The Next Big Thing

by Jonathan Spira
The Next Big Thing

Headline writers love to proclaim The Next Big Thing, something I talked about in a column almost eight years ago.
At the time, I commented on TSTBTNBTBNWs (Things Supposed to Be the Next Big Thing but Never Were).  A few items on this list included artificial intelligence and push technology (such as PointCast).
Truly great ideas in business that weren’t proclaimed The Next Big Thing when they arrived on the scene include …

Mercedes-Benz S550

by Jonathan Spira
Mercedes-Benz S550

What was the first production car to come standard with electronic ABS (anti-lock braking) and an airbag?  The Mercedes S-Class of course.  Today, the 2008 Mercedes S-Class represents a combination of luxury and handling that safely transports driver and passengers with a menu of Mercedes safety innovations such as the crumple zone, safety steering wheel, and seat belt tensioner.  It was all new in 2007 and little changed for 2008.
The …

Top Down: BMW 335i Cabrio, Mercedes-Benz SLK350, and Volvo C70

by Jonathan Spira
Top Down: BMW 335i Cabrio, Mercedes-Benz SLK350, and Volvo C70

DRIVE TIME – TOP DOWN
Summer. A time when the business traveler’s mind turns to… convertibles!
Nothing says summer like a bright red convertible.  Unless it’s a medium-blue convertible. Or a metallic grey roadster.
In the automobile’s earliest days, all cars were open; the open car continues to be seen as sporty and adventurous and perfect for hot summer days.  The rest of the time, they were drafty, noisy, and considered less safe …

Lexus LS 460

by Jonathan Spira
Lexus LS 460

Three brands lead in executive class luxury: BMW, with the 7er Series, Lexus, with the LS sedan, and Mercedes, with the S-Class.  BMW is introducing a new 7er Series later this year so we’ll focus our attention on Lexus (here) and Mercedes.
Lexus, Toyota’s luxury division, debuted in 1989 with the first-generation LS sedan.  Since then, subsequent generations of the LS have been recognized for their reliability and luxurious appointments.  The …

Plantronics Discovery 925 Bluetooth Headset

by Jonathan Spira
Plantronics Discovery 925 Bluetooth Headset

Is it a headset or a fashion accessory?  The Plantronics Discovery 925 Bluetooth headset collection (and the use of the word “collection” shows a crossover from the technology world to the fashion world), with its unique VFrame design and elegant finish, is both.
Introduced at Spring 2008 New York Fashion Week, it’s one of the most practical headsets I’ve come across as well.
The VFrame design hugs the contours of the user’s …

iPod Classic

by Jonathan Spira
iPod Classic

The Apple iPod is unquestionably the most popular MP3 player to hit the market, with 71% of market share, according to the NPD Group.
So what could Apple do to improve the world’s favorite music player as it continues to define the portable music player? Quite a bit, it turns out.
For starters, the 80 Gbyte iPod Classic ($249) is thinner than its 60 Gbyte predecessor. The 160 Gbyte ($349), only slightly …

T-Mobile Hotspot @Home

by Jonathan Spira
T-Mobile Hotspot @Home

The landline phone, while nowhere near extinction, is something that fewer and fewer people rely on.  Where are all of your phone numbers stored? Your mobile phone, of course.  How do your friends reach you? Same answer. Besides, you can’t send a text message to a landline phone.
But what if your mobile phone gets poor reception at home or the plan you are currently on doesn’t support hours of catching …