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Internet of Things + Wearable Tech

Vendor Newsletters | March 2014

TelePacific Talks | March 2104
 
March 2014

How Wearable Tech Will Impact Your Company

Wearable tech is already here and, like so many tech advancements, promises to have significant impacts on our lives both personal and professional. Also like so many things "tech," it promises lots of potential IT and security headaches. Fortunately, we can see this wave coming, so there is time for your company to get out in front of this wave. Here are some tips:

  • Seek one-stop security solutions like OneSecure to build active security into your private networks.
  • Establish policies now. Are recording devices like Google Glass allowed on-site? If so, can they be worn in sensitive meetings? What about bathrooms? And what about employee privacy?
  • Create plans for network capacity and scaling. Remember, it's not just all those extra devices (currently, the typical company has between one and three devices per employee, wearable tech promises to drive that number as high as 15 to 20), it's all the processes needed to manage those devices as well.

Five Commonly Overlooked Tax Deductions
for Small Businesses

It's tax time, so we hunted around for some tax tips small business owners tend to overlook. We found five tips in an exchange between the Small Business Professor and a senior tax analyst from Intuit's Professional Tax Group that may help you this season. We're not tax advisers, so you should always consult with an accountant, but here are five deductions that small business owners are most likely to overlook:

  • Bonus depreciation in the year that new assets are purchased: Businesses can claim a 50-percent bonus depreciation deduction, in addition to the normal asset deduction, in the year you purchase a new capital asset (doesn't apply to used assets).
  • Startup expense: $5,000 toward the costs of creating a trade or business or to investigate the creation or acquisition of a trade or business (market research, employee training, advertising, etc.).
  • Retirement plans: Even if you hadn't saved anything before year-end 2013, you can still put away money for retirement (provided you get the plan in place before you file) and reduce your tax bill while you're at it.
  • Home business use: A new, simplified method of determining home business expenses is available. Multiply the area of your home used for business by $5, up to a maximum deduction of $1,500.
  • Obamacare credits: Small-employer health insurance premiums can claim tax credits (not just deductions) for providing health insurance coverage for their employees.

 
Internet of Things Taking Off

The machine-to-machine (M2M) space — also known as the Internet of Things (IoT) — is starting to make its mark in a big way. Already the fastest growing segment in the telecom industry, it's now clear that the M2M market may be exponentially larger than is currently recognized if you factor in smart devices (read: phones and tablets). Of course, the wearable tech we discussed earlier also has a seat at the table. If your company is involved in automotive, manufacturing, retail, utility, healthcare or public safety and surveillance, there's a good chance you're already investigating or working within an M2M framework.
But M2M will reach into all companies to some extent. In fact, by 2020, there will be more IoT connections than all other Internet connections combined. This reality will present two major IT challenges — one real and one imagined. The real challenge will be managing all of the data from sensors on everything from our food (checking for freshness and bacterial contamination) to complex robotic installations performing next-generation manufacturing. The imagined challenge? Avoiding a dystopian future wherein the machines rise up against us, of course.

Shadow IT Purchasing Much Larger Than You Realize

Cloud analytics firm Netskope has released statistics revealing that cloud adoption in companies is much more extensive than IT departments realize. How much more? On average, for every cloud instance the IT department is aware of, nine more exist.

This means that your company probably has redundant storage and file sharing services. If you have multiple locations, you may (in fact, probably, if you're like the companies in the study sample) have different HR applications in different offices, and some may not be in compliance. And your company may have multiple backup services. And varied levels of security. And... you get the picture. There are lots of "ands" in this particular equation. When it comes to the cloud, there really can be too much of a good thing. Here are some tips for getting your arms around your firm's cloud adoption.

  1. Perform an audit. Get every employee a form or a link to an online survey and figure out which apps they're using. Make sure you capture apps they may use personally but are sharing in the business environment.
  2. Take this audit list and organize it into applications categories so you can easily identify redundancies.
  3. Establish best-of-breed applications and organize migration to common apps and platforms.
  4. Look for multiple accounts for the same application and consolidate them under one master account to leverage bulk discounts.
  5. Establish cloud adoption policies to curb future fallout from shadow IT purchasing.

For our part, the potential confusion and chaos in cloud adoption is why we rolled out our TelePacific Cloud Solutions Suite. We've tackled core cloud solutions in the same way we tackled the telecom space — with customer-centered solutions that put the burden of operations on us so you can focus on your business. From hosted exchange and data protection to server backup and collaboration tools, we provide you with a single-source solution that takes care of many of your core business needs.

 
 
 

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