09 Sep 2015

Thoughts on Apple’s announcements

I haven’t posted in a really long time. Mostly because of this.

I really like the below quote from Apple’s biggest and most biased fanboy:

Complexity isn’t the reason why Netflix doesn’t allow offline viewing. It’s just their excuse for not having it yet. It’s right out of the Steve Jobs handbook: something you don’t offer is a terrible idea, until you offer it yourself, at which point you explain why your solution is the first to get it right.

I think that about sums it up. the 3D touch has potential to really improve interaction, but as much as Apple would say otherwise, most of the other stuff was evolutionary, not revolutionary.

Apple Watch: Google and many others came before Apple watch. I don’t see them as competing devices though. If you want a watch, you’ll likely pick the watch that runs the same OS as your phone.

Apple TV: Many others came first, but Google and Amazon were first with a full app running mobile OS based set top box. Arguably Google didn’t take advantage of being first to market (Android TV is really good and has great potential, but is still buggy, and Google TV was an absolute embarrassment that nearly crippled their hardware vendor (Logitech). I am genuinely excited about the Apple TV though, as the industry follows Apple on a lot of things. Though Google and others launched their products first, Apple TV will probably kickstart developers to launch a lot more mobile/TV cross games. It will be pretty cool to play a game on your phone, and then continue where you left off on the TV or tablet. I do wish Google would invest more heavily in Android TV. It has so much potential! (maybe now they will)

iPad Pro: Seems like great hardware, but it’s a total rip off of Microsoft’s surface. Beefier specs, stylus, keyboard case. Check, check, check. I’m sure it will be good, but the main difference here is that the Surface is running a full blown desktop OS (for better or worse).

Another point that’s interesting. The latest and greatest chip is now the A9 and A9X. The iPhones get the A9, and the iPad Pro gets the A9X. Makes sense so far. But what if you want a regular iPad, or an Apple TV….. You have to settle for the year old A8. If I were in the market for such as device, I’d be pretty annoyed. I suspect the reason is because of the price points. Apple can get away with charging $650 for an iPhone, but ‘only’ $400 for an iPad mini, and $500 for an iPad, and for obvious reasons, they couldn’t charge anywhere near that for their TV device. So, some things have to give. I own a Nexus Player that I got for cheap, and it’s a pretty good device, but really, I have my eye on the Nvidia Shield Android TV. It looks great, has a killer specs (Tegra X1, 3GB RAM etc..) and will likely get prompt Android updates, but until the Android TV ecosystem improves, there’s little reason to get such a powerful device.