Wednesday, January 29, 2014

About the Apple TV Not Being A Hobby Anymore, New Features, Costs

There has been a lot of rumors and posts about what the next Apple TV will feature and, over all, what Apple's television and living room strategy is.  I've got an idea about that I would love to share but that's for another post.  Today, it's about Apple TV.

There is talk that we are nearing another Apple TV update after largely being ignored for the last year since the last Apple TV was updated.  Today, Apple added an Apple TV section.  Any time Apple does anything, it's a big deal especially among the tech media.

And adding a specific section for Apple TV counts as that.

The talk around the Apple rumor water cooler is that Apple could add a router to Apple TV as well as give it the much sought after app gaming store and accessories to go along with it.  There is even talk of a TV tuner.  (9to5Mac)

Huge rumor.  And if true, I'll be one of the first to order one.

For the purpose of this post, let's call this new Apple TV the "Apple TV Media Center".  ATMC.  As you can see, I don't have much of an imagination.

So, folks, get ready for this.  It's gonna cost more than $99 that the current generation Apple costs now.  In fact, I think if Apple does release such an update, I reckon Apple will likely keep the $99 unit around for those who just wants to stream video.  In fact, Apple may even cut the price for the Apple TV to around $79.

How much will ATMC cost?

If the rumors are true and Apple does add a router, TV tuner, and better specs like the 64-bit chip in the A7, the build could triple the cost of the current Apple TV.  Given Apple's focus on profit margin, we are talking about a cost that could be three to four times more than the current Apple TV.

ATMC likely will cost anywhere from $300 to $400 - about the price of a console like an Xbox for Playstation 4.  A bit less but not by much.  Maybe even a $500 with something extra like doubling the storage.  After all, this is Apple we're talking about.  It'll cost a pretty penny.

Of course, I have to include a wishful thinking portion of this post and because I'm a fan.  Apple can try to keep the cost down.  Maybe $200 to $300.  Apple can make money back through a different manner:  iTunes content and game sales.  Also include a premium version with more storage as well.

On top of that, ATMC would likely evolve into a home hub for all things Apple.  And to control the hub, you would need an iPhone or iPad.  Which means Apple will be able to even further expand its ecosystem.  And that means more money down the road.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Social: Here's A Good Tip About Financial Decisions (Or Any Other Life Ones) - Do It Early In the Day

Here's an excellent tip from Life Hacker.  Make financial decisions early in the day, this way, you're fresh and likely to make more sound decisions.  In fact, I think it goes beyond financial decisions.  Any life decisions.

Okay, I get in the kind of lives we have, many decisions about life happens to be about personal finance as well.  Fine.  But think about it.  When you wake up, you feel fresh and energized.  Ready to hit the ground running.  And that is when you're likely pretty clear (unless you've got a hangover or something).

I've often felt this way at times.  By the time you get home from a long day at work, you don't much feel like you want to do anything much less decide on something, important or otherwise.  You don't want to think.  You want to get a cold one and just relax a bit.  Then it's dinner.  Then it's a little television or surfing the web or read.  Then it's bed time.

You're exhausted mentally, even physically.

When else can you make decisions?

I'm an early morning person so the advice above definite makes a lot of sense for me.  And this also extends to chores as well.  Best time to do it is in the morning.  Wake up half an hour to an hour earlier a couple of times a week to get things done.

Social: A Place For Google Glass And Other Such Devices

The backlash against Google Glass is to be expected.  And that's a good thing.  Over time, however, it should go away when proper public rules and etiquette is established and social privacy once again shifts.  There is a place for devices like Glass.

In fact, I'm waiting to see where this experimentation will take wearable devices.  So far, I've not seen anyone with Glass but that is likely because of the limited base that Google has kept under tight control.  Plus, the cost of the device is prohibitive for your average mobile user.  

And even if it was affordable, $200-$300 range, there are again the social backlash.  

But I see myself using Glass that I hope will have some neat applications.  For instance, during runs or hikes in the mountains, I would love to have information displayed so that I can see what kind of progress (or lack of) that I'm making.

I'm sure folks taking their morning walks are less likely to be concerned about me wearing Glass during my run or hike than if I were to wear that into a restaurant or restroom.  For the record, Glass has no place in a public restroom.  This should be rule number one.  

Of course, gyms too.  I have to make one comment about this.  Practically everyone in my gym has traded in their iPods for an iPhone or Android device.  but I have never seen anyone taking pictures in there.  As far as I know, I'm the only who has taken a selfie or two or to help me remember what settings my machines are.  Most of the time, my phone is in my pocket or laying on the pockets of a treadmill next to my water bottle.  

I can think of a few other places that Glass or similar wearable device might have a place.  But athletics seem like the most logical place for it.  What do you think?

Apple Should Prepare to Leave China (There Is Still Time To Execute Such A Plan)

At first glance, you might think that the title of this article is a clickbait considering that China is the second biggest economy in the w...