News Scan: Tricorders move from TV to reality; BYOD investment falls short; More


>> Beam me up, Scottie

Qualcomm is offering a $10 million Tricorder X-Prize for researchers who create a handheld device that can diagnose 15 diseases and record and transmit health metrics, according to a report by EE Times. The Tricorder was made famous in the Star Trek TV series as the medical device of the future that could diagnose a patient's problems simply by waving it over the person's body. Scanadu, one of the entrants in the Tricorder X-Prize competition, offers a handheld device that measures blood oxygen levels, electrocardiogram, stress, heart rate, body temperature, blood oxygen level and pulse wave transit time, explains Donald Jones, vice president of global strategy and market development at Qualcomm Life. Read more on the Tricorder X-Prize.

[More on medical mobile IT: Despite risks, healthcare is aggressively adopting BYOD | Lax medical device security could endanger patient lives, warns Deloitte]

>> When it comes to BYOD, firms are not putting their money where their mouths are

BYOD was in the top five of greatest concerns to senior IT leaders, yet BYOD ranked 21st in terms of IT investment, according to a survey of 483 IT leaders conducted by the Society of Information Management (SIM). "What it points out to me is BYOD doesn't cost a lot of money; sometimes it saves you money. But it's a big worry. It's a big security problem. It opens holes everywhere," explains Leon Kappelman, professor of information systems at the University of North Texas and lead researcher for the study, in a report by TechTarget on SIM's IT Party 2.0 SIMposium held in Boston this week. Read more on the SIM survey.

[More on BYOD: BYOD to make traditional phone systems obsolete, study says | BYOD is 'an unregulated mess,' says IT security expert]

>> 'Global' M2M group moves beyond Europe

The Global M2M Association (GMA) is finally starting to live up to its name. The machine-to-machine (M2M) association, composed primarily of European telcos, has added Canadian-based Bell Mobility and Japan-based SoftBank Mobile to its membership list. However, still absent from its membership rolls are U.S.-based telcos. European members are Deutsche Telekom, Orange, Telecom Italia and TeliaSonera. The association's main focus is to deliver seamless M2M services globally and to maximize the business benefits for customers, a GMA release explained. Read more about GMA.

[More on M2M: Mobile M2M module market jumps 10% in first half, says Infonetics | Satellite providers Inmarsat, ORBCOMM team on M2M alliance]

>> Samsung launches KNOX partner program

Samsung launched this week a partner program for the much delayed KNOX mobile security platform. First announced in February at the Mobile World Congress, KNOX is designed to ease BYOD security concerns of enterprises by providing application container technology that allows IT departments to support both BYOD and corporate-liable models while reducing the risks to corporate security or employee privacy. The partner program is designed for independent software vendors and resellers to bring KNOX to the enterprise. In October, Samsung unveiled a new software development kit enabling developers to build applications leveraging the KNOX platform. Read more on the KNOX partner program.

[More on KNOX: Samsung unveils Knox SDK to boost enterprise mobile security efforts | Report: Samsung to delay release of KNOX security platform until summer]

>> Mobile device owners to make retailers happy this holiday season

Nearly seven in 10 smartphone owners will use their devices for holiday shopping, according to a survey of more than 5,000 consumers sponsored by Deloitte. They will use smartphones to search for store locations (56 percent), check and compare prices (54 percent) and obtain product information (47 percent). Smartphone shoppers intend to spend 27 percent more on holiday shopping than non-smartphone owners. In addition, 63 percent of tablet owners intend to use their devices for holiday shopping, with shopping or browsing online as their primary activity, the survey finds. Read more on the Deloitte survey.

[More on mobile shopping: Samsung adds PayPal support to simplify mobile app purchases | eMarketer: Retail m-commerce sales to reach $42B in 2013]