Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 19th Sep 2013 22:25 UTC
Apple

Great interview with Apple's executives.

When Apple got into the mobile business, it was Nokia’s world. The Finnish company was considered something of a miracle worker. "I'm old enough to remember when Nokia had margins of 25 percent, and there was absolutely no way they were going to be dislodged from their leadership position," says Kuittinen of research firm Alekstra. Says Cook, "I think [Nokia] is a reminder to everyone in business that you have to keep innovating and that to not innovate is to die."

Quite true. If a fingerprint scanner and a 64bit ARM chip are innovation, time will tell, but for now, Apple is surely still atop of its game. The amazing load of iOS 7 application updates and the rapid adoption of Apple's latest is testament to that.

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Comment by aligatro
by aligatro on Thu 19th Sep 2013 22:46 UTC
aligatro
Member since:
2010-01-28

But..but they've invented the plastic housing for their cellphones that can have DIFFERENT colors.But wait there is more! They also invented the cellphone cases that come in different colors and, most importantly, have holes to show the original color of your device.

/sarcasm

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by aligatro
by jello on Thu 19th Sep 2013 22:52 UTC in reply to "Comment by aligatro"
jello Member since:
2006-08-08

You forgot to mention the RED leather cellphone case ;)

Reply Score: 0

RE: Comment by aligatro
by Ultimatebadass on Fri 20th Sep 2013 08:12 UTC in reply to "Comment by aligatro"
Ultimatebadass Member since:
2006-01-08

It's not plastic, it's polycarbonate! Makes it 27.3% more amazing.

Reply Score: 6

RE: Comment by aligatro
by Adam S on Fri 20th Sep 2013 14:15 UTC in reply to "Comment by aligatro"
Adam S Member since:
2005-04-01

Stupid comments like this piss me off, seriously. I mean, what sort of pompous-assed ego do you have to have to post a comment that snide about the devices that are going to sell more than any other phone device in history? What it says, unquestionably, is that you're an elitist and that what you value is definitively not representative of the masses. Stupid or not, your view is not very common.

This is almost the same as someone trolling a Windows release article about how the sheep use Windows but should be using Linux.

Benchmarks now show the iPhone 5s running iOS 7 is faster than the "cutting-edge" Android devices running quad-cores. In other words, Apple invests in its software and hardware as a bundle, but Android users tend to use disparate, single-stack apps and more often than not, hardware that manufacturers care so little about that they stop supporting it within one calendar year. The still lure people in with gimmicks like 3D cameras or water-resistant chassis or a big speaker. Is that innovation? No thanks, I'll take the tight experience every time over that nonsense. FYI: I own a Galaxy Nexus and a BB10. I'm not on the latest BB10 and the Nexus takes literally months to get firmware updates. That's the non-Apple experience.

I'm sorry if this is harsh, but I'm so effing tired of this "Apple doesn't innovate" shit. This is a technology site and Apple is setting the bar for the mobile experience. If you want to post stupid drivel like this, please go to reddit.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by aligatro
by BushLin on Fri 20th Sep 2013 15:07 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by aligatro"
BushLin Member since:
2011-01-26

I think the OP made a parody of those who rave about things Apple supposedly invented but have actually existed elsewhere for some time.

I don't think they made any comment about comparisons with high end android devices or made any unfounded comments about how successful they are.

Meh.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by aligatro
by BenGildenstein on Fri 20th Sep 2013 15:26 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by aligatro"
BenGildenstein Member since:
2013-09-20

Stupid comments like this piss me off, seriously. I mean, what sort of pompous-assed ego do you have to have to post a comment that snide about the devices that are going to sell more than any other phone device in history? What it says, unquestionably, is that you're an elitist and that what you value is definitively not representative of the masses. Stupid or not, your view is not very common.

This is almost the same as someone trolling a Windows release article about how the sheep use Windows but should be using Linux.

Benchmarks now show the iPhone 5s running iOS 7 is faster than the "cutting-edge" Android devices running quad-cores. In other words, Apple invests in its software and hardware as a bundle, but Android users tend to use disparate, single-stack apps and more often than not, hardware that manufacturers care so little about that they stop supporting it within one calendar year. The still lure people in with gimmicks like 3D cameras or water-resistant chassis or a big speaker. Is that innovation? No thanks, I'll take the tight experience every time over that nonsense. FYI: I own a Galaxy Nexus and a BB10. I'm not on the latest BB10 and the Nexus takes literally months to get firmware updates. That's the non-Apple experience.

I'm sorry if this is harsh, but I'm so effing tired of this "Apple doesn't innovate" shit. This is a technology site and Apple is setting the bar for the mobile experience. If you want to post stupid drivel like this, please go to reddit.



What benchmarks are these exactly that show the 'dual core' 64-bit outperforming cutting-edge Android devices? Surely you are not referring to Anandtech. Anandtech shows that the few native run (ie. non Javascript benchmarks -- which are highly dependent on software implementation), the leading Android 'quad-cores' wipe the floor with the CPU in the iPhone 5s. Go ahead, take a look at the 3D Mark CPU-bound physics tests. The Snapdragon 800 is flat-out doubling the performance.

Apple is marketing their CPU as 64-bit and as such this characteristic is responsible for it's superlative performance, but that's not accurate. 64-bit can mean higher FP throughput, and certainly can address more memory, but on mobile these are not really relevant. Why the "64-bit" is most significant, is that it is an effective way to fool people into thinking that Apple is superior and leading the way for. But the fact is, most modern devices are incrementally improving, and Apple is sadly behind the technology curve the majority of the time.

** Fun Fact: By all indications, Apple did not design the CPU, ARM did. They may have modified an ARM design, but the R+D, and innovation was done by ARM. Apple just included it in their product.

Now, the GPU is quite formidable, but only incrementally so against it's cutting edge competitors in off screen tests; tests that equalize the playing field between devices. How long do you think this small lead will last? How long does Apple typically use the same SoC in their devices? If history is any guide, Apple's iPhone 5s will enjoy a few months of being slightly on top, and then spend the next year (or more) being significantly out-performed by the competition.

What I find annoying is that users see incremental gain by Apple as being "real" innovation. I remember when Android phones were running 800x480 screens, a significantly higher res than the laughable 480x320 screens in the early iPhone. But then Apple decided to make an incremental bump in res, label it 'Retina', and all of a sudden 960x640 (600K pixels) was considered "real" innovation. It wasn't long before Android devices moved up to 720p, significantly higher resolution (1M pixels). But that wasn't considered innovation. Currently Android devices have 1080p screens (2M pixels), but nobody is calling that innovation either.

** Fun fact: The current resolution of the larger iPhone 5 display STILL has significantly fewer pixels than the 720p of "low-end" Android devices (18% fewer). But that doesn't matter right? The argument then shifts to some other metric to once again show Apple as the leader. It only matters when Apple has even a modicum of advantage over its competitors.

But strangely nobody really bothered to ask the question: who really was making these screens? That is, who was doing the R+D needed to get these higher res screens (across the entire industry) on the market. Certainly not Apple: Apple doesn't make screens -- they purchase them from companies like Samsung. What they do, however, is trick the general public to believe that they do indeed make them and that they are revolutionary accomplishments.

This example of screens was to illustrate the public mindset that Apple has so wonderfully marketed to. They label minor, incremental gains as industry leading innovation -- gains that are happening in FAR greater frequency in other companies.

iPhone 5s's CPU has already been dominated, and the GPU will soon be as well.

** Fun fact: while Apple designs the SoC, ARM designed the CPU, and ImgTec designed the GPU. These components will be featured in other chips and find their way to some other Android devices.

This isn't to say that the iPhone isn't a nice device. It just is to say that it isn't nearly as special, unique, or industry-leading as it's being made out to be.

Reply Score: 7

RE[2]: Comment by aligatro
by BallmerKnowsBest on Sat 21st Sep 2013 15:50 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by aligatro"
BallmerKnowsBest Member since:
2008-06-02

Stupid comments like this piss me off, seriously.


Shocking. Because if there's one thing Apple fans are known for, it's their impulse control & anger management skills.

http://arstechnica.com/apple/2013/09/im-not-leaving-without-a-gold-...

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Comment by aligatro
by Adam S on Sat 21st Sep 2013 15:53 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by aligatro"
Adam S Member since:
2005-04-01

Riiiight. Because one person from a group is always representative of everyone.

Edited 2013-09-21 15:54 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Comment by aligatro
by BallmerKnowsBest on Mon 23rd Sep 2013 18:05 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by aligatro"
BallmerKnowsBest Member since:
2008-06-02

Riiiight. Because one person from a group is always representative of everyone.


That was supposed to be a rebuttal, was it?

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by aligatro
by henderson101 on Mon 23rd Sep 2013 11:19 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by aligatro"
henderson101 Member since:
2006-05-30

Benchmarks now show the iPhone 5s running iOS 7 is faster than the "cutting-edge" Android devices running quad-cores. In other words, Apple invests in its software and hardware as a bundle, but Android users tend to use disparate, single-stack apps and more often than not, hardware that manufacturers care so little about that they stop supporting it within one calendar year. The still lure people in with gimmicks like 3D cameras or water-resistant chassis or a big speaker. Is that innovation? No thanks, I'll take the tight experience every time over that nonsense. FYI: I own a Galaxy Nexus and a BB10. I'm not on the latest BB10 and the Nexus takes literally months to get firmware updates. That's the non-Apple experience.


I recently moved to Android from iOS. I now have a Nexus 4, which I'm really happy with. My previous phone was an iPhone 4, which I had for 3 or so years (got it 3 months after release.)

I installed iOS 7 on the iphone 4 just to play with it, and it is pretty nice. The UI is clean. No, it does not seem to be Windows Phone like... having actually used a Windows Phone device, it is absolutely different. It's also completely different to Android, given the lack of App tray. If you choose to put a lot of icons on your home screen it is slightly more like Android, but the lack of Widgets really makes the difference apparent.

What I did notice (having done this a few times before - I was an iOS developer for 2 years and went through the 3.x and 4.x BETAS on 3G and 3Gs), the speed of the phone is in no way diminished. If anything, it's less sluggish than with iOS 6. The scrolling is noticeably smoother, and the device stutters a lot less. This update made it feel like a new phone. Having seen the 3.X GM make the 3G run like a dog, I can see that Apple actually did something pretty awesome with this release! Does it make me regret moving to Android? No. My iPhone 4 still functions, and I still get to play with iOS 7. But I also get the freedom that comes with Android, which I have to admit I prefer.

I'm sorry if this is harsh, but I'm so effing tired of this "Apple doesn't innovate" shit. This is a technology site and Apple is setting the bar for the mobile experience. If you want to post stupid drivel like this, please go to reddit.


Well said. It's like kindergarten in here... too much proverbial genital waving.

Reply Score: 2

Rapid adoption
by darknexus on Thu 19th Sep 2013 23:03 UTC
darknexus
Member since:
2008-07-15

I'd say the rapid adoption of iOS 7 has a lot to do with the fact that, if you have any iPhone manufactured within the past three years, you actually can update. No messing around, no OEM delays, no carrier buggery or refusal to give you an update. I dare say new versions of Android would have that adoption rate too, if only everyone had a Nexus or Google Play edition device. Too bad OEMs are still allowed to fuck with it, as they were back in the Windows Mobile and Symbian days. That's one thing I do love about iOS despite everything, I must say.

Reply Score: 6

RE: Rapid adoption
by Nelson on Thu 19th Sep 2013 23:41 UTC in reply to "Rapid adoption"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

In my view, Apple commands (or at one point commanded) an almost unique desirability factor which afforded them the kind of clout needed to bully carriers into letting them control the pipe.

You could see this when the iPhone launched with Visual Voicemail for example, which at time was a completely new concept for carriers -- but introduced through an iOS interface. That was radical at the time (amazing, I know).

Android on the other hand gained critical mass by being the most viable choice outside of an iPhone, and for being as malleable as OEMs/Carriers want it to be.

So Apple and Android are both in the same place but the way they got there is different, and the way they throw their weight around is differently as well.

As long as iPhone sales hold strong and their engagement (from a platform profit, conversion rate, ad impression, and usage POV) remains high, Apple will continue to dominate with developers.

I'm glad Thom touched on the subject of iOS 7 updates an applications -- its extremely telling and a testament to the strength of Apple's developer ecosystem that there will probably be better "Metro Style" iOS apps than there are on Windows 8 and Windows Phone themselves.

Windows having a developer/app problem, who the hell would've thought.

Reply Score: 8

RE[2]: Rapid adoption
by l3v1 on Fri 20th Sep 2013 05:39 UTC in reply to "RE: Rapid adoption"
l3v1 Member since:
2005-07-06

Windows having a developer/app problem, who the hell would've thought.


It's not Windows that has the problem, it's WP (probably what you meant, anyway). And it's no surprise. You'll always find more developers at a bigger cash cow, and it's no secret that iStuff users pay more for apps and services than others. Of course, as with FOSS, there will also be crowds of devs who gather at friendlier pastures, like Android & co. However, if you can't provide either of the options, then you'll end up where WP is, where you drive manufacturers into the ground with your blind and forced effort to catch up with the flock and end up buying them just so that you can produce your device - even if you might end up building the great phone trash wall from unsold stock -, since nobody else is interested.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Rapid adoption
by JAlexoid on Fri 20th Sep 2013 11:22 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Rapid adoption"
JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

it's no secret that iStuff users pay more for apps and services than others

The split for an average developer is much less drastic.(According to VisionMobile Developer survey) Most of the revenues go to the top publishers/developers.
So unless you are thinking of spitting out 500 games at $1 each, you're better off developing for Android and iOS.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by l3v1
by l3v1 on Fri 20th Sep 2013 05:29 UTC
l3v1
Member since:
2005-07-06

and there was absolutely no way they were going to be dislodged from their leadership position


Well, there was no way, then they became a bit sloppy, and of course then came Microsoft and their Trojan horse who managed to drive a hurting company finally into the ground. History.

Edited 2013-09-20 05:29 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by l3v1
by renox on Fri 20th Sep 2013 07:29 UTC in reply to "Comment by l3v1"
renox Member since:
2005-07-06

Well, there was no way, then they became a bit sloppy


A bit sloppy?? Nice understatement for 'not able to manage programmers'.

Reply Score: 5

Apple Brand Power
by Adurbe on Fri 20th Sep 2013 10:13 UTC
Adurbe
Member since:
2005-07-06

Apple IS and has utterly defined certain markets, but mobiles it hasnt in quite the same way..

iPad = tablets
iPod = MP3 player
iPhone = iPhone

They were skillful/lucky enough to release the first iPhone just when the move was away from phones towards smartphones and have come to have a large share of that market boon.

What the next "gamechanger" is, we obviously dont know (if you do, pm me ;) ) but that will then be when Apple is truely tested. Can it follow the new trend quickly enough or will it flounder trying for years to catchup (Nokia/Blackberry). Sometimes, not being in the first wave means you are to late..

Reply Score: 2

RE: Apple Brand Power
by Tony Swash on Fri 20th Sep 2013 10:29 UTC in reply to "Apple Brand Power"
Tony Swash Member since:
2009-08-22

This is an interesting interview with Horace Dediu author of Asymco on 'Apple and Future of Computing'

http://etalks.me/horace-dediu-asymco-apple-and-future-of-computing/

Here is an excerpt with a typical Asymco pithy answer

Niaz: So many people in the industry now believe that Apple has lost its image. Fundamentally, Apple is a company that was built to innovate and to make great products. What do you think about the current performance of the company? Do you think apple has lost its image that it has created over the years as a center of innovation and building excellent products?

Horace: I cannot comment on how Apple’s image is measured by people in the industry. I have been listening to commentary on Apple for about a decade and I have never seen any change in pattern. The company has always been perceived as a failure by a majority of observers. With respect to its products, I also do not see a change in the pattern established over the last decade.


I found this thought provoking

]Niaz: Do you think it is possible to disrupt Google? How?

Horace: That’s easy. Google relies on keeping too many secrets. Giving away all that it holds dear will cause its business model to change. Let me put it this way: Google beat Microsoft because it developed and gave away that which Microsoft kept dear: source code to operating systems. (Microsoft finds it impossible to react unless it sells hardware–not easily done in volume and at a high premium.) Now turn the discussion around and ask what Google holds dear. The answer is the data which every consumer has to give. It’s now given freely in exchange for a service. But if that data were brokered by the user directly to the advertiser then Google has nothing to sell. For this to happen there must be a revolution in both the perception of what users give up when they use online services and in the ability of advertisers to act on their own to understand the mind of the consumer. If a consumer can become a free agent and an advertiser can do analytics then the economics of the internet (i.e. global information systems) will pivot yet again. Maybe Google will be flexible enough to pivot along but it will be a different company.

Reply Score: 6

RE[2]: Apple Brand Power
by JAlexoid on Fri 20th Sep 2013 11:27 UTC in reply to "RE: Apple Brand Power"
JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

In general - that is exactly why Google has all those strange ventures. Like Android itself - to make sure that their core business is stronger.

Google beat Microsoft because it developed and gave away that which Microsoft kept dear: source code to operating systems.

Last time I checked, Google did not beat Microsoft. Microsoft was(is being beaten in mobile) beaten by it's inability to move fast, not free OS.

Edited 2013-09-20 11:27 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Apple Brand Power
by ricegf on Fri 20th Sep 2013 15:09 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Apple Brand Power"
ricegf Member since:
2007-04-25

Last time I checked, Google did not beat Microsoft.


I disagree. I was quite shocked when I saw the limitations that Microsoft put their hardware OEMs for its mobile OS over the years. Seriously? No wonder they all bailed except the one receiving the billion dollar checks.

Microsoft seemed to have a knack for picking the next form factor that would result in explosive Android growth, and disallowing their vendors to offer it.

No, Google is beating Microsoft.

Reply Score: 4

Comment by BenGildenstein
by BenGildenstein on Fri 20th Sep 2013 16:11 UTC
BenGildenstein
Member since:
2013-09-20

QUOTED FROM ARTICLE: "When Apple got into the mobile business, it was Nokia’s world. The Finnish company was considered something of a miracle worker. "I'm old enough to remember when Nokia had margins of 25 percent, and there was absolutely no way they were going to be dislodged from their leadership position," says Kuittinen of research firm Alekstra. Says Cook, "I think [Nokia] is a reminder to everyone in business that you have to keep innovating and that to not innovate is to die."


This is classic mis-direction from highly adept marketers. Innovation isn't strictly required for a company to succeed, sales are. Now I can appreciate that innovation can help, but consider the iPhone 5s as a product:

It has a slightly faster CPU/GPU, a thumb scanner, a slightly better camera, a slightly different colour, and the OS has slightly different graphics and animation. These can certainly be considered innovations, but they are merely incremental improvements.

I would posit that Nokia has at least "innovated" this much, and certainly changed much more relative to its earlier phones as it has switched to Windows Phone. But I would also say that Nokia has failed to sell devices -- and this is the reason for their downfall. It's not lack of innovation, it's lack of sales.

Apple has a wonderful way of convincing the public that minor bumps in phone features are real innovation, and then use their popularity and high sales to justify the claim of innovation magnitude. And the public eats it up. But it's easy to see that this is logically invalid. What Apple does really well, is selling devices which is in no small part thanks to amazing marketing, PR, customer satisfaction, auxiliary services, customer support, etc.

As for innovation: there are plenty of companies that are innovating at least as much, with far lower sales and market penetration.

I'll say it again: innovation doesn't lead to success, sales do.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Comment by BenGildenstein
by ilovebeer on Sat 21st Sep 2013 07:03 UTC in reply to "Comment by BenGildenstein"
ilovebeer Member since:
2011-08-08

It has a slightly faster CPU/GPU, a thumb scanner, a slightly better camera, a slightly different colour, and the OS has slightly different graphics and animation. These can certainly be considered innovations, but they are merely incremental improvements.

None of that is anything I need, little of it is something I want (if you could even call it wanting), and none of it is breaking any new ground. Innovative is absolutely not a word I would use to describe the iPhone 5s/5c. Not even close. Furthermore, you can debate whether or not some of that stuff qualifies as an improvement.

Reply Score: 3

BenGildenstein Member since:
2013-09-20

"None of that is anything I need, little of it is something I want (if you could even call it wanting), and none of it is breaking any new ground. Innovative is absolutely not a word I would use to describe the iPhone 5s/5c. Not even close. Furthermore, you can debate whether or not some of that stuff qualifies as an improvement."


They definitely qualify as innovations relative to Apple's prior products and to that of the industry; albeit they are marginal ones (as I have argued above).

Definition of the word 'innovation':
1. The act of introducing something new.
2. Something newly introduced.


(courtesy of thefreedictionary.com)

Edited 2013-09-21 16:58 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Comment by BenGildenstein
by ilovebeer on Sat 21st Sep 2013 17:37 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by BenGildenstein"
ilovebeer Member since:
2011-08-08

""None of that is anything I need, little of it is something I want (if you could even call it wanting), and none of it is breaking any new ground. Innovative is absolutely not a word I would use to describe the iPhone 5s/5c. Not even close. Furthermore, you can debate whether or not some of that stuff qualifies as an improvement."


They definitely qualify as innovations relative to Apple's prior products and to that of the industry; albeit they are marginal ones (as I have argued above).

Definition of the word 'innovation':
1. The act of introducing something new.
2. Something newly introduced.


(courtesy of thefreedictionary.com)
"
Regardless of your dictionary quote, you're going to have a hard time getting a good number of people to agree with your technical & very narrow view that the iPhone 5s/5c is innovative. While you are correct on technicality only, I have yet to hear a single regular person aside of yourself describe the iPhone 5s/5c as innovative.

Reply Score: 4

BenGildenstein Member since:
2013-09-20

While you are correct on technicality only, I have yet to hear a single regular person aside of yourself describe the iPhone 5s/5c as innovative.


I agree that the interpretation of the definition may seem pedantic or 'narrow', but concepts like 'innovation' are not black/white/on/off concepts -- as they are frequently made out to be in common discussion -- but exist in various amounts ranging from very small to very large.

My use of the term in this context accepts that the phone and some of its technology are certainly new, but the improvements are arguably small compared to those of other companies and not disproportionately large compared to the steady improvements seen across the industry.

In any case, I appreciate your perspective. Take care.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by BenGildenstein
by mkone on Tue 24th Sep 2013 00:14 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by BenGildenstein"
mkone Member since:
2006-03-14

"It has a slightly faster CPU/GPU, a thumb scanner, a slightly better camera, a slightly different colour, and the OS has slightly different graphics and animation. These can certainly be considered innovations, but they are merely incremental improvements.

None of that is anything I need, little of it is something I want (if you could even call it wanting), and none of it is breaking any new ground. Innovative is absolutely not a word I would use to describe the iPhone 5s/5c. Not even close. Furthermore, you can debate whether or not some of that stuff qualifies as an improvement.
"

Every improvement is incremental. No one reinvents everything about anything anymore. The Samsung Galaxy S4 was an incremental improvement on the S3, as is the iPhone 5S over the iPhone 5.

According to Apple, they:
- Doubled the computing power of the new iPhone compared to the older one
- Improved the camera significantly
- Added a motion co-processor to offload background processing on to and to save battery life
- Added a two tone flash to improve pictures taken with the flash
- Overhauled the look and feel of iOS
- Included a fingerprint scanner on their phone
- 13 LTE bands on one phone
- Activation lock (that can't be defeated by doing a reset)

If you trawl back into the archives on this site, lesser innovations were greeted with much more hype here. Examples include:
- Face unlock
- Windowing on a phone (seriously)
- Dual camera
- Group play
- The much hyped NFC

Reply Score: 2