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From: aknahow10/2/2017 9:35:17 PM
   of 23630
General info to understand or evaluate what the deal means if it does go through.

Pixel launch will test Google hardware strategy and Apple rivalry

Published: Oct 2, 2017 8:49 p.m. ET

Alphabet expected to show off new Pixel smartphones and other gadgets Wednesday

Google unveiled its first-generation Pixel smartphones last year, and is expected to show off more new hardware at an event Wednesday in San Francisco.


MaxA. Cherney
Tech reporter

Alphabet Inc. will look to impress gadget lovers Wednesday with a new line of devices for the holiday shopping season, but the company’s event will also be important to determine if the money Google is spending to produce its own hardware and challenge Apple Inc. is worth the cost.

Much of what Google will unveil at the San Francisco event has been reported, thanks to a series of leaks last month. Two new Pixel phones — one larger than the other — a new high-end Chromebook, a mini version of Google’s Home smart speaker and an updated Daydream virtual-reality setup are expected.

While the surprise element may be missing from the event, there is still much anticipation to see what Alphabet GOOGL, -0.64% GOOG, -0.61% can do in challenging Apple AAPL, -0.20% directly with its own high-end hardware. More than anything, Wednesday’s event will need to convince investors and the media that the company’s hardware strategy is a bet worth making.

“I think they need to convince everyone that their hardware strategy is justified, this is a very expensive endeavor,” said Creative Strategies Principal Ben Bajarin. “If this is a strategy they need to remain committed to, they need to take meaningful share. These new products need to be able to compete with some of the other strong product lineups, and it’s not as easy as it once was.”

Google appears to be doubling down on the bet it made last year in introducing the Pixel to challenge Apple’s iPhone, after previously leaving most hardware design and manufacturing to partners like Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. 005930, +0.04% . Last month, Alphabet committed $1.1 billion in a deal with HTC Corp. 2498, -0.27% that will bring hardware talent and licensing from the hardware partner that has been essential to the Pixel line.

See also: Why Google’s HTC deal may be different than the Motorola bomb

Alphabet is making that commitment while the opportunity to profit from sales of its own branded smartphones, Chromebooks and smart speakers is not guaranteed. Alphabet‘s hardware sales are bundled with all non-advertising Google revenue in a bucket of sales that grew 62% to $3.4 billion in last year’s holiday shopping quarter, but that amount is dwarfed by the rest of Google’s business and profitability is a real question mark.

Analyst Jan Dawson of Jackdaw Research believes
Google has sold about 2 million Pixel phones — Apple sold that many iPhones in half a week, on average, last year — and still has a lot to learn about the business.
One of the reasons the last Pixel models did not see Apple-like numbers of units was that Google initially gave Verizon an exclusive deal to sell the phones, Dawson says.

“The devil is in the details,” said Dawson over the phone. “The reality is they sold 2 million phones because of limited supply, limited distribution and that they were not differentiated in the market. Unless those things change, it’s not going to be that material to Google’s sales. Even if they move twice as many units, that’s still a tiny fraction of the global smartphone market.”

Google could juice its revenue from the Pixel with a new pricing strategy for its phone lineup, much like Apple’s iPhone X announcement earlier this month. Dawson says that it would not surprise him to see a price increase in the new Pixel phones driven by more expensive components and rising memory costs.

“It’s quite possible that Pixel devices will be more expensive than last year,” Dawson said.

The future is here with Holo's augmented reality app
Google could go the other way, however, and look to offer the Pixel at a much lower price than the iPhone X to disrupt sales of Apple’s latest and greatest smartphone, which will begin preorders later this month. While it could weigh on Alphabet’s profitability, a larger quantity of cheaper sales could have a better chance of making a difference for a company expected to surpass $100 billion in annual revenue for the first time this year, and would fit the Android vs. Apple rivalry as it has been known so far.

To compete, the display and camera are the two features “Google needs to be competitive with” Apple and Samsung, Bajarin said. Specifically, the camera needs to be “top-notch,” perhaps with some kind of three-dimensional sensing, and the display needs to be bezel-less, he says.

Related: Nvidia adds Google Assistant to Shield streaming device

While the phones might be the gadgets that consumers and investors watch closest, Bajarin also said that Google’s expected Home Mini smart speaker might be most exciting. The new Home, and its big brother, can showcase the products Google is best at: search and giving users the data they want.

“Nobody saw the volume of speakers coming, Amazon AMZN, -0.22% has sold 25 million to 30 million to date, which is a lot given how new a category it is,” he said. “It’s a category with a lot of opportunity and a great play if the margins are there. But again, they’ve got to prove themselves that they can take smart-speaker share.”

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To: aknahow who wrote (20739)10/2/2017 10:37:36 PM
From: Kevin Podsiadlik
3 Recommendations   of 23630

Technically, I'm "working with Google" every time I check my email.

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From: aknahow10/3/2017 8:40:19 AM
   of 23630

Press release.

Standard info about upcoming Bus even, technology displayed at booth.

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From: aknahow10/3/2017 9:33:54 AM
   of 23630
Google seems to believe it's big and popular enough that it can wedge its foot in the door of the market, and at least take a piece of the high-end smartphone universe. But that's actually the easy part— the last Pixel was great, and HTC made it. The real reason to take everything internal is to be able to control and improve what comes after.Saying "we're a hardware company!" and actually becoming a successful one are two radically different enterprises, though. That HTC group Google just bought? They've made great phones for a decade, but thanks to some bad carrier-exclusivity decisions and a truly terrible marketing plan, its products stayed under the radar. (Meanwhile, Samsung's marketing department bought the radar and trained it to only recognize Samsung products.) The Pixel, which is a great phone, didn't exactly take the world by storm either. Google hasn't reported exact sales, but one estimate showed a million Pixels in the market; another said between three and five million. That's due in part to Google's total inability to keep the phone in stock—another downside of not managing your own hardware—but doesn't inspire much confidence. Either way, Greengart says, "it certainly hasn’t been a dominant player in the high-end of the market. It doesn’t play at all in one of the biggest markets, China. I can’t see Huawei or Xiaomi or Oppo being worried." Apple and Samsung haven't lost sleep either.

But Google has to try. As we've learned time and again, the best products come from companies that make both hardware and software, each working to optimize and improve the other. Samsung knows it; Apple knows it. As we enter the next phase of tech, where smartphones give way to smart watches and smart speakers and smart lightbulbs and smart cars, there's no room for too-big parts or inefficient software. The winners will be the companies who figure out how to do everything right: hardware, software, marketing, everything. Apple nailed it with phones, and became the richest company in the world. There's another chance coming.

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From: aknahow10/3/2017 9:58:57 AM
   of 23630

Définition de High Contrast Filter
High Contrast Filter (Panasonic)
La technologie High Contrast Filter, présente sur certaines TV Neoplasma Panasonic, est destinée à améliorer les résultats en contraste.

Les TV plasma équipées de cette technologie intègrent dans leur revêtement un filtre dont l'architecture permet :
  • de laisser passer une quantité plus importante de la lumière qui est émise par les cellules
  • de réfléchir la lumière environnante afin d'éviter qu'elle perturbe celle émise par la TV.

  • Ainsi, la technologie High Contrast Filter permet d'obtenir des images plus lumineuses et plus contrastées.

    Illustration de la technologie High Contrast Filter de Panasonic

    On retrouve le High Contrast Filter par exemple sur la TV Panasonic TX-P50ST60E.


    SPD-Smart Contrast Enhancement Filter for Information Display

    Annax, a leading supplier of passenger information systems consisting of six companies in four countries (Germany, Switzerland, Austria and China), showcased another information-display related innovative application for SPD-Smart technology at InnoTrans. At their booth, Annax’s information display used an SPD-Smart contrast-enhancement filter supplied by Vision Systems. The functionality of the SPD-Smart filter brings more contrast to Annax’s information display, and facilitates reading the text on the screen.

    At InnoTrans, Annax exhibited an information display that included an SPD-Smart contrast enhancement filter supplied by Vision Systems – delivering greater contrast to the display, for improved reading.

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    From: aknahow10/3/2017 10:21:51 AM
       of 23630
    Annax’s information display used an
    SPD-Smart contrast-enhancement filter supplied by Vision Systems.
    I have problems imagining how VS would supply millions of contrast filters for smartphones.whoever makes them.

    Google's needs are far less than other producers and I suppose VS could contract out the process to a capable party.

    Ideas on how any of this might work or could not work?

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    From: Rancon5610/3/2017 1:47:44 PM
    1 Recommendation   of 23630
    Lots of rumors, and the junk still won't move.

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    To: aknahow who wrote (20743)10/3/2017 2:09:26 PM
    From: firstresponder
       of 23630

    That HTC group Google just bought?
    Here's their 2015 patent for a "portable electronic device" that includes a:

    ,,,switchable layer ... capable of being switched between a substantially opaque state and a substantially transparent state. The substantially opaque state prevents viewing of the optical element through the switchable layer and the substantially transparent state allows viewing of the optical element through the switchable layer.
    Utilizing the portable electronic device of the embodiment of the invention, the optical unit (image sensor or light emitter) is disposed behind the front panel. Additionally, in the substantially opaque state, the optical unit is hidden and invisible. Therefore, the aesthetic appearance of the portable electronic device is improved.

    The focus is on a:
    .. conventional portable electronic device (smart phone), which comprises a housing, a camera and a flashlight ...However, the camera opening and the flashlight opening may not be aesthetically pleasing when applied to the conventional portable electronic device and thus, decreases the attraction of the portable electronic device to consumers.

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    From: dimtint10/3/2017 6:41:11 PM
    1 Recommendation   of 23630

    An oldie, but a good reminder of how long some of these development cycles take. Since GM (along with everyone else) is headed into EVs.... will that be the breakthrough market..... 30 years ago, they cited the same need that SPD addresses today.

    To me, the killer apps are sunvisors, rear side windows and then dynamic glare control on infotainment screens. Sunroofs are just a gimmck AND windshields already use laminated glass. We're getting close, one more model with decent volume gets us to breakeven, but I doubt it's a sunroof that drives demand-- sun visors should do it.

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    To: firstresponder who wrote (20747)10/3/2017 7:10:02 PM
    From: aknahow
       of 23630
    Is it fair or correct to say that reading this patent one possible conclusion is that the patent applies to using "the switchable layer" not to making such a layer?

    ,switchable layer ... capable of being switched between a substantially opaque state and a substantially transparent state.

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