Tech Bytes to Know this Week: 4.20.2016

April 20th, 2016

Topics: Customer Infrastructure Virtual Reality

A Good News/Bad News Week for Netflix – Netflix has always been a headline-grabbing company, but this week has seen its share of headlines and analysis spike due to the combination of good news and bad news. On the good news side of the equation, the goal clearly stated a few years back by Head of Programming, Ted Sarandos, that Netflix was trying “to become HBO faster than HBO can become us” is starting to look like a reality as the company produced more hours of original programming in 2015 than HBO (450 hours compared to 401 for HBO). On the bad news side of the equation, the company saw its stock price drop significantly this week, despite beating earnings estimates due to increased competition from Amazon as that company announced it would open up Amazon Prime to monthly customers only seeking streaming services. Complicating matters, Netflix continues to battle overseas VPN users as international expansion is proving to be a bit of a challenge form a content perspective. Perhaps that’s one reason producing its own content is so critical to future success of the company.
Read More: Netflix Is Getting So Original, It’s Overtaken HBO
Read More: Why Netflix’s Stock is Plunging Right Now
Read More: Amazon Challenges Netflix by Opening Prime to Monthly Subscribers
Read More: Netflix Expects to Add Fewer US Users, So It’s Looking Abroad
Read More: Netflix’s CEO Says VPN Users Really Aren’t a Big Deal
New York City’s New Wi-Fi Network Begins Rolling Out – New York City faced a challenge – what to do with all the physical assets associated with payphones now that everyone carries a cell phone? The City turned to frog design to help develop a solution, as CDS learned last month during a Britt Technology Impact Series talk with frog’s Vice President of Technology Strategy, Patrick Kalaher D’91 and Director of Strategy Annie Hus T’11. In the talk, Patrick explained the design of the new LinkNYC kiosks. Now, it seems, some groups are pushing back on the city’s effort to provide free Wi-Fi to the city based on privacy and surveillance concerns specific to the NYPD’s access to data from the kiosks.
Read More: Will New York City’s Free Wi-Fi Help Police Watch You?
Read More: A Vision for Smarter Public Spaces
Peaking Behind the VR Curtain at Magic Leap – Wired has an in-depth profile of secretive virtual reality company Magic Leap. The amount of money funneled to the company by Google, Andreeson Horowitz, Kleiner Perkins and others demonstrates the power of the firm’s underlying tech (although, almost no one has had the chance to try it). Virtual reality technology hitting the mainstream opens up a world of opportunities, many of which haven’t yet been conceived. However, there are a few companies already making use of the technology.  CDS alumni fellow Alex Russell T’15 looked at examples from Ford Motors and National Grid in a research project last year.
Read More: The Untold Story of Magic Leap, the World’s Most Secretive Startup
Former Apple CEO and Silicon Valley Mentor, Bill Campbell, Passed Away – Long-time Silicon Valley veteran and mentor to tech industry visionaries ranging from Steve Jobs to Larry Page passed away following a battle with cancer. Campbell guided Apple as CEO during the 1980s and remained active with the company until 2014 in the role of Director. His influence extended across the industry (and beyond – the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame named their scholar athlete award after Campbell in 2009) and his loss is felt by the entire industry. Bill Campbell was 75 years old.
Read More:  Silicon Valley’s Legendary ‘Coach’ Bill Campbell Has Died
Read More: Bill Campbell, Coach of Silicon Valley Stars, Dies at 75

Featured CXOTalk video of the week: Episode 29 Mike Capone, CIO, ADP


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