Motorola continues retail expansion in India with 100 new Moto Hubs

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Motorola is continuing to strengthen its offline retail presence in India with the launch of 100 new Moto Hub outlets in the state of Karnataka. 50 of these will be in the capital city of Bengaluru and the rest spread across 7 other major cities. This comes shortly after the company announced that it has opened 50 new Moto Hubs in the city of Mumbai. Motorola plans to open 1000 Moto Hubs across 100 Indian cities by the end of 2018. Moto Hubs are small retail outlets, usually found in malls. Apart from having multiple stores now in New Delhi and Kolkata along with the…

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Does Dallas Have What it Takes to Be One the World’s Top Tech Hubs?

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Ask most people what comes to mind when they think of Dallas, and they’ll probably say football, steaks, and JR Ewing. But lately the answer has been a little different: “Disruption.”

You wouldn’t think Dallas, a city deeply rooted in tradition, is becoming synonymous with creating new markets and upending old ways of doing things. But sure enough, that’s exactly what’s happening.

The city’s pro-business environment, talented workforce, affordable real estate, and lack of state income taxes have always made it a magnet for traditional businesses like energy and finance. Other industries often felt it wasn’t worth their time to try and infiltrate what was seen as an Old Boys’ Club — but that antiquated perception has changed.

Here’s a look at why that is, plus explanations from some of the top CEOs and entrepreneurs in the city about the ongoing transformation.

Disruption in Dallas: A look at the numbers

“The Big D” as many call it is usually absent from discussions on which city will be the next Silicon Valley, but perhaps it doesn’t need to talk that talk. It has quietly put itself on the forefront of technology, now ranking as one of America’s fastest growing tech centers.

Dallas is business wealthy, ranking second in metro job creation (behind only New York). Historically that was because of the aforementioned traditional industries like oil, cotton, and cattle. But now, Dallas now has the 7th highest concentration of tech jobs in the country; in fact, it’s one of just four cities that have regional U.S. patent and trademark offices, a nod to the number of patents produced there.

Today Dallas is home to several world-renowned universities, 22 companies on the Fortune 500, 4 major sports franchises, and one of the biggest and busiest airports in the world. Amazon is even famously considering it to be home of its new HQ2, or second headquarters.

Other tech companies, too, are digging in — companies like Facebook and Salesforce.

“We see Dallas as a strategic location,” says Marie Rosecrans, senior vice president of small and medium-sized business at Salesforce. “Its growing reputation as a tech hub, combined with pro-business platform and even its geographic location make it a great place for any small business looking to grow.”

To that end, Salesforce is bringing its popular Business Growth conference to Dallas on March 22; anyone curious about using technology to connect systems and serve customers can attend for free.

Dallas as Start-Up Central

But it’s not just about the well established enterprises. Dallas is also home to a burgeoning field of startups and fast-growing businesses.

One exciting development: Austin-based accelerator Capital Factory recently joined forces with the Dallas Entrepreneur Center (DEC) to grow Texas’s startup and investor profile.

The DEC’s Trey Bowles believes Dallas’s underrated tech community has a lot to offer.

“Dallas is extremely startup friendly,” he says. “If you think about larger markets like Silicon Valley or New York, there are often a lot of closed doors and hurdles you can’t overcome unless you have major connections — but in Dallas, truly anyone can start a business.”

One new founder is former NFL standout Darren Woodson. Woodson, who gave every snap in his career to the Cowboys, grew up in Arizona, but chose to stay in Dallas when he left the NFL.

“Dallas gave me an incredible football career, and now I try to give back to the city in my second career as an investor,” Woodson says.

Woodson concentrates on investing in new companies and startups that give a boost to the local economy. Today Woodson is the founder and CEO of CounterFind, a company that sells patented software that recognizes and eliminates counterfeit merchandise online.

“This software idea came up, and it seemed like a no-brainer. Several people asked whether or not Dallas was the right place to build this business, but to me there was no question. Dallas had the brains, the drive, the expertise.”

OK, but do you have to have to have name recognition to start a business here? “Not at all,” says Clarisa Lindenmeyer, Head of Strategy at Launch DFW.

“Dallas has really diversified over the past decade in terms of workforce and industry. Now that we’ve grown into something of a tech hub, people have seen the benefits of taking chances. Anyone can have access.”

Today technology companies abound in Dallas. Consider travel logistics maven MUV, which began in Dallas to disrupt ground transportation and logistics. CEO Mark Shrayber says Dallas was an easy choice.

“At a basic level, the mid-continent location puts us close to all of our customers, which is vital. Beyond that, all the Fortune 500 companies here in Dallas bring both an incredible workforce and a vibrant community.”

Traditional to transformative

Lance Auburg, a 4th generation Texan, has been witness to the transformation of Dallas and the entire state. Auburg’s family has been influential in the agricultural sector for generations, but recently Auburg has seen the opportunities presented by the influx of tech. It’s a new line of thinking that has transformed even the oldest of industries here.

“What we’re seeing today is a marriage of technology with the industries Dallas is known for, like energy and agriculture. While the innovations in those sectors are phenomenal, it’s especially exciting to see how entrepreneurs of all stripes are collaborating across Texas. There have been a lot of ups-and-downs in the Texas economy over the years, but I’ve never been more excited about the future of Dallas and Texas as a whole.”

The post Does Dallas Have What it Takes to Be One the World’s Top Tech Hubs? appeared first on ReadWrite.

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Increase Your Ports with HomeSpot USB-C Hubs [Deals Hub]

MacBooks are amazing computers, nonetheless, the number of USB and other ports that are available are very limited supply. When you have to charge your devices, upload new music and photos, and utilize your other ports, you find that they are valuable real estate and get taken up much faster than you would think. You can now have access to many more ports with the HomeSpot USB-C Hubs. It’s on sale right now in the iPhoneHacks Deals Hub. Continue reading
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Amazon Has Huge Discounts on Two of Our Favorite Anker USB Hubs Today

As any readers with a MacBook know, there’s always a constant struggle when it comes to getting all your devices sufficiently connected. Since there are only a limited number of USB C ports (particularly if you’ve got a non-Pro MacBook), most folks are resigned to either hot swap them out as needed or pick up a USC C hub, which can be pretty pricey- Particularly for a decent one.

If you’re in the market for one of those hubs, Amazon’s Gold Deal for Today has a pretty hot price on a three port charging/data hub from Anker. Not only do you get three USB 3.0 slots from one USB-C, the hub also throws in an Ethernet connection in case you want to do a hard wire connection for your laptop. Unfortunately, this particular hub doesn’t do USB-C power pass-through for your MacBook (so you can’t use the same USB-C port to charge while using this hub) but it’s still a great find if you have multiple iPhones/iPads and other random devices that you need plugged in.

The USB plight applies to more than just laptops of course, I’ve installed USB cards and a motherboard that has as many USB slots that I could find and I still find myself on the verge of needing more. That’s why I’m pretty happy with this next Gold Box item, which is a 10-Port Anker data hub that also has 60W of total charging. So, not only do I get an awesome hub that charges fairly fast, but each one of those USB slots are active connections so I can connect things like my mouse, keyboard and myriad of other devices that my desktop handles.

For anyone interested in the above two items, this deal ends today so purchase while you can.

Eli Note: Eric is being pretty polite here regarding Apple’s constant removal of ports from computers, but the deletion of the ethernet jack (among others) is seriously stupid. I travel a ton and still find myself in situations where the WiFi is ruined (particularly at conferences) but there’s ethernet jacks available. These multi-function USB-C combo hub and ethernet adapter devices have saved my bacon more times than I can count to get videos online when convention WiFi was slower than tethering to my iPhone.

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If you’re not into this particular item(s), we’d really really appreciate it if you’d do your Amazon shopping by first visiting toucharcade.com/amazon !

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Brilliant turns your light switches into connected-home hubs

Brilliant plugs directly into your home's existing light switch ports and it controls a slew of smart home devices, including lights, the Ring doorbell, Nest thermostat, Sonos speakers, Amazon Alexa and more. This is a control panel built for everyda…
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[Deal Alert] Get 20% off Xtorm’s EU-friendly USB-C hubs and chargers with coupon code

Yesterday I reviewed some of Xtorm’s USB-C products and came away pleased but not convinced by the prices. It then occurred to me that a little discount could go a long way in making these prices palatable so I reached out to Xtorm and got y’all a 20% coupon code discount. If you were interested in grabbing something from the company, this makes the products more competitive against other brands.

Xtorm makes EU-compatible (EU plug, 220V) hubs, chargers, and cables.

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[Deal Alert] Get 20% off Xtorm’s EU-friendly USB-C hubs and chargers with coupon code was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Xtorm review: Good but expensive USB-C hubs, chargers, and cables for the European market

There are many perks to living in the US: Google services availability, frequent Amazon deals, lower tech prices (on average), and the fact that many tech companies are based there, meaning you never have to worry about plugs and voltages when buying your gadgets. Cross the Atlantic and the story gets a bit more complicated. Each time we, the poor souls living in Europe and countries that follow the European electricity standards, want to buy something new that isn’t officially available for us, we have to make sure it works on 220-240V and that as a bonus, it has an EU plug so we don’t have to use a small adapter that will add weight and could cause the whole thing to fall off the wall at any time.

Read More

Xtorm review: Good but expensive USB-C hubs, chargers, and cables for the European market was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

Android Police – Android News, Apps, Games, Phones, Tablets

Xtorm review: Good but expensive USB-C hubs, chargers, and cables for European users

There are many perks to living in the US: Google services availability, frequent Amazon deals, lower tech prices (on average), and the fact that many tech companies are based there, meaning you never have to worry about plugs and voltages when buying your gadgets. Cross the Atlantic and the story gets a bit more complicated. Each time we, the poor souls living in Europe and countries that follow the European electricity standards, want to buy something new that isn’t officially available for us, we have to make sure it works on 220-240V and that as a bonus, it has an EU plug so we don’t have to use a small adapter that will add weight and could cause the whole thing to fall off the wall at any time.

Read More

Xtorm review: Good but expensive USB-C hubs, chargers, and cables for European users was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

Android Police – Android News, Apps, Games, Phones, Tablets

Motorola launches Moto Hubs, exclusive chain of retail outlets in India

Motorola has announced that it will be opening a chain of retail stores across India. Called Moto Hubs, these stores will let customers do something they haven’t for a while with Motorola devices in India: try them out before buying. Check out the #motohub now at:GIP Mall & Logix Mall at NoidaShipra Mall at IndirapuramXperia Mall, Korum Mall & Viviana Mall at Mumbai pic.twitter.com/amUmgQ1cQq— Motorola India (@motorolaindia) August 3, 2017 Six of the stores are launching today, including two in NOIDA (Great India Place, Logix Mall), one in Indirapuram (Shipra Mall), and three near…

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Best Smart Hubs – Centralize Your Home Automation

Once you’ve got the smart home bug, you’ll quickly find yourself with a group of smart gadgets, and the logical next step is to figure out a way to tie them together. Otherwise, you’ll have to manage multiple apps and accessories to keep them all under control, and soon your convenience factor will go downhill.

So, if you want to keep that level of convenience, what do you do? You’re going to need some sort of smart hub that can control most, if not all, of them. Check out the list below for our list of the best smart hubs to get you started!


Samsung SmartThings

Smart Hubs | Samsung SmartThings

One of the most popular choices in smart hubs for your home is the Samsung SmartThings. SmartThings has been around for quite a while now, and there’s a few good reasons why. For starters, it’s a continually supported device that has seen a couple of hardware refreshes over time. Another reason is that Samsung is a brand that consumers trust, and at the end of the day, it’s a pretty great price point at just $ 99.

The Samsung SmartThings smart hub is very well designed, and it offers a solid range of first-party accessories to customize and enhance your smart home. Those first party accessories include water sensors, motion sensors, and general multi-purpose sensors that can be used to detect when doors are opened, as well as temperature increases in specific areas of your house.

The Samsung SmartThings smart hub works with all of the major protocols, including Bluetooth, WiFi, ZigBee and Z-Wave, and though some people have criticized the app for being a bit cumbersome when it comes to setting up your various devices for the first time, overall, it’s a very intuitive means of tying together a slew of sensors and devices. For the price point and the quality that you can get with the Samsung SmartThings smart hub, this is a no-brainer starting point if you’re ready to take your smart home up a notch.


Vera Control VeraPlus

Best Smart Hubs | VeraPlus Controller

The VeraPlus smart hub isn’t as well-known as the Samsung SmartThings hub or the Wink Hub 2, but this is a very robust platform, not for the faint of heart. You’ll notice this device is on the higher end of our list when it comes to price at $ 140, but that boils down to the immense compatibility that it offers. Vera claims that the VeraPlus smart hub is compatible with over 2,000 devices, and you can have up to 220 unique devices connected to the smart hub at one time. That’s substantially more smart devices than the average person will ever have in their home.

Like the other smart hubs on this list, the VeraPlus smart hub supports the major protocols, including ZigBee, Z-Wave, Bluetooth and WiFi. However, the VeraPlus is edged out by the more affordably-priced Wink Hub 2 when it comes to the number of supported protocols. When it comes to managing the devices that are connected to your smart hub, Vera offers a seamless user experience across multiple platforms including iOS, Android and Windows Phone apps, as well as browser access.

At the end of the day, this is a powerful smart hub, but for the average consumer, you may be just as well going with one of the more affordable options.


Wink Hub 2

Best Smart Hubs | Wink Hub 2

Wink Hub is another smart hub that has been around for a good while. Wink’s latest iteration of its smart hub, the Wink Hub 2, brings along an impressive vertical stand design that can be tucked away on a bookshelf or entertainment center, or, if you want to flaunt your geekiness with pride, you can display right on the counter, front and center. At a price of $ 79.95, this is the most affordable smart hub on the list. But, don’t let that price point fool you. Outside of the sleek, modern design, the Wink Hub 2 is known for its lengthy list of supported protocols. These include Bluetooth, WiFi, ZigBee, Z-Wave, Kidde and Lutron Clear Connect. The more supported protocols, the more devices you’re able to connect.

Another benefit here is Wink’s app. Like Samsung’s app, it can be a tedious process pairing specific devices manually. However, Wink’s app comes pre-loaded with a barcode scanner that allows you to (as you might imagine) scan some products’ bar codes in order to get them paired up almost instantly. Yay for convenience! If you really want to impress your friends, and you also happen to own an Amazon Echo, the two are able to work together to control devices around your house. Unfortunately, the Wink Hub 2 is not compatible with Apple’s HomeKit. Though this is the most affordable option on our list, it is also one of the most capable. If you want a solid smart hub on a budget, this one’s for you.


An alternative to hubs: Google Home, Amazon Echo, and Apple HomePod

Best Smart Hubs | Google Home

Ok, so this final section consists of products that aren’t what we would typically refer to as smart hubs. However, as technology advances, and more and more features are added, these devices draw closer to that product distinction.

Amazon Echo was the first to market in the realm of connected speakers/home assistants, and the device continues to evolve and meet more and more demand. Of course, the voice assistant aspect of the Echo is Alexa, and she (it?) has evolved significantly in terms of the capability to control devices in your home.

Further reading: Amazon Echo, Echo Dot, or Echo Tap – which is right for you?

Google Home was the second mass market smart speaker/home assistant. For users that are already enveloped in the Google ecosystem, Google Home was almost a no-brainer to get started with smart devices. This one doesn’t have quite the level of third-party developer support at this time, but it’s steadily adding new features to enhance its capability.

Further reading: Google Home review

Finally, Apple’s recently-announced smart speaker, Home Pod will soon be hitting shelves. We don’t have all the details on what Home Pod will be able to do at this point, but it will surely have Apple HomeKit support, enabling to it to control some supported devices in your home.

Further reading: Apple HomePod vs Google Home vs Amazon Echo

At this time, tying these devices to existing hardware in your home can really unlock the potential of your smart home system. Amazon Echo and Google Home both have the potential to integrate with a number of smart home accessories and even hubs. For example, Amazon Echo can integrate with both the Samsung SmartThings Hub and the Wink Hub 2. Doing so will give you the ability to control your home with your voice, where previously you would have to open up an app and touch your commands.

Outside of hubs, Alexa can also integrate directly with Philips Hue bulbs, the August smart lock, and Nest thermostat – and that’s just scratching the surface. Google Home, on the other hand, can also integrate with Samsung SmartThings and the Wink Hub 2. Google Home doesn’t support quite as many smart devices at this time, but if you’re interested, you can tie in devices like Philips Hue, Nest, and even Rachio Sprinklers. Who doesn’t like voice-controlled sprinklers?

Wrap Up

Whether it’s locks, lights, thermostats or outlets, it’s definitely convenient to have one central point to manage all of your smart home devices. This list of smart hubs should give a number of options to think about. All of them will benefit you in some way, but it comes down to preference as well as which devices you’re trying to connect. Did we miss your favorite smart hub? Let us know in the comments below!

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