Electric vehicle business models

The electric vehicle industry has moved past the toddler stage (where companies that could not stand on their own have fallen) to early adolescence (where business models are taking shape and profitability is within reach). This report will focus on the most promising new business models in the electric vehicle ecosystem.

Quarterly Wrap-up

Cleantech second-quarter analysis and outlook

Implosions in the electric vehicle space dominated news in the cleantech area just as new EV darling Tesla became the first major success story. Solar, meanwhile, showed signs of a rebound and the home energy management space is heating up.

BMW backs electric car charging startup Coulomb

BMW’s venture fund, BMW i Ventures, has invested in electric car charging company Coulomb Technologies, according to a release. BMW launched its $100 million fund — its first to date — last year to focus on “mobility,” including mobile apps, in car services and auto navigation.

Is Detroit buying Verizon’s LTE-connected-car vision?

Verizon recently has aggressively pursued its LTE-connected-car strategy, buying up Hughes Telematics and on Wednesday launching a new initiative with foreign car manufacturers. But not all automakers are necessarily on board with Verizon’s dream of embedding 4G into every car.

Quarterly Wrap-up

Green IT Q1: Ups and downs for EVs and the quest for the low-power server

Finally, smart-thermostat darling Nest hit a snag when Honeywell slapped it with a broad patent-infringement lawsuit over IP related to building a learning thermostat. As much a competitive strategy as anything else, the suit shows that Honeywell has woken up to the threat of a new kid on the block, and it raises larger questions about how the patent and legal systems are being used these days by major corporations. In the short term, Nest likely will have to come to some kind of settlement with the multibillion-dollar company.

Rethinking on-demand energy storage

Google’s choice of thermal storage for cooling its data center signals interest from Internet giants in using stored energy to cool data centers rather than just drawing power direct from the grid when needed. Is this the future of on demand power for data centers?


12 tech leaders’ resolutions for 2012

Lose your love handles, call your mom more often, get that promotion: If you’re like many of us, you’re already thinking over some New Year’s resolutions that will make you a better “you” in 2012. But how are the tech industries’ thought leaders approaching the new year? We asked 12 of them for their resolutions and published those from Dec. 27, 2011, through Jan. 7, 2012, on We have bundled them together here in a single document for the convenience of our valued GigaOM Pro readers. Be sure to check back over the coming months for further thoughts and advice from some of the tech industry’s most well-known names. Companies mentioned in this report include Sprint, Facebook and Amazon. For a full list of companies, and to read the full report, sign up for a free trial.

A123 lines up $25M amid disappointing ’11 forecast

Is A123 Systems a company that is good at announcing deals but can’t profit from them? After cutting its 2011 sales forecast last Friday, A123 on Monday announced a licensing deal with Japan’’s IHI, which will make a $25 million equity investment in A123.

5 bets the DOE made that are better than Solyndra

It’s been over a month since the Solyndra news came out, but it’s still dominating. Because it just won’t go away, here’s my top five list of projects that the DOE also backed with loan guarantees and that are showing some early signs of success.


The connected planet: Smartphones aren’t the only player

The number of connected devices is steadily on the rise, but it’s not smartphones or computers that will lead us to the 50 billion connected devices expected by the year 2020. Rather, the Internet of Things — numerous smart objects that speak to the web and one another — is the next wave of wireless and will power a wide range of devices as we want remote access to everything all the time.

Research: Using smartphones for frugal driving

Smartphones are increasingly becoming the remote controls of our lives. Car owners can use theirs to check on the battery level and driving range and adjust the climate control system. An MIT project explores new ways to use smartphones to help drivers cut fuel costs.

Car data needs standards, too

Ford and Toyota are working together on standards for the next-generation of networking and Internet-connected services in their vehicles. The move shows just how important connectivity is becoming for car companies, as vehicles are becoming the latest devices to have an always-on wireless connection.

Car apps: the future of the vehicle industry

Car companies are trying to get social, and 2011 could be the year of the car as a major platform for social and other types of apps. A new GigaOM Pro report examines the in-vehicle app landscape and analyzes individual carmakers’ efforts and models.


From car to cloud: the future of the in-vehicle app landscape

Looking ahead to the age of the electric vehicle and the smart grid, the in-vehicle app landscape will take another turn as it becomes a part of the same infrastructure that powers both our homes and offices. The electric car will change the vehicle industry once it reaches critical mass, but when this will happen is currently unclear. In the interim, a battle will take place over who controls the end-user experience among proliferating options.


A field guide to cloud computing: current trends, future opportunities

Assuming cloud adoption takes off as data suggests it will, cloud services integration will provide major opportunities for cloud providers and software vendors willing to open up their platforms to the greater cloud ecosystem, as well as for third parties hoping to play the middleman in helping to bring together many different services.

Toyota Teams Up With WiTricity for Wireless Car Charging

Wireless charging is an appealing concept for many of us who loathe the sight of messy power cords or the need to find outlets in public. Carmakers like it, too. Toyota announced a deal Wednesday with WiTricity to bring wireless charging to cars.

Microsoft and Toyota Use Cloud to Connect Cars, Homes and Users

Microsoft and Toyota are jointly investing $12 million in a bid to build a cloud-based platform that will connect cars, homes and the electrical smart grids. The joint venture will be run out of Toyota Media Services and will leverage Microsoft’s Windows Azure cloud services.

Toyota Embraces iPhone Jailbreak Community for Ad Campaign

In what may be the weirdest Apple-related news you’ll read today, Toyota introduced a new official Scion-branded jailbreak iPhone theme Saturday for distribution in the Cydia store. This marks the first time a major corporation has embraced the iOS jailbreak community, but how will Apple respond?

How Japan’s Crisis Could Affect Cleantech

Japan’s massive earthquake, tsunami, and now nuclear disaster, is starting to shine a spotlight on just how important the country is in terms of clean energy technology, from solar to electric cars.


A 2011 Green IT Forecast

Green IT Jeff St. John’s thoughts, analyses and predictions are compiled here in a single report. As with any analysis of the market, we couldn’t possibly include every company, announcement and product that’s caught our eyes over the past 12 months, and if there are trends or announcements you found important but weren’t included here, we encourage you to add it in the comments section of this report.

Quarterly Wrap-up

Big Data, ARM and Legal Troubles Transformed Infrastructure in Q4

As for Java, which, technically, is still very important but is losing its shine among web developers, Oracle’s stewardship of the technology had everyone from Google to Apache up in arms, and possibly resulted in some irreparable damage to the Java development community.


Top 10 Greentech Companies of 2010

For good or for ill, 2010 marked a watershed year for the greentech industry. From Tesla Motors emerging as the first electric vehicle startup to challenge automaking giants to OPOWER ruling the home energy management field, here are 10 companies that made notable waves this year.


Green IT 2011: China Marches Towards Greentech Dominance

The world’s greentech industry is likely meeting the end of 2010 with a mix of relief and trepidation. Clouds are on the horizon for global investment in renewable energy, and VCs fret about realizing returns on their existing investments. Meanwhile, China boasts the world’s largest population and a booming economy, and could go from the world’s leading greentech manufacturer to the world’s leading greentech consumer.

Tesla Update: Panasonic Battery, Growth

Tesla is showing off an investor presentation this morning that, while not earth-shattering, has a few tidbits of information, one of which is that a result of the Panasonic’s deal will be a custom-made battery cell that will have improved life cycle, performance, safety and cost.

Sneak a Peek at the Official Plug-In Prius Prototype

For this week’s episode of GigaOM TV’s Green Overdrive show, we got to take one of the official plug-in Prius prototypes for a drive. It drives about the same as the regular Prius, but has a larger lithium ion battery, and charges in about three hours.

Tesla Picks Up $30M from Panasonic

Tesla Motors has just picked up a $30 million investment from Japanese electronics giant Panasonic. The two companies announced on Wednesday that Panasonic — a preferred battery cell supplier for Tesla’s electric vehicles — has bought a $30 million stake in the Palo Alto, Calif. car maker.

GM Trust to Provide $11.7M for Fisker Factory Site Cleanup

As part of a record-setting environmental settlement package, the bankruptcy estate of General Motors will set aside more than $11.7 million for the cleanup of an old factory site in Delaware where plug-in hybrid car startup Fisker Automotive plans to manufacture its Fisker Nina sedan.

Quarterly Wrap-up

Report: Cleantech’s Third-Quarter Growing Pains

Green technology needs to grow up and face a tough job market — that’s the news from the third quarter of 2010. This report examines some of the cleantech sector’s growing pains during the last quarter, from a shrinking pool of investors to lagging mergers and acquisitions, as well as how the renewable energy, green transportation, energy storage, smart grid and energy efficiency sectors fared in the the current economic climate. China’s market, meanwhile, was highlighted this quarter, and as the U.S. sector continues to struggle, eyes are shifting from North America to Asia for cleantech investment and growth. Companies mentioned in this quarterly report include PG&E, Silver Spring, Elster, Holley Metering, General Electric, Google, Microsoft, Blue Line Innovations, Belkin, Intel, IBM, OPOWER, Enernoc, Comverge, CPower, Constellation Energy, Honeywell, Akuacom, E-Mon and Schneider Electric. For a full list of companies mentioned, and to read the full report, sign up for a free trial.

Do Plug-In Cars Need Extra Noise?

For some, the silence of an electric vehicle is really cool, and for others, who worry about getting slammed in a cross walk by a silent, oncoming EV, it’s a safety problem. There’s a growing list of startups developing vehicle noise technology to address these concerns.

Hecka Bullish Report: Tesla Stock to Head to $25

JPMorgan issued an eager beaver report on electric car startup Tesla this week, estimating that Tesla’s stock will hit $25 by the end of 2011, due to its low battery costs, early lead in the EV market and partnership deals with large automakers Toyota and Daimler.

Green Light for Fisker's Project Nina Factory

A bankruptcy judge on Tuesday gave the green light to Fisker’s $20 million deal to buy a plant in Wilmington, Del. where GM once built Saturn, Pontiac and Opel GT models, and where Fisker aims to build its second-gen cars.

Tesla Ups Ante for IPO

Tesla has upped the ante on its IPO. According to an update posted this morning with the SEC, Tesla plans to sell 13.3 million shares tomorrow, up from the 11.1 million shares previously planned for the initial public offering.

Tesla IPO: What It Means for the Green Car Biz

Tesla Motors, the electric car startup scheduled to debut in public trading on Tuesday, could deliver the biggest IPO for a U.S. car company since Ford Motor. It will also reveal the degree of public confidence in electric vehicles at this early stage of the market.

Vid-Biz: Google TV, Clearleap, Project Canvas

Today on the Net: An analysis of what Google TV means to advertisers, Clearleap hits a milestone by topping 10 million cable subscribers and the U.K. Office of Fair Trade has decided against investigating the BBC’s Project Canvas.

Gateway Introduces NV Series Notebooks for Social Networking

Gateway has introduced a new line of notebooks aimed at providing affordable performance for multimedia enthusiasts. The NV series comes in two sizes — 15.6-inch and 17.3-inch, and is available with Intel or AMD processors. A unique social networking button provides one-touch access to social networks.

Green Car 101: How to "Fail Gracefully"

In the move from gas powered cars to hybrids, plug-in hybrids and battery electric vehicles, our cars will become more like overgrown consumer electronics than ever before. That trend brings with it potential for a new breed of errors.

Where are the Android Superphones, Verizon?

Verizon and Google have been promising the Nexus One would appear on the carrier Real Soon Now for what seems like forever, but it’s nowhere to be seen. Things heated up with the rumor the HTC Incredible was coming to Big Red. So where are they?


Report: IT and Networking Issues for the Electric Vehicle Market

This Pike Research report focuses on the IT and networking requirements associated with technology support systems for the emerging Electric Vehicle (EV) market. Key areas covered include vehicle connection and identification, energy transfer and vehicle-to-grid systems, communications platforms, pricing and billing systems and implementation issues.

The new generation of mass-produced EVs (including both plug-in and all-electrics) that will start arriving in 2010 will be able to charge at the owner’s residence, place of business, or any number of public and private charging stations. Keeping track of the ability of these vehicles and the grid to transfer energy will require transmitting data over old and new communications pathways using a series of developing and yet-to-be-written standards.

Industries that previously had little to no interaction with each other are now collaborating, determining new technologies and standard protocols and formats for sharing data. Formerly isolated networks must be able to handshake and seamlessly share volumes of financial and performance data. EV charging transactions will, for the first time, bring together platforms including vehicle operating systems and power management systems, utility billing systems, grid performance data, charging equipment applications, fixed and wireless communications networks, and web services.

Daily Sprout

Mobile Banking, Solar Power Put to Work for Water Distribution: A community in Musingini, Kenya, is working with Safaricom and Grundfos Lifelink…

Daily Sprout

The Problem With MPGs: The folks behind the Automotive X Prize lay the smack down on General Motors’ 230 MPG claim for…

Daily Sprout

EEStor: Will It or Won’t it?: There are some indications that startup EEStor is making progress toward its goal of selling an…

Daily Sprout

Cash for Clunkers Fraud, Already: The Department of Transportation warns consumers and dealers to watch out for scammers implying you need  to…

Daily Sprout

Noble Nixes IPO Plans: Connecticut-based wind developer Noble Environmental Power has withdrawn its registration, filed last year, for a $375 million initial…

Daily Sprout

Renewable Energy Standards Hullabaloo: For all the excitement over a national clean energy mandates, actually putting one in place won’t much change…


Shattering the Fourth Wall To Find Web Audiences

Web series are often praised for their diverse subject matter and original points-of-view. But what does pretty much every single prominent web series over the past several years — ranging from serious dramas like “quarterlife” to more fantastical fare like “Dr. Horrible’s Sing-A-Long Blog” — have in common? A main character who addresses the audience directly. And within the online video world, “breaking the fourth wall,” as it’s known, has become a defining characteristic of many shows, to the benefit of creators, audiences and advertisers alike.

Daily Sprout

Bill Gates Gets Into Hybrid Car Tech: Microsoft founder Bill Gates appears as a principal applicant on a new patent for a…

Thanks to our jkOnTheRun Sponsors!

We’d like to say thanks to this month’s jkOnTheRun sponsors. WunderRadio: WunderRadio plays thousands of streaming Internet radio stations and other audio…

Daily Sprout

Bigger in Texas: The state senate in Texas is considering so many proposals to boost state incentives for solar power this week…

Daily Sprout

China “Absolutely Opposed” to Chu’s Tariff Idea: China’s top negotiator for climate treaties has called a U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu’s recent…

Daily Sprout

Tesla Goes to Canada: Electric sports car maker Tesla Motors said it will start taking orders from Canadian customers today and begin…

Daily Sprout

Behold the Salt: Startup SolarReserve uses the sun’s heat to boil water, spin a turbine and heat a salt, which melts into…

Daily Sprout

Japan Mulls Feed-In Tariff : Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry is pushing for a feed-in tariff that would guarantee a…

Daily Sprout

GM to Import Engines for First-Gen Volts: General Motors has assured autoworker union leaders that it will produce Chevy Volt engines in…

Daily Sprout

Chrysler-Fiat Deal Contingent on More Loans: Anonymous sources say Fiat’s agreement to take a 35-percent stake in Chrysler will not be binding…

Daily Sprout

Hybrid Hacking 101: A delay with the battery pack has made Toyota pull its plug-in Prius from the Detroit Auto Show. Hybrid…

Daily Sprout

Big Bucks for Batteries?: Congressional Democrats are making a strong push for an expected $800 billion stimulus package to include new funds…

Daily Sprout

UK Wind Farms Tangled in Red Tape: Britain has 262 wind projects representing seven gigawatts stuck in planning stages, and the rate…

Daily Sprout

Solar Subsidies Strike Back: Japanese officials announced plans today to bring back subsidies for solar panels on homes, starting with $99.6 million…

Daily Sprout

Pop Goes the Green Bubble: In 2008, debt and equity finance dried up for companies with an environmental focus and a key…

Companies Can Make Money With Widget Ads

Brand and comparison advertising done through ad-focused widgets is emerging as a viable way of using the ubiquitous applications. Widgets’ interactive features, their ability to be virally distributed and potentially be placed on a target’s own page makes the creations appealing to advertisers.

South Korean Broadband Shakeout?

Citibank and Dacom are looking to make a joint bid for South Korean broadband provider, Thrunet, which has been under bankruptcy protection…

More Steam-Powered Games

Wired News: Steam is an e-commerce platform for delivering paid games to consumers. Geeks+Broadband+Games+Instant Delivery=$$$$$$$ Finally broadband is replacing the nasty habit…

Sycamore stuck in a Rut : Deutsche Bank has lowered revenue estimates for Sycamore Networks, saying the company’s story “remains stuck in a rut associated with…