Yesterday Apple released its September 9, special event invitation to select media with the message “Hey Siri, give us a hint.” Thousands of people instantly grabbed their iOS devices asking Siri to “give them a hint” to see if anything particular regarding the event came up. At times, Siri does say “Well, I hear there is something big happening on September 9,” but beyond the cute response, Apple's keeping Siri quiet. At times Apple has hidden hints within their invitations as to what may be coming. This invitation may also hold some clues.
Apple car rumors may be on a slow burn as of late, but that has not stopped Apple from hiring Tesla, Fiat Chrysler, or any number of automotive company employees. And Apple’s supposed off-campus car headquarters is as locked down as ever. All indications are Apple is quietly, secretly, developing their own car at warp speed.
An all-new Apple TV has been highly anticipated since it was a no show at Apple's World Wide Developers Conference this past June. Rumors suggest the revised Apple TV will be thinner and slightly wider, with iOS 9 acting as the software core of the device. A state-of-the-art A9 processor, Siri integration, an app store, Home Kit and possible Force Touch remote control are all said to be apart of Apple's new black box. But new high tech goodies come at a price.
During an Apple Watch special event in March, CEO Tim Cook announced Apple TV would begin selling at a price of $69. For years Apple TV had been selling at $99. The lower price not only saw an increase in Apple TV sales, but also paved the way for an all-new Apple TV to enter the market at a higher price point. The lower price for the current Apple TV also gives Apple the flexibility to continue selling it as an entry level option, competing with Roku and others in the sub-$100 market.
Apple has been rumored to be making the TV network rounds once again, in order to build an affordable and disruptive streaming service. Sounds great, but there is one mammoth hitch. If pricing is not aggressive enough it will not be well received.
Consumers dislike their communications companies as much as they disliked their mobile phones before iPhone. Comcast, Time Warner and DirecTV bundle packages are overpriced and deliver far too many programming options people do not care about. If Apple can bring to market a set of desired network options at affordable rates, Apple TV and its service would force cable entities to offer more choices, or lose subscribers.
Getting well beyond the rumors of an Apple designed car, and thoughts of its possible mileage breakthroughs or handling, I began to wonder what the experience of an Apple created car would be like. Cars are an extension of our personality, or perhaps more importantly, an expression of how we wants to be seen by others. Cars are personal and emotional. We spend years of our lives within a car, and thus they tend to be a big deal.
Steve Jobs always groused about how there were concept cars which looked amazing, and how he would buy one today — if it were available. But when that car finally went on sale it looked like everything else out there. Apple has always never valued the auto laden world of focus groups and has instead relied on their own internal abilities to ferret out good designs from the poor. An Apple vehicle would likely follow this same philosophy.
Rumors of both a 12-inch MacBook and iPad have surfaced in recent months. Where there is smoke with Apple rumors there is often a form of fire, and claims of the an iPad Pro have been heating up quickly. We have put our stamp of approval on a 12-inch MacBook, but a 12-inch iPad (now with a stylus?) have us questioning the merits of why a product should exist.
Research, rumor and a timely update, inform us that Apple will be holding a special event in February 2015. Exact timing is still unclear, but Tuesday, February 24th, may indeed be the event date, with an as of yet unknown announcement.
The rumor mill is rife with speculation, claiming Apple will be releasing an all-new 12-inch iPad Air Pro. Or is it a 12-in MacBook Air?... The latest information on the matter comes from Mark Gurman of 9to5Mac. Gurman is well connected within the Apple ranks, and reported his findings about as close to fact as one could do without it being set in stone. So which is it? Which rumor makes sense, if either do at all?
First, there is the 12-inch iPad Air Pro rumor. Most of the iPad information has stemmed from Asian tech publications, siting upstream supply chain contacts. DigiTimes leads the pack with such rumors, and is a publication having as good a track record as a broken clock (even a broken clock gets it right twice a day).
Now that iOS 8 is out the door, anticipation is building for the release of OS X Yosemite. The reason this OS X release is so important is due to its tight interdependence on iOS 8, which Apple calls Continuity. Never before have the desktop and the mobile operating systems been so intertwined.
I didn’t think Handshake, which is part of Continuity, was going to be a big deal until I was on a road trip and began to type an email on my iPad while in flight. But I discovered the email needed to be finished on my MacBook Air (due to some files and images that were not on my iPad). At that point I had to do some technical gymnastics. The process was not terribly difficult mind you, but now that I know Handshake is coming the current workflow seems archaic. With Handshake, I would have just opened my MacBook Air and there would have been the email in the same state as it was on the iPad, ready to go.
Apple drives media attention. In fact, the world’s number one brand and the products it produces are so popular Apple’s allure drives news cycles. So when something, anything, could be amiss with something from Apple, the media covers it as if our every breath depends on how well, for example, Apple’s iPhone antenna may – or may not – work. Accurate reporting be damned, this is Apple, and by reporting negatively on Apple it is bound to drive up viewership and public attention.
This time around, Apple is on the cusp of being accused of building faulty iPhones that bend or collapse far too easily. Currently, the issue of bending iPhones is just being reported, but this is exactly how antennagate started. It is said that those who do not learn from history are bound to repeat it. Unfortunately for Apple, the media learn all too well from history and are on the cusp of creating the next non-issue issue for their own well being. Before this story creates a life of its own, it is time to shed some truth on this forming bendgate storm, and discover if Apple products are actually flawed or if it is about some users and the media making news out of nothing.