The world’s 230 million knowledge workers are frazzled. Modern life is an interminable cacophony of emails, notifications, messages, alerts, feeds, data and information. 70% of us look at our phones within 30 minutes of waking up. All this causes stress. With multiple notifications on multiple apps on multiple pages of our devices, where do we start? Who will help us?
Fortunately, almost all of us already have a personal assistant. It’s a piece of software on a device you own: the intelligent assistant (IA). We carry IAs around on our laptops (Microsoft’s Cortana), phones (Google Assistant, Apple’s Siri, Samsung’s Bixby) and smart speakers (Amazon’s Alexa, Baidu’s Little Fish). You probably have more than one. There are an estimated one billion IA-enabled devices in the world today. With smartphone penetration in the UK and US approaching 70%, it’s easy to believe that there will be as many intelligent assistants as
This seems right to me: “In post-industrial environments where foods are abundant and readily available, our cravings for fat and sugar sculpted by distant evolutionary pressures can easily go into insatiable overdrive and lead to obesity, diabetes, and heart disease (…) the pro-social needs and rewards [of smartphone use as a means to connect] can similarly be hijacked to produce a manic theatre of hyper-social monitoring,”
“Put your phone away” has become a commonplace phrase that is just as often dismissed. Despite wanting to be in the moment, we often do everything within our power to the contrary. We take out our phones to take pictures in the middle of festive family meals, and send text messages or update our social media profiles in the middle of a date or while watching a movie. At the same time, we are often interrupted passively by notifications of emails or phone calls. Clearly, interacting with our smartphones affects our experiences. But can our smartphones affect us even when we aren’t interacting with them — when they are simply nearby?
In recent research, we investigated whether merely having one’s own smartphone nearby could influence cognitive abilities. In two lab experiments, nearly 800 people completed tasks designed to measure their cognitive capacity. In one task, participants
There was a lot of hype about VR ad then it seemed to go pretty quiet. So where are we right now? Bigscreen founder Darshan Shankar and a16z general partner Chris Dixon take the pulse on VR, AR, and mixed …
I finally got around to buying the Pixel 2, a phone that several of my USV colleagues have said is the best phone they have owned.
It’s too early in my relationship with this phone to comment on whether I like it or not, but I did have the easiest new phone setup experience of my smartphone tenure last night.
First and foremost, Google has made moving from one Android phone to another way better. You simply connect the two phones with a USB-C cable and about ten to fifteen minutes later, you have everything on your new phone. Then the apps start downloading and about 30mins later (depending on how many apps you have), everything you had on your old phone is on your new phone.
The second factor in the “easiest new phone setup experience” is Dashlane on Android. I realize Dashlane doesn’t have the same access to
There’s a new wave of bike-sharing in town. And this wave looks a little different than previous waves — from docked rows of government-funded bikes to dockless fleets of bicycles where users can find and unlock bikes through GPS from …
In this hallway conversation, Benedict Evans and Steven Sinofsky discuss CES 2018 and share insight on what they took from this year’s show. How much can you discern each company’s ‘big picture’ strategy out of the slew of new products …
Apps like WeChat and Alipay in China show us what’s possible when an entire country leapfrogs over the PC era directly to mobile. And while the contexts and nuances differ significantly, there are lots of product …
What capabilities do enterprise companies really want from their computers? Twenty years ago, those capabilities might’ve been bundled into a mainframe. Ten years ago, it might’ve been the PC. Today, as more and more businesses rely on devices that need …
The personal computer S-curve gave us 1.5 billion PCs and 3 billion people online, and now the smartphone S-curve is giving a computer to everyone on earth. So today, we have two innovation conversations: First, what can we build on …
Mobile phones have become the new prey of choice for hackers and other nefarious individuals. Once compromised, our phones offer easy access to our personal and financial information, giving hackers the ability to sell that information on the dark web and to ransom our information.
But despite the growing threats to our smartphones, most people — even most corporate executives — still don’t take basic security precautions. According to a 2016 report on mobile security by Intertrust, the cost of mobile app hacks and breaches will reach $1.5 billion by 2021. Yet mobile device security often gets less attention than security for network systems or even our laptop computers. The same report says $34 million is spent annually on mobile app development while only $2 million is spent on app security. This reinforces the old adage that the money spent on security is never enough, until there
We all know the basics of cybercrime, such as phishing emails with malicious links or attachments, or phone calls from fake help desks seeking to take over your computer.
But schemes in the cyber world continue to get more sophisticated. One of the latest scams has hackers stealing phone numbers to drain cryptocurrency accounts such as Bitcoin. How? Hackers have identified a weakness in the way we use our phones to authenticate our identities to mobile service providers, as well as to online accounts. They’re exploiting this weakness to steal whatever they can get their hands on. And it all goes back to two-factor authentication, or 2FA.
If you’ve enabled 2FA on Twitter, Facebook, or Google, you’ve probably received a one-time password, through SMS text message, for logging in or making changes to the account. Many online cryptocurrency wallets and services also use SMS text messages as a