Tag Archives: Product innovation

New Smart Glasses from Ray-Ban and Facebook

First there was Google Glass, then Snap entered the video glass frame market with Spectacles. Now, Facebook and Ray-Ban have partnered on new smart sunglasses called Ray-Ban Stories with a camera built into the glass frame.

The Wayfarer-looking glass frames have a 5-megapixel camera to record whatever you are looking at. All the user has to do is tap the side of the glasses to take a photo or 30-second video. The frames also hold micro-speakers, microphones, and a computer processing chip. The eyewear can also answer phone calls and play music or podcasts.

The vision (no pun intended) behind the new smart glasses is to enable people to capture the moment that they are in and then post it to Facebook. Unlike the weird-looking Google Glass, the project was focused first on fashion and design, and then on the technology.

Priced at $299, the glasses also come with a charging case. When fully charged, the glasses can be used for six hours. There is also voice activation available using Facebook Assistant and paired with your phone. A small light on the frame front goes on when the glasses are recording, but the small light is hard to see, thus there are privacy concerns when recording.

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss smart glasses with students. What problems do they solve?
  2. Poll students: Who would be willing to buy smart glasses? Why or why not?
  3. Show the product on the Ray Ban website: https://www.ray-ban.com/usa/discover-ray-ban-stories/clp
  4. Show the WSJ video of the glasses in action: https://www.wsj.com/video/series/joanna-stern-personal-technology/ray-ban-and-facebooks-camera-equipped-sunglasses-cool-yes-creepy-yes/94A651AF-2320-43D7-AFEC-78C307FAAE00?mod=djemfoe
  5. Discuss the importance of clearly defining a target market.
  6. For this product, who is the target market?
  7. Divide students into teams and have each team develop a profile of a target market. Include demographics, psychographics, behaviors, values, attitudes, etc.
  8. Based on the target market profile, what tactics should the marketing plan include?

Source:  CNN; New York Times; The Verge; Wall Street Journal; Washington Post; other news sources

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Movies and Music for Cats and Dogs

Worried that your pet doesn’t get enough stimulation when you are gone during the day? Does your cat or dog just sleep the day away, seem bored or anxious? Then pet TV and music might be just what Spot and Kitty need.

Yes, there are now movies and special music playlists, plus audio books, just for the pets in our lives. Even pet owners seem transfixed by the new services; both humans and pets seem to find it meditative and calming.

Some of the offerings include:

  • Amazon Prime has a number of streaming videos that feature birds, squirrels, and other creatures in their outdoor habitats. The sounds and motion make it seem that it is all happening just outside our windows.
  • Audible collaborated with famed “dog whisperer” Cesar Millan to highlight books for dog listening.
  • Spotify has playlists created just for dogs, cats, and owners, as well as My Dog’s Favourite Podcast. Spotify also offers music for iguana, hamsters, and birds.
  • DogTV offers a subscription streaming service developed specifically for a dog’s sight (color) and hearing (no startling sounds).
  • And, don’t forget about YouTube which hosts thousands of videos that may appeal to pets.

By all accounts, the pet products industry is growing by leaps and bounds, accounting for an estimated $70+ billion in purchases of toys, food, and supplies last year in the U.S.

Rock on!

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Poll students: Who has pets? Do these pets watch TV or listen to music?
  2. Divide students into teams – include pet owners in each team. List the items that are purchased for pets during the year.
  3. Show pet video/music sites:
  1. Assign each team one of the above sites to examine.
  2. How should these be marketed to pet owners?

Source: Advertising Age; New York Times

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Interested in the Future? Check out CES.

The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) is one of the largest and most influential showcases in the United States for introducing innovative products from around the globe. At this year’s show in Las Vegas, CES included more than 20,000 new products from 4,400 companies. A diverse group of companies included manufacturing, transportation, entertainment, robotics, automotive, consumer goods, and more. (The show is produced by the Consumer Technology Association which represents the $401 billion U.S. consumer technology industry.)

CES was held in January and hosted 175 thousand attendees who viewed products from 4,400 different exhibitors in categories such as 3D printing, gaming, robotics, sports, drones, fitness, health and wellness, retailing, wearables, and a variety of other product groupings. CES regularly announces thousands of new products, including many that we all know and use today.

This year’s show provided looks at products in the marketplace as well as products-yet-to-be-launched in categories including:

  • Artificial intelligence
  • 5G and mobile connectivity
  • Food and CPG companies
  • Health care technology
  • Smart cities
  • Home sensors and technology
  • Travel and tourism
  • Transportation and vehicle technology
  • And lots of robots!

It’s hard to pick a favorite product from the show. What’s your favorite innovation from CES?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss the purpose of CES show and how innovation fits into it.
  2. Also discuss the use of trade shows and exhibits as part of a marketing plan.
  3. Show a summary video about CES from the Wall Street Journal: https://graphics.wsj.com/image-grid/ces-2020/?mod=djem10point
  4. Additional summary videos can be found on YouTube: https://youtu.be/YvRP_Y1WDxw
  5. View the CES Web site: https://www.ces.tech/
  6. Divide students into teams. Have each team select a product featured at CES.
  7. Instruct students to research the products online, and define a target market for the product.
  8. Which ones do they think will be winners in the marketplace?

Source:  C/NET; TechRadar.com; Wall Street Journal; other news sources

 

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