Articles about Retail

Music's value gap? Follow the money trail back to Google

Analysis If you want to understand the economics of the music industry, imagine that you make wellies: Prestige Boots. They’re excellent wellies, well reviewed and loved by customers. You deserve to crack the big time, so you arrange a meeting with Hypothetical Hypermarkets. In his swanky office, the Hypermarket buyer tells you how …
Andrew Orlowski, 14 Apr 2016

Can you hear me now – over the picket line? Verizon workers strike

The workers who handle Verizon's wireline services in the Eastern US have gone on strike. At 6:00am local time Wednesday morning, the Communications Workers of America (CWA) said that members in districts ranging from Maryland and Delaware up through New York and New England were officially on strike barring failed …
Shaun Nichols, 13 Apr 2016
Grinning man in suit points at a calculator meaningfully. Pic via Shutterstock

Fujitsu Tech Products overhauls direct sales team's pay

Fujitsu’s Technology Products Group (FTPG) says it is going to pay its end user sales team the same amount regardless of whether they transact business via resellers or cut out the middlemen. This is one of the levers the new look team team over at FTPG is pulling to grow business while containing costs, and breaking down the …
Paul Kunert, 13 Apr 2016

Cutting edge security: Expensive kit won't save you

We all want to protect our customer and employee data, but as the threat landscape changes and the publicly disclosed data breaches get increasingly larger, our approach may need to change. What constitutes "state of the art" information security in 2016? It’s tempting to create a listicle of 10 shiny new security tools that …
Danny Bradbury, 13 Apr 2016
hacker

What exactly is it that infosec miscreants get up to? A quick overview

If corporate IT infrastructures are a battlefield, then the cybercriminals are putting up a good fight. Last year saw some nasty breaches. Anthem Insurance, which lost nearly 80 million records, and the US Office of Personnel Management, which lost 21 million records after failing to encrypt its records. Cybercriminals are …
Danny Bradbury, 13 Apr 2016
Amazon under a cloud

IT suppliers: Amazon is starting to pay its debts. Some of them, anyway

Amazon has presented irate distributors and vendors with a deal that will see them receive some payment for historical disputed deliveries stretching back a year. As we exclusively revealed last month, suppliers are battling the retail giant to get paid for orders they claimed were delivered from the spring of 2015. The …
Paul Kunert, 13 Apr 2016
Three store maidenhead

Ofcom wants you to thank it for resurrecting the spectre of BT's 1980s monopoly

Comment Years ago, we used to mock Ofcom for its Ofcom-branded bottled water, and its tediously technocratic “evidence based” approach, something which is actually enshrined in the 2002 Act that created it. Throughout its first decade, Ofcom chief execs stood regally above the fray, knowing that a regulator’s decision must be …
Andrew Orlowski, 12 Apr 2016

UK competition watchdog gripes to Brussels about Three-O2 merger

Britain's competition regulator has written to Brussels to put the brakes on the proposed £10.25bn merger between Three and O2 unless a fourth mobile operator is proposed. In a letter to Europe's competition chief Margarethe Vestager, chief executive of the UK's Competition and Markets Authority, Alex Chisholm, reiterated the …
Kat Hall, 11 Apr 2016
Cash register, photo via Shutterstock

Want a job in security? Lock down US military's supermarkets

The US Department of Defense is looking to form a security team to protect military commissaries from hackers. NextGov has spotted a posting from the Federal Business Opportunities site for an "incident response service" at military commissary shops. According to the job post [Word Doc], the response service contractors will …
Shaun Nichols, 08 Apr 2016
Katipunan, Quezon City, Philippines. Photo by Chris Villarin, CC 3.0

Megabreach: 55 MILLION voters' details leaked in Philippines

A massive data breach appears to have left 55 million Philippine voters at much greater risk of identity fraud and more. Security researchers warn that the entire database of the Philippines’ Commission on Elections (COMELEC) has been exposed in what appears to be the biggest government related data breach in history. The …
John Leyden, 07 Apr 2016

Mobe and Wi-Fi firms flog your location data to commercial firms, claim reports

Two reports by privacy campaigners into mobile and Wi-Fi services' location tracking activities have revealed practices of questionable legality and security. The studies found that “at best, companies are fulfilling the minimal legal requirements, and at worst could breaking the law and breaching our right to privacy.” The …
Biting nails photo via Shutterstock

AI, VR, bots and YOU? A survivor's guide to The Future™

We’re at an inflection point, or – rather – the point before that inflection point. We are in the pre-countdown-phase for virtual reality or augmented reality or perhaps machine learning or bots, say onlookers. But which is it? Or will it be none of these? For Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, the future is definitely virtual …
Gavin Clarke, 05 Apr 2016
Plastic_Pipes

Automic lets big firms play with DevOps in private sandbox

Automation vendor Automic has sought to counter the DevOps “whatevs” folk by offering a try-as-you-buy taste of its technology, as part of a slew of initiatives to entice companies to tuck into its full fat product line. The vendor is offering a try before you buy sandbox service for customers, operated on its own cloud, so …
Joe Fay, 04 Apr 2016

SEC chair blasts Silicon Valley for its hokey valuations

The chair of the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has given Silicon Valley a poke in the eye concerning its over-valuation of tech stocks. Speaking at Stanford University in the heart of Silicon Valley, Mary Jo White warned that the federal regulator did not look kindly on the wild – and wildly inaccurate – self- …
Kieren McCarthy, 01 Apr 2016
Suitcase full of money

Learn how to prepare for the multichannel retailing future

PROMO Need to keep abreast of the latest developments in ecommerce and multichannel retailing? Then check-in at Internet Retailing Expo 2016 (IRX) for two days of conferences, clinics, workshops and exhibitions at the NEC in Birmingham (27-28 April 2016). And it’s all free. You can get more info and registration details at IRX. In …
David Gordon, 30 Mar 2016
Alexa on Raspberry Pi

Amazon ports Alexa voice assistant to Raspberry Pi

Amazon.com has released a Raspberry Pi version of its Alexa Voice Assistant, the company's voice-activated “companion” bot that resides in its Echo range of speakers and offers voice-driven home automation and shopping. Amazon's cylindrical Echo speakers make a virtue of simplicity: one just plugs them into power and Wi-Fi, …
Simon Sharwood, 29 Mar 2016

Do you qualify as poor in Palo Alto? Spoiler: Yes, yes, you do

Analysis When you think of affordable housing programs, it's probably safe to say you're thinking about cooks, or cleaners, or even teachers being given a way to live near the neighborhoods where they work. In effect, it's bedrooms for poor people. Except of course in Palo Alto – the heart of Silicon Valley, California. Because in Palo …
Kieren McCarthy, 23 Mar 2016
apple music

Streaming now outsells downloads – Recording Industry Ass. of America

Last year, revenues from streaming music topped those of paid downloads for the first time ever. This according to a fresh report [PDF] from the Recording Industry Ass. of America (RIAA), tracking revenues reported by US record labels. The RIAA says that during the year, streaming music revenues accounted for just over one- …
Shaun Nichols, 23 Mar 2016
Toilet roll printed with fake US $100 bills

HP Inc won't shake you down for ink in 3D printer era, says CTO

Interview HP Inc is threatening to bring an era of open platforms to 3D printing, one it claims will turn the well used – and much criticised – ink toner supplies biz model on its head. So how exactly does HP expect to print money when it is actually using thermo-plastics? There's one buzz word on the tip of the CTO's tongue – …
Paul Kunert, 23 Mar 2016

Micro Focus spends $540m to add Serena its software brand museum

Micro Focus International is splashing out $540m to scoop up Serena Software – or more specifically, its recurring maintenance revenues, to add to its stable of once great, now slightly dusty software brands. LSE-listed mainframe specialist Micro Focus is simultaneously raising $216m in a placing to help pay for the deal, …
Joe Fay, 22 Mar 2016
Jerry Maguire

DevOps, huh? Show me the money. Show me the MONAY!

As career buzzwords go, you’d struggle to find one that trumps DevOps judging by the number of conferences, software tools and books flooding the market. DevOps certainly seems to offer plenty of opportunities, straddling, as it does, disciplines across technology and management from building and managing apps to running and …
Rachel Willcox, 21 Mar 2016
Apple iPod touch

Apple's largest UK reseller Jigsaw24 is for sale

The UK’s largest Apple reseller, Jigsaw24, is for sale, multiple industry contacts have told The Channel. The Nottingham-based B2B seller has hired Deloitte to run the process, a move that comes just three years after private equity outfit NorthEdge Capital (NEC) moved in to back a roll up by the management team. In recent …
Paul Kunert, 18 Mar 2016
Woman angrily hangs up phone. Photo via Shutterstock

Web ads are reading my keystrokes and I can’t even spel propperlie

Something for the Weekend, Sir? A friend has the willies. He even went on Facebook to tell us about his willies. He’s not normally the kind to get the willies, but willies is what he has. American readers of this column may be disappointed to learn that my friend is neither a fellow of loose morals nor is he, as far as I am aware, multitudinally …
Alistair Dabbs, 18 Mar 2016

Who watches over your data – and how do you know it won't go AWOL?

There are a couple of alternative interpretations of the concept of data ownership. The first relates to the legal ownership of data – the intellectual property aspects such as copyrights, designs and trademarks. Now, while that's a world I did work in for a few years it's the other interpretation I'm concerned with here: the …
Dave Cartwright, 15 Mar 2016
A fix for the troubled Windows 10 Start menu

Hey Windows 10, weren't you supposed to help PC sales?

Very few if any ever thought Windows 10 would truly reinvigorate the PC industry, and they were right - IDC has pulled down forecasts on traditional device sales for 2016. The analyst has clipped unit expectations by a couple of per cent, claiming global notebooks and desktops shipments into channels are now on course to …
Paul Kunert, 14 Mar 2016
Bitcoin is the future of money CC 2.0 by Jonathan Waller https://www.flickr.com/photos/whitez/

Microsoft stops accepting Bitcoin in Windows Store

Back in November 2014 Microsoft announced that it had struck a deal with an outfit called Bitpay that would let it accept Bitcoin in the Windows Store. “For us, this is about giving people options and helping them do more on their devices and in the cloud,” Eric Lockard, corporate vice president of Universal Store at Microsoft …
Simon Sharwood, 14 Mar 2016
EU egg timer, photo via Shutterstock

SAP backs UK remaining in the EU ahead of vote

Exclusive SAP, Europe’s largest native software firm, boasting annual revenue of 20.8bn euros, has come out in favour of Britain remaining a member of the EU. The industry’s largest maker of business software told The Register that Britain’s membership of the European Union would benefit both sides. Part of the Germany-based firm's …
Gavin Clarke, 11 Mar 2016

Systemax bleeds cash, reports $100m net loss for 2015

The cost of exiting its North America reseller biz propelled Systemax’s net losses to nearly $100m in calendar 2015 - but European ops might just be finally showing some signs of recovery. The supplier, in the midst of a turnaround strategy, offloaded the Technology Group reseller biz in December to PCM for $14m but then …
Paul Kunert, 09 Mar 2016
Graph of US dollar going up CC 2.0 https://www.flickr.com/photos/68751915@N05/ 401kcalculator.org.

LCD price fixing settlement helps sweeten Tech Data's bottom line

A $35m settlement from LCD vendors over price fixing coupled with some general belt tightening on operating costs helped Tech Data bank a double digit profit bounce in Q4 of fiscal ’16. The world’s second largest tech distributor reported sales of $7.48bn for the three months ended 31 January, up two per cent year-on-year. In …
Paul Kunert, 04 Mar 2016
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No more Nookie for Blighty as Barnes & Noble pulls out

Barnes & Noble's Nook business in the US is faltering, but that's nothing compared to the UK, where it's exiting and handing operations to Sainsbury's. The company has posted this announcement on its UK site. Effective from March 15, 2016, NOOK will no longer sell digital content in the United Kingdom. The NOOK Store on NOOK …

You know how we're all supposed to automate now? Dark web devs were listening

RSA 2016 Security researchers have thrown the spotlight on a popular cybercrime tool that’s used by crooks to automate the process of taking over accounts on major websites before making fraudulent purchases. Sentry MBA, which is readily available for purchase on the so-called dark web, offer a way to break into accounts via a point- …
John Leyden, 02 Mar 2016
Archer cracks the ISIS mainframe's password

Hackers rely on weak passwords when brute-forcing PoS terminals

New research takes a fresh perspective on the passwords hackers use while scanning the web rather than the weak login credentials users often pick. Security analysts Rapid7’s results come from a year’s worth of opportunistic credential-scanning data collected from Heisenberg, the MetaSploit firm’s public-facing network of …
John Leyden, 02 Mar 2016
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos

Irate IT distributors chase Amazon over unpaid bills

Exclusive Amazon has a bad rep among some Brits for avoiding taxes but it seems the company isn’t winning any fans among its supplier base locally either. Multiple tech distributors and vendors have told us they are fighting tooth and nail with the retail giant to get paid for historic deliveries it has disputed, potentially amounting …
Paul Kunert, 01 Mar 2016
Tablet in shop, photo via Shutterstock

Nearly a million retail jobs will be destroyed by the march of tech, warns trade body

Structural upheaval driven by technological change will cost British retailers nearly one million jobs by 2025, according to a trade body. There could be 900,000 fewer jobs in retail in nine years’ time as a result of accelerated store closures and shifting priorities in investment. That’s according to the British Retail …
Gavin Clarke, 29 Feb 2016
Files in manager's desk drawers: manila folder marked "Redundancies". Image via shutterstock

IBM is to cut more than 1 in 8 from its UK Labs, say sources

IBM is taking the knife to the UK Labs team with more than one in eight staffers expected to get the chop, insiders have told us. The “Resource Actions” are expected to see 123 out of 900 divisional employees get made redundant following the start of a 45-day redundancy notice period. An Employee Consultation Committee has …
Paul Kunert, 29 Feb 2016
Bill Murray in the movie Groundhog Day. If you haven't seen it, it's about a man forced to endure reliving the same day over and over. Pic: Columbia Pictures

NBN rollout behind target, claims yet another leaked report

The company charged with building and operating Australia's National Broadband Network (NBN) is denying a Fairfax media report that its multi-technology model (MTM) rollout is stalling. Over the weekend, The Sydney Morning Herald got its hands on a leaked nbnTM internal document dated February 19 suggesting a slow-down. …
Man runs as a fire engine pulls up to a burning building. Pic by Shutterstock

Official: Toshiba pulls out of European consumer PC market

Exclusive Scandal-hit Toshiba is slashing jobs across Europe as it beats a retreat from the region’s consumer PC market. Retailers are honouring existing orders for the first quarter of this year but are not placing any further ones, sources told us. Staff have been notified of the planned redundancies and a number put at risk. “We are …
Paul Kunert, 26 Feb 2016
Simon Cowell, photo: s_bukley via Shutterstock

Oh TechNation. Britain's got tech talent. Just not like this

Opinion It was ironic that this month’s crowing Tech Nation report, which wrongly claimed the UK digital sector “was growing 32 per cent faster than the rest of the economy,” almost coincided with the total collapse of one of the sector’s biggest – and loudest – stars, Powa Technologies. Compiled by Tech City and NESTA, an innovation …
Marcus Gibson, 25 Feb 2016
Service Stream Warehousing for NBN by https://www.flickr.com/photos/29053105@N04/  cc 2.0 attribution sharealike https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

Canberra passes USO review to Productivity Commission, tells the economists to hasten slowly

Australia's federal government re-ignited debate about rural telecommunications with the suggestion that today's Universal Service Obligation (USO) scheme be abandoned and replaced. However, any report about the death of the USO is, at this point, very premature: nothing's going to happen in an election year, for a start. The …

Feds spank Asus with 20-year audit probe for router security blunder

Asus has settled its case with the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) after hackers pwned nearly 13,000 home routers via an unpatched security flaw. The case arose in February 2014, when miscreants used an easily exploitable flaw in Asus's home router line to take control of 12,900 systems in the US. An investigation by the FTC …
Iain Thomson, 23 Feb 2016

Hackers aren't so interested in your credit card data these days. That's bad news

Healthcare and government have overtaken the retail sector as most-targeted for data breaches, according to security firm Gemalto. A total of 1,673 data breaches led to 707 million data records being compromised worldwide during 2015, according to the latest edition of Gemalto’s Breach Level Index report. Not all breaches are …
John Leyden, 23 Feb 2016
a coffee cup topped with cappucino foam with a wi-fi symbol sprinkled on top in powdered chocolate

Wi-Fi operators must notify device users of potential data processing

Organisations that provide Wi-Fi services to their staff or customers must notify device users of the potential for their data to be analysed before they begin to process their information, the UK's data protection watchdog has said. Wireless connectivity between Wi-Fi connection points and electronic devices, like mobile …
OUT-LAW.COM, 23 Feb 2016
trolley_shopping_648

Claranet swallows AWS MSP for web apps fun and frolics

Managed services and hosting player Claranet has hoovered up small but perfectly formed AWS channel partner Bashton Ltd for an undisclosed sum. This is the third buy Claranet has made including LinuxIT and Techgate since it refinanced in March of last year. Warrington-based Bashton specialises in selling managed services to …
Paul Kunert, 22 Feb 2016
HP Elite x3 and HP Mobile Extender

HP Inc Elite X3: Windows 10 phablet for enterprise-y types

MWC16 HP Inc has unveiled a big bet re-entry into the handheld device market, banking on enterprise’s attachment to the Windows ecosystem to blur the memory of its previous forays and retreats into the space. The vendor will unveil its Elite x3 phablet at MWC, a six inch-high, 7.8mm thick phablet, along with a desktop dock to …
Paul Kunert, 21 Feb 2016

OnePlus X: Dinky little Android smartie with one or two minuses

Review We've held off reviewing the third OnePlus phone, the OnePlus X, until you could actually buy it without an elusive invitation. But a fortnight ago the company abolished rationing and made it generally available. Phew. Now if you recall, OnePlus really laid on the Strategy Boutique marketing waffle when the phone was first …
Andrew Orlowski, 20 Feb 2016

Public enemies: Azure, Amazon, Google, Oracle, OpenStack, SoftLayer will murder private IT

Analysis On-premises IT is facing decimation by six public cloud enemies: Amazon, Azure, Google, OpenStack, Oracle and SoftLayer, who are on course to have the majority of customers' IT spend by 2018. An Internet retailer, started up as an online book store, and a website search facility have kickstarted an IT phenomenon which could …
Chris Mellor, 16 Feb 2016

Mirantis: OpenStackers, it's us or Amazon...

Open Stacker Mirantis CEO, Alex Freedland, has given out an anti-Amazon message: “Our outstanding growth is reflective of the huge market opportunity we have in front of us. As AWS continues disrupting the $150 billion dollar cloud infrastructure market, OpenStack will rise up as the only viable open source alternative.” It’s …
Chris Mellor, 11 Feb 2016
Kyle Schwaneke at Microsoft

Microsoft hits the gas in drive to recruit autistic techies

Getting a job if you're on the autistic spectrum can be hard, but Microsoft is keen to hire people with the disorder for its workforce. Last April, Redmond's VP of worldwide operations Mary Ellen Smith announced a plan to seek out IT-savvy autistic workers. In the eight months since it started, nearly a dozen employees have …
Iain Thomson, 09 Feb 2016
Apple logo on glass fronted building. Licensed under cc0 / editorial use only

Mall owner lays blame at Apple's door for dragging down sales

One of the US’s major mall operators blamed Apple for dragging down the performance of its high end properties, potentially compounding the discomfort for the i company. Last month Apple reported results that were - for the tech juggernaut - slightly lacklustre, precipitating a share slide that made it the former most valuable …
Joe Fay, 04 Feb 2016
ioSafe BDR 515 Stock Image

ioSafe releases x86 server for the 'we don't have a geek with a screwdriver' crowd

Review ioSafe, which you may remember from a delightful prior experiment in which I set one of its storage units on fire has launched a new product. This delightful new device, the BDR 515, is based on a dual core Intel i5 platform with 16GB of RAM and runs a full version of Windows Server 2012 R2 Standard. BDR in this case can be …
Trevor Pott, 03 Feb 2016