Eye Sightings

The Consumer Eyes Blog

Category: Technology

The Top 6 Things to Know Before Alibaba Goes Public

Massive Chinese e-tailer Alibaba has announced plans to launch an IPO in the United States, leading to a flurry of speculation about the potential for investors to bet on the Chinese web-shopping boom. But if you think Alibaba is just Amazon-East, you're only seeing part of the picture. Here are 6 key facts you should know about this retailing giant - and about the future of China's web-savvy middle class.

A New Dimension in Candy

3-D printing company 3D Systems has teamed up with Hershey to explore new opportunities in printed confections. At CES this year, 3D Systems showed off a pretty big 3-D printing innovation - the ChefJet 3-D food printer, which can print surprisingly complex models using chocolate or sugar. Now, Hershey has signed on to help them to develop potential outputs for the technology, which looks to be targeted mainly at bakers and small foodservice providers.

Big Data in the East Village

In the last few years, our neighborhood here in New York City has transformed itself into Silicon Alley, an east coast counterpoint to Silicon Valley in the west. And IBM has just announced that it's betting big on the downtown area, setting up their famous Watson supercomputer just a few blocks south of our offices in a new building on Astor Place - an area that's better known for Cooper Union, tattoo parlors and skate punks than innovation in advanced cognitive computing. 

CE at the CES!

The 2014 Consumer Electronics Show kicked off this week, featuring a host of buzzworthy gadgets and devices we’re all going to spend the rest of 2014 pining for.

Consumer Eyes is proud to have played a role in one of the most exciting debuts at this year’s show: Samsung’s new Chef Collection dishwasher featuring WaterWall technology. We worked extensively with Samsung to develop a global positioning and go-to-market plan for this breakthrough home appliance.

Some Friday Inspiration

inFORM - Interacting With a Dynamic Shape Display from Tangible Media Group on Vimeo.

Look, Touch, Experience, Buy

Over the past decade, Cyber Monday has become almost as big a tradition among American consumers as turkey for Thanksgiving. Every year, sales figures for the day have broken records… jumping from $608 million in 2006 to a whopping $1.5 billion last year… and 2013's numbers are expected to do the same.

Interestingly, though, just as we prepare to mark online retail’s biggest day, there are signs that brick-and-mortar retail may not be as doomed as some predict:

A Coffee Machine that Roasts and Brews

Within the world of coffee enthusiasts, there's often a battle between Keurig users and purists: purists claim that a Keurig's pre-packaged units and brewing process limit the quality of the coffee being made, while Keurig enthusiasts point to the speed and ease with which their machine can brew a hot cup. 

Pizza at the Push of a Button

In the last couple years, a great deal of thought has been put into the pizza-ordering process. Hungry customers can follow Domino's Pizza Tracker, which logs every step of their pizza's creation, from the initial order, to baking, to the moment it leaves the store. A Domino's in Salt Lake City even installed 5 webcams in its kitchen for maximum transparency. And online ordering, through a company's site or services like Seamless, has become the norm. So where can we go from here?

Young Kids' Screen Time Decreasing, But More Mobile

 

A new study by the nonprofit Common Sense Media has found that the total amount of time children age 8 and under spent in front of a screen actually decreased, from 2 hours and 16 minutes per day to 1 hour and 55 minutes per day, between 2011 and 2013. It's interesting to note, though, that the biggest change during that period was in the type of screens kids were looking at – conventional media, such as television, plummeted while smartphone and tablet use tripled.

Wikipedia Goes Lo-Fi

 

The impact of the internet can feel inescapable, and when you're inundated with technology news every day it can be easy to forget that all of those startups and apps are irrelevant to a large chunk of the global population. 

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