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Apple Drops The Price On Several Expensive Mac Upgrades…And Other Small Business Tech News This Week

By March 26, 2019No Comments


(This post originally appeared on Forbes)

Here are five things in technology that happened this past week and how they affect your business. Did you miss them?

1 — Apple dropped the price on several expensive Mac upgrades.

This week, Apple lowered the cost of SSD (Solid State Drive) upgrades for the MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, and Mac mini—as well as the 2013 Mac Pro RAM. Users can now upgrade the base model MacBook Air to the 1.5TB SSD for $1,100, which is $100 less than before. For the MacBook Air with 256GB, upgrading to the 1.5TB SSD will also cost $100 less, or $900 total. Upgrading the base Mac mini to 2TB will cost $1,400, which is $200 less than previously listed. (Source: engadget)

Why this is important for your business:

These aren’t the state of the art Mac models, but they’re pretty darn good. If your company is invested in Mac products then this is your opportunity save some money.  You’re welcome.

2 — Instagram tests ways to let you buy products directly on the app.

On Tuesday, Facebook-owned Instagram said it’s testing a feature called checkout that will allow users to purchase products without leaving the app. Now, Instagram users won’t have to go through the extra step of visiting a brand’s website and entering payment information. Instagram is testing the feature in the US, and users can buy products from more than 20 brands including Adidas, H&M, Zara, Warby Parker, Revolve, Uniqlo and MAC Cosmetics. (Source: CNET)

Why this is important for your business:

A billion users and growing…Instagram is popular, fun and – for some – has a reputation of being “safer” than Facebook. If you’re selling stuff online then keep a close eye on how Instagram’s testing does with these larger brands. Assuming things are good and the company expands the program you might have new channel open to sell your products.

3 — As Teams turns two, Microsoft adds compliance and meeting features.

This week, on the second anniversary of Microsoft’s Teams collaboration tool, the company announced a major update of the tool, including customized backgrounds for video calls, live text captions, and integration with its Whiteboard ‘digital canvas’ tool. Teams, which effectively replaces Skype for Business, is also adding compliance and meeting features and security features such as private channels and information barriers.  (Source: Computer World)

Why this is important for your business:

Microsoft Teams, which is part of Office 365, continues to grow and rival the leader Slack in the communications/collaboration workspace.  This news is evidence that Microsoft is turning on the gas with this application, making more investments and adding more features. Ask a consultant to walk you through the entire application – which you may already own- so you can better understand how Teams can improve productivity. (My company, The Marks Group PC, is a Microsoft partner.)

4— Google’s Inbox by Gmail app will apparently shut down April 2. 

Google has announced that its personalized email app Inbox by Gmail will be discontinued on April 2. Recently, some people using it on Android devices were notified that their emails on that app would be pushed to the main Gmail app. It said ‘You can find your favorite inbox features in the Gmail app. Your messages are already waiting for you.’ Google often used the Inbox app to test features before adding them to the main Gmail app. But, in the 2018 Gmail overhaul, that app incorporated many of Inbox’s features. (Source: CNET)

Why this is important for your business:

If your company is still using the old Inbox by Gmail (hopefully not) then this is your last chance to shut it down and make sure everyone’s moved over to the main Gmail app.

5— An app to book doctors appointments is now worth $1.1 billion.

A doctor-appointment booking app from French startup Doctolib has been valued at more than $1 billion dollars after raising new funding, which adds to the booming interest in health-care startups. Founded in 2013, Doctolib has been growing services of video-based consultations and digital prescriptions. The company says it gets 30 million online visits from patients every month and has partnered with doctors and hospitals in France and Germany. (Source: Bloomberg)

Why this is important for your business:

Healthcare apps are booming and if you’re in the profession keep an eye out for apps like Doctolib and others that may help you expand your practice.

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