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Archive for March, 2012

UK games sales beat video sales

March 26, 2012 By: Dr Search Principal Consultant at the Search Clinic Category: Computers, Ecommerce, Gaming, Smart TV, Technology Companies, Uncategorized, Video Marketing

Sales of computer games in the UK have surpassed those of videos for the first time according to new research.UK games sales beat video salesThe Entertainment Retailers Association (ERA) said sales of £1.93 billion in 2011 made the gaming industry the country’s biggest entertainment sector.

By contrast, sales of DVDs and other video formats totalled £1.80 billion, while music sales came only third with only £1.07 billion in UK sales.

However, in the first 11 weeks of this year, the ERA said video sales were worth more than two times those of games.

By comparison over the whole of last year games accounted for 40.2% of the entertainment market, video for 37.6% and music for 22.2%.

Total sales in 2011 for games, video and music fell year-on-year by 3.3% to £4.80bn.

“This is a dramatic time for the entertainment market,” said Kim Bayley, director general of the ERA.

“It is an historic development for the games sector to have overtaken video last year. Video has long been the biggest entertainment sector. Sales so far this year, however, suggest video is not going down without a fight.”

“The UK is the most competitive retail games market in Europe – as such I don’t believe gaps in the market will be left unplugged for any length of time.”

However it not all profits for gaming companies. The Game Group has today gone into administration.

The business has been hit by competition from online only retailers.

Game Group employs 385 staff at its headquarters in Basingstoke in Hampshire, and about 5,100 in its stores in the UK and Ireland.

Review of contract law prompted by online shopping rise

March 23, 2012 By: Dr Search Principal Consultant at the Search Clinic Category: Customer Service, Ecommerce, internet, Online Marketing, Technology Companies, Uncategorized, Website Design

The rapid rise in shopping online – and the use of electronic media – has prompted a major review of contract law in Scotland.Review of contract law prompted by online shopping riseThe Scottish Law Commission said the law must be updated to take account of modern technology and ensure consumers and businesses are fully protected.

The current law is based on traditional oral and paper contracts.

But the commission has asked how they can be formed online, and whether electronic signatures are valid.

It has launched a discussion paper to discover if the law should be updated.

Few people realise they are entering into contracts every day, whether they are buying a bus ticket or a loaf of bread.

But this review has been prompted by the rapid growth of electronic contracts, for example downloading a ringtone or music or purchasing books or clothes from an online retailer.

The commission said that in most cases they work perfectly but said it was unclear whether electronic transactions carried the same weight of legal protection as written contracts for a house purchase or agreement to build a new hospital.

Because of the rapid rise in the use and importance of electronic media, it said answers were needed urgently to questions such as how a contract was formed in the electronic age and what role electronic signatures play.

It has asked: “Do the rules which were designed for oral and paper contracts still work for e-contracts?”

The lead commissioner, Prof Hector MacQueen, said: “With the rise in new technology it is high time that our law on how contracts are formed is reviewed and updated.

“Our proposals would lead to a clear and modern law in line with developments in technology and its usage.

“We think that the innovations would be particularly attractive for commercial parties, for whom the proposals offer world-class levels of certainty and convenience.”

Responses to the discussion document should be received by 29 June.

Tablet computers added to UK inflation basket

March 20, 2012 By: Dr Search Principal Consultant at the Search Clinic Category: Apple, Computers, Tablets, Technology Companies, Uncategorized

Tablet computers are being put in the basket of goods used to calculate the UK’s rate of inflation.Tablet computers added to UK inflation basketItems dropped from the basket include the cost of developing colour film.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) updates the basket each year so the contents accurately reflect current trends in spending.

The basket contains 700 items, with 180,000 individual prices collected each month.

“Tablets have been added as they represent a significant and growing market,” the ONS said.

“However, charges for developing and printing colour film are being removed as the popularity of digital cameras means fewer and fewer people are using analogue cameras,” the ONS added.

The basket of goods is not changed just because spending on individual items has fallen or risen. Changes are made to broaden or widen the coverage of a particular group of items.

So pineapples are in this year, to give more varied coverage of volatile price movements for fruit and vegetables.

Other categories have been changed simply to make them more representative.

Hot oat cereals are in to broaden the category of bread and cereals; continental soft cheese has been added to the milk, cheese and eggs category; and cans of stout have been added to widen the range of beers in the basket.

In addition, the costs of vehicle excise duty, TV licences and trade union and professional subscriptions, which are used to work out the RPI, will now also be used to calculate the CPI, in line with European statistical standards.

Encyclopaedia Britannica ends its ubiquitous print edition

March 14, 2012 By: Dr Search Principal Consultant at the Search Clinic Category: Browser, Computers, Customer Service, Ecommerce, internet, Online Marketing, Technology Companies, Uncategorized

After 244 years the reference book firm Encyclopaedia Britannica has decided to stop publishing its famous and weighty 32 volume print edition.Encyclopaedia Britannica ends its ubiquitous print editionIt will now focus on digital expansion amid rising competition from websites such as Wikipedia.

The firm, which used to sell its encyclopaedias door-to-door, now generates almost 85% its revenue from online sales.

It recently launched a digital version of its encyclopaedias for tablet PCs.

“The sales of printed encyclopaedias have been negligible for several years,” said Jorge Cauz president of Encyclopaedia Britannica.

Companies across the globe have been trying to boost their online presence in a bid to cash in on the fast-growing market.

Various newspapers, magazines and even book publishers have been coming up with online versions of their products as an increasing number of readers access information on high-tech gadgets such as tablet PCs and smartphones.

Britannica said while its decision to focus on online editions was influenced by the shift in consumer pattern, the ability to update content at a short notice also played a big role.

“A printed encyclopaedia is obsolete the minute that you print it,” Mr Cauz said.  “Whereas our online edition is updated continuously.”

At the same time, frequent users of the encyclopaedia said they preferred using the online version more than the print one.

Encyclopaedia Britannica, the company, has largely moved away from its encyclopedia work focusing most of its energies in recent years on educational software.

Apple unveils new iPad with high definition screen

March 07, 2012 By: Dr Search Principal Consultant at the Search Clinic Category: Apple, Mobile Marketing, mobile phones, smart phones, Tablets, Technology Companies, Uncategorized

Apple has unveiled a new iPad with a high definition screen.Apple unveils new iPad with high definition screenIt said the resolution of the display was 2,048 by 1,536 pixels. The tablet is also powered by a new A5X chip with improved graphics performance.

Apple dominates the market but should face a fresh challenge later this year when tablets running the full Windows 8 system are expected to go on sale.

The new iPad – which is simply called by that name – also features a 5-megapixel camera sensor. It will be able to run on 4G LTE networks where the service is available and can act as a wi-fi hotspot for other devices if carriers allow the function.

It is 9.4mm deep, slightly thicker than the 8.8mm profile of the iPad 2. The basic 16GB model with only wi-fi will cost £399 and the top of the range 64GB model with wi-fi and 4G will cost £659.

It is due to go on sale on 16 March in the UK, US, Canada, Germany, France, Switzerland, Hong Kong, Singapore, Australia and Japan.

The previous model will stay on sale at a reduced price, starting at £329. Mr Schiller said that would make it more affordable for schools to buy the machine.

The firm also announced an upgraded TV box which can now handle 1080p video