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For years, smartphones have been getting bigger and bigger, to the point where the newest phones barely fit in your pocket. The extra screen real estate is a huge plus for on-the-go productivity, but it’s a design trend that can only go so far (unless you’re willing to modify your wardrobe to accommodate your next phone!)
Foldables like Samsung’s new Galaxy Z Flip4 provide an elegant solution to that very problem, letting you carry a big screen and tap into big capabilities, without needing big pockets. Galaxy Z Flip4 is a fresh and exciting Choose Your Own Device (CYOD) option for business, with a clamshell form factor that provides greater flexibility at work, at home and everywhere in between. Here are five reasons why your team will flip for this phone:1. Pocket-sized productivity
Galaxy Z Flip4 is a small phone with big productivity enhancements and beautiful design. Flipped open, the display measures 6.7 inches corner to corner, giving you plenty of room to get work done effectively. Folded shut, it’s about half the size of a typical smartphone — but delivers pocket-sized power. Galaxy Z Flip4 is undeniably stylish, while also being durable thanks to an armor aluminum frame, Gorilla Glass Victus+ display and IPX8 water-resistance.2. No need to open
Work doesn’t stop when you close your phone. With Galaxy Z Flip4, your phone doesn’t need to be open to keep you in the loop. The external cover screen is your notification center, delivering informative updates on its touch display. The cover screen is especially helpful if you spend most of the day in meetings. You get the information you need at a glance, without distraction. You can also answer calls and respond to texts without even opening the phone. The cover screen can show you the day’s weather, upcoming calendar events, your daily steps in Samsung Health, favorite contacts to instantly call, your music player and other customizable widgets.3. Master multitasking
Toggle less and accomplish more when you launch two apps at once on Galaxy Z Flip4. You can instantly access your favorite apps from the Edge Panel and start working in split-screen view. Edit a Word document in the built-in Microsoft Office app while you reference an email, side by side. Video chat in one window while following a presentation in the other. When a colleague confirms a meeting date over email, seamlessly send them a calendar invite.
The split screen capability also helps you maintain work-life balance. Go ahead, check your social media and work emails simultaneously.4. Video calls, hands-free
Videoconferencing is now an everyday staple for many businesses. When connecting from a smartphone, though, users are tasked with holding the device at the right angle to ensure they can be seen. Thanks to Galaxy Z Flip4’s flexible form factor, you can now go hands-free by setting down the device in Flex Mode. Flex to the perfect angle, set it down and talk freely. Plus, you can easily multitask in Flex Mode by taking notes or viewing slides on the bottom half of the screen.5. Capture content, hands-free
Capture the best of every day with Galaxy Z Flip4’s intuitive camera system, which takes sharp, steady photos and videos with no tripod necessary. Impromptu selfies come out beautifully. In Flex Mode, the cover display preview allows for hands-free snaps, so you can capture the entire scene without your arm in the way. Portrait Mode is crisper than ever with enhanced AI processing, allowing you to change up your background and lighting effects to blend more naturally. Hyper-Lapse and Auto Framing make it easy to capture your best shot on the first take.
So long, boring work phone. Hello, foldable innovation. Galaxy Z Flip4 brings pocket-sized productivity to power big moves for employees, and workplace mobility for employers. It will make your team proud to be productive on the go and help them stay connected wherever they may be.
Sign up for a Samsung Business Account to get exclusive offers, including volume pricing discounts, on Galaxy Z Flip4 today. And as you set up your new device, make sure you secure the personal and work data on your mobile phone using this free guide.
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A once predominately lip-synching app has grown into a full short-form video content hub.
The platform sports features similar to those of Snapchat, Instagram, and Twitter all meshed together to suck people in and keep them scrolling for more.
That’s right, we’re talking TikTok.
TikTok is booming and there is no way to ignore it. So, it is about time we address it head-on.1. The Number of People on the App Is Insane
It’s probably no surprise to many that TikTok is heavily dominated by 18- to 34-year-olds.
Much like many previous “hot” social media platforms, young people adopted the platform first and held it close to their chest in the early days (when TikTok was still Musical.ly).
And while the users still heavily skew younger, the number of adults flocking to the platform cannot be overlooked. According to MarketingCharts, in May 2023 more than 1 in 8 U.S. adults ages 18-24 had adopted the platform.
Today, the app has more than 1.5 billion users and you can find dentists, cops, teachers, parents, and even grandparents on the platform.How to Find out If Your Audience Is on Tiktok
Go through a few of the profiles and see what kind of person is interacting with what kind of content.
Remember, just because you find something interesting doesn’t mean your target audience will find something interesting.
You should be looking to find content that your target audience is interacting with.2. The Users Aren’t Passive
Before opening the TikTok app, users are already committing to an immersive experience.
Video is the only type of content that captures all of your attention. Not only do you have to be looking at the screen, but your sound has to be on as well because the audio plays such a major role in the content.
So when a user opens up the app, they are dedicating their attention to the videos they are going to be watching.Just Because Users Are There, Doesn’t Mean They’re There for You
Businesses have a really bad habit of running to the water hole and splashing around in it when they just need to line up and drink the water.
There is no reason for you to create a TikTok account if you are not going to be offering value in one way or another.
Users are there for entertainment, so be entertaining!
Sometimes you can get away with being educational, but that content will still have to be entertaining and engaging.
Remember, all it takes is a scroll for you to be out of the picture.3. Attention Is Easy to Capture
Perhaps the most valuable feature of TikTok is the presentation of content.
Content is presented in a full-screen format which means there are no other distractions and there are no “partial” impressions.
This is very different from some platforms where an impression may be counted when only part of the post has been shown (see Google Ads).
With TikTok, you have the full attention of the user for at least a split second. All you have to do is figure out how to keep them watching.
And that may not be too hard as the latest study shows that, on average, users are spending 52 minutes per day on TikTok.
That means that, even if every video was a full minute long (which most aren’t), the audience watches at least 52 videos daily on TikTok.
Most platforms today are pay-to-play and even when you do pay, the platform layouts make it easy to skip through the content without even noticing a brand name – TikTok may be an exception.Capturing User Attention on TikTok
Now, you are guaranteed users’ full attention for a split second and what you do with that split second is make or break.
So remember, users are used to fast content that is constantly changing.
They’re used to seeing people lip-synching videos, dancing videos, jump cuts, filters, editing, and “stories.”
If you aren’t offering one of those things in that first split-second, you aren’t going to make the cut.4. Some(Not Every)One Else Is Already Doing It
Family Feud, Will Smith, Walmart, Chipotle, the NBA, tons of zoos and so many other businesses are already using TikTok.
But remember, earlier we said that more than 1 in 8 U.S. adults are on the platform. We are just now starting to see brands like Guess, Sephora, and HP join in on the fun.
And while 89% of marketers are adding Facebook to their social media marketing plans for 2023, only 4% are adding TikTok according to the 2023 Sprout Social Index.
As a marketer, when I see that gap, I see opportunity!
There are over 1.5 billion people on a platform and only 4% of businesses are there?! Count me in!Decide What Is Right for You
There are a few ways to get active on TikTok, just like anywhere else you can either post organically or you can do a paid campaign.
Organic posts are obviously the videos you can just post straight from your phone right after you record it.5. It’s Just Fun
No, TikTok is not going to be for everyone.
Just like Twitter isn’t for everyone. But most brands have something they can add to the platform – even if it is just UGC.
The reality of it is that consumers are craving ways to connect with brands.
Most marketers would argue that the best way to connect is through authenticity and relevancy. And what is more authentic and relevant than your sweet vet doing the Git Up Challenge with a puppy?
The platform gets people out of their comfort zone and also allows them to show off their talents all while being creative.
TikTok is just another opportunity to meet people where they are in a sense they understand and enjoy.Creating Your First TikTok
I suggest creating your first TikTok to a “sound.” The sounds will give you a place to start your video (and people to copy).
There are a few ways to find sounds on TikTok – the first is to tap the sounds word at the top of the TikTok video capture screen. Tapping that will allow you to find sounds, but won’t show you any videos to pull inspiration from.
Another way to find sounds, probably the easiest is by watching tons of videos. Eventually, you will stumble across something that you like or you can make videos to.
Once you find that sound, all you need to do to use it is tap the record looking icon. You’ll be taken to a screen with a red “use this sound” button.
Getting your brand or business on TikTok does not have to be difficult.
But at some point, it is going to become a must.
Let 2023 be the year you dominate TikTok and get ahead of the game.
All screenshots taken by author, January 2023
Lindsay Lohan, Johnny Depp, Katherine Heigl, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Katy Perry are just some of the celebrities who have been spotted with vapes in their hands in recent years, so below, we thought we’d put together some of the reasons why celebrities love to vape…It’s better for their health
Perhaps the most obvious benefit to vaping is that it’s better for your health than traditional cigarettes which are packed with tar that can cause lung and other cancers. Research from the FDA suggests that vaping does 95% less damage than traditional tobacco – which is great for celebrities who are obsessed with their health but still want to get their smoking fix. The main reason is that there’s no burning, and so harmful substances are not released.
For musicians like Katy Perry, vaping is important for maintaining a career. We all know that smoking can make your voice raspy, scratchy and rough as well as decrease your singing range and cause breathiness, weaken your voice and reduce pitch and accuracy. That’s a lot of downsides! Vaping is considered much safer than smoking with less of an effect on your voice, which is great for singers who want to light up quickly before they take to the stage!It’s cheaper
Okay, so this point won’t affect celebrities as much as it will us ordinary people, but we know that some of our favorite singers are frugal with their money.Smoking is an expensive habit, and the average price of a packet of cigarettes has been increasing year on year as brands pass on taxes and falling to consumers.
Vaping, on the other hand, is considerably cheaper and allows you to get your fix without dropping $20 every couple of days.Indeed, a single pod of e-liquid is equivalent to around two packs of cigarettes but costs just a fraction of that.It’s natural and doesn’t smell
When you purchase e-liquid from companies such as MOTI, you can benefit from high-quality natural ingredients such as natural fruit and vegetable glycerin, which are not only much healthier than harmful toxins and chemicals but much better for your nose! For celebrities who are always out on public appearances or meeting fans at a meet and greet, vaping means that they don’t have to worry about freshening their breath or spraying more perfume to mask the smell of cigarettes – vaping is a cleaner habit without the nasty smell.
What’s more, vaping does not cause yellowing to your teeth or fingers, which is another common side effect amongst those who smoke. You won’t find tar, carbon monoxide, and suspended particulates in your favorite vaping liquid – the ‘enemies’ of any vain celebrity! But you will find delicious fragrances and flavors!Sophistication
Nothing says glamor like someone sucking on a cigarette. Not! We’ve all seen the memes – the truth is that smoking is a pretty dirty habit, and people who smoke often age prematurely and look unsightly when they’re lighting up. Smoking can also be a major turn-off, which is not good news for celebrities who are trying to impress record executives or find a new date at an awards show.
Vaping is the more sophisticated way to smoke – and for celebrities who care about their appearance and the way they’re portrayed to the world – that’s important. Perhaps one of the best things about vaping is that you can put your vape in your pocket or purse and smoke whenever you feel the need. And as vaping is allowed in some indoor venues (particularly behind the scenes for celebrities), it’s a super convenient way to smoke.Premium brands are attractive
As a health plan, adding gamification solutions to a standard workplace wellness program could be the incentive that convinces your clients’ employees to get off the bench and into the game. For most people, games aren’t just a casual diversion — they drive spirited competition, encourage sociability and provide a simple excuse to have fun. The investment people place in their games can be leveraged to encourage greater participation in health incentives like corporate wellness. Here are five reasons why you should add gamification to the workplace wellness options that you offer your clients.
1. Boost engagement. UnitedHealthcare’s Consumer Sentiment Survey recently found that 70 percent of employers offer corporate wellness programs. However, the same survey also found that 63 percent of respondents were unwilling to spend at least an hour per day on improving their health. Gamification — like point tracking, rewards and leaderboards — makes participation more fun and can persuade users to spend more time on healthy activities.
2. Capitalize on human nature. Some people don’t like change. Gamifying fitness goals provides a small nudge of encouragement to make tiny changes that, when added together, create a healthier lifestyle. For example, if a participant earns a medal icon in their fitness app for every 1,000 steps they take, that creates a positive feedback loop. Earning that icon is a small win, but may just be enough to encourage the next 1,000 steps.
3. Piggyback on the popularity of wearables. IDC expects the global wearables market to more than double by 2023, with 240.1 million units projected to ship that year — up from 104.3 million in 2023. Incorporating wearables such as the Samsung Gear Sport or Fit2 Pro into workplace wellness programs allows for easy use of apps to gamify the programs. Users or IT device managers can set alerts to remind wearers to stand, walk or drink more water. They can also track the wearer’s personal progress and compare that to a company-wide leaderboard. The wearable itself can serve as a constant reminder to participate in the program.Improve Employee Wellness With Wearables
Get your free guide to using wearables to help keep your employees healthy, present and productive. Download Now
4. Increase social support. Some gamified wellness apps let users send encouraging notes or messages to one another. Eating better, staying fit, quitting smoking — all are laudable goals, but self-motivation can be difficult to maintain. Gamification adds a social element that lets users know they’re not alone. Users who feel motivated today can offer encouragement to those who are struggling.
5. Keep them coming back. Healthy employees are more likely to be present employees. The CDC found that productivity losses from missed work cost employers $225.8 billion per year or $1,685 per employee. If gamified apps lead to even small gains in workplace wellness participation, employers could see noticeable decreases in medical costs, premiums and employee absenteeism.How Gamification Works in Wellness Programs
What does gamification in corporate wellness programs look like in practice?
One large North American health insurer offers employers a wellness program that uses wearable devices such as the Gear Sport. Eligible program participants can monitor their steps, set health goals and earn monetary rewards by meeting daily walking goals. Employees get to pick from a variety of activity trackers or can receive a credit if they already own one. They register and sync the device, which tallies the user’s fitness goals, such as walking at regular intervals, walking with intensity for a fixed amount of time, or walking a prescribed minimum number of steps for the day.
The program is having the desired effect for the health plan, helping employers and their employees. More than two-thirds of eligible employees registered their devices, and 65 percent are active with the program. The data won’t lie. For insurers, gamified programs entice employers to invest in these initiatives. The more engaging and successful the program, the more benefits employers will see in healthier employees and healthier bottom lines.
Learn more about how wearables can help keep your employees healthy, present and productive..
The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 should be the first foldable Samsung smartphone with a flexible screen and stylus support.
Dutch designer Jermaine Smit, known for the Concept Creator YouTube video channel, has created a new three-dimensional model and high-quality renderings of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 with an S Pen stylus for the LetsGoDigital website based on the available information.
The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 is expected to be the last flagship that Samsung will unveil in 2023. Its official debut will not take place until October.Gizchina News of the week Samsung phone shipments fall below 300 million for the first time in 9 years
According to reports out of South Korea, Samsung phone shipments this year are less than 300 million. This will be the first time in nine years that the company will ship below 300 million units. However, the company was expecting the figures considering the coronavirus pandemic. Samsung will to promote the supply of foldable smartphones in 2023 and fully expand the lineup of low- and mid-end 5G models.
The report pointed out that Samsung’s total shipments at the end of the third quarter were 189.4 million units. The company’s total shipments in 2023 will be around 270 million units. Nevertheless, Samsung plans to ship 307 million mobile phones in 2023. Of the 307 million mobile phones, 287 million are smartphones and the rest are feature phones.
In addition, Samsung Electronics plans to produce a total of 49.8 million flagship models; including the Galaxy S21 series and foldable phones in 2023. In the second half of next year, Samsung’s foldable phone may replace the company’s Note series. We expect Samsung phone shipments to increase in the coming year given all the strategies it has in place.Samsung to launch many low-end 5G phones in H1 2023
With the current travails of Huawei, Samsung has a huge ground to cover. If it can unveil some affordable 5G devices, it might just claim those grounds. According to reports, after the official release of the Galaxy S21 series, Samsung will unveil a series of low-end 5G phones. This year, the only mid-to-low end 5G phone from Samsung is the Galaxy A51 5G. However, the South Korean manufacturer is currently preparing the likes of Galaxy A32, Galaxy A52, and Galaxy A72. Unlike the latest high-end models, these mid-and low-end models will still retain the 3.5 mm headphone jack.
In addition, Samsung Galaxy A32 recently passed the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) certification. According to reports, this device will officially arrive next year. There are speculations that the price of this device is about 400,000 won ($364). Although it will be Samsung’s cheapest 5G model, it is not entirely cheap. The likes of Realme V3 5G cost about $150. This is the target price of 5G smartphones for Chinese manufacturers next year.
Industry insiders predict that Samsung will launch a low- and medium-priced 5G phone with a multi-function camera when the Galaxy S21 arrive in January next year. The company will do this in order to seize the market gap left by the US sanctions on Huawei. If it succeeds, it will capture a larger share of the emerging market.
A user’s perception of how good a network is will generally be based on two main factors: speed and reliability. These demands, coupled with the need to accommodate ever more bandwidth-hungry applications, means that network administrators are under continual pressure to provide a faster and more reliable system. So how do you give your growing Ethernet LAN a performance boost, without implementing complicated upgrades that could affect the stability of your network? One common strategy is to replace existing 10BaseT Ethernet hubs with switches. In this article, we’ll look at how Ethernet switches can make your network faster and examine what factors you should consider before purchasing.
Ethernet switches are not a new technology, having been popular in corporate environments for a number of years. In such environments, where speed is a priority over cost, switches are pretty much the standard. However, in smaller LANs, and LANs that have been in place for some time, Ethernet hubs are still working away, albeit slowly.
Replacing your Ethernet hubs with switches can yield massive improvements in performance. Not only are switches capable of making same-speed transmissions faster than hubs, they can also unleash performance improvements in equipment that you already have. For example, many older hubs have transmission speeds of only 10Mbps, but many newer PC’s have network cards with 100Mbps capability. Plug a 100Mbps network card into a 10Mbps hub, and you will have a 10Mbps connection. Plug the same 100Mbps network card into a 100Mbps switch, and it is possible to achieve data transmission speeds of 200Mbps, as well as gaining the speed improvements provided by the basic process of switching.
How switches improve performance
Layer 2 and Layer 3 switches
Layer 2 switches: Because switches make their forwarding decisions by using the MAC address, they are often referred to as Layer 2 switches in reference to the second layer of the OSI data model.
Layer 3 switches: You can also buy Layer 3 switches, which have the capability to make their decisions based on the network address or service as defined by the third layer of the OSI model. Some high-end switches use a combination of methods, switching at the most appropriate layer depending on the configuration. The high level of flexibility found in switches means that they can also be used for other network configuration tasks, such as the establishment of virtual LANs (VLANs).
To understand how using switches can make such a difference in performance, let’s quickly review how Ethernet networks function. When a computer connected to an Ethernet network wants to send data, it listens for any other traffic on the network segment; when the computer determines the media is clear, it attempts to transmit. Because Ethernet is a base-band technology, only one signal can use the cable at a time. So, if two machines attempt to talk at exactly the same time, their transmissions collide, damaging the data.
The network cards of the sending PCs sense the collision, wait for a random time period, and then attempt to resend the data. If the cable is clear this time, the transmission is completed. If it isn’t, and another collision occurs, the re-transmit process repeats. This collision-based system means that the more devices connected to an Ethernet segment, the more likely collisions are to occur, degrading performance exponentially. Switching provides vast improvements in speed by literally preventing these collisions.
In a switched network, each station has its own dedicated segment. The sending PC doesn’t have to consider that another device may be using the segment, which eliminates the possibility of collisions. The isolation of devices in this way is known as microsegmentation. With a switch in place, when the PC wants to send data, it transmits directly to the switch without having to wait. The switch examines the data, determines from the destination Media Access Control (MAC) address which other port on the switch to send the data to, and forwards it to that port.
Eliminating the need to worry about collisions provides a further opportunity for switches to improve performance, by allowing communication to occur in full-duplex mode. When a PC and a switch communicate in full-duplex mode, they send and receive data on the cable at the same time. This is possible because in a full-duplex communication, the two connected devices drop the standard Ethernet communication system (which by its nature caters to multiple accesses of the media) in favor of a more direct one-to-one method. Full-duplex communication can deliver double the throughput–a 100Mbps connection running in full-duplex will effectively become a 200Mbps connection.
Buying a switch
When you’re buying a switch, you need to consider a number of factors:
How many ports do you need on the new device? Consider not just your current needs, but your future requirements, as well.
Look at the speed at which the ports on the switch operate. Switches described as 10/100 models can accommodate both speeds, and usually have the ability to detect the speed at which a connection can be made. This feature, known as auto-negotiation, is also how the switch determines whether full duplex communication is possible.
Consider whether you need management capabilities. Managed switches will often have features such as port mirroring and remote monitoring, which can be useful if you are troubleshooting network devices or measuring bandwidth utilization.
Managed devices have the ability to communicate with a network management system, usually via Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP), or are capable of communicating with proprietary network management systems.
Check how much memory is available for buffering data on the switch. The size of the buffer can play a large part in the overall performance. Look carefully at manufacturers’ specifications, because some quote figures for the entire switch, whereas others quote on a per-port basis.
Ascertain whether there is an opportunity for expansion. Some switches have the ability to accept plug-in expansion modules to provide high-speed uplink capabilities, or media conversion options. Again, consider your current as well as your future requirements.
Once you have decided on the features you need, it’s time to go shopping. When you start to look around for switches, you may notice that prices vary a great deal. With switches, as with any other type of networking equipment, the name makes quite a difference. Products from manufacturers such as Cisco or Nortel are likely to cost more than those from some of the smaller and less well known manufacturers. That doesn’t mean a device from a smaller company may not be suitable for your needs. If it has the features, backup, and support you’re looking for, then it may be the switch for you. As always, shop around and compare features and prices.
Whether you go with one of the big names or buy from a smaller manufacturer is a matter of personal and business preference. From a price perspective, the biggest influence is likely to be whether the unit has management capabilities. For an unmanaged switch, costs can be as low as few hundred dollars for an eight-port unit. For a larger, managed unit from a major manufacturer, you can expect to pay between $75 and $125 per port.
A risk-free upgrade
Perhaps the most attractive feature of using a switch as an upgrade is that doing so is almost risk free. The implementation of a new switch generally has no effect on other networking components, such as cabling, network cards or other network devices. Depending on which switch you purchase, in many cases, the actual upgrade is as simple as connecting a power cord to the new switch, unplugging the cables from an existing hub, and plugging the cables into the switch. If you are looking for a quick, easy and reliable way to improve the performance of your Ethernet LAN, switches represent what could be the easiest network upgrade you ever do.
Drew Bird (MCT, MCNI) is a freelance instructor and technical writer. He has been working in the IT industry for 12 years and currently lives in Kelowna, BC., Canada. You can e-mail Drew at [email protected].
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