JanRezab / Blog

Founder & Executive Chairman of Socialbakers.com


Monthly Archives: August 2013

Which wearable measurement is the best – Review of Misfit Shine vs. Jawbone Up

Published: August 22, 2013

I recently bought a Misfit SHINE (John Sculleys company – for those of you that don’t know John Sculley, he is the former Apple CEO) on top of my Fitbit (broken), Nike Fuel (broken). One update, I had to get a new Jawbone, because it didn’t survive some water contact, and its water resistance (OK yeah, they only claim “shower proof” is not really perfect). If you haven’t read my previous article on: “Which wearable measurement is the best – Review of Nike Fuelband, Jawbone UP or Fitbit“, definitely do so, it gives basic grounds for this article. I have already compared those quite a lot, so I will focus on the comparison of the Jawbone UP and Misfit SHINE, which, call me crazy, I currently use both.

Misfit Shine Benefits

  • Water proof – writing this from my holiday, I especially appreciate the fact that its water proof, and shows you the activities. I have dived, swam, been on slides, was in water for practically a week and no effect on the Shine. So this is provably proof :) 
  • Battery life – apparently a 6 month battery life, which is absolutely insane, at that point I won’t even know where I put the thing that clips out the battery :) No indication of battery life going down so far.
  • Wearability – generally the Shine is a much more wearable device, its nicer, lighter, and goes better in different places (pockets, watch, etc.).
  • Beautiful watch – its truly a magnificent watch, compared to the Nike Fuelband which is not so good.

These all together are huge up-sides, and perhaps match or overtake some of the issues below, that seem to be easily fixable with a firmware upgrade and a bigger app upgrade.

Misfit Shine Issues and Mistakes

  • The handling – as I understand it today after more than a week of use: 2 taps for progress and watch, 3 taps for “sleep” mode.
    • I am really unclear how to detect if “sleep” is on or off, there is not a clear distinction, but it seems to be monitoring the sleep, thats certainly good. With Jawbone you clearly see – sleep, no sleep. Here you are not sure, making the data harder to trust
    • Once you hit your daily goal, you are just “at goal”, there is no clear visualization on how much you are over your goal, which I can imagine would be possible with adding a small around a 1 second “roll-over”, where it would clearly show you how much are you over. It doesn’t motivate you to do more beyond your daily goal like Nike Fuel or Fitbit do (Jawbone has no direct feedback, but a stellar app)
  • The app – even though you can see the “data are there”, the visualization is very bad, no large charts, no clicking in to get data info, not a proper visualization of the activities
    • The app is a generation before all other apps, especially the Jawbone Up app which I consider together with Fitbit the best app
    • It really needs work on the charts and all other areas
  • The device itself
    • Is a beautiful gorgeous thing that is perfect and is a perfect watch too. The only issue it has it doesn’t see to be perfectly scratch resistant. Lets see over time.
  • Customer service
    • All other companies, Jawbone, Fitbit, and Nike do pretty good Twitter support. Misfit Shine really misses this.

Once I get home, I will share the screenshots from both the apps so you can compare and see how the visuals work, and how the data overlays each other.

I am thinking of putting a project on one of those freelance sites to grab data off of all these networks (Jawbone, Nike, Fitbit, and Shine), and finally put it in one, socially comparable place. Documentation would take 20 minutes, development probably no more than a few days and would pay a couple hundred bucks. Cool free tool that might be worth it.

OMSignal – New player on the market

Also, watch this video about OMsignal. They put in the wearable measurement in literal means – for it to be wearable! :) This seems to be something else and hey @omsignal, I am willing to be a tester! :)

 


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Biggest screw-ups by brands in social media so far and how they reacted

Published: August 20, 2013

I love #sociallydevoted brands, which are brands that not only respond in social media, but also reflect on that feedback and try to do something about it. Now this is of course not always the case, and we see many examples day-to-day, some starting with a human error, some with an big issue inside the company itself. I took a set of my favorite ones to post them. I might come back and update this article with more examples.

This also covers what some of the companies did after.

#1 Chrysler – Dropping the f-bomb

Typical example of human error. Someone wanting to tweet with their own account, and accidentally sending it through the company one.

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Follow-up from Chrysler was the following: Initially they were not open, the first reaction was almost shocked which you can read in between the lines, that “our account was compromised”. It wasn’t.

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Later they announced some cool follow-up on their blog that I quite liked, good points for them.

Prevention: As a company of this size, don’t outsource social media posting to someone where you don’t have full control over it, especially not on Twitter, where basically everyone has a password.

#2 MSN – Someone dies, click like to pay respects

Extremely weird way to get engagement by MSN, which wouldn’t be the first time or the last (I think BING had some issues with retweet and we will donate to victims of Japanese earthquakes, which backfired heavily and the company eventually donated the promised full amount anyway.

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Prevention: A better content plan and rules around social media call to action would have sufficed.

#3 GAP – “We’ll be shopping during the hurricane, how about you?”

GAPs tweet was among the group of inappropriate brand comments around hurricane Sandy. Trust me, I left the U.S. 1 day before, and it looked pretty bad already when I was leaving. You don’t want to make fun of something like this as a brand.

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#4 NRA – Good morning shooters 

After one of the American shootings in Aurora, the NRA (American Rifleman, National Rifle Association) posted a tweet saying:

nra-tweet

#5 Dominos Pizza – “Sorry for the good pizza”

Dominos quite recently had some issues with someone saying that this is a really good pizza, and Domino’s actually went back and apologized, creating probably the funniest response ever. The company as a #sociallydevoted company really took their responses seriously, and dealt with it well.

Prevention: Only pre-validation of responded posts could be a solution for truly large enterprises, where they could have just a two person model so that he checks the other one for mistakes, similarly to how many enterprise and public structures work (even soldiers, police officers, and many other things work in pairs, thats something that on the big-level should be done easily).

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#6 Macy’s Dump Trump

I am already explaining in a previous article the issue that Donald Trump and Macy’s and what challenges these guys faced, read that here: http://www.janrezab.com/5-ways-macys-could-deal-with-dump-trump-issue/. Macy’s did nothing with this issue.

#7 Burger King is now McDonalds :) 

Funny, password of the Burger King account was compromised, and quite a preventable joke from companies like

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If you guys have any examples of other social media disasters, let me know and I will keep adding people to the list.

Categorically, these things are either:

  • Human Error – mistweeting – publishing something that should have not been published. Run it by more people.
  • Bad Judgement – people thinking something is a good idea, when in fact its not. Run it by more people.
  • Not enough security – too many people having for example the Twitter passwords. Have less people have direct access, especially to Twitter.

Top tips on social media disasters: 

  • Just be Open – People actually respect the fact that companies respond well quite a lot.
  • Protect your account – Use only a few key tools that you know you have trust in – not someone with 5 – 10 people that would be heavily relying on your business. Build it with a partner at a good size and scale. Make sure noone has your Twitter passwords…
  • Delete or not to delete? A lot of companies choose to delete negative posts, they will make them go even more viral. For example H&M had a very big problem with their page and a lot of people shared updates, they tried deleting them one by one, but the more they deleted, the more people tried and shared. Deleting is not a good option. One recommendation if for example sensitive information are being shared, alert the user and hide his conversation, effectively making it a private conversation
  • Create a process in social media: The more we look, the more important it is to create a process around social media. If a company hasn’t got one, it sure should create one.

Of course, those are virtual or content mistakes the brands are doing. Next time we will look at real mistakes, that brands are managing through social media. A topic much more interesting on the corporate level.


Flashback: Automated algorithmic mobile testing

Published: August 12, 2013

A few days ago I was migrating my computers and doing some photo archiving during doing that, and I found a picture that I just needed to share but it certainly needs commentary.

Back in 2008 / 2009, when I was finishing with mobile games, platforms, and mobile apps and interfaces, we had the idea of automated algorithmic game testing, that you would basically plug the screens to, and read both input and output of the screen and manage the keyboards device directly (yeah, at that time phones have keyboards)

The idea was to use a proprietary chipset, “hack” in the phone screens output and work with it in application testing. This could work on both black and white and color screens.

I think it could still be reproduced today, whoever wants to execute the idea, go ahead. The execution could be much easier: Phones could be easily put into television and a manual little touch robot over it could test.

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Self-driving cars could save up to 50 000 years of life every day in U.S. alone

Published: August 8, 2013

I was driving from San Francisco airport today to Palo Alto because of my meetings in the morning, and I have to say after 15 hours of flight and a total of 20 hours of flying, its not easy to sit in the car and drive for an hour, making me think even deeper about self-driving cars, especially since this is the place the Google one is being born. I admire that Google and other players have gotten so extensively involved with self-driving cars. In fact, I would adore self-driving cars. Even though I love driving for the sport itself, its a complete waste of time. If I look at the number of hours in my life that I have spent in my car, at the end of my life, it could be up at maybe a few years in a car? Thats horrible, especially if you are the driver and constantly have to watch the road.

An average american spends under 2 hours in a car every day. Its an average, so with 250 million driving americans, we are looking at quite some time change. You can say that not all are drivers, but even if one is just riding and not driving, he has to have some level of eyes on the road. Quick look at the highway today, over half the cars were only with the driver (including mine). Still, 50 000 years a day is a huge saving, even though the number might be a heavy estimate, and it could be more like 20 – 30 000 years. Hell, thats not bad.

If all drivers in the world (lets say 1 billion) drive self-driving cars for say 1 hour per day (not to mention efficiencies if there are 100% of them), over 1 billion people-years would be saved in the next 100 years. Now don’t get me wrong, but thats a LOT of time saved, possibly the biggest time saver you can find in the world.

This is why I am a huge advocate of self-driving cars, and I really want them to come as soon as possible. Just imagine the savings.

Where would the savings go? I am pretty sure a majority of regular work commuters would spend it working more efficiently. The minority would then probably spend it as they are now, lowering our overall efficiency savings one last time.
1 huge obstacle of self-driving cars

The biggest obstacle I can see with self-driving cars other than technologically completing them (although they seem pretty good to me) is safety. Not for the first few drivers, but when there is a big amount of them on the road. And not because of the self-driving cars, but because of other cars. Of course, in the long-run, when 100% of people use self-driving cars, the road becomes a much safer place (almost 100% safe). The problem of course is different, its the other drivers that don’t have self-driving cars. I could easily find “auto hackers”, that might want to get your insurance by knowing how to trick the self-driving car to bumping you just a tiny bit so it has to pay for insurance, or even worse, really do something bad to you. You would think who would do that? If self-driving cars get quite advanced, I can see this happening very easily. Of course, a self-driving car can’t have bugs, as you rely on these bugs many times with your life and the life of your children. I think there is a technological & mental barrier that needs to be taken down.

The number of backup systems that needs to be in place for people to trust it well is huge, and when the car fails, it needs to have some sort of module to do something. I think this will come down to the engineering and actual building of the cars when you work on them. The other thing is crazy situation where the human driver (at least for now) might be better equipped (natural disasters, etc. – where a humans instinct might not be replaceable at least for now).

1 huge downside of self-driving cars

The biggest downside of self-driving cars other than security is the fact that there are quite a lot of drivers in the world. These drivers of taxis, delivery services, transportation basically will not be needed anymore (or at some very basic level). If the entire world is running on self-driving cars, all of these people’s jobs are practically gone once this happens, and this is not the thing of tomorrow. If blind people can drive self-driving cars from Google (see YouTube video), then everyone really can.

We are talking about taxis (like 100 000 jobs), truck drivers (3 million in US), postal services (USPS alone had 212 000 vehicles in 2012, and thats not even ), possibly more drivers), and many more. We are probably talking about 15 – 20% of jobs immediately at threat with self-driving cars. Vehicle transportation is the first industry really heavily endangered by self-driving cars. I didn’t do enough research to look into what people started doing after the industrial revolution, but I have to certainly look into it. Because this is surely coming.

If you are a say on the board member of DHL, and your competitors are just talking to self-driving car companies, wouldn’t you be the first company to innovate? These moves of these companies and the competitive aspect when they save hundreds of thousands on jobs – this could go in billions of dollars in savings for such huge companies.

How would a taxi work? Well, similarly to how Uber works. You would call a cab, it would have a set place, park in it, you’d get in and punch the destination. Very easy. With buses its a bit harder. The bus driver can act as a hostess and operating mechanic in one in this case.

When we are finished – and 100% of the world is self-driving

We will really save 50 000 years of car time only in the U.S., and where  we can take our eyes off the road. Accidents will be practically gone.

Maybe we can use that time to finally solve some of the deeper real-world problems, rather than chasing for short-term issues.

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This is why companies should use social management tools and processes

Published: August 5, 2013

OK, everyone sometimes makes mistakes, especially in social media. We all saw the tweet of Chrysler, no need to repeat what that said. Coca-Cola on the other hand just published a post that is perhaps not a fail or f-bomb (and now its gone), but proves how social media needs to be managed by tools and processes.

The posts said exactly: “Text for post should be: Dalsi tyden…”, and then the rest of the post in the localized language (in this case, Czech). I have known for quite a while working with Coca-Cola in different countries (Even they want to change this!) that social media is done centrally: One global page, local posting. 

The trend is now to create a “glocal” page. A set of local pages under one umbrella, similarly to how Kit Kat and many others have done it. The global page scenario is GONE, and all brands are getting away from it (we were and are a big advocate of local pages, even if centralized under the global umbrella, but local pages, local Facebook walls, local languages). Having a central person or team in Atlanta to publish all the texts for a big Coca-Cola Facebook page is tough! Of course, social media mistakes happen, but local teams having more autonomy would be less likely to make it.

This why I recommend to companies to do the following:

  • As part of the process, have a tool and a final approval
  • Schedule posts, even if its only in 5 minutes (e.g. What if a competitor with a high fan overlap publishes in 2 minutes, you can still delay, what if you notice a mistake, you can still edit)
    • The fact that post schedulers get lower engagement is a myth (that used to be the case maybe years ago)
  • Have a local person do it who understands the language – especially if you are Coca-Cola, make sure the person understands the local language
  • Create an approval process (even with the tool – have an editor – and an manager role set in the system to approve)

‘Some brands think that sending social media posts in .txt is the way – obviously it isn’t.

The best part of this is, if I were Coca-Cola, who’s mistake is it? The guy who posted it? He probably sends 50 or more (more!) of these per day. No way! The Czech guy who wrote it? Clearly not the case. Its the wrong process that is set-up. 

Guys at Coca-Cola, I love you guys, I drink you guys, but please be more social, and create a global, locally executed, social media strategy.

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