7 of the Best Super Bowl Commercials From Tech Companies

With Super Bowl 50 nearly upon us, viewers across America are preparing for one of the best few hours on television: the Super Bowl commercials airing between plays. Super Bowl ads have historically been dominated by beverages and cars, but tech companies are making a bid to change that. In honor of technology taking over even the Super Bowl programming, here’s a preview of some Super Bowl 50 commercials from tech companies, and a few of the best from the past.

2016 Tech Company Super Bowl Commercial Debuts

LG, 2016. Actor Liam Neeson steps into the future and debuts in LG’s TVs with OLED technology.

T-Mobile, 2016. “Unrestricted Bling.” Well played, T-Mobile, on the rebuttal of recent commercials from other mobile carriers.

Amazon, 2016. It’s Amazon AND Paypal’s first year getting into the Super Bowl commercial game, and Amazon isn’t taking it slow. Alec Baldwin and Dan Marino star in the footage, as well as this preview. “What about a snack stadium?”

Wix.com 2016. Brett Favre, Emmitt Smith, Terrell Owens, Larry Allen and Franco Harris trade in their football jerseys to be small business owners with the help of Wix.

 

Past Tech Company Super Bowl Ads:

Google, 2010. Google proves that they are still the number one search engine.

Microsoft, 2014. Microsoft breaking technology barriers to inspire others.

 

ETrade, 2013. Let’s not forget the introduction of the classic E*Trade baby.

 

In addition to these oldies and newcomers, Microsoft will be returning to the mix, along with a slew of other technology companies like Squarespace, Apartments.com (starring Jeff Goldblum) and gaming app Mobile Strike. Tax and payroll software company Intuit even ran a contest for a small business to win a 30-second spot (watch it here). It’s safe to say, technology companies are going to keep putting up the big bucks for Super Bowl commercials. Now, who wins for best tech company Super Bowl ad of 2016?

Recap: Demos & Drinks in OC, Smart Home Edition

At the end of September, Tech in Motion Orange County hosted a Demos & Drinks mixer – smart home edition! Some of the best home automation companies were on display at Eureka Building’s high-tech outdoor venue while 400 Tech in Motion members enjoyed drinks, viewing the latest home tech and meeting up with local techies and friends.

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Featured companies INSTEON, EDGEhome and Smartenit demonstrated how our Orange County members could use the latest smart home tech in their own homes.

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Medicast, a service that delivers doctors to your home within two hours with just a click of a button graciously sponsored the event and raffled off a service package to a lucky member!

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INSTEON entertained our members by demonstrating how they’ve integrated their Windows 8.1 phone app with Cortana, Microsoft’s digital assistant.

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EDGEhome and Smartenit both helped our members understand the logistics behind home automation. While Smartenit has been part of demo events other than Tech in Motion, they were sure to note that this was one of their best demoing experiences to date. They said the casual atmosphere and interest from our members really made their demoing process enjoyable!

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Founder Peter Cullen of Core Performance Consulting also sponsored this event, and provided our members with information on how his company can provide excellent Cloud based Accounting Services to small and mid-sized businesses.

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As always with our events at Eureka, people networked into the early evening and left our event with new information, new friends and new memories! We can’t thank our sponsors Workbridge Associates, Jobspring Partners, Core Performance Consulting, Medicast and Eureka Building enough for helping us put together this event!

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If you’d like to learn more information about joining the largest tech meetup in Orange County, please check out Tech in Motion Orange County to join the group and RSVP for our upcoming events!

The Future of Virtual Reality

1097723620Written by Arthur van Hoff, CTO at Jaunt

Virtual reality is something many people have heard of, but few have experienced. Yet trying to put it into words is, as one blogger stated, “like trying to take a picture of your favorite song.” Poised to disrupt the way we see, live and engage with the world, the fully immersing experience of VR has the potential to change the face not just of gaming or entertainment, but has implications for education, travel, healthcare, real estate, and more.

Today, you can put on VR goggles and have an immersive experience beyond your imagination – with high-definition 360-degree, 3D video and binaural audio, you can feel as though you’re in the world’s most spectacular places, on stage next to your favorite musician, or on the field cheering on your home team, even when you’re thousands of miles away.

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The truly exciting part about virtual reality is that this is just the beginning. The potential applications for this technology is something that excites us tremendously and we are continuously exploring.

Much of the content that is currently being developed for virtual reality goggles is simulated or digitally produced, along the lines of video games. At Jaunt, we’re building the full-stack technology to create cinematic VR. This includes the camera, software editing, and content production. Instead of exploring a simulated world, you can be transported to other places in the real world.

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This also means exploring new means of storytelling beyond the current capabilities of traditional film-making. We’re discovering new ways to use the technology, and it’s opening up huge new doors for writers, directors, actors, artists, and other content creators.

We shared some of what we’ve discovered and created at the Tech In Motion event this week. We enjoyed sharing the experience of cinematic VR with you and you’ll see some action photos in an event recap posted later in the month.

Tech in Motion Silicon Valley is also proud to announce their September event, Security & Technology: BYOD, Home, & Mobile {Sponsored By Microsoft & Appvance}. You can RSVP here.

arthurAbout the author: Arthur van Hoff is serial entrepreneur and was most recently CTO at Flipboard. He started his career in Silicon Valley at Sun Microsystems where he was an early developer of the Java programming language. Since then he has started several successful companies. Arthur has expertise in machine learning, big data, mobile applications, 3D printing, and computational photography. He is originally from the Netherlands and has a master’s degree in Computer Science from Strathclyde University in Glasgow.

The Future of Mobile in Boston

On Tuesday, June 17th, the Boston chapter of Tech in Motion held an exciting tech talk that was all about mobile at the Microsoft NERD Center in Cambridge. The panel included some great mobile representatives from the Boston community, including Yoni Samlan, Head of Mobile at LevelUp, Dan Bricklin, Chief Technology Officer at Alpha Software, Greg Raiz, Founder and CEO of Raizlabs and Manny Elawar, a BlackBerry Developer Evangelist.

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The evening started with some food and networking before the panel convened to to discuss the topic at hand. To kick it off, the moderator Mark Eisenberg faced the panelists with the simple, but fitting question – where does the panel see the future of mobile going?

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The entire panel was in agreement that mobile phones are everywhere and they have become a common part of the average person’s everyday life. To illustrate the impact of mobile tech, Greg prompted the audience to raise their hands if they had a smart phone – and almost everyone had a hand in the air. Greg also mentioned how if you have a great idea, mobile apps make it easier to reach an entire population. Yoni spoke about being excited about wearable technology, predicting that they will seem as normal as a smart phone in the upcoming years.

From there, our moderator dove into other topics. There was the popular question of bringing your own device to work as opposed to having one supplied by the company. Many of the panel agreed that as smartphones advance, people would prefer to work on their own device due to the comfort and convenience of it being their own, personal device.  However, there is also the complication of security when dealing with high profile companies and projects.

Greg pulled from his own personal experience to say that “it’s important that my employers have the devices that they need in order to get their jobs done; [we want] to empower them to have the choice on what device they use”.

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Our panel then went into the discussion of creating mobile apps across various platforms; with the emergence of not only smartphones, but tablets as well. Several developers have to think of ways for the apps that they are creating to be supportive over all kinds of devices. Dan Bricklin spoke highly of using HTML5 to create apps.

“If you try to program an iOS without HTML5, you have to be a really good iOS developer,” Dan said. “It’s really good at a lot of business stuff, so you can build for a lot of different platforms.”

“For every enterprise you run into, you have a different legacy system and you have to put all the pieces together, which is the hardest part,” Manny chimed in. “So when we have a solution that allows developers to bring everything together, that is a great thing.”

Things got a little heated, however, when Greg wanted to mention that HTML5 isn’t the only way to go when creating applications. It is simply up to the reference of the developer.

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At the end of the discussion, Manny reflected again on how he feels mobile is going to be shaped.

“Everything is going to be connected, and there is going to be a new definition of mobile,” Manny commented.

Mobile will be defined differently in the sense that phones will still be the most important part – but new technological advances will change the way that we connect to stationary objects that we use every day. They are what will help redefine mobile. Manny gave an example that he hopes one day when he can get into a car, connect his phone, be able to adjust things like his radio preferences or whether he wants the windows open, all based on the information given from his mobile device.

Following the panel discussion, the speakers took questions from the audience.  Inspired by what had been discussed, the audience came up with some amazing questions that sparked further conversation between the panelists. Once the official panel discussion concluded, a large number of audience members pushed their way to the front of the room to see if they could get one-on-one time with our speakers. This panel definitely left the audience thinking about the future.

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We want to send out a big thank you to all of our speakers for their participation, Mark for moderating, the NERD Center for hosting us, and our monthly sponsors Workbridge Associates and Jobspring Partners as well as Fisku and Blackberry. Please join Tech in Motion: Boston to hear about our upcoming events!

The Future of Mobile (Tech in Motion LA)

Tech In Motion LA recently hosted the Future of Mobile Panel Discussion, which was graciously sponsored by BlackBerry. The panel featured senior developers from Urbanspoon, Beats by Dre, Microsoft and BlackBerry. With the mobile market at an all-time high, the panelists dug into the state of mobile today and talked about what the future may hold.

The event took place at Loyola Marymount University – not too far off from the Los Angeles tech hub, “Silicon Beach.” Before the panel began, we polled a few guests to see what they are most excited to see in mobile’s future. This is what they had to say:

“I’m excited to see advances in the visual design of mobile applications.”

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 – Jesse Brownstein

“I’m interested to see how mobile apps will have the ability to control things around us. Like remotely starting your car, turning on lights in your house, etc.”

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 – Jens Zalzala

“I’m really into fashion and technology, so I can’t wait to see the next big thing in fashion/clothing related apps!”

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– Hillary Creech

All in all, the event was a hit with the crowd of techies, entrepreneurs and mobile tech enthusiasts. The lively discussion ranged from mobile security to cross platform development and kept the attendees attentive throughout the night. The audience Q&A that followed the formal discussion was a great opportunity for developers and entrepreneurs alike to share their ideas, concerns, and questions with some innovative industry leaders.

To get invited to Tech in Motion LA’s next event, don’t forget to join the meetup group. Thanks again to our sponsors: BlackBerry, Jobspring Partners and Workbridge Associates.

8 Great Pieces Of Startup Advice From 4 Silicon Valley Stars Under 30

Twentysomethings have it pretty good in Silicon Valley. To the extent that age discrimination exists, it generally favors the young. It may be the one place in America where a 23-year-old can introduce himself as a CEO and no one bats an eye.

But being a young business leader in the technology industry comes with its share of challenges. Whatever you’re doing — hiring people, raising funding, negotiating compensation — chances are you’re doing it for the first time. Everyone expects you to act like a hyper-entitled Millennial brat. Many of your peers are hyper-entitled Millennial brats, and you have to work with them.

For the past three years, FORBES has been identifying young innovators and game-changers in the tech world as part of our annual 30 Under 30 list.  A few days ago, Tech In Motion Silicon Valley gathered four of our honorees at Microsoft’s offices in Mountain View for a conversation about what it’s like to run a fast-growing tech company while still in one’s twenties.

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The participants were: Steven Eidelman, cofounder of Whistle; Lisa Falzone, CEO and cofounder of Revel Systems; AJ Forsythe, CEO and cofounder of iCracked; and Morgan Knutson, chief product designer at Dropbox. The discussion was wide-ranging and full of hard-won lessons. Here are eight of them:

1. Accept that even your dream job is going to suck sometimes. “I used to be a competitive swimmer,” said Falzone. “I think all good things in life are love/hate for me.”

It may seem obvious that sacrifice comes before achievement, but members of Gen Y grew up hearing the message that work should offer personal fulfillment, Forsythe said. “I think that can get lost in translation as probably not ‘You’re going to work harder than you’ve ever done and it’s going to be s****y work, and the happiness is going to be delayed,’” he said.  “It’s not that you shouldn’t optimize for happiness, but you have to do stuff you don’t want to do.”

2. Hiring good people is too important too rush. “The best people in the world at hiring still only get it about 70 to 80% right,” Forsythe said. “I always find it’s best to wait for the right hire,” agreed Falzone, adding that she once took nine months to hire a head of HR — and would probably have had to fire the candidates she almost hired for the job.

3. Talent isn’t the place to get cheap. For all the talk of fulfillment, “businesses exist to make money,” said Knutson. “They don’t exist for any other reason than to make money. We can misconstrue it as altruism as much as we want, but the fact is we spend our life on wages.” The people you want to hire understand that and aren’t going to accept less than they’re worth. “For me, if this person is amazing, I never want to lose them, and I’m going to pay this person whatever they need,” he said.

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4. That said, just throwing money around can get you the wrong sort of talent. “If someone comes in and there’s already a sense of entitlement because they were making way too much money in the their last job, that’s going to be an issue,” said Eidelman.

“This is advice for everyone: If the first thing out of their mouth in an interview is about compensation, kick their ass out the door,” agreed Knutson.

6. Startups are great places to get experience, but lousy places to get formal training.  Because so many of them are launched by people just out of college, graduates think of startups as good first jobs, but that’s not necessarily the case. “Early stage companies just don’t have the time or the manpower to train people,” said Falzone. “If you just want to pick it up and learn it on your own, then join an early stage company.” If you need a more structured form of experience, big companies are the way to go.

7. Networking is best when it doesn’t feel like networking. “Don’t pitch right away” is Eidelman’s advice to founders looking for backers. He and his cofounder spent two years in private equity before becoming “obsessed” with the idea for Whistle, at which point they were able to go back to people they’d known in their previous lives for help. “A lot of those relationships we leaned on for our first round of funding were people we met right out of college,” he said. “Relationships matter.”

8. Use the power of narrative. Forsythe, whose company repairs shattered screens on smart phones and mobile devices, said he wrote “Tell stories and explain why” on a whiteboard in his office. It’s a message that he uses as a sort of mantra to help him stay motivated and motivate those around him. “It’s always important that you can go back to why you’re doing what you’re doing, and the way you do that is by telling stories,” he said.

Read the original blog post here on Forbes.com by Jeff Bercovici – and don’t forget to RSVP for Sweet Summer Mixer at Tech in Motion Silicon Valley on July 16th.

Interested in more insights from young innovators? Check out the first-ever FORBES Under 30 Summit in Philadelphia this October. 

Recap: San Francisco’s Spring Networking Mixer

On April 24th, over 200 of San Francisco’s Tech in Motion members joined together at 111 Minna to swap business cards and share their insight on all things tech.  As the picture below demonstrates, it was a busy night full of techies connecting.  One of the interesting elements of the night was the number of members visiting from out of town, and even out of the country!  The tech movement in San Francisco seems to be spreading internationally, as people are eager to completely relocate their lives because of how big the city is growing on the worldwide tech scene.

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We had the pleasure to meet Gianni Teixeira, from São Paulo in Brazil, who moved to San Francisco because she was experiencing many limitations in the technology industry in her home country.

“The growing tech companies are so concentrated in SF and it is so easy to find new partners or learn about a new technologies. “ Gianna said, following up with how she felt to have found the Spring Networking Mixer. “The tech event was an amazing opportunity to be connected with people that work in the same area as me or they can put me in contact with companies that could be a good network to me.”

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She expressed how amazed she was by “the opportunities that can come up in anywhere. People are so open-minded!” All in all Gianni’s favorite part of the night was how easy it was to make new connections.  She stated, “The name tags helped me a lot. The drinks and food were good topics to initiate a conversation.”

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We also asked some people why they are looking to stay in San Francisco.  The majority of our members had several reasons such as good weather, friendly people, good companies, and also how beautiful San Francisco is.  Silicon Valley was also mentioned a lot, as people are attracted to the concentration of important tech companies like Facebook and Google.  Questions like “what do you do?”, “what company do you work for or did you work for?” as well as “what brought you to this event tonight?” were circling in the air.

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Tech in Motion’s sponsor, Microsoft, was the biggest hit that evening, especially with their free giveaways. Their portable chargers, for the on-the-go tech enthusiast, was the hot item everyone wanted to take home.  Microsoft also spent the night demoing Outlook at their display table, where people were able to have questions answered by a Microsoft engineer expert right at their fingertips!

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All in all, it was the tech connection event to be at. Join Tech in Motion San Francisco to get on the invite list for the next big networking event.

Recap “Big Data: It’s a Big Deal”

On Tuesday, March 25th, San Francisco techies gathered at Tagged HQ with one common interest: big data. Tech in Motion’s “Big Data: It’s a Big Deal” brought San Franciscans together to network and learn about big data from two local experts, Dr. Konstantin (Cos) Boudnik and Jerome Banks.highres_346078872

Like most Tech in Motion events, the night began with networking and drinks. Tagged HQ provided a large, open layout for techies to mingle and network over drinks and pizza. While new connections were made guests were invited to explore booths from the sponsors Microsoft, Jobspring Partners and Workbridge Associates.

Presentations began midway through the evening with a compelling introduction to Microsoft’s OneNote from Orlando O’Neill. He gave a personal and thorough demonstration of how OneNote can be applied to everyday life. 2

Next came the big data experts. Dr. Cos Boudnik spoke first about his experience with big data and developing the software Hadoop, an open source framework for storage and large-scale processing. He discussed how open source can result in highly successful projects and is incredibly important for the future. He closed his presentation with a detailed demo for the audience.1965562_616075765153240_33412_oFollowing Boudnik was Jerome Banks, a data engineer working with Hadoop technologies and a primary contributor to the Brickhouse open source library of Hive UDFs. Banks explained how his work with the Brickhouse Library contributes to big data and functionality of projects. Upon finishing his presentation he opened the floor up for questions and discussion. Photo (3)

As the night came to a close, the speakers mingled with guests and answered lingering questions over glasses of wine. Attendees left with new contacts and a better understanding of big data as a whole. Don’t miss out on the next Tech in Motion event in San Francisco – join the group here.