YouTube turns eight years old today, reminding each of us in some odd way how young or old we really are. Remember, the company launched back in 2005, the same year that Michael Jackson was found not guilty of child molestation, and Lance Armstrong was winning his seventh Tours De France, and Arrested Development was still on the air.
A lot has changed since then, but YouTube’s growth remains strong as ever. YouTube announced that its community now uploads more than 100 hours of video to the platform every minute. Minute. That’s the equivalent of four days worth of video every sixty seconds.
But of course, the supply makes sense when you consider the demand. YouTube claims that more than one billion people across the world come to YouTube for content each month, which comes out to nearly one in every two people who have access to the internet.
Here’s a little perspective on growth: Two years ago, YouTube revealed that users were uploading 48 hours of video each minute, and last year it had grown to 72 hours. Eight years in, YouTube is still a growing platform, while Facebook may be slipping amongst younger and fresher social niche applications.
Meanwhile, YouTube opens up new possibilities for startups who want to leverage its massive, active user base and content library. Telecast, in particular, comes to mind, as the betaworks company helps makes all those billions of videos discoverable and curated on mobile devices.
Here’s what YouTube had to say about it, in the official blog post:
And so, on our eighth birthday, we’d like to thank you for making YouTube the special place that it is. For showing us how video can create connections, transcend borders and make a difference. For clicking these links even if you aren’t sure what they’ll be, but you trust us. In short, thanks for making us better in big ways and small ones, too. We can’t wait to see what you come up with next.
Editor’s note: Keith Teare is the founder of just.me and a partner at Archimedes Labs. He is also the co-founder of TechCrunch. Follow him on Twitter @kteare.
Because of Google I/O, this was a momentous week for those of us who are watching the rapid transition that is taking place from desktop computing to mobile, and particularly for those focused on mobile-social as I am because of my job at just.me. Here is my take on what we just witnessed.
Standalone Hangouts. Google announced at its I/O event that Hangouts was to be launched as a separate app from Google Plus, taking personal conversations out from the G+ app and putting them into their own space.
Facebook Home problems. AT&T was reported to have decided to discontinue distribution of the HTC First – the Facebook Home Android phone – due to lack of sales. This comes on the back of publicity pointing to a large number of one-star reviews for the software on the Google Play store.
What is at stake?
There are many common themes and questions that underpin the launch and evolution of Hangouts as a separate app and previously led to the decision to launch the Facebook Home product. These products represent two very similar answers to a common question. The primary question is who will users look to to enable their social communications needs on mobile devices?
To set the context for an analysis let’s acknowledge the elephant in the room that is partially driving these decisions.
Mobile Messaging is rapidly becoming the primary way users engage socially on mobile. Figures released this week imply more than 41 billion messages a day are now being delivered via various “Over the Top” (OTT) messaging apps.
Phones were created as social tools. Smartphones are especially good at being social, integrating text, voice, video and images in an endless number of apps that can serve a user’s needs, and all without the need for a web-based social network.
Users are able to communicate with anybody in their address book anywhere in the world with almost any content mix at any time. This has been compelling to users and has driven the growth of apps like iMessage, WhatsApp, LINE, WeChat, KakaoTalk and some other smaller competitors. Almost 750 million users out of a smartphone population of 1.2 billion are already using these apps.
If you are Google, Facebook or almost any other major provider of social communications platforms originally developed for the web, this move to mobile messaging represents a considerable challenge.
Similar challenges exist from media-sharing apps. As users flock to Vine, Snapchat and, previously, Instagram, the social platforms are challenged to continue to be the primary provider of these services to the growing army of smartphone users.
The other core feature of Facebook and Google+, publishing to an audience for all or many to see, are increasingly becoming activities only a few engage in on mobile — and certainly less often than was the case on the web.
What Is A Platform Provider To Do?
If we look out a few years there is really only one product approach available.
That is to build single apps that embrace and extend the current features of the messaging market leaders — hoping to win users over from WhatsApp, LINE, KakaoTalk and WeChat — while also integrating the features of media sharing, private memory collection and publishing into single unified experiences.
Google and Facebook both seem to be pursuing this approach.
Breaking out Hangouts and going after the messaging audience with enhanced features makes sense. But Google also showed Google Now and Voice Search as possible points of integration for all of its mobile-social features. It’s early days here, but Android clearly wants to find a point of integration for all the users’ needs.
Facebook, with Home, revealed its integrated approach, while under the hood it has Messenger, Camera, Pages and the full Facebook app. Poor as Home’s reception has been, Facebook will certainly continue to deepen and refine its integration efforts and its attempt to be the primary UI a user needs on a smartphone.
Vulnerabilities And Strengths Of Mobile-First Companies
WhatsApp and its clones can be thought of as mobile-first companies. Their apps sit on top of the smartphone, particularly the mobile address book, and just help a user chat to their friends, family or colleagues. Their success is their simplicity and the singular purpose they have addressed.
Insofar as they are vulnerable, it is due to being very narrowly focused on brief “in the moment” conversations in the form of a chat or instant messaging UI. They have added the ability to include media in those conversations, and some voice-calling abilities. But their goal is really momentary interactions with individuals or groups. Their requirement to have both sides of the conversation install the app is another liability.
Human beings have broader needs that are currently served by other single-use apps. Evernote for private memories, email for longer more enduring interactions, social networks like Facebook, Google+ and Twitter for public statements of all kinds and Path or Instagram for photo sharing. This is a little like the era of Windows before Outlook when apps tended to do only one thing and users used many apps.
Can Web Companies Beat Mobile-First Companies?
These recent moves by Facebook and Google represent early moves by the web-era companies to react to the successes of the mobile-first messengers. They certainly do not represent end points in any way, impressive as they are. And there is plenty of time for the mobile messaging apps to respond by offering a broader range of social features.
There are already clues to the future – provided by users. The continuing use of email on mobile (trillions of messages in 2013) indicates that users are not entirely catered for by the chat-centric conversational UI. The growth of Vine and Snapchat (single-feature based as they are) indicate not all media-sharing needs are catered for by these apps. There is a lot still to play for.
If we look five years out, it is likely that the iOS and Android core will support a far more integrated set of messaging tools that cater for many of the needs we use single-use apps for today.
Message saving for private use, shared messaging to individuals or groups, media sharing, video and voice messaging (both synchronous and asynchronous), Timelines to look back and recall what we did in the past. These will all be features of the operating system.
As mobile moves from its Windows 3.1 — single-use apps — era to its more integrated future, apps that used to stand alone will have their features sucked into the operating system. Google and Apple have an advantage here of course as they own the operating system.
The Future Is Being Fought Over Now
In that sense the current product focus – decisions about what features to separate into single apps, and how to integrate those into a unified UI all represent the first moves in defining who wins.
Facebook has Messenger, Camera, Pages and its primary app with Home as an integration point.
Google has Talk, Contacts, Mail, Plus, Hangouts perhaps with Now as a point of integration.
Apple is a little behind but has iMessage, FaceTime, Photostream, Mail and Contacts. iOS itself may be the point of integration.
WhatsApp, LINE, KakaoTalk, WeChat and the others will need to move beyond the chat-centric user interface into a broader set of asynchronous messaging features, and a new set of social features, probably with Timeline support, in order to stay ahead of the curve.
The End Of Social Networks And The Start Of A New Era?
The ground has been set for a fascinating next few years as the web-based social platforms seek to own mobile-social messaging and the mobile messaging apps seek to extend into more fully integrated social features.
As of this moment the mobile-first apps have the lead measured by number of users and levels of engagement. To keep it they will need to continue to innovate.
The human race is already social, and the smartphone has everything needed to enable them to act on their social needs. As the growth of OTT messaging and media sharing shows, a user’s social needs are being met with no need for a social network.
In this mobile-social world the only question is, whose software will we all use to enable human social activities? That is what this week was all about.
Editor’s note: Tolga Ozuygur is the co-founder of Overdose Caffeine, an indie game-development company from Turkey that develops cross-platform, real-time multiplayer games. Follow him on Twitter @tolgaozuygur.
We at Overdose Caffeine had previously announced that Pocket Fleet, a real-time multiplayer space dogfight game developed for mobile devices, would be available soon on OUYA. Our players were looking forward to it. Even we were excited about the prospect of bringing the game to the platform, as we loved the device and thought TV was a great medium for fast-paced multiplayer gaming.
However, we have decided to end development for it and switch to GamePop. I know many people were looking forward to playing the game on OUYA, so I thought I’d explain why we made this decision.
Pocket Fleet Is A Cross-Platform Game
Pocket Fleet works on Android, iOS and any computer with a browser. We are also about to release the game on Samsung with the 100 percent revenue share indie deal we struck with them. Gamers can also play the game on their PCs and keep playing on their mobile devices, battling players from any other platform. The game runs the same way on every platform, which is why we wanted to add support for a TV console to expand our PC-Mobile combo, and were going to do it with OUYA.
But We Are a Small Indie Development Team With Limited Bandwidth
We don’t have a separate “design group” to rework menus. We focus all of our energy on building the best possible game mechanics and providing new fancy features to our fans. This has paid off so far, as Pocket Fleet has exceeded our wildest expectations, having reached downloads in the seven figures in just a few months and a feature in Google Play. We don’t have time to mess around. If we had a larger team, things might have been different.
Developing For OUYA Became A Lot More Work
While it might seem we would only need to map the controls in Pocket Fleet to the OUYA controller (a job of only a few days), it turned out to be much more than that. The biggest surprise was what they required in terms of new menu design. We assumed the user could move a cursor around to select things on our main menu, but this was not the case. The company required that we redesign the main screen so that people could move around it by highlighting different buttons. This may sound simple but certain circumstances meant that it was anything but. Their ODK was also pretty shoddily thrown together and updates didn’t note what had changed. It began to get very onerous very fast.
GamePop Had a Much Simpler Proposition
We still loved the idea of bringing Pocket Fleet to TV. Recently, we were contacted by someone from BlueStack, which was about to launch their GamePop subscription service and console. They asked for no menu changes or controller mappings, there’s no SDK, no nothing. Seriously, it was about the easiest onboarding we’ve ever had to a platform, since they basically use our stock APK.
We Wish It Weren’t This Way
We were (and still are) fans of Ouya and have been rooting for them since the start. We wish them the best. For independent developers however, we just can’t do so much work for such an uncertain benefit. We’re taking the Occam’s Razor approach and going with GamePop for now. Pocket Fleet looks awesome on its prototype and we can’t wait to release the finished product.
Have you ever “owned a room?” I don’t mean in terms of actual real estate, but rather in terms of mental real estate?
If you have, you’ll never forget the feeling of having every eye in the room on you, people practically breathing along with you. I think that’s what they mean when they say having them “eating out of your hand.” Now, have you ever completely lost control of the room? As you look around, eyes are glazed over, people sneaking peeks at their smart phones and mobile devices or just typing on their computers (and you know they aren’t taking copious notes). Even worse, executives throwing twenty questions at you and you having that sick, squirmy feeling inside?
If you’ve spent any time at all in the world of business, you’ve probably had both of these experiences and wondered how in the world the same person could create two completely opposite experiences. One answer is to simply say that it’s a function of the audience, and in some ways it is. But like most things in this world, the experience we create for our listeners is really in our own hands.
What I didn’t realize, until I read “Own the Room: Discover your Signature Voice to Master Your Leadership Presence,” is that we can control the outcome of any conversation and any presentation. WE are in control.
What authors Amy Jen Su (@AmyJenSu) and Muriel Maignan Wilkins (@MaignanWilkins) clearly point out in their new book is that you can power up your career and leadership cred by simply mastering your “Signature Voice” that is uniquely your own and can be adapted to any situation. This signature voice comes from aligning your beliefs, your communication skills and your physical energy with the needs of your audience.
For example, there are what I’d call “doing” conversations and “leading” conversations. And you have to be very clear about which conversation you are having. If you are the team or project leader giving an update to the management team – a “Leading” conversation is required because you are speaking up to a leadership audience. Their information needs are different AND they are looking at YOU as the leader in the situation. Hence, they expect you to communicate as a leader would.
The Authors Speak From Personal Experience
I heard about the book from a publicist and requested a review copy based purely on the title. I mean, if there is a process out there where I can get people eating out of my hands, I want to know about it.
The authors, Amy Jen Su and Muriel Maignan Wilkins, are the owners and managing partners of Asis Associates, an executive training and coaching firm. Both are sought after speakers on the topic of leadership presence and communications. Both have had personal experience in this area. Amy was told that she needed to toughen up. She was perceived as being too young and passive to be considered as “leadership material.” On the other hand, Muriel was told that she had to turn her bold personality down a notch.
Amy and Muriel took their personal experiences and work to transform their communication style and turned it into a process and a book that you can use to learn how to leverage your strengths and gain the high-powered presence you need to reach your full potential as a leader.
How to Become an A-C-E in Your Field
The authors have developed a powerful model to help you become a power communicator. It’s called A-C-E:
A – Assumptions you make and the mindset you bring to your interactions with others.
C – Communication Strategies – Techniques and tools you use to engage influence and inspire.
E – Energy and Expression – How you physically show up; how your nonverbal cues impact others.
You will learn from the examples of well-known people like:
- Christine Day, CEO of Lulemon Athletica, whose authenticity helped her grow her company’s market share to become the largest yoga outfitter in the world.
- Al Gore, who was known for his robotic style who then transformed his presence to one of warmth, poise and passion for the environment.
- Tony Hayward, the CEO of BP at the time of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, who was skewered for his insensitivity when he failed to adapt his communication style to the crisis.
But the book also includes those unsung leaders in organizations like yours who are all dealing with the same communication challenges.
You won’t just learn from their stories, you’ll have the opportunity to experience the process for yourself by using their diagnostic tool to assess your current and ongoing presence and how others perceive you.
“Own the Room” is a Much-Needed Book
While there are many books on how to give powerful presentations, “Own the Room” is about how to have appropriate communications while not losing yourself in the process. One observation I had as I read through many of the examples is that the style was a little more “corporate-speak” than I’m used to in the world of small business. But don’t let that stop you from taking the authors’ message to heart.
This is a book that is as applicable to small business owners who sell to more corporate clients as well as to employees who are looking to move into leadership positions.
The post How to “Own the Room” in Any Presentation appeared first on Small Business Trends.
While you’re probably worried about the future and are constantly trying to make your business a more customer-friendly environment, there are a couple of things you need to know about mobile devices. Smartphones and tablets have been penetrating the workplace for a while already. They’ve made conducting business a very simple process while, at the same time, ensuring that employees can attend to work practically anywhere in the world. It’s been quite a blast to have these things around.
However, there’s a flip-side to mobile penetration. Your business’ security and integrity can be threatened by two things: The loss of a device that eventually ends up in the wrong hands, and the intentional theft of one. These things can’t always be prevented, but there are ways in which you can make the possibility of such things happening minimal.
Digital Defense, Inc., a provider of a variety of network security products, has been kind enough to give us some tips on ensuring that your mobile security is as tight as a taut rope:
- Make and enforce a mobile security policy within your business. Obviously, this means having a dialogue with your employees on how they should operate their mobile devices. We’ll get to some of the details in the points below.
- Make sure that employees are aware that they must use certain devices to access your enterprise networking infrastructure. This is to help you determine which devices are able to access the network and which aren’t.
- Configure the network in such a way that only devices you’ve approved for use with that network will have connectivity.
- If you’re giving employees devices you own for their use at work, make sure you have a way to track them. Make an inventory of these devices regularly.
- Limit the amount of operating systems and device brands that you distribute to employees. It’s preferable to have only one or two brands of phones. This removes the headaches of having to manage the weaknesses in each brand of phone.
- If you’re going to limit phones to one operating system, choose one that has strong OS-level encryption. iOS has very powerful security that includes solid encryption, for example.
- Lest you be concerned about employee privacy on a phone that you gave them, conduct random inspection of these phones. Obviously, if you let employees bring their own phones, you’d be breaching their privacy by doing this.
- Any phones you give employees should not be capable of tethering or providing hotspots.
- Don’t allow company-owned devices to synchronize with cloud services automatically (like iCloud).
- Teach employees how to make a strong password (a combination of numbers, letters, and symbols, like “fjF@94#,” works) and enforce this policy any way you can. The hardest passwords to crack are phrases with symbols embedded in them (such as “ph1llip w3nt to th3 m@rk3t”). The longer the password, the better it is at resisting brute force and dictionary attacks.
- Configure mobile devices so that they do not cache sensitive data (like passwords) on their browsers.
They also have one final piece of advice: Keep up to date on the latest mobile security threats. After you’ve learned how to mitigate these threats, teach your employees to do the same and ensure that their phones and tablets are kept up to snuff!
The post 12 Mobile Security Tips All Small Businesses Must Be Aware Of appeared first on Small Business Technology.