Three Guys and a Podcast: Apple News & Analysis
A long time ago I had the opportunity to accompany a friend to an Alcohol Anonymous meeting. It was a very sobering experience (pun intended). The building was old and the room looked like a beat up classroom. Light from outside peeked through the curtain drawn windows and smoke filled the air (this was way before any indoor smoking laws had hit the books).
I learned a lot that day. I learned that if not careful, anyone can slip into addictive, self-destructive behaviors. I learned the power of a support group and accountability. I also learned most of the people in the room were seemingly addicted to something else in place of alcohol. The smoke filled room was one clue. Another was "Bill" who needed to go from one support group to the next in order to stay sober. You may be asking, what does this all this have to do with Apple?
If Boy Genius reporting is accurate, Apple is setting the stage to make the higher educational sales competition a no-contest event this summer. The report claims Apple will be offering $200 off any iPad with the purchase of a Mac, which is an additional offer added to the typical free iPod touch offer given to students during the educational buying season. Apple offering iPads as low as $299 – it's a game over situation.
If you have any form of youth in the house and were considering a Mac or iPad, this "may be coming" offer marks the time to get some new Apple goodness. Students are on, or around, campus most of the time, thus a majority are likely to just go with an iPad wifi model. But many students will consider a 3G version with Apple's tempting discount, pitting Apple against its carrier partners, specifically Verizon.
HP's VP of European operations, Eric Cador, has claimed that HP will be better than number one in the tablet market. "We call it number one plus," said Cador.
Now that HP has thrown their skin in the game, this may mark the time I need to come back with a comprehensive article on why every tablet out there that's trying to be "iPad plus" absolutely stink. Cador also called Apple an expensive island, regurgitating a dated stereotype of the 90's (AKA Microsoft's diatribe against Apple).
Reuters is reporting that Apple isn't satisfied with the size of current SIM cards and is pushing for a smaller standard for the iPad and other iOS devices. The information comes to Reuters from an Orange executive.
Orange is one of the UK's major carriers along with T-Mobile and O2. Any validity to this? Who knows, as Reuters is an odd rumor source, and this is not typical for them. This could simply be an Orange executive with loose lips sinking ships.
"Stay Tuned" says Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon. Stayed tuned for what? A tablet. But before diving into that topic, I want to make one thing perfectly clear. No one in the tech industry is better positioned to take on Apple in the mobile computing space than Amazon – no one.
According to the UK-based V3 publication, market research firm Context is claiming 3G iPads are a disproportionately large chunk of overall iPad sales figures. In fact, Context claims the 64GB 3G iPad totaled a third of all iPad 2 sales in Europe since its launch. The surge in 3G iPad sales is likely to have pushed Apple's average selling price (ASP) north, but to what extent?
The last known ASP for iPads came during Apple's January financial conference call, where Apple COO, Timothy Cook and Apple CFO, Peter Oppenheimer revealed a $600 figure. But Apple's figure was from the Christmas quarter, when entry-level $499 iPads were likely high volume sellers (when compared to other quarters). If Context figures hold true beyond Europe's boarders, iPad 2's ASP for the June quarter will land somewhere around $680. How much revenue does equate to for the June quarter? Mr. Cook gave us an idea last month.
Cnet's Scott Stein comes up with five creative areas where he'd like to see Thunderbolt deployed. Scott has some creative – and some not so creative – ideas:
Hmmmm... We take a quick look at each area to see what makes sense.
Recently a big stink over user privacy has reared its ugly head again, but this time about one of my favorite products and something I use daily, if not hourly — the iPhone. Security researchers Alasdair Allan and Pete Warde revealed last week that Apple was storing logs of users' geographic coordinates in a hidden file. The researchers didn't know why Apple was doing this or what it was using the data for, but they said Apple indeed is gathering this information about the whereabouts of its iPhone users.
Unless you're slightly crazy, there's no questioning Apple's dominance in the tablet market. In fact, a year after the iPad's original launch, competition is still scarce. PC and cell phone manufacturers alike are struggling to nip Apple's iPad heels. Can these hardware makers find a market for their tablets and truly compete with Apple, or is iPod history repeating itself?
Presently, there are several issues blocking Android-based tablets success in the marketplace:
On Thursday TechCrunch's Devin Coldewey reported that Best Buy would no longer be receiving shipments of iPad 2's due to the Best Buy withholding iPad 2's for sale after they had reached an internal day's sales quota.
TechCrunch claims the news comes from a tipster within the Best Buy chain who is highly likely to be delivering accurate information. Coldewey was told that Apple COO Timothy Cook is working to revolve this issue. Cook's involvement would indicate this is not an isolated innocent by a single Best Buy store, but a practice implemented on large scale. Yet the question remains, “Why do this?“ It seems counterintuitive to withhold sales, but there are two reasons Best Buy would implement such a policy.