Compiled by Patrick Avenell

Smartphones booming, retail trouble looming

Smartphones will account for 16 per cent of all electronics consumer spending this year, according to GfK global director Jurgen Boyny. Speaking at a preview event for IFA, Boyny said he expected surges in tablet PCs and notebooks during 2011.

In worrying news for the established bricks and mortar retail sector, Boyny said that internet sales will only continue to impact high street retailers. According to GfK’s global website, internet purchases are now accounting for almost 14 per cent of all technical consumer goods in Europe.

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Google and friends create 3D dreamscape music video

Google has used what it calls “the world’s most cutting edge audiovisual technology” to create a special music video of 3D “dreamscapes” for the song ‘3 Dreams of Black’.

The song is performed by Danger Mouse (Gnarls Barkley, Broken Bells) and Danielle Luppi, featuring Jack White (The White Stripes) and Norah Jones.

“At various points in this web experience, you can take control with your computer’s mouse and guide your journey through the unfolding narrative,” said a spokesperson. “You can even contribute to the dream by creating your own relics using a 3D model creator. Some of the best user creations will be integrated into the experience and become a part of others’ ‘3 Dreams’ exploration.”

Click here to watch the clip, though you may need to download software to view it.

Auction freight site launched for online purchases

Consumers purchasing goods online can now put the delivery of their packages up for tender in a competitive bid process on a new website. Called Loadmax, this website aims to maximise logistical efficiencies by allowing freight already on routes pick up and deliver extra parcels at competitive rates.

“At present, it is estimated that 75 per cent of trucks do not travel with a full load,” claimed a spokesperson who provided no evidence to back this up. “This new system maximizes transport loads, thereby increasing efficiency and reducing CO2 production by ensuring transport space does not go wasted.

“By bidding for consumers’ business online, carriers can maximise their load and increase their revenue, whilst users can enjoy a reduction in haulage costs for their online purchases:  a win-win situation for both buyer and transporter.”

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