5 Technology Observations: 3 Sept. 2015

Good morning, I.T. entrepreneurs. Here are five technology news updates, insights, chatter and plenty more to start your day for Thursday, Sept. 3, 2016.

Actually, today's update involves six items to sip on.

6. Point of Sale In-Security: Small businesses are supposed to update their point of sale (POS) systems with new security capabilities by Oct 1. The technology standard, known as EMV (Europay, MasterCard and Visa) comes with the following catch: If you don't adhere to the standard, your business will be liable for losses if you physically accept counterfeit credit cards, notes The Wall Street Journal. But... two-thirds of businesses with 500 or fewer employees aren't ready for the new standard, according to Ponemon Institute research.

5. Whatever Happened to Master MSPs?: A long time ago, in a digital galaxy not so far away... there was endless talk about so-called Master MSPs. But you don't hear the term much anymore. And... I'm starting to hear the term Master CSP more and more -- particularly from businesses like Ingram Micro Cloud. So, what were Master MSPs? And what are Master CSPs? Hmmm... I may weigh in on that in the near future...

4. Don't Call It A Comeback: Panasonic is bringing back Technics Turntables -- i.e., "record players." Hmmm... I'd buy one. Except that I already made a turntable purchase about a year ago. I'd spin up some retro vinyl tonight... but I'll be busy this evening hanging out with The Jackson 5... hmmm.. make that The Jackson 3.

3. HP Selling Security Unit?: Hewlett-Packard Co. may sell its TippingPoint network security business ahead of a corporate split later this year, Reuters reported. The unit could be valued at $200 million to $300 million, the report said. If true, that's a rather depressing figure if you consider (A) how hot the security market is and (B) 3Com, now part of HP, acquired TippingPoint for $430 million in cash in 2004. More proof that M&A deals are fraught with risk.

2. Misleading Headline of the Week: Re/code says Intel is making a "last-ditch effort to save PCs." Excuse me? I know the PC market is a train wreck in terms of falling sales. But does anybody really think it's game over -- dead and buried? -- for a market that sold 308.6 million units in 2014, according to IDC? Perhaps the real problem involves false expectations. IDC back in 2012 predicted that annual PC sales would climb about 500 million units by 2016. Whoops. That prediction will likely be off by about 200 million units or so...

1. Goodbye (For How Long?): Reminder, we don't blog on Friday's. Also, we're closed Monday (Sept. 7) for the Labor Day holiday. When Amy Katz and I return to the office on Sept. 8, we'll be thinking long and hard about where to take this blog next. We have spent a lot of time analyzing the world of content and digital platforms lately. We've been listening. We've been asking a lot of "What if...?" questions. It's nearly time to stop asking "What if...?" 

Oh, and One More Thing: Assuming we found some answers involving our potential next moves, we promise we'll share them here -- via the After Nines Inc. blog. One door closes. Another opens. Some doors are entries. Others are exits. Frankly, it's nearly time to kick in a new door. When we do, you'll be invited to the conversation on the other side of that door. In the meantime, have a great holiday weekend.

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