Facebook’s Workplace App Targets Slack, Microsoft Teams…And Other Small Business Tech News This Week by Forbes – Entrepreneurs

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Here are five things in technology that happened this past week and how they affect your business. Did you miss them?

1 — Facebook’s Workplace reaches 2M paid users and is targeting SMBs.

Used by some of the world’s largest organizations, Workplace by Facebook has now amassed two million paid users, according to data just released by the company. When launching Workplace in late 2016, Facebook envisioned it as a corporate version of its consumer social network—a way to drive employee engagement, communication and collaboration. Since then, 150 companies have deployed Workplace to more than 10,000 users, and organizations such as Nestlé, Starbucks and Walmart have rolled it out to more 100,000 workers. (Source: Computer World)

Why this is important for your business:

Now that the application has matured, Facebook is turning towards the giant small business market, which is mostly dominated by collaboration apps Slack and Microsoft Teams. But there’s certainly room to grow. The company plans to add reseller and other consulting partners (if your business in interested you can sign up here), develop a more robust mobile version and potentially change its marketing approach to appeal to this broader audience.

2 — Microsoft will start selling Windows 7 add-on support April 1 and will also release a new Windows 10 in April.

This week, Microsoft announced that it plans to start selling its Windows 7 add-on support—called Extended Security Updates (ESU)—on April 1. This will give enterprise customers more time to purge their environments of Windows 7. Beginning when Windows 7’s support ends on January 14, 2020, ESU will provide security fixes for uncovered or reported vulnerabilities in the operating system. Also this week, Microsoft released a new Windows 10 preview with 9 bug fixes. It will be finalized for Windows Insiders this month and rolled out to the public in April. (Source: Computer World and Venture Beat)

Why this is important for your business:

This spring is a good time for you to review your network with your IT firm, clean out any old operating systems and upgrade to the most current versions.  It’s not just a matter of performance and support…it’s critical for your company’s security.

3 — Google Cloud launches a fixed monthly fee plan for storage that smooths out cloud cost bursts.

Google Cloud will soon launch a storage plan called Storage Growth Plan which covers cost bursts by featuring fixed monthly pricing for a year. It gives enterprise CFOs more budgeting predictability related to cloud infrastructure costs, which can be volatile as data shifts locations and resides on different tiers. The Storage Growth Plan rhymes with data plans from wireless providers that roll over minutes, as well as with the way enterprises are used to buying IT infrastructure–based on a fixed dollar amount. (Source: ZDNet)

Why this is important for your business:

If your business is data intensive, then take a hard look at Google’s Storage Growth Plan. It’ll help you better budget and control your cloud storage costs.

4 — Phishing alert: one in 61 emails in your inbox now contains a malicious link.

Security provider Mimecast reported this week that the number of phishing attacks on corporate inboxes has more than doubled recently, with one in 61 emails found to contain a malicious URL. These harmful links are one of the key methods hackers use to conduct criminal campaigns, and the emails containing them are often designed to look like they come from legitimate senders, such as a colleague or a company. Their purposed is to deploy malware onto the victim’s PC or to encourage that person to enter sensitive information into a fake version of a real service in order to trick him or her into revealing passwords and other data. (Source: ZDNet)

Why this is important for your business:

The best way to fight this problem is through training.  The vast majority of security issues happens due to user error – people clicking or downloading the wrong the thing.

5— DARPA is launching an accelerator for small businesses.

The Pentagon’s research funding arm, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), just announced the launch of an accelerator for small businesses. It would accelerate private companies, so that they could sell their products, services, or research back to the government. (Source: The Sociable)

Why this is important for your business:

Here’s a great way to get funding – and assistance – from the government. The goal of DARPA’s program is to increase the participants’ ability to move technology from the lab to a sustainable business that then sells new capabilities to the military. The accelerator will also provide funding to hire one entrepreneur-in-residence or business development lead who will offer the awardee direct support for a variety of business activities.

 

Gene Marks is a CPA and owns The Marks Group PC, a technology consulting firm based near Philadelphia.

 

March 10, 2019 at 07:34AM
https://www.forbes.com/sites/quickerbettertech/2019/03/10/facebooks-workplace-app-targets-slack-microsoft-teams-and-other-small-business-tech-news-this-week/
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