By Oliver Haslam on Apr 6, 2013
Without a doubt, one of the biggest differences between iOS and Android is its fundamental handling of information. Google decided to allow widgets onto a phone’s Home screen so that, theoretically, users would have the information they need right at their fingertips. Apple, on the other hand, has doggedly stuck to its guns over the years, with iOS remaining a collection of app icons rather than live widgets.
Over the years there have been plenty of arguments amongst those in the tech community as to which was the best way to go. Android users will repeatedly point to widgets as one of the main reasons they prefer their phones over the iPhone or even one of the Windows Phone handsets. Sitting halfway between iOS and Android, Windows Phone features live tiles that offer up information from the phone’s Home screen a la widgets, but that’s just not enough for some. It’s widgets or nothing, man, and that’s the way it is.
But iOS users can have their cake and eat it. They can have widgets on their home screens just like Android users, whilst still having that iPhone they so love. But the real question is: should they? Even if they should, I’d argue that fewer people actually would than we might think… Read More
By Jeff Benjamin on Dec 12, 2012
Okay, I’ll bite. Again.
Yesterday I called out the developer of “Dream JB” for promising to bring a jailbreak to the iPhone 5 when he knew good and well that he couldn’t fulfill that promise.
Understandably, a lot of readers were miffed that I had the audacity to dash their hopes for a jailbreak. We’ve waited a long time for a jailbreak for iOS 6 and the iPhone 5, so it didn’t really surprise me when I was labeled a pessimist, although I was surprised a bit that my journalistic integrity was questioned. Fair enough, I was pretty positive that in due time this “jailbreak” would be exposed for what it really was.
Due time came today.
As I stated, I too wish for a jailbreak, it’s in my best interest to have one…but I and many others saw through this for what it was — a fake. Now the developer has released a video showcasing his fake work. And although it’s a pretty ambitious job of fakery, at the end of the day it’s still fake. Read More
By Jeff Benjamin on Nov 23, 2012
I decided to go completely case-less. Most of you guys probably think I already do that, since I never have a case on my devices when I’m filming a new video.
But that, as it turns out, hasn’t been so. I used to only keep my iPhone nude for aesthetic purposes on film. As soon as I hit the shutter release on my camera to stop filming, back in the case she went.
Then I read something that changed my perspective on things. After seeing this post by John Gruber, I started thinking. Why are we so obsessed with encapsulating our devices in protective covering? Aren’t we ridding ourselves of the pleasure of using it as it was intended and designed to be used?
I decided to embark on an experiment. One that could prove costly, but at the same time provide me with a since of liberation. I was going to go case-less… Read More
By Oliver Haslam on Nov 6, 2012
A report by Strategy Analytics yesterday claims that Apple’s customer loyalty fell for the first time since records began, which may come as a surprise with huge lines and waiting lists abound for the latest releases of the iPhone and iPad.
The report tells that when asked, 88% of US customers said that they were likely to buy another iPhone at upgrade time, which is down from the 93% that claimed the same thing last time around. It’s a similar story in Europe, with a result of 75% being well down from the previous year’s 88%.
While any company should be happy with a loyalty rate of 88%, why is Apple seeing a reduction in customer loyalty? That’s the real question I think we should be asking… Read More
By Sebastien Page on Oct 30, 2012
If there’s one thing that really came as a surprise this month, it’s certainly not the iPad mini, or any other product announcement, but the executives shake up and shuffling at Apple. SVP of Retail John Browett is gone, and that’s a good thing, and really, hardly a surprise. The biggest surprise was that he was hired in the first place. The real bombshell in yesterday’s abrupt announcement is the departure of SVP of iOS Software, Scott Forstall.
Although it was the biggest kick, Apple’s press release also told us that Ive would now be in charge of Human Interface (aka everything design), iOS and OS X groups are now one, Maps and Siri are now part of the Internet Services unit, and Mansfield will lead the new Technologies group.
Now that we’ve gathered a little more information about the news and that I’ve had time to really soak it in, I’d like to share my thoughts on the situation, and what it all means for the new Apple… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Oct 28, 2012
Apple is no stranger to abandoning features it thinks are heading for the graveyard of technology. I guess you could say the company invented it. The new iMac without a built-in optical drive is the perfect epitome of such forward-thinking that, however, isn’t without its pitfalls.
With the revamped all-in-one desktop, club Cupertino risks alienating the old-fashioned types by inconveniencing their daily computing, at least until the rest of the industry catches up. Then again, every Apple customer has always been an early adopter in every sense of the word.
The question is, will other makers follow suit and remove rotating medias from their products? More importantly, what exactly does the new iMac tell us about a Tim Cook Apple?
By Jeff Benjamin on Oct 11, 2012
I never planned on purchasing a new iPod touch, but the impulse bug got me. I bought one last year for testing purposes. But despite that justification, I still had buyers remorse soon afterwards. That’s how bad the iPod touch 4th generation was. It lacked power, had a terrible screen, and the design was, well, disgusting.
But when Apple showed off the new iPod touch hardware last month, my interest was piqued. Still reeling, though, from the 4th generation product, I kept myself from getting too excited about it.
Unfortunately (thankfully?) I struggle to control myself when it comes to Apple product purchases. But that lack of control allowed me to witness first hand a marvelous turnaround to the iPod touch line. Yes, the iPod touch 5th generation shares little with the previous generation hardware, and that’s a good thing.
Indeed, the new iPod touch is — wow — it’s actually good. I mean, it’s really good. If you haven’t yet seen it in person, you owe it to yourself to check out this review… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Oct 1, 2012
News made rounds earlier today that Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey’s another startup, Square, just snapped up design shop 80/20. Square makes an awesome iPhone and Android payment solution based on a credit card dongle and it recently teamed up with Starbucks on micro-payments.
Headquartered in New York, 80/20 is renowned for its design work on user interfaces. They did a dashboard for the electric vehicle company Better Place and a sexy fitness-tracking watch for Google’s subsidiary Motorola.
Here’s why Square and 80/20 are a natural fit, why the deal makes in a greater scheme of things and why you should care… Read More
By Cody Lee on Sep 16, 2012
Designing and developing a new iPhone every year has to be one of the most difficult things Apple does. Essentially, it has to take the world’s most popular smartphone, not to mention its biggest money-maker, and make it different enough so people will buy it, but not so different that it messes up the obviously-winning formula.
That’s a tall order. And it was probably even tougher this year due to seemingly higher expectations and stiff competition from Samsung, and others.
So was Apple able to pull it off?
By Cody Lee on Aug 14, 2012
While it seems we know just about everything there is to know about Apple’s next smartphone — looks, features, launch date — there is one thing that still remains a mystery: what’s Apple going to call it?
According to our poll we conducted last month on the topic, the two most likely candidates are “the new iPhone” and the “iPhone 5.” And if you think that Apple would never call it the iPhone 5, read this… Read More
By Cody Lee on Jul 16, 2012
It’s October 4th, 2011, and Apple is hosting its highly anticipated iPhone event. SVP of Marketing Phil Schiller is on stage, and after about 5 minutes of discussing changes to the iPod line, he utters the words that everyone has been waiting to hear: “Next, iPhone.”
A sense of disappointment spread throughout the tech world as Schiller went on to unveil a familiar-looking iPhone 4S. Where was this teardrop-shaped iPhone 5 that we had been hearing so much about? With the bigger screen, and LTE? What about all of those leaked cases?
Of course, the 4S would go on to be a huge hit for Apple. But the whole experience has left a lot of consumers with low expectations for this year’s iPhone release. Well it’s time to raise them. There are actually a few reasons why you should be excited about Apple’s next handset… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Jul 6, 2012
I just read this argument how anyone that thinks Apple might do an iPad mini because of the Kindle Fire or Nexus 7 should be banned from writing about Apple. Seriously? I’d wager it’s the other way round. Apple absolutely cannot afford to sit on the sidelines while Amazon and Google take over its prospective customers on the low-end and lock them into their ecosystems.
Yes, Apple knows all too well that Google’s $199 Nexus 7 is a game-changer. Tim Cook understands this thing is gonna be big and you can bet he’ll do something about it. Why else do you think Apple has started alerting the press that it’s been working on a seven-inch competitor… Read More
By Cody Lee on Jun 29, 2012
It was inevitable that after Google’s Nexus 7 announcement, the “iPad Mini” rumors would start surfacing again. The 7-inch Asus-branded tablet has garnered quite a bit of attention this week.
Apple has long been believed to be working on its own 7-inch slate, with reports coming from both Apple-insiders and news outlets alike that such a product exists. But will we ever see it? Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Jun 24, 2012
It’s virtually impossible to find a business that doesn’t mine data on its users, be it your local grocery store or an online-only outlet which carries digital warez. And it doesn’t matter whether you’re a prospective buyer browsing a collection of books on Amazon or a repeat customer using your credit card to purchase intangibles.
One way or another, you’re getting profiled. It’s happening all the time and all around us, insofar as we don’t even pay notice though we should. Even searching the web leaves valuable data in server logs that can and is being traced to your anonymized profile. What you’re getting in return is a more personalized experience and certain businesses like social networks (Facebook, Google+ and so forth) literally depend on this idea.
Apple begs to differ. Suggesting the practice is getting out of hand, the company scored a huge patent win for techniques that could make data profiling more difficult and the iOS ecosystem a place devoid of aggressive advertising…
By Christian Zibreg on Jun 22, 2012
Notebook vendors are clinging their hope to a fall launch of Windows 8 and Intel’s Ivy Bridge chips, thinking it’ll help reinvigorate interest in notebooks. Now, notebooks and portables in general have seen modest, single-digit growth in the past two years because a portion of the consumers’ budget has been absorbed due to iPad demand. So, what gives? Read More
By Cody Lee on Jun 14, 2012
Looking back at it, there was no shortage of announcements during Apple’s WWDC keynote on Monday. An all-new MacBook model, major updates to its desktop and mobile operating systems, and a new Maps app — not bad for an afternoon.
But amongst all of the oohs and ahhs of the new products and updates, there was one particular announcement that sort of flew under the radar. According to Apple, it now has more than 400 million active credit card-linked iTunes accounts… Read More
By Cody Lee on Jun 9, 2012
I’ve always tinkered with my devices, regardless of their OS. I remember installing leaked versions of RIM’s OS 6 on my old BlackBerry Bold, and rooting my Android handsets to install the latest ROMs.
But out of all of those experiences, I can honestly say that hacking devices, customizing them and installing tweaks, is much easier to do on iOS than it is on any other platform — even the “open” Android… Read More
By Cody Lee on Jun 6, 2012
According to recent rumors, reports and speculation, Apple’s next-generation smartphone will finally receive a bump in screen size. It seems like everyone is convinced that the next iPhone, expected to drop later this year, will be sporting an all-new 4-inch display.
But while we’ve heard a number of theories regarding how Apple could go about implementing such a change, we’ve yet to hear any explanations for why it would want to. Why would it all of a sudden want to change the iPhone’s display size after 5 years? Read More
By Oliver Haslam on Jun 1, 2012
The eagle-eyed amongst you will have already spotted that the title says “two months on” and, clearly, we are beyond the two month mark since the new iPad was made available to an expectant public. The reason for my tardiness is that this post has taken the better part of two weeks to write, and I almost scrapped it on a few occasions.
To understand why that is, let’s delve right on in to why I didn’t buy the new iPad and, importantly, why I am glad about that fact.
So, before we continue, and before I open myself up to more than my fair share of abuse, I suggest you make yourself a good cup of coffee, and get yourself comfortably. We’re about to begin… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on May 15, 2012
Pacific Crest’s Andy Hargreaves wins the coveted title for this week’s Most Idiotic Analysis concerning a rumored HD TV television set from Apple, aptly dubbed by the press the iTV.
In a note issued to clients on Tuesday, Hargreaves provided two arguments against an Apple-branded telly.
First, such a device would be of little value to couch potatoes unless it came with a bucket load of premium Hollywood entertainment. Up to a point, he argued Apple thus far has failed to get content owners in line to stream movies and television shows to the TV.
Bear with me for a sec.
Secondly, he wrote a 46-inch HD TV set “would be a terrible use of retail space relative to iPhone, iPad or the Apple TV set-top box”.
Has this guy heard of warehouses? What about jumbo-sized walls of Apple’s retail stores? And whoever said Apple would need to stock hundreds of big-screen iTVs in retail outlets, especially if they’ll fetch a cool $2,000 a pop, as rumored… Read More