technology

How To Succeed In Local SEO

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If you’re a small business who hasn’t considered optimizing your site for local SEO, you’re missing out on the potential to reach an audience that’s practically at your doorstep. Starting a local SEO overhaul for your site and keywords might sound daunting, but it’s worth it when you see your rankings and sales increase. Here’s a quick guide on how to master local SEO.

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Start with your Website

Before you start focusing on keywords and citations, you need to make sure your website is one that is easily navigable for both people and search engine crawlers. If your website was designed in 2001, it probably needs a massive facelift. Search engines recognize when users don’t spend a lot of time on your site, which affects your rankings negatively. After you’ve done this, update the site regularly by posting valuable content so people will want to come back.

Customize your Keywords

Since your business is likely competing with larger businesses that have dominated general keywords, this is your chance to optimize your site for locally targeted keywords. For instance, if your business specializes in computer repair, instead of trying to compete with the keyword “computer repair,” change your optimization to “computer repair dallas.” This will narrow the focus to a smaller audience and your rankings won’t be buried by larger businesses.

Social Media is your Best Friend

Sites like Facebook and Twitter can seem foreign to those who don’t frequent social media, but they offer small businesses the chance to communicate their brand message on a more personal level. Don’t mistake social media for a channel to run promotions all day – communicating with customers and clients is the key to helping your rankings increase. Use these sites as an opportunity for sharing useful content or brand news with customers. The more valuable your information is, the more your followers will comment and share, which makes your relevance to search engines increase.

Utilize SEO Tools and Resources

Don’t feel like you’re expected to figure out how to climb the SERPs alone. There are plenty of local SEO resources out there to help you along the way. Google AdWords can help you research what keywords people in your area are searching for, which can help you better target your keywords to match. Google Alerts is a useful reputation management tool that can alert you when your brand is being talked about online. This can help with responding immediately to customer feedback, whether positive or negative.

Don’t underestimate the value of local SEO tactics for your business. By optimizing your website and making use of social media and local keywords, your rankings should see a dramatic and dynamic rise through the SERPs.

Cloud Database Options

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Cloud databases offer flexible storage and application deployment, which allows businesses to customize the cloud to meet their needs. Whether you’re a mid-sized business or large firm, cloud databases offer data storage, data management and application development. Get inspired by some of these common ways to use the cloud, then customize these strategy to meet your own business needs.

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General Efficiency

When data is stored in the cloud, employees can work more efficiently, quickly navigating from one item to the next. Additional efficiency benefits include:

  • More staff time for pet projects: With troubleshooting, maintenance and upgrades in the cloud provider’s hands, all employees have more free time to work on important projects.
  • Easier collaboration: Employees can share, review and revise materials easily in the cloud, using change tracking, chat and messaging functions to discuss projects in the cloud space.
  • Group applications: With applications like email, calendaring, to-do lists, reporting and document creating grouped together in the cloud, employees can multitask more efficiently. Likewise, a cloud database hosting platform will have more compute power than in-house servers, leading to faster application launch and less time wasted.
  • Speedier search and response: Customer service employees can browse client requests, orders and history from the centralized cloud, leading to faster and more personalized customer care.

Cloud Storage

Cloud storage offers database management, data sharing and remote backup to keep enterprise data safe and secure. Business options include the following:

  • Upgrade storage for less cost: Many companies’ local data centers are maxed out; switching to the cloud consolidates resources and saves money.
  • Movable data backup: Cloud storage allows business to store any type of data, regardless of format. You can move data from one private server to another or expand your storage space when needs change, maximizing enterprise flexibility and scalability.
  • Scale as you need to: Scalable cloud storage increases when business needs increase and decreases when circumstances change. Purchasing more space in the cloud comes at a lower price point than purchasing more in-house server space.

Cloud Applications

The cloud isn’t just a place for data storage; applications receive several boosts from migrating to the cloud. Choose from a suite of applications to build your cloud.

  • Automate processes: Clouds excel at automation, which frees up staff time to focus on projects that are more important. Automate reminders, mailings, scheduling and calendaring, reporting and much more. Additionally, employees use technology to manage needs, leading to a self-service way of getting work done. This leads to less drain on managers and other high-level employees, while maintaining workflow.
  • Deploy faster– Faster processing speeds help launch and run applications faster. Additionally, cloud servers may offer less downtime and higher rates of bandwidth to increase workflow.

Studies have indicated that applications and processes can receive a cost decrease of as much as 50 to 70 percent when migrated to the cloud. Such benefits allow businesses to more effectively budget resources, grow the business and perform at a higher level for reduced technology costs.

7 Tips To Successfully Rebrand Your Business

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7 Tips To Successfully Rebrand Your BusinessSo, you’re thinking of taking the image of your business in a new direction with a rebrand. Congratulations! It’s a big step, but it’s one that can pay off if done well. Maybe you’re hoping to announce changes in your product or service line, create an image that fits your marketplace better, or you just want to stand out from your competition. No matter why you decide to rebrand, consider these seven tips as a guide to a successful and positive rebranding process.

1. Do your Research

Take the time to learn what’s going on in the marketplace, as well as what your competitors are doing to become or stay successful. That’s easier said than done—if your business relies on digital marketing to capture and follow through on leads, there are free tools like Open Site Explorer you can use to make competitive research a little easier.

2. Plan, plan, plan

The best laid plans…often work out pretty well. Take the time to determine what you want your new brand to convey about your products and services, identify your target audience, and create a schedule to keep you on track from start to finish. Using a project calendar can help you and your team stay on schedule on everything from brand revisualization to public launch—consider Google’s free Calendar or Trello for easy sharing.

3. Expand your Vision

A successful brand is more than an image, but its conception often starts with visual elements like a logo. Use your research and planning to inform your vision. If you’re not visually inclined or you don’t have someone on staff to handle logo design, consult a professional to generate ideas or create a logo for you.

4. Get new Marketing Collateral

Even if you’re a primarily digital business you’ll need new print materials—from business cards to brochures. Services that offer design help often can also help you print all new materials with your new brand for a reasonable price.

5. Give yourself a Digital Facelift

Just as you’ll need new print materials, you’ll need to revamp your web presence as well. This is more than just your website: your social media accounts will have to be updated. Be sure to get your employees involved in the update: if they have social media accounts that represent your brand, be sure they also update their own profile information online.

6. Announce your new Rebrand—but do it Strategically

Unveiling a rebrand takes both time and patience. You want to be sure that your new and improved brand is given the attention to deserves. Would a soft reopening or update be better for your brand, or would you rather reach out to customers individually via email? Think about what will work best for you and your community.

7. Promote and Publicize

Once all the hard work has been done, it’s time to c
elebrate! You’ll have planned this part of the process, but it’s still important to be sure you’ve contacted all the right media outlets and done your own legwork, both online and off, to make sure people know about your rebranding. Take out a few ads, host a party for your customers or clients, and have fun!

Image credit: KROMKRATHOG on Freedigitalphotos.net

Cloud Block Storage: How Can It Benefit Your Business?

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As a business’s data requirements become more extensive, its storage demands increase as well. Cloud block storage maximizes the efficiency of a server for maximum data storage and scalability. Although the concept may seem abstract, it has concrete implications for data management and file storage.

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An Overview of Cloud Block Storage

Blocks are the lowest level of data storage, residing on a server beneath the level of file storage. Because they’re relatively simple, blocks offer an independent storage method that can be scaled as needed in a number of ways to keep costs low. Blocks accommodate a wide range of data types, including databases, files and virtual machine file system volumes. Compare this to a file-level storage system, which only accommodates files. Although you might be able to store spreadsheets, marketing PDFs and images on a file-based storage system, you can’t store other types of data.

As you fill the block with data, you can expand to an additional block without disturbing other data on the server. The data is stored independently from the hardware, so you can move the block storage from one server to another without disturbing the hardware. Think of it like a separate hard drive on a server: You can remove the hard drive from one server and take it to another without disturbing the files.

Block storage is more challenging to administer than file-level storage, since administrators need to manage storage per server, track device performance and set security and protection levels. With cloud block storage, the cloud vendor takes on all the maintenance and administration of the storage server, so you don’t have to worry. You can connect to the cloud storage through an easy-to-use graphical user interface. Many common applications use block-level storage, including Microsoft Exchange and VMware, so you may already be taking advantage of block storage in your business life without even realizing it.

Block Storage’s Benefits

If all you need is a place to put files, TechRepublic recommends file-level storage, but if you’re looking for extensible storage options, cloud block storage can’t be beat. It offers faster speeds, greater reliability and faster performance than a file-based storage system. Block storage can also be formatted differently to accommodate a range of file systems that might be required by an application.

Consider these applications of block-level storage:

  • Move stored data to your block storage and then delete the contents of your server. Since everything is on the block storage, costs are kept down by paying only for the capacity you’re using.
  • Lend more storage to applications and databases that demand a high level of space, freeing up room on your solid state drive (SSD) for other applications.
  • Enhance the storage space of a cloud server without paying additional costs for cloud space.
  • Use the extra space to increase system speed and performance.
  • Keep computing costs low by paying only for the resources you need at any given time.
  • Use block storage for databases, applications, files or a combination.

A reputable cloud company can help you get started with block storage, monitor your block storage and perform all the necessary system maintenance and upgrades. See for yourself why businesses have taken to block storage to increase capacity and lower costs.

Making Your Logo An Effective Part of Your Marketing Mix

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Branding is an important part of any business, especially for small businesses needing to stand out in the crowd. Choosing relevant clip art and simply adding the business name is an ineffective method for creating a logo. Your business won’t be seen. Using clip art in this manner can look sloppy and careless. Instead, choose a quality logo design firm to help create the right logo to best reflect your business.

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Set your Budget

One of the most important steps throughout the design process is to set an initial budget. Before meeting with any potential companies, think about the value of the logo and what it can mean for your business’ growth. Consider how much money you have set aside for your marketing budget. The logo will be a one-time cost so it often pays to spend a little more.

Check their Work

You wouldn’t want to hire a design company that doesn’t know what they are doing. It is important to check their work before scheduling a consultation. First, go straight to the source. Check out the company’s website you’re considering for the design intitiative. A good design company will have a quality logo of their own and proudly showcase it on their site. If they don’t have a website, consider another company. Next, ask for a list of companies utilizing the company’s designs and verify the quality of work before you sign a final contract of intent. A skilled company will be more than willing to provide strong examples.

Know your Business

Think about what your business has to offer and what you envision for your company’s overall design. When you meet with a design firm, they will ask a variety of questions about your company in order to guide them toward the perfect end result. Therefore, be ready to talk about your business’ tone, personality and goals, as well as what needs to be avoided. Being prepared will help the process move smoothly.

Communication is Key

Throughout the design evolution, communication is a key factor. The right logo design firm will keep the lines of communication open from the first meeting to the delivery of your fresh, new logo. The company you choose should be willing to listen to your questions and concerns, as well as ask for your feedback on their ideas. If a company ignores your requests or is difficult to reach, move on to another company that will effectively communicate. A company that isn’t willing to communicate is more likely to provide you with a poor-quality logo or one that uses the same clip art you are trying to avoid.

An effective logo is important to your branding power. As a small business, it is even more critical to ensure you have a strong logo design on your side. While it is tempting to save the money and use clip art to create your logo, it is worth the money to hire a professional firm, as long as you take the steps to choose the right one.

Cloud Opportunities

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To say that cloud computing has transformed how we produce, process and distribute business information would be the understatement of the century. While full-scale cloud adoption has had its fair share of challenges making traction with larger scale and smaller companies alike, it’s undeniable that cloud platforms as diverse as DropBox, SalesForce and Skype have made life easier. In company meetings and official business documentation we call this “efficiency,” but that’s exactly what the cloud is about. It takes computing-heavy processes and helps businesses transform them into easily-managed and delivered services.

The Cloud Problem: Small Businesses vs. the Cloud

According to a recent report by IT research analyst firm Freeform Dynamics, roughly 70% of small businesses state they aren’t likely to migrate to the cloud in the near future, and some won’t bother with the cloud integration discussion at all. This is telling in a lot of ways. First and foremost though, it reveals a misunderstanding of how the cloud can be used to benefit their business and boost their bottom line. Let’s investigate some real-world ways the cloud makes life easier, or, “boosts efficiency”.

The Cloud Solution: Efficiency

· Cloud Backup – According to DataLossDB.org, there were upwards of 1500 incidences of major data loss in 2012. Only a few months into 2013, there has already been reported over 350 instances. The bottom line is that you’ll lose data at some point, and your robust security tools won’t make a difference. What matters is what you do in the event of lost data. For small businesses, cloud backups are a cheap and easy solution that allow for simple off-site backup procedures matched with seamless data recovery tools.

· Cloud Storage Solutions – Cloud backup storage is easily the most popular type of cloud-based service out there. It has transformed the way we view data storage. Instead of opting for bigger, better and faster on-premise storage components, we seek out robust cloud storage platforms similar to DropBox, Google Drive and Box.net. While SMBs aren’t eager to fully jump on the cloud bandwagon, they are likely using cloud storage store information to make it more accessible to certain team members.

· Affordability, Scalability, Flexibility, etc – Affordability, scalability and flexibility is at the core of the cloud, and is often overestimated or underestimated, but not rightly understood within the adoption conversations that many businesses are having. The truth is from a cost and scalability perspective, you really only pay for what you use. From there, as your business grows or scales back its needs, you can almost instantly scale up or back your cloud services to meet your needs. This allows you to focus your IT budget on business-specific tools that help grow your business.

SMB Growth through Cloud Services

Whether you’re renting access to applications, or you’re using a cloud-based platform to deliver a more meaningful user experience to your customer base, the cloud can and does make life easier for your business. It allows you to focus on what matters: growing your business.

 

How to Avoid Letting Technology Take Over Your Business

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Today’s computers are so advanced that sometimes business owners and executives forget their role in the grand scheme of things. Simply put, a computer is a machine that does what it is programmed to do. Computers are good for providing data, and to a certain extent even some analysis, but what computers can’t do is offer personal contact. No matter how much you spend on technology, it isn’t an adequate substitute for a well-trained manager.

Data vs. Information

Let’s use graphic designer Joe as an example. Joe ‘s goal is to be spend four hours of his day on billable work. The company uses time-tracking software that allows Joe to track his billable time. The software then prints out a daily report and whoever looks at it can see how often Joe is or isn’t meeting his four-hour goal. Read More

New Software Testing Helps Identify Flaws in Surgical Robots

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Many people are torn about the idea of going under a knife that’s controlled by a robot. On one hand, a robot is going to be steadier and better skilled than a human. On the other hand, a robot can be affected by glitches that could be fatal for the patient. Software testers are working to end the fears associated with surgical robots, but will it be enough to calm a patient’s nerves about robotic healthcare?

Why Robots Would Be Beneficial

Doctors are under a lot of stress from long hours and when you throw in family problems and other stress factors, a doctor’s mind can be a million miles away. This can be extremely dangerous in the operating room. Robots don’t have to worry about anything except the task at hand. This means that there’s complete focus on the operation. Another problem is human mistakes. Doctors and their surgical team certainly don’t mean to leave items inside their patients, but it does happen. A robot is working on a set of instructions, making it near impossible to make such mistakes. Read More

Learn from the Best: The Leaders of Web Design

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Creating a quality eCommerce site can appear deceptively simple. With just a few images, descriptions and a shopping cart, it is possible to immediately begin selling online. However, with millions of competitors out there, the process of creating a site that customers will actually seek out and use is significantly more challenging.

Top Design Companies just released its list of Best eCommerce Web Design Trends for 2013, where it notes five eCommerce websites that set the bar for what is possible in eCommerce web design. These companies demonstrate how important quality design is, and they give a glimpse of some of the expected web design trends for the coming year.

By taking note of companies that are leading the way in eCommerce web design, and attempting to apply some of the same concepts to their own company websites, business owners can help ensure that their own websites will be competitive.

Top Design Winners

Some of the sites noted by Top Design included Reebok, Sony and clothing retailer Uniqlo. Top Design noted that each excelled at ease of navigation, as well as the clarity of their calls to action.

Reflective of Trends

Recently, Amber Leigh Turner published an article at The Next Web discussing the 10 web design trends expected for 2013. Many of the trends predicted by the writer are already in use by Reebok, Sony and Uniqlo, and are worth taking note of.

Responsive Design

Responsive design refers to creating sites that are viewable across many different devices, sites that are easy to navigate and require little to no resizing. This means users encounter no road blocks when accessing the site from their tablets, desktops or smart phones.

All three of the sites listed above utilize responsive design because it works. For instance, potential customers can quickly view Sony’s newest offerings and make a purchase, regardless of what device they happen to be using.

Large Images for Impact

One of Turner’s predictions for 2013 websites is the use of large, screen-size images for impact. These images can be truly powerful in creating a unique feel for a website.

Consider Reebok’s home page. Most of the initial screen space is taken up with a rotating banner of high-quality photos. Each photo is related to a particular product line Reebok wants to showcase. The images set an undeniable mood, allowing the viewer to feel a little of what it might be like to be trail running, doing yoga or dancing.

As screens increase in size and resolution, large images will only become more useful in setting the tone of a website.

White Space

Another predicted trend for the coming year is the increased use of white space. A white background is surprisingly effective in making product images pop off the screen, especially when those images are high quality.

Clean design continues to be appealing to the majority of consumers. Apple has been riding this wave for years, and customers are still loving it.

Uniqlo uses white space to great effect. When color does appear, either in backgrounds for clothing models or in the clothes themselves, it is set off by the surrounding white space. This creates an emotional response. Potential buyers can feel the impact they might make wearing those same clothes.

Use What Works

Taking note of what works in website design is worthwhile for business owners. Today, every business needs a web presence. Fortunately, businesses do not have to settle for a generic and unappealing site. With the help of a quality web design company, business owners can utilize the design trends that work to help develop a powerful brand, and help encourage the conversions that will come along with it.

 

 

Say Goodbye to CD’s and DVD’s and Hello to High Definition

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While CDs and DVDs were a dramatic improvement on the audio and video formats that came before them, these too have been upstaged by changing technology. You may still have CDs and DVDs in your library, but how often do you listen to music or watch video on them? Today’s technology offers so many ways to listen to music and watch video and many of the new methods are technologically superior to CDs and DVDs. Welcome to high definition; CDs and DVDs, please exit to the right.

CDs vs. MP3s

MP3s generally offer comparable audio quality to CDs. The average listener will probably not be able to tell any real difference between a CD and a high-quality MP3; sound quality differences are generally only audible when the MP3 has a low bit-rate and is generally of poor audio quality. Where MP3s really have the win is with competitive pricing.

Not only can you purchase MP3s for 99 cents, you can purchase an entire album for pretty much the same cost as purchasing the CD. Because the MP3 is born digital, it’s easier to burn tracks to a CD or upload them to portable music players. Gone are the days of running with a bulky CD player clenched in your hand or loading up a six-disc player with music for your dinner or dance party. Gone also are the days of caretaking for a large CD library, carefully placing discs back in their jewel cases and running out to buy a replacement or trying a home hack when your favorite CD ended up scratched.

DVDs vs. Blu-Ray

If you enjoy the convenience of streaming music, streaming video offers much the same for movie and television content. You can watch streaming video on a smartphone with apps like Hulu, Netflix and YouTube or you can watch on your computer by visiting the equivalent websites. Learn about nearly anything you want, find fitness routines or catch up on your favorite television shows online, all for little to no cost.

Those who like watching movies at home and don’t embrace streaming video may be happy with a Blu-Ray player, which offers an upgrade to DVD ownership. High-definition resolution makes colors, background and people’s facial expressions pop in a way they don’t on DVD; you feel as if you’re really right in the world onscreen. Additionally, there are none of those poor colors and orange complexions found too often on DVDs. With high-definition TV being fairly standard these days, Blu-Ray video really allows you to take really optimize the its potential. In comparison, DVDs have a maximum resolution that’s less than half that of Blu-Ray players, which mars the HDTV’s potential. Many households already own an HDTV and the number is sure to grow, which makes the Blu-Ray player more of an entertainment center necessity and less of a luxury item. You don’t have to give up all of your DVDs for Blu-Ray discs; the player is capable of supporting both formats.

With holiday steals to be found online and in retail stores, now is the time to pick up a Blu-Ray player and a selection of discs. As HD movies become more popular, prices will continue to drop and the technology will become more affordable. Make the switch to modern media now!

Image Source: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:CDs.JPG

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How Increasing Web Development and Database Technologies are Saving Lives

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As technology grows and diversifies it becomes more and more useful to a wider range of users. Web development and database technologies are quickly growing fields that are becoming more and more beneficial to a larger range of people. These technologies are no longer limited to use by large companies or other businesses but are becoming more and more common within the medical and emergency response fields. These technologies can make the jobs of firefighters, doctors, nurses, and EMTs far easier than ever before.

Medical Records

Technology is in fact saving lives in many cases as it makes the transport and records of patients faster, more accurate, and more readily available to medical professionals. In the past it has been necessary for medical and emergency response professionals to take written or manually logged notes about cases and events of which they have been a part. While these notes are critical in reconstruction of accidents and events and in caring for patients, they are not widely available to all the professionals that may be part of the incident.

Take for instance traditional medical records; prior to the digitization of medical records, access to these files was strictly on a physical basis. You either needed to have the file in your hands or request a copy of the files in order to use them properly. Web development and database technologies make it possible now to transmit information from doctor’s office to doctor’s office or from the accident scene to the hospital directly. You no longer have to wait for paper records and teams and staff can get to work faster on patients than they would have been able to otherwise.

Another advantage is that teams and professionals can look back on past incidents much easier with digitized and database records than they would have been able to with paper records. The ability to store larger amounts of data is another advantage to this growing software and digital database technologies. Medical and emergency professionals are no longer limited in the amount of information they can store and save for future use as they were with paper records. Though there are still some limits, professionals can now store far more data than ever before.

Security and Technical Support

On top of all that there is also the added security and tech support benefits. Paper records are difficult to secure and anyone who can read and find them ends up having access to them. Though some of these records are not private, many are and securing access to them is a main concern. With web development and database technologies you can safeguard information quickly and easily and can specify who you want to have access to your information and who should not. In regards to tech support, you will always have a team of developers that know the ins and outs and difficulties and glitches in programs. With support you can quickly and easily nullify and remedy problems so that access to records is simple.

All of these benefits can help make web development and database technologies a major part of saving lives every day in both the emergency response setting and in the medical profession. In a world where technology is king it is refreshing to see that the technologies that are being created are not only easy to use but are also incredibly useful when it comes to saving lives. These technologies will no doubt change and grow as the available resources and information changes and we can only hope that the changes that are made will benefit the greater public and the medical and emergency response professionals that save lives every day.

Author Bio: Ryan Ayers writes articles in the field of business. This article was written to explain how new technologies are helping emergency responders all the way to hospital managers save lives and to encourage further study with a Masters Degree in Organizational Leadership.

Caller ID Finally Reaches Cell Phones

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When the home phone was the primary form of contact for a household, a service changed the way we answered the phone. Caller ID allowed us to see who was calling and screen our calls accordingly. If our exes called over and over, we knew, if someone tried to prank call, we were able to see who it was and we were happy about that.

 

When cell phones took over as the primary phone used by homes, they lacked this service due to complicated technical reasons. Unless we had the person added in our contact lists, we didn’t know who was calling. Now caller ID for cell phones has been figured out. We now have the ability to see who is calling even if they are calling from a new number that is foreign to our cell phones. That is of course, if you have the right service provider.

 

Service Provider Offering Caller ID:

As with any new service that reaches the mobile market, not all carriers offer it. For caller ID, you can add this service to your plan if you have T-Mobile. They are the first carrier to announce caller ID for your mobile phone. The service will be launched with their Android powered Samsung Exhibit smartphone initially. In the future, caller ID will be available for existing phones on their network.

 

With this introduction, the future holds room for competition. As of now, T-Mobile is the only carrier to announce the technology, however, there are restrictions. For instance, Verizon hide their registered customer information so you won’t be able to see who is calling if they call from a Verizon phone. As caller ID technology for mobile phones increase, we should see more carriers offering the service, reduced prices for the service, and perhaps even a change in Verizon’s policy that will allow mobile phone users to see Verizon customer’s names when they call.

Cost:

The service will cost $3.99 a month for T-Mobile users who want to add caller ID. This is similar to the original cost of landline caller ID when it was released and as we see now, it is now a free service for many landline carriers. Perhaps as more wireless carriers carry the service, the prices will decrease and eventually become standard in phone packages.

 

Though T-Mobile has launched caller ID for mobile phones, there are still flaws. In the future as more carriers add the service, the caller ID for mobile will become as dependable as landline caller ID. For now, T-Mobile users can enjoy the service for what it is and the rest of us will get it eventually.

Victor Converse is a private investigator and freelance blogger for reverse phone lookup.org – one of his favorite tools for finding out what he needs to know in the information age.

How to Make Better Use of Your iPhone

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The mobile technology has reached to an amazing extent, ranging from smartphone and “i” series to simple handsets for entertainment and needs, to be catered in one set. Every one desires to have an updated version of the mobile phone and enjoy the luxury of the most advanced mobile technology.

But few of these people use their mobile sets like iPhone to their fullest potential. Other than just entertainment, this phone set can serve many purposes if used effectively. This article can guide you to some simple steps using which you can enjoy the entertainment toy as an efficient tool to make your personal and professional life easier.

How to Make Better Use of Your iPhone

Two lines system: If you are not yet aware then know that your iPhone has this function of facilitating a second line. In this way you can have two numbers being used separately through one phone. Now you can better arrange your personal and professional contacts separately and at your convenience.

Set your Homepage: As you do on your personal computer that the site which you visit most is selected in the homepage of your browser. In the same way, when using your iPhone you can organize your homepage by selecting the app that you use most and drag it to front.

Managing your Web Apps: It usually takes longer if we have files stored at different paths. Your iPhone can give you a service through an iPhone Web app, which will consolidate all your web apps in one program. In this way, you can easily browse and launch the desired web app. This iPhone web app is available in a minimal price in market and you can get it easily for your phone set.

Quick Search Function: With your own mobile phone, it has become very easy to turn to your work any time. If you need to look for some important article and don’t have computer and internet access then stop worrying, as your iPhone will give you a search function. Go to the home tab and double click on it to get the search box, type your search word and select the desired results in no time.

Voice Control Function: It is always unsafe to attend your phone calls while you are driving. If you are on your way to office and have to take important call then don’t stop your car and receive the message. Your iPhone voice control is available with which you can get your calls and listen to your choice music without using your hands.

These features, if used effectively, can make your iPhone the best system of your life. You just need to stay updated with the enhancements that are launched to the OS of iPhones. If you search the web, you can still learn a lot more than I just shared. In reality, the technology covers a whole wonder world which most of us had never tried to explore. So, change your pattern and start using your device in a different way.

This post was brought to you by the Computer Too Slow, a leading source for tech related news, tutorials, and all kinds of helpful advice.

New Technologies That Will Bring a Revolution to the Travel Industry

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Getting away from the usual routine for a holiday abroad is something which none of us are likely to ever turn down. However, will it be even easier to travel in the future thanks to advance in technology?

GPS Uses

We are already seeing a lot of ways in which travellers can benefits from having a GPS system on their mobile devices. From finding out where you actually are to locating a hotel there are a lot of exciting ways of using your GPS to get more out of your holiday. However, the really exciting changes are coming in areas such as augmented reality, which gives you a completely different view of the city you are in, I one went on a cruise from Southampton and my person GPS when out at sea kept me busy. Time will tell what further advances we will see in this area but it seems clear that we can expect some big things which will be very welcome for travellers.

Near Field Communication

There is a lot of talk about this subject but it still isn’t entirely clear what exact form it will take in the future. You may have heard it been described as being a way to pay for things using your smart phone but it is going to be able to do a lot more for us than that. It is basically a way in which you phone can communicate with other smart devices, and interesting uses for it are already being found in countries such as Japan.

Biometric Identification

You have probably already heard about biometric passports, and certainly travelling with a document which has your retina scan and other essential details will bring you a lot of benefits. However, there are other uses for this technology and we can look at the world of cruise ships to find one of them. If you have ever travelled on board a cruise ship then imagine if you could check in by giving these details and then get automatic access to every part of the vessel which you need. No more keys, no more names on lists; just you and your body will be enough to get you into the places you want to go.

Mobile Devices for Travel and Work

For far too long many people have suffered through not being able to take time off to get a good holiday every year. Things have now changed drastically and now a lot of us can work from anywhere in the world without any problems whatsoever. In fact, if your job gives you this kind of flexibility then why would you ever need to go home again? Life could turn into a constant trip provided that you have a laptop and a broadband connection you can hook up to.

 

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Voting Technology to Help the Disabled

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Cities in the United States often use various methods to assist the disabled on voting day. This typically consists of transporting the handicapped to voting sites in a wheelchair van and ensuring the disabled have access to voting sites. Legislation such as the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 ensures that polling places accommodate disabled voters.

Now, voting machines have the capability to accommodate people with a range of disabilities. This technology ensures that the disabled voters truly do have equal access to polling places.

Long Beach, California plans to use voting machines for visually impaired individuals during the April 2012 primary elections, according to Gazettes.com. These machines are able to issue audio commands to users, allowing them to vote without assistance, even if they are completely blind. This will mark the first use of these voting machines in Los Angeles County and is an important step in providing independent voting for the disabled.

Dolores Nason, executive director of the Disabled Resources Center, was nearly brought to tears when she saw some of her volunteers, workers and clients using these machines during a demonstration. “People who have disabilities, they still want to be independent and they want to keep their dignity,” she told Gazettes.com, “and being able to vote can be a big part of that.”

Los Angeles County has 88 cities, 60 of which have municipal elections. Long Beach used an independent contractor to conduct its elections until 2006, and this city has been improving its voting facilities in-house ever since. In 2006, Orange County began using the e-slate voting machines, electronic machines that directly record voting machines. Anyone can use these machines, but they are especially useful for people with disabilities.

E-slate machines issue voice commands through headphones for the visually impaired. The large buttons are easy for people with motor disabilities to control, and those without any use of their hands can control these machines with a sip and puff device. An e-slate machine displays the entire ballot as if it was a paper ballot and also allows the user to modify previous choices before submitting the ballot.

Long Beach officials will install four e-slate machines at City Hall for the 2012 elections, which run from March 12 to April 3. The city decided to buy these $24,000 machines instead of electronic poll books, which allows voting officials to review voter information. Officials plan to install e-slate machines at all 270 polling locations, although this will require several years to fully implement.

Voting machines allow the disabled to maintain their independence and keep their dignity while voting, in addition to increasing the number of people who vote. These machines also allow the handicapped to vote independently, thus ensuring privacy for all voters.

In order to ensure equality at the voting booth, this technology should be widespread, rather than contained in such a limited area. With technological advancements being made every day, it is feasible that, assuming everything goes as planned in California this year, this technology can be available nationwide by the next presidential election.

Cloud Hosting: Serves Businesses Professionally

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Cloud hosting is the latest technology that has gained lots of popularity in such a short time as a new and budding technology in the web hosting industry. The advantages of this latest web hosting plan can be availed through various packages of hosting websites that the users usually access while using cloud servers. The cloud hosting spreads over the resources among various servers that are needed to host a website and thus the dependency on single server ends. Cloud server enables the cloud hosting to host websites effectively as the interconnected servers in cloud server empower the user to manage his websites on them. This clustering of various servers at one cloud server speed up the processing of web hosting and the websites can be accessed at a high speed even at the tome heavy traffic on networks.

Cloud Hosting: Serves Businesses Professionally    Businesses get benefited in many ways through the use of cloud hosting services. Cloud hosting, being based on various server of the cloud server, is enabled to manage the risk of getting affected by the server crashes during downtime of a website. Cloud hosting plan also enables the user to download their websites without any problem at the peak load hours. The users are also benefited with its cost effective feature as it has reduced the time taken in hosting a website to a great extent hence the cost of using cloud server and the use of electric power, both have got reduced greatly as compared to the use of single server for hosting the websites. This web hosting plan is primarily based on the intention of managing the web traffic variably which may increase the stability and redundancy as compared to other web hosting servers.

Cloud servers are made to encourage the movement of data among the servers with no trouble to keep the website activated when hosted. Users are also empowered with the facility to add or remove a server of their choice to the cloud server to improve the chances to download their website. Moreover the users are charged by the service providers, for the quantity of computing power used by them.

Thus, cloud hosting has proved to be the most effective platform for hosting websites for the business houses as it speeds up the process even at the heavy traffic moments on the networks as well as reduces the cost of web hosting websites that helps in saving lots of money.