Editorial

Does Apple need to create an entirely new product to stay on top?

Apple is sitting on top of the world right now. It has the most popular handset and tablet on the market, it broke nearly every company sales record last quarter, and it’s currently the most valuable corporation in the world.

The company’s real accomplishment, however, is how quickly it has risen to the top. Less than two years ago Apple’s market cap was only $200 billion. And now it’s teetering around the $500 billion mark. But how long can it keep up this ridiculous pace?

Should Apple be worried about HTML5 apps?

Apple’s handset has been seemingly unstoppable as of late. The company sold more than 37 million iPhones last quarter, making it the top smartphone manufacturer in the world over the three month period.

But what is it about the iPhone that makes it so popular? What sets it apart from the competition? Is it the sleek hardware? Is it the polished operating system? Sure. These are both big factors. But a lot of folks will tell you that it’s all about the apps…

Tim Cook says Apple’s working on new products that “will blow our minds”

Apple hosted its annual shareholder’s meeting yesterday in Cupertino, California. This marked the first time that Tim Cook addressed the company’s board and its investors as Apple’s CEO.

Topics of the meeting ranged anywhere from Apple’s record-breaking quarter last year, to its relationship with Facebook. Those who attended the affair described Cook as witty, knowledgeable, and passionate as he talked about Apple’s future…

Does Apple care about jailbreaking anymore?

When Apple unveiled iOS 5 last summer, a lot of folks saw it as a direct shot at the jailbreak community. The new software included a number of new features that replaced popular jailbreak tweaks like Notified and Xpandr.

And not only that, but the iOS update included new security measures to make downgrading to previous firmware versions extremely difficult. So you can see why it appeared that Apple was looking to stop jailbreakers in their tracks…

The difference between an Apple TV and an Apple Television

All the talk these days – at least before all the iPad 3 rumors took over – has been about the much anticipated Apple Television. Apple has certainly not announced anything, and some of us still are not convinced that Apple needs to enter a crowded market, but those rumors just keep on coming.

I’m one of those that just doesn’t see why Apple needs to bring a television to market, especially considering there are already hundreds of TV manufacturers in the space that are all scrambling for market share. If Apple is to make an impact, then it needs to offer something that nobody else can. Something that differentiates.

The Apple TV that we currently know and love is a sign that Apple doesn’t yet take the home entertainment business seriously. Famously called a “hobby,” the Apple TV is a box that is full of potential yet seems almost held back. Almost neutered…

Why we’ll finally see LTE technology in the iPhone and iPad this year

Yesterday morning, my friend and colleague Oliver Haslam laid out an interesting case for why he believes, despite overwhelming evidence, that Apple won’t implement LTE technology into any of its mobile products this year.

Oliver thinks that because there aren’t 4G networks in every corner of the world, and because current LTE devices suffer from issues like poor battery life, we won’t be seeing LTE in the next iPad or iPhone. But I happen to think he’s wrong…

Why the study showing that jailbreak apps leak less private data than App Store apps is flawed

Following the Path debacle which led the world to realize that many apps indeed upload some of your private data to their servers, much ink has been spilled about the subject. To the point that Congress sent Apple a letter to express their concern, but also to ask for more details about the situation. Apple later commented on the matter saying that apps will now need explicit user permission to access contacts.

In the meantime, a year-old study by a group of researchers at the University of California at Santa Barbara showing that jailbreak apps leak less data than App Store apps was uncovered. For a site like us, and for many jailbreakers alike, this study was a blessing as we could once again claim that jailbreaking can actually make your device more secure.

The problem is that this study is flawed and proves nothing…

Why Apple won’t give the iPhone or iPad an LTE radio. Yet.

Right, I’m going to come right out and say this before I go any further: I’m going to get a lot of stick for this, and the rest of the iDB team thinks that I’ve lost my mind, but I’m going to write this anyway. I don’t think the iPad or iPhone is going to get an LTE radio. At least, not yet.

Now I know this flies in the face of what we are being told by just about everyone, including a very recent article by the Wall Street Journal. The general consensus is that Apple will indeed bring an iPad 3 to market during the coming weeks, and that said iPad 3 will be the first Apple device to come packed with an LTE radio for hooking up to super-fast 4G networks.

I, however, think you’re all wrong. Here’s why…

Why Apple Must Not Rest on its Laurels

It seems right now that Apple just can do no wrong. With record sales of its devices and huge amounts of money sat in the bank, it’s all very rosy over in Cupertino. But other companies have had successful periods before, only for things to go a little awry in future years.

Despite great results from Apple ever since Steve Jobs returned to the company back in 1997, it wasn’t really until the iPhone’s introduction in 2007 that the world really took notice of what was going in at 1 Infinite Loop.

Now it’s a worldwide phenomenon, with people owning iPhones who would never have contemplated picking up a Mac.

Throw in the beginnings of a tablet market that is still being dominated by the iPad, and Apple have every right to feel smug. But it may not last forever…

The iPad 3 Wishlist

The iPad 3 hysteria is reaching a fever pitch, and even I am getting swept up in the excitement. So much so that I just sat down and made a short list of the things I would most like to see Apple add to its next tablet device.

Before I unleash my list upon the unsuspecting masses, I must reiterate that I do know that some of these are never going to happen, but that’s kind of the fun of a wishlist, right? Asking for things that would be mind-bendlingly awesome but are almost impossible, or just highly improbable.

With that out of the way, onwards we go to my iPad 3 feature wishlist…

Will Textbooks for iPad Change Education?

Yesterday, Apple held an event focusing on education at New York City’s Guggenheim Museum to unveil a couple of new products that are supposed to change education. Apple opened up the event with the video below, where teachers explained what is wrong with education and why many students do not get the fullest education offered — or simply do not graduate.

Apple unveiled three new products yesterday: iBooks 2, iBooks Author, and iTunes U apps for the iPhone and iPad. iBooks 2 allows for textbooks publishers to sell their textbooks for $15 a pop, while iBooks Author allows for anyone to create text books simply through a Mac application. Lastly, iTunes U is an iOS app that allows for teachers to customize topics, provide students with office hours, post messages to the class, and give assignments.

With these announcements, Apple is working towards changing education, because really, education is not where it is supposed to be. But then comes the question: is Apple really the company that should be taking this charge, or should someone else? Moreover, will yesterday’s announcements make a difference? As someone infinitely familiar with the inter-workings of high school education, I try to breakdown why I do not think Apple is up for the task…

Should the iPhone Mute Switch Really Mute Everything?

Right now it seems everyone who’s ever laid eyes on an iPhone is in the middle of a giant discussion about the same thing, and it’s showing no sign of abating.

The discussion of which I speak is, predictably, the one revolving around the behavior of the infamous mute switch on Apple’s iPhone. Namely: should it mute everything, or should certain alerts still sound as normal?

This discussion recently came to the fore after one unfortunate fellow found himself the center of attention during a music event in which his iPhone decided to cheerfully sound an alarm, despite the handset being supposedly muted. The result? The whole performance was halted. Oops…