Sunday, August 31, 2014

No iWatch Leaks - Why? And Not Much 5.5" iPhone Either

So far, we've seen tons of leaks regarding for the next iPhone.  Plenty.  They're mostly for the supposedly 4.7" iPhone 6.  And come to think of it, there has not been a lot of information on the 5.5" iPhone either.

So, why is that?

This is a wild guess but I think I might know why.

Both the 5.5" iPhone and the iWatch are going to be premium devices out of the gate.  So, what? Well, first let's go over what an $500 or more iWatch or $800-$1000 5.5" iPhone means.
  • The two high-end iOS devices will be limited to some countries.  Not many countries are going to be able to afford a large influx of these devices.  It'll eventually expand but on a slow rollout schedule.
  • Because of the price entry, markets like the US, Canada, some EU markets, and only the elite and status conscious in China and Hong Kong are will to shell out money for it.
  • There has been talk that the sapphire covers Apple plan on using for the next generation iOS devices will be limited in quantity.  If this is true, Apple will limit its use to the iWatch and high-end devices. Tim Cook has referenced in the past about the glass quality of phablets that were on the market.  
Taking into accounts all of the above, I gonna throw this out there.  It's possible (highly improbably) that Apple means to manufacture high-end iOS devices where demand will be limited in quantity in the US.  If my bored Labor Day weekend guess is true, it would certainly explain virtually no leaks on the 5.5" iPhone and zero-leaks on the iWatch.  

After all, until Apple unveiled the Mac Pro, there was nothing about its form factor, specs, and what plans Apple has for it.  And Apple was only able to keep things under wrap because Apple controlled almost ever aspects of the manufacturing.

The same could be said about the 5.5" iPhone and the iWatch if this is what Apple has planned.  And furthermore, manufacturing and assembling high-end and higher cost devices like a sapphire-covered iOS devices would mitigate the potential higher cost of manufacturing in the US and the higher margin would be able to absorb any associated costs of US manufacturing.   

And last I heard, "Made In the USA" still has a greater value than "Made In China".  Plus, it would be more in line with Tim Cook's long-term plan of being some Apple manufacturing back to the United States.

And with a closer to home manufacturing base, Apple has greater control over possible leaks and can more quickly move to close them.  Hence, no leaks on the 5.5" iPhone and iWatch.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Techcrunch Is Wrong About Apple's Past Copying When Talking About Xiaomi

Techcrunch's post regarding Xiaomi's blatant copying of Apple and casually throwing in Apple's copy of Xerox's GUI and mouse is very much erroneous and trying to equate Apple's past with Xiaomi is just wrong.

First, I would like to acknowledge that Apple did in fact copy Xerox. It's a very well known historic fact. However, it was Apple that used that concept and brought it to the consumer market at a time when the GUI was still sitting in a PARC lab.  There was no Xerox version of the Mac in 1984 or at any other time before that.

If anything, Microsoft's copying of Mac OS is closer to what Xiaomi is currently doing in copying what Apple does, what its products feel like, and the UI experience.

And the "one more thing" slide that Xiaomi even used on its product launch event (which Steve Jobs is famously known for), Apple has never gone as far as to place competitor logos on its website and claiming as its own.  Just as TC's post mentioned in Xiaomi's own product page.

Bottom-line here is that it was a different era back in the early 1980s.  And Apple did not copy something on the market and blatantly ripped it off.  That's the big difference here between what Apple did and what Xiaomi is doing now.

Xiaomi is just shamelessly photocopying all things Apple.

Xiaomi Highlights China's Problem And Reputation As Second Rate Tech World

Source:  9to5Mac.

Here is yet another example of Chinese consumer tech companies demonstrating their inability to innovate and using government shields to copy Western companies like Apple.  Here is its Miui 6 skin that runs on top of its own Android variant (san Google apps) where it copied the look and feel of Apple's iOS.

What's worse as it has been reported previously by various media outlets is that it even copied the look and feel of the iPhone 5 and iPhone 5S.

However, don't look for Apple to do anything about this in China anyway.  It's unlikely Chinese courts under Beijing's control will issue favorable rulings to foreign companies.  If anything, should Xiaomi become a threat outside of China, look for Apple legal to go to bat once more.

However, this is just one example of how Chinese companies are unable to innovate all on their own.  For one thing, the OS Xiaomi and other phone/tablet makers are using are Google's Android.  That in and of itself highlights just how the Chinese will be followers in tech for decades to come.

On top of that, the development of UI experience that is so essential to a user's experience is virtually nonexistent beyond being copiers.

At the same time, the premium on high-end Chinese consumer tech is very low as it simply only copies what many Western companies spend billions to develop.  This is something that many governments from Washington to EU capitals fail to address time and time again with world economic forums out of fear of making Beijing angry.  However, it does show that if Chinese brands has to compete on the global market with established brands like Apple, it fails miserably.

What's worse is the plethora of consumer orient issues that are not addressed with Chinese tech, security concerns like spying by the Chinese (Washington is right to be wary of Chinese tech being used in government), and other legal issues.

MacBook Air M2 - I Love It And Any Laptop You Get Will Always Be Right For the Time

The 2016 MacBook sitting off to the side still has some value as I gleefully starting using my MacBook Air M2 that I got for a decent price ...