11 March 2015 – Global Marketing News
Baidu seeks funding to create artificial intelligence
The founder of Baidu, Robin Li, has asked the Chinese military for funding for a “China Brain” project that would focus on developing artificial intelligence.
Li said the project would be as large and important as the American Apollo mission to put humans on the moon.
Instead of rockets, however, the China Brain project would focus on: “human-machine interaction, big data analysis, automated driving, smart medical diagnosis, smart drones and robotics technologies for both military and civilian use.”
Baidu has a keen interest in artificial intelligence, having recently recruited top AI experts from Google and Microsoft.
Wearables unpopular in France
Research by Harris Interactive and EBG has revealed that the popularity of wearables in France is very low and looks likely to remain that way.
The research compared purchase intent for smart wearables in France in October 2014 and February 2015.
Smart watches and smart home systems both showed no increase in interest over time, with just 4% saying they intended to buy a device in late 2014 and early 2015. Purchase intent actually dropped from 5% to 4% for smart fitness bands in the same period.
Smart TVs were the only devices that saw an increase in popularity, with purchase intent rising from 6% to 8%.
The research did reveal some hope for smart wearable manufacturers though, with concerns over privacy and security declining and the perceived usefulness of the gadgets rising.
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UAE company Property Finder to expand further into Egypt
The UAE company Property Finder is looking to expand further into Egypt.
Property Finder, which was launched in 2007 in the UAE, is the Middle East’s largest property search website and currently operates in the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, Lebanon, Morocco and Egypt.
The newest expansion plans would see it expanding into the new Egyptian cities of Sharm El-Sheikh, Hurghada or Alexandria.
Property Finder said that Egypt’s growing internet population was a key reason for choosing to expand in the country. With just half of Egypt’s 90 million people currently online, there is plenty of room for future growth.
China introduces “Internet Plus” global expansion plans
China’s Premier Li has announced an “Internet Plus” plan for the country, which aims to support the development and international expansion of Chinese internet firms and ecommerce platforms
He wants the state to provide more financial support for major Chinese internet firms such as Alibaba, Baidu and Tencent, as well as Chinese shipping and logistics companies.
The money would go towards promoting mobile internet, cloud computing and online banking, and improving logistics to improve ecommerce deliveries.
The announcement comes as China’s economy slows down, with the Chinese government aiming for growth of just 7% this year, the lowest ever rate in the last 25 years.
Twitter opens office in Indonesia
And finally, Twitter has opened a local office in Jakarta, Indonesia.
The news was announced, unsurprisingly, on Twitter, with the new Twitter Indonesia account tweeting a picture of Nick Mulia, Twitter’s business development boss in Indonesia, eating a meal with a blue Twitter bird, with a caption reading: “Good morning! @RickMulia is having a Rice Bogana dish while bringing you this good news – Indonesia now has a Twitter office! #NewBeginnings”.
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