from March 2012
Evidence is mounting that Verizon may be pushing Windows phones over iPhones to customers not sure on which smartphone handset to purchase. Whether these are isolated incidents at a few stores, or a nationwide push by Microsoft to force their way into the smartphone war is not yet clear.
Microsoft attempting to inject themselves into markets they completely missed or believe is critical to the company is nothing new for the Redmond giant. The likely game this go around is to spiff local Verizon representatives with per-handset bonus cash or via weekly/monthly sales totals.
Episode 76: iGrill for iPad: The Three Guys discuss Apple's issuing of dividends to stock holders, the real cost of producing the new iPad, iPad sales reach three million during the first weekend, iPad hot or too hot?, Android development wanes, Apple Safari tab syncing in the iCloud, HP merges PC and imaging divisions, and a brief visit from Barry White. All this and much, much more in Episode 76: iGrill for iPad.
There were some rumors that Microsoft would be bringing the Office suite to the iPad. The rumor also stated that it would come around the time the 3rd generation iPad was announced. Now that the iPad has been out for a while, we know this part is not true. But that does not mean we won’t see Office on the iOS.
The App Store has many applications that can read Microsoft Office files, but they are not the same as the real thing. Most of them have issues when reading anything more than simple files. Microsoft also makes changes to the file format on almost every version. This makes it difficult for anyone else to keep up. For that reason, many are wanting to see Office come to the iPad. The question is will Microsoft bring Office to the iPad?
AppleCare has been a mainstay and profit center since Steve Job's returned to Apple. AppleCare is essentially an insurance policy for your Apple device should it fail prematurely. AppleCare grew in popularity and its "payback" became even better when Apple Stores launched and there was a real person you could talk to about your particular problem and get a real answer (not just "Well, send it in and we'll see what we can do for you.").
The question though is whether AppleCare is a good deal. Sure you're buying more peace of mind by turning a 1-year hardware warranty and 90-day telephone support into an overall three year support contract. The question reamins does paying an extra 10 - 75% of the original purchase price make sense? Is that a good deal?
The signs where always there, but how on earth did we miss them:
- Steve Ballmer throwing a chair across the room in anger, as he loses another valued employee to Google. Ballmer states: "$@#$* Eric Schmidt is a $#@% pussy. I’m going to #@$# bury that guy, I have done it before, and I will do it again. I’m going to $#%@# kill Google.”
- Ballmer believes Zune can beat iPod "The market will have two big players for a long time, us and Apple,'' said Ballmer.
- The day of Apple's iPhone announcement, Ballmer decries the product stating; "$500, fully subsidized with a plan?! I said that is the most expensive phone in the world, and it doesn't appeal to business customers because it doesn't have a keyboard, which makes it not a very good email machine..."
- "We're in an iPad bubble...", windows tablets mimicking the iPad will soon debut, however, and they'll get "sleeker, smaller, and faster", Ballmer promised this on stage at the D8 Conference, in 2010...
- Alain Crozier, Chief Financial officer of Microsoft's Worldwide Sales, Marketing & Services Group is said to have put the kibosh on Microsoft's sales and marketing teams from purchasing Macs and iPads with corporate funds. On March 21st, TUAW claims to have received word back from a Microsoft spokesmen stating "No comment."
The is nearly endless, but the theme Microsoft and their CEO displays over and over is denial running on a foundation of pride. Microsoft's latest salvo of reducing the Apple presence in their sales and marketing forces only serves to inflict wounds on themselves. Ad agencies almost exclusively use Macs, iPads and iPhones. Another 46,000 Microsoft employees are now left to figure out how to work as efficiently with their agencies as they did with Apple to Apple products.
One of the features I just love about OS X was the introduction of Spaces with OS X Leopard. Spaces allowed me to have multiple "desktops" and easily assign apps to launch in those spaces. For example, if I wanted to quickly get to my Mail I knew it was in space 2 and iChat, Address Book and Calendar in space 1, and so forth. This was a great way to run many more apps without having a super cluttered screen. It was almost like having multiple monitors on my laptop.
The new iPad has a number of great new features. The Display is the biggest change from the iPad 2. It will be the reason many people buy it. The new cellular data protocol called 4G LTE is another big improvement. Data speeds are now faster than most land line Internet connections. While this speed may decrease as more users come online, it will still be a major improvement.
The iPad 2 with 3G saw data download speeds around 0.5–2 Mb/s and upload speeds around .5 Mb/s. With 4G LTE, the new iPads are seeing download and upload speeds around 5–15Mb/s. Speeds vary depending on many factors, including distance to LTE towers. Yet many will see ten times the speed when compared to the old 3G protocol. For many, it is fast enough now to get rid of the land line Internet connection. This will not work because the new 4G LTE data network comes with a very big issue.
Friday, 10:30 AM Pacific, and a few people remain in line for the iPad launch at the Apple Store in Washington Square mall (Portland, OR, metro area). Evidently lines were heavy in the wee hours but quickly thinned out, as Apple had enough supply to meet initial demand. Some 4G and 64GB models were still available. But the remaining stock will likely run dry by the time Friday workers begin taking off early and flood into the stores.