Chris J Powell

YouTube, Mobile Payments and is it the end of FUD?

Before I lay bear to my rants I want to send my prayers to the residents of Joplin, Missouri and to the emergency workers across the Southern United States who have been working to support and recover the lost and missing after the devastating series of Storms this spring.

YouTube will turn 6 this month and guess what…the social connection that only a camera phone or mini video recorder can connect us with to real time happenings now can boast 3 BILLION hits per day!!!!  I must admint that while I do have a YouTube Channel I do not frequent the site enough to put more than a drop in the bucket of the 3 Billion Hits but when I do I find that I get lost in the mundane and sublime of Google’s Video Step Child.  To put this into perspective:

There have been two recent announcements that may change the way we as individuals do business out in the real world, the first I think is absolutely incredible and the second well all I can say is Google loves to be disruptive!

The New Tech darling Jack Dorsey (yes the same genius behind our beloved Twitter) has rolled out a way for any of us to conduct business while on the go.  The concept is simple while utterly complex at the same time.  Simply plug a chip reader into your SmartPhone or Tablet and as www.squareup.com puts it  “Square puts people in business.”

What amazes me is that the company is giving you a FREE Credit Card Reader, no monthly fees and only a 2.75% charge per transaction! Imagine a world where I no longer have to worry about cash ever again!!!! Oh wait I don’t do credit cards…but if I did the possibilities are endless and from what I am reading so to do investors and tech hounds but one caveat….it is only available in the US right now (I just got blocked from installing the FREE App on my iPad).

Not to be outdone Google will be rolling out its own NFC app that turns your smartphone into a payment device.  No more fishing through my wallet when I walk into Timmies for a coffee…simply flash my phone and voila an Extra Large Double Double appears…oh wait…I don’t do Credit Cards!

According to the Wall Street Journal “The program will launch first in New York, San Francisco, and potentially other locations, followed by a broader rollout, said a person familiar with the matter. Participating retailers include Macy’s Inc., American Eagle Outfitters Inc. and the Subway fast-food chain, said a person familiar with the matter. Retailers that participate in the program will have upgraded terminals at the point of sale that can read the mobile devices and provide special offers.”

Now I get the thought process behind this…I will get blasted with ads as I walk through the mall being drawn to 50% off on this and BOGO that until information overload drags me down…a little to close to the sci fi world of Minority Report for me!

Finally I thought that I would weigh in on the recent call for the King of FUD to step down from the helm of Microsoft.  David Einhorn, head of the hedge fund Greenlight Capital called for the immediate removal of Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer telling and investor conference that his leadership is the biggest overhang on the company’s stock price.

The timing could not be more impeccable as Ballmer went public with a 2012 Release of the next generation of Windows that was quickly retracted by the Marketing Department.

While I may miss the fantastic anti-Ballmer Cartoons that have come out over the years, I won’t miss the FUD that Ballmer spews when he makes any public announcement of the Microsoft directions (ie the Skype/Microsoft deal, the Novell/Microsoft Deal, the Any-Company-With-A-Foot-In-Open-Source/Microsoft Deal).  I leave with one final image:

Just a bit scary isn’t it!!!

Chris J Powell

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