Top Stories: UPS 3D Printing, Google Test Tool Announced

Top Stories: UPS 3D Printing, Google Test Tool Announced

New technology like 3D printing is having a major impact on quite a few industries. But some small businesses still haven’t been able to access the technology as much as they’d like. Those businesses got some welcome news recently when UPS announced a new 3D printing service.

In addition, Google and many others also made announcements this week that could be relevant to small businesses. Read on for a list of headlines in this week’s Small Business Trends news and information roundup.


Order 3D Printing Jobs Online with New UPS Service

Whether it is a toy or a hair clip, creating a product is a complicated process involving many people and just as many resources. In the past this meant hiring designers, engineers, a company to do the molding and eventually a manufacturer. If you are a small business with a great idea, you can see how the cost and process can be discouraging.

Google Launches Free Tool to Test Website Performance on Mobile and Desktop

In a world that’s gone mobile, having a website that isn’t mobile-friendly can hurt your business. If a site loads slowly or people can’t find what they need immediately, they are likely to leave and continue their search elsewhere.

Business Travelers, Click on Google Maps for Third Party Hotel Reviews

Google now shows third party hotel reviews in a quest to provide the best hotel reviews to travelers. Previously, a search for hotel reviews on Google would show you Google’s own hotel reviews only, but now a quick search for hotel reviews brings up Google’s reviews as well as third party reviews.


Soon You’ll be Taking Business Calls on Your Smart Jacket – Seriously

The barrier between us and the digital connectivity we need to work, play and live has been reduced by another factor with the announcement of the Levi’s Commuter Smart Jacket. So if you see someone walking down the street talking to themselves and swiping and tapping their clothes, no need for alarm, they could be wearing this Commuter smart jacket.

Smart Locks Provide Easier Access to Offices of the Future

Basic security is crucial for any small business. Yet, as non-traditional work patterns become more and more commonplace, the inconvenience of cumbersome and old-fashioned security methods is turning out to be a major hindrance for more forward-thinking business owners. A solution to that problem seems to have emerged with the launch of the second-generation August Smart Lock.

SAP Ariba For Small Business Provides Technology to Connect With Customers

One of the biggest challenges small businesses face is access to resources. Whether it is getting funded, acquiring the best talent or developing the necessary networks to help their company thrive and grow, they have to work that much harder compared to large enterprises.

Waverly Labs Earpieces Translate Other Languages Almost Instantly

Real-time translation used to be the domain of human beings, but machine translation has evolved to the point it can now deliver highly accurate results instantly. Watch this video that shows you how the new Pilot real-time translation earpiece works if you really want to be impressed.


Prefer Chai to Coffee in Your Office? Check Out Chime

Coffee makers are essential parts of most office kitchens. They can help to keep your employees energized and motivated throughout the day, increasing both productivity and morale.


New Money Transfer Scam Asks For Payment Through iTune Gift Cards

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has warned of a new scam where criminals dupe people into paying fraudulent claims through iTunes gift cards. The FTC said that scammers are pretending to be agents from the IRS or U.S. Treasury and demanding that you pay back taxes via an iTunes gift card. Yes, an iTunes card.


Bank of America Study: 95 Percent of Entrepreneurs Built or Acquired

Setting up a business is difficult, but that’s not deterring entrepreneurs from pursuing their passion probably because most of them have done it on their own. That’s what a new study has revealed. According to U.S. Trust’s annual survey of high net worth entrepreneurs, the majority of business owners (95 percent) have founded or acquired their companies.

Small Biz Spotlight

Spotlight: BookScouter Offers a Platform for Comparing Book Prices

For college students and others who want to resell books, the process of finding the best price can be time consuming. There are several different platforms available to actually sell those books and textbooks. But to make sure you get the best possible price, there’s BookScouter. Read more about BookScouter and its price comparison tool in this week’s Small Business Spotlight.


Ooma Office Adds IP Phones to Analog, Mobile Lineup for Small Business

Ooma, a cloud-based phone service provider for small business, just announced on its blog that it intends to include IP phone support for its Ooma Office phone system, which means that businesses can now use analog phones, fax machines, mobile and IP phones in combination.

FreedomVoice Phone Service Coming to GoDaddy: Why Should You Care?

Small Business Trends recently reported that GoDaddy is in the process of procuring cloud-based FreedomVoice phone service to add to its suite of small business marketing communications products.

Pebble Introduces Three New Devices on Kickstarter

The Pebble project has been one of the most successful funding drives on Kickstarter. The company was able to raise $10 million and $20 million in its first and second drives, respectively. This resulted in the introduction of some innovative smartwatches with each consequent round of funding.

What is Gboard for iPhone and What is it For?

The rift between Apple and Google is well documented, but in reality they need each other more than they let on in order to give their customers the solutions both companies provide. The latest evidence of this is the new Gboard for iPhone keyboard app Google just announced. With tens of millions of customers on the line, the Gboard is a no brainer for Google.


How Can Businesses Use Facebook Continuous Live Video?

When it comes to social media, Facebook is undeniably king. That’s why businesses bend over backwards to try and engage with users via the social media platform — and it’s also why they’ve been working hard to take advantage of Facebook’s video capabilities. With the launch of the new Facebook continuous live video API, those capabilities have drastically expanded.


Microsoft Gives Grants to Businesses Providing Affordable Internet

As much as the world seems to be so connected online, more than half of the world’s population still doesn’t have access to the Internet and now Microsoft wants to reduce that number through Microsoft Internet access grants. Microsoft Internet Access Grants Awarded Microsoft Internet access grants seek to increase affordable Internet access in communities in underserved markets.

Image: UPS

Joshua Sophy Joshua Sophy is the Editor for Small Business Trends and has been a member of the team for 16 years. A professional journalist with 20 years of experience in traditional media and online media, he attended Waynesburg University and is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists. He has held roles of reporter, editor and publisher, having founded his own local newspaper, the Pottsville Free Press.