
Jul 23, 2019

At first, print service providers (PSPs)—including mailing companies and direct mailers—might wonder what they have in common with Netflix. Although the service started out as a direct mail offering, it has since become more associated with online digital streamlining. Nevertheless, a recent technology blog from Netflix has shed some additional light on how the company is pushing its personalization practices forward, making them more advanced and better synced to each individual Netflix user. While this level of personalization is quite advanced now, it will likely become increasingly commonplace in the years ahead.

Many firms, including PSPs, can benefit from absorbing and understanding how Netflix continues to personalize its offerings in today’s digital age.

Netflix logo

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Making Printers & MFPs More Accessible to All Users

Christine Dunne
Jun 20, 2019

Document imaging OEMs have taken many steps to make their products more accessible to people with special needs. While this may be the right thing to do, it can also make business sense—particularly when selling into government agencies, other vertical markets (e.g., education, healthcare), and environments that put an emphasis on accessibility. Furthermore, in many instances designing for accessibility provides the added benefit of delivering a better experience for all users—regardless of their physical and mental capabilities.

In a recently published Market & Vendor Insights report, Market & Vendor Insights: Accessibility, Keypoint Intelligence analysts outlined specific efforts OEMs have undertaken to support accessibility, as well as scored these manufacturers on relevant product features, processes, and initiatives. Categories evaluated are shown in the below scoring table, which for the purposes of this blog post omits the names of manufacturers (they are included in the actual report). The darker blue the cell, the better the OEM performed in our assessment.

MFP/printer accessibility scoring by OEM (specific names omitted for blog post)

Office CompleteView subscribers have access to this market insight report, which also includes print accessibility primary research, OEM profiles, and analyses of PaceSetter award winners. Anyone else interested in this document can contact Christine Dunne at christine.dunne@keypointintelligence.com for more information.

New Research Document Scores OEMs on MFP Platforms, Apps, Cloud Readiness

Christine Dunne
Jun 17, 2019

Recently, Keypoint Intelligence analysts published a new Market & Vendor Insight report: MFP Platforms, App Ecosystems, & Cloud Readiness. In this document, we identified the trends surrounding multifunction printer software platforms as well as their associated app ecosystems and cloud readiness features, laid out the competitive landscape in this area, and showed how major OEMs performed in our latest platform and apps ecosystem evaluation (for which cloud readiness is a new scoring rubric).

As a basis for this evaluation, we surveyed the leading document imaging equipment makers in the United States and Europe, and conducted independent research to determine the progress path of MFP software platforms and their associated app ecosystems. Interested in a snippet of this report? Here’s a visual showing that office equipment dealers believe MFP apps that scan directly to cloud locations will be most important to customers over the next year.

In the next 12 months, how important will MFP apps be in your customer’s overall office environment?

Interested in more information about this document, including PaceSetter award winners? If you’re an InfoTrends Office CompleteView subscriber, the report is included as part of your subscription. Otherwise, please contact Christine Dunne at christine.dunne@keypointintelligence.com.

Developers Using Cardboard to Test VR Environments at PAX East 2019

Colin McMahon
Apr 10, 2019

PAX East, which was held in Boston, MA, March 28th to 31st, 2019, is one of the largest gaming technology expos in the world. The four-day event, which in the past has drawn crowds of over 80,000, once again enjoyed a well-attended year. While no official number has been given, Keypoint Intelligence – InfoTrends (InfoTrends) estimates that around 100,000 people visited the show. While PAX is an event mainly focused on video games and gaming as a whole, it also serves as a technology showcase. Over the past several years, we have followed developments in virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and 3D printing at PAX East.

PAX East Boston VR

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What Does Hololens 2 Mean for Businesses?

Colin McMahon
Feb 26, 2019

On February 24, 2019, Microsoft unveiled Hololens 2, the successor to its augmented reality headset, Hololens. Almost three years have passed since the developer edition of the first Hololens became commercially available. In that time, numerous other AR, virtual reality (VR), and mixed reality (MR) headsets have come to market. All the while, software creators and content developers have used this time to create a wealth of programs – some simple, some quite complex.

For Microsoft, the three-year gap means one significant detail: DATA. The company has had several years to see exactly how its intended clients use Hololens and have created Hololens 2 with what it says are significant improvements for the enterprise space.

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WHEN DID SNEAKERS BECOME ACCEPTABLE BUSINESS ATTIRE?

Deborah Hawkins
Feb 11, 2019

I haven’t done the rounds of many exhibitions the last few years. My focus area of office print is generally served by Vendor specific events and the one global event the industry had, CeBIT has now finally been put to bed. So I was quite surprised at my first visit to ISE (Integrated Systems Europe) 2019 in Amsterdam. It was full, thriving and so many people were wearing sneakers.

Does this have something to do with the meeting of two worlds that ISE has emerged from?  The vibrant Audio Visual (AV) high tech hardware focussed industry and the IT world that can integrate practically anything without having to heed to standards or obligations?

Founded in 2004 and boosting 3500 visitors that year, the exhibition has grown to some 1400 exhibitors and an expected 90,000 visitors in 2019. For me, it felt far more than that. The growth has undoubtedly been supported by the portfolio breadth of AV boasting 8k, curved as well as inflatable screens and flashy displays and its acceptance across many horizontal and vertical sectors. What attracted me most to the show however, was the connection to IT and looking at how the AV industry hooks up with business IT, the hub of our digital world today. I see a lot of parallels to the office printing industry and I knew this industry was in a similar stage of disruption when I saw the likes of Google & Uber speaking about workplace trends at ISE 2019. Read more »

Cybersecurity: Understanding the Inside Threat

Colin McMahon
Jan 7, 2019

When stories of cyberattacks reach the media, the culprit is often an outside source. Whether it is a foreign government or malicious hacker, organizations are conditioned to seek external threats to data security. This approach, however, misses a common cause of cyberattacks and data breaches—a company’s own employees.

Research has shown that more than half of all businesses are either at risk or have been attacked from the inside. To move forward with a fully developed data protection strategy, PSPs must be cognizant of inside attacks and minimize their risk.

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