This year’s Techweek NYC was host to some of the biggest names in technology.
Speakers from all over the country discussed topics such as social media, engagement, wearable tech, innovation, sports technology, and more. Each speaker shared their insights from personal and professional experiences, and interacted the crowd with question and answer sessions. Here are five key learnings from Techweek NYC:
1. It’s Time To Go Global
In the first session of the Techweek NYC conference, titled Overcoming the Language Barrier with Cloud Computing, Jack Welde, CEO of Smartling, made it clear that the time is now to go global. Welde told the audience that he gets asked all the time by app owners for his number one recommendation to help their app gain more awareness and rise in the ranks in the app store.
His answer? Make it available in 20 different languages. The rise of Internet usage in emerging markets around the world is creating entirely new markets for digital companies. If your service is available in native languages, you can better connect, interact, and engage.
Be Uncomfortably Excited
In a session titled How To Gain Competitive Advantage in the Digital Age, Patricia Arundel, Head of Media & High Tech at Google Enterprise, firmly expressed that it’s time to stop experimenting with digital, and to fully embrace it. For businesses to gain a competitive advantage in their respective markets, they must fully embrace digital in everything they do. This includes creating a digital workplace. She expressed, “In a digital workplace, people start to think different…Ideas start to grow.” Arundel provided the numbers to back her claims. “Companies that fully embrace digital have higher market value, increase profitability and revenue.”
Most importantly, embracing digital is crucial for collaboration and engagement in the workplace between employees and with customers.
Her call to action for this? “Be uncomfortably excited.” This tagline was a favorite at Techweek NYC.
At #TechweekNYC where Patricia Arundel says Google’s call-to-arms is “Be uncomfortably excited”
— Jeffrey Conover (@innieoutie) October 2, 2014
3. It’s All About The Fan Experience
At Techweek NYC, a panel of sports experts comprised of Anthony Caponiti, Nihal Mehta, Brian Linthicium, and Manish Jha, shared their insights into sports technology in a session titled Sports and Technology: How College and NFL Football Teams Are Closing The Gap. When it comes to sports and technology, fan interaction is in the spotlight. Speaking on fan engagement in sports venues, Manish Jha expressed, “I think this is an area that people should really be paying attention to.” In sports, technology is serving to create a better experience with fans, and it’s doing so in two ways. Technology is engaging fans with their favorite teams, players, and venues, and with each other. Beacon technology is one way this is happening. Fans in the proximity of a beacon can be pushed local, targeted, sports-related content and can rack up rewards through gamification. Sports is emotional, and it is community-based. Technology helps bring this together.
4. Innovate To Stay Relevant
Keela Robison, CEO of Urbanspoon, showed Techweek NYC attendees how innovation is woven into an organization in her talk Established Innovation: Staying Relevant in a Sea of Startups. As industries rapidly change and competitors get more competitive, companies need to innovate, especially as they scale. How does she do it? By placing importance on creative work and on a creative culture in the workplace. She highlights two ways to accomplish this: autonomy and spontaneity. “To be effective in innovation, you need to be nimble and quick.” She recommends to, “Keep teams small and move faster.”
5. When It Comes To Wearable Tech, Social & Data Are Hot Topics.
The session Wearable Technology: Changing the Way We Think, Act, and Move was host to a powerhouse panel of wearable tech experts that included Hilary Topper, Jason Fass, David Berkowitz, and Steve Jackson. What made this panel so exciting, and one of the most attended sessions of Techweek NYC, was that some aspects of wearable tech were highly contested among the panel members. Jason Fass was first to tackle the topic of meaningful data. “I didn’t need a wristband to tell me I needed more sleep…We need to capture more meaningful data.” Data in this space should lead to actionable recommendations to maintain or improve health and wellbeing.
There was also debate on the use of social sharing in wearable tech during this session and throughout the Techweek NYC conference. Some of the panelists expressed their concerns with sharing data socially, humorously pointing out that they didn’t want to share their weight each time it was recorded. Hilary Topper, however, taught us that social sharing with wearables adds a lot of value to the experience, and, as the session is named, is helping to change the way we think, act, and move. Topper talked about the intersection of wearable technology and social media. She commented that through social media, we can motivate each other through communities of others also tracking, monitoring, and trying to achieve their goals.