The Five Biggest Things In Tech You Missed This Week: 12/12/15

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(This post originally appeared on Forbes)

Here are five things that happened in the world of technology this past week and why they’re important for your business (and mine). Did you miss them?

1 – Yahoo YHOO -6.25% abandons its plans to sell its stake in Alibaba , and announces a reverse spin-off.

From The Guardian:  Yahoo has abandoned plans to sell its $31bn stake in Chinese e-commerce business Alibaba, announcing instead that it would be keeping Alibaba and getting rid of everything else. CEO Marissa Mayer and chairman of the company’s board Maynard Webb called the process a “reverse spin” in a conference call with investors on Wednesday. Rather than spin off one division, Yahoo will spin itself off into a separate, publicly traded holding company that will contain Yahoo’s core business and its stake in Yahoo Japan .

Why this is important for your business:  

Yahoo’s lack of direction and focus has driven many of my clients away from considering the once powerful online platform as a destination to place ads, setup a store or use its e-commerce tools. The company appears to be packaging its core business for sale. Small business owners are unlikely to commit to Yahoo’s search and online services during this very disruptive period, if ever.

2 – Google GOOGL -1.33% “mobile web” plan will go live in February.

From TechCrunch:  Google’s plan to accelerate the mobile web – also known as the “Accelerated Mobile Pages Project” or AMP, for short – now has a launch date. The company said that it will begin directing traffic to its sped-up AMP pages in Google Search starting in late February 2016. In addition, Google notes that Pinterest is already testing AMP pages in its mobile apps, while both Twitter and LinkedIn will begin linking to AMP content in early 2016, as well. 

Why this is important for your business:

According to this report, mobile advertising will account for more than three-quarters of digital ad spending in the next five years.  Not only that but digital ad spending is expected to overtake TV advertising as early as 2017.   Google’s AMP project is laying the groundwork for an enormous change in how our information is delivered to our mobile devices and if your business is planning on advertising you’ll need to have a digital strategy and that must involve a mobile plan.

3 – Periscope is named “App of the Year” by Apple.

From USA Today:  If you noticed video updates this year coming from the likes of celebrities Jimmy Fallon and Ellen DeGeneres, presidential candidate Donald Trump, citizen journalists or your friends, well, you’re not alone. The live video-streaming app Periscope took off big-time in 2015; Wednesday, Apple named it the coveted iPhone App of the Year in its annual year-end ranking of the best in mobile tech. “This game-changer made sharing and watching live videos an instant obsession,” said Apple in offering the nod.

Why this is important for your business:

According to this report, streaming video and audio now account for 70% of U.S. broadband usage.  The enormous popularity of streaming technologies like Periscope, Google Hangouts, Meerkat and others cannot be ignored by businesses who are looking for new audiences and who want to provide content to their existing communities.  And that content will be video.

4 – Target unveils a pop-up store in New York that gives us a hint about what’s to come in retail tech.

From Target’s website:   Target Wonderland will merge the physical and digital retail experience to reimagine holiday shopping for guests. As guests step into the space, they receive a custom lanyard and digital Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) key—the same technology we use in our stores! If any of the products featured throughout the journey catch their eye, they can simply use the keys to scan a mini bullseye tag and add the items to a custom digital shopping list. At the end of the adventure, guests can check out and purchase anything they added to their list.

Why this is important for your business.

Are you in retail? Then watch Target closely. And if you’re in the New York area, stop by their store. These are the techs that you will be using in the next few years if you intend to stay competitive and grow your business.

5 – Twitter is about to enormously increase its advertising audience.

From Re/code:  Twitter announced Thursday that it will start showing ads to its “logged out” audience, a group of roughly 500 million people who visit Twitter every month but who don’t have active user accounts. That means if you click on a tweet that appears in a Google search, for instance, you may see ads on that tweet page or on the tweet creator’s profile.

Why this is important for your business:

As explained in the above Re/code piece:  First, it’s important to some advertisers, who don’t think Twitter has enough registered users — especially compared to Facebook — to matter, and also to Wall Street, for the same reasons. But the company has argued for years now that its audience is much bigger than the 320 million people who log in each month, and it has been telling Wall Street that it can make money off people without Twitter accounts. Now it’s finally doing that.

As small businesses look to better target their very limited advertising dollars, this move makes spending on Twitter more attractive than ever.

This week’s best tech news?  Get ready to buy those delicious thin mints online this winter!

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