The technology business week: Broadband can boost household’s income, Enterprise Ireland opens new offices

23 Sep 2013

A digest of the top business technology news stories from the past week.

Broadband access can boost a household’s income by US$120 a month – study

Access to broadband can increase household income, a new study from Ericsson conducted in conjunction with Arthur D. Little and Chalmers University of Technology suggests.

In what Ericsson claims is the first study to quantify the impact of broadband speeds on household incomes, an increase in broadband speed from 4Mbps to 8Mbps in households in OEDC countries would have a corresponding effect on household incomes of an additional US$120 per month.

In Brazil, India and China, an increase from 500Kbps to 4Mbps would have the effect of increasing household incomes by US$46 per month, according to the study.

Enterprise Ireland opens new offices in Texas and Turkey

Ireland’s export agency Enterprise Ireland has expanded its international office footprint with the opening of two new offices – one in Austin, Texas, and the other one in Istanbul in Turkey.

The expansion comes as part of an overall strategy aimed at boosting exports by €250m a year and in the process create 1,200 new jobs.

“Texas and Turkey are two markets which hold enormous potential for Irish companies,” the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton, TD, said.

Google acquires Bump for US$30m

Internet giant Google has acquired data sharing firm Bump – the company behind the app that allows smartphone owners to transfer files by simply bumping their devices together – for an estimated US$30m.

Bump, which has raised US$20m from backers including Sequoia Capital and Andreessen Horowitz, has seen its app downloaded more than 100m times.

“We strive to create experiences that feel like magic, enabled behind the scenes with innovations in math, data processing, and algorithms. So we couldn’t be more thrilled to join Google, a company that shares our belief that the application of computing to difficult problems can fundamentally change the way that we interact with one another and the world,” said David Lieb, Bump’s co-founder and CEO.

IBM acquires data management software provider Daeja Image Systems

Tech titan IBM has acquired software provider Daeja Image Systems Ltd for an undisclosed sum, in a move to enhance its key market initiatives for big data, mobile, and content management.

Daeja Image Systems Ltd, a privately held company headquartered in Milton Keynes, UK, delivers software that helps employees across all industries, especially data-intensive ones such as banking, insurance and healthcare, access critical business information more quickly.

Daeja’s software lets users open and view hundreds of document and image file formats, even if the native application is not present on their devices. This in turn saves time and enables social collaboration and document sharing across the organisation, IBM said.

BlackBerry to drop 40pc of workforce by end of year

BlackBerry is reportedly planning to cut 40pc of its workforce by the end of this year, with jobs losses set to hit all departments in waves over the coming months.

The Wall Street Journal cites “people familiar with the matter”, who claim some employees have already been informed which round of cuts will affect them.

At last count in March this year, BlackBerry had 12,700 employees, so a 40pc drop will affect thousands of workers. Based in Ontario, Canada, BlackBerry has already seen its workforce drop from 17,000 employees two years ago as the brand struggles to compete in the smartphone market.

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