2013 might well be known as the year that the race to the bottom really heated up. As in the sport of limbo, smartphone manufacturers see how low they can go with the price of their wares. Racing to the bottom is nothing new. It happens in every industry. I don't just want to note the fact that it happened, but also the reasons. And since it really is a race, we might even take a brief look at who is winning.
The above headline is actually quite reasonable. In fact, I would say it is rather good. But that is not the type of headline that's getting my blood pressure up these days. The offending headlines read more like, Chromebooks beats Windows laptops and Macbooks in 2013 US sales growth, and, Why the Chromebook is beating the MacBook, and, NPD: Chromebooks Enjoy 21% of Notebook Sales in 2013, and... And they're all lies! Here's what you need to know:
Apple put out a number of great products this year. The latest entrant is one that I have not seen, and will likely never be able to put through its paces. I am refering to the Mac Pro released just days ago. Though it does not win this year's award, it is an example of how great the offerings were. If the Mac Pro is the loser, what could posibly be the winner? Let's find out...
Do you remember when Android first came out? Does anybody? The internet has a very short memory, So let this be a reminder; Android was actually in development before the iPhone was introduced. Here is something else you may have forgotten. Android was originally a clone of the Blackberry OS. At the time, the was no iOS to copy. Once the iPhone was unveiled, Google scrapped their Blackberry clone, and started making an iPhone clone.
Alone, this data point probably means very little. After all, it is based on the research of Piper Jaffray, an analyst: a class of pundit that is almost never right about anything. In this case, they looked at 25,000 recent tweets to determine what people were asking Santa for Christmas. More people asked for an iPhone. The second most requested item was a PS4. That does not mean that they will get iPhones, just that they want it, badly. In case you were wondering, the iPad was a close third.
Don't shoot the messenger. I'm not being tasteless for the sake of being tasteless. The bit of headline that caught your eye is a quote from a Qualcomm insider. In an unexpected fit of honesty, he said a lot of things. Apple turned the industry on its ear when they announced the iPhone 5s. The 64-bit A7 chip is a revolutionary advance that took the chip world by storm. While everyone took pains to publicly downplay the advance, privately, they were sweating blood. Here's a few examples:
Do you feel misunderstood because of your iPhone addiction? Then perhaps you can claim to be just like the star of Apple's new, heartwarming holiday iPhone ad.
Why are Amazon and Google talking about delivery drones and autonomous robots instead of real products that people can actually buy this holiday season? Last week Jeff Bezos: Amazon CEO, sat down with Charlie Rose of 60 Minutes. This aired on the eve of Cyber Monday: the time when people are thinking about where to continue their shopping spree for the latest and greatest consumer goods. They turn on the TV to find the head of the world's biggest shopping center, quite literally, droning on about autonomous drones.
So, you went ahead and bought that Android phone, tablet, thing, despite my warnings. Well, you’ve stepped in it now, and you might not even realize it. There is a new, Android app masquerading as a flash light, but is secretly tracking your every movement, and sharing it with advertisers. The app in question was downloaded over 50 million times.
Are you planning to stuff a few stockings with iPods, iPhones, or iPads? I could sure use a new iMac, hint, hint. Well. Here's the thing. Unlike Google, Amazon, and Microsoft, Apple will actually be selling boatloads of the most sought-after products to people all over the world. If you want to get yours in time, you might want to go ahead and place your order right now.
37% of online sales are done on mobile devices. iPhones and iPads account for almost all of those devices. That was certainly the case on Black Friday. I am for anything that takes more Black Friday sales online and off the streets. We are constantly told that there are more Android phones and tablets than iPhones and iPads, so why are mobile purchases so skewed in favor of iOS?
Microsoft is no stranger to paid endorsements. They will happily hand over truckloads of money to any celebrity who will take it, and pretend to like their products. This time, it's the Pawn Stars. In a slight twist, the ad is not promoting any particular Microsoft product, but slams the Google Chromebook, and Google in general.
Remember the Motorola Razr? It looked nice, was expensive and profitable, and people liked it. Sure, it was a piece of junk, with a failure rate that rivals the original Xbox, but people liked it. Today, Motorola is repackaging their junk. These days, motorola has the stink of bottom feeders. Their phones are dirt cheap, unprofitable, people don't like them, and they look like the junk they are. Say hello to the Moto X and the Moto G.
Sometimes we iPhone and iPad users don't realize how lucky we are. Apple puts a lot of time, money, and energy into coming up with new ways to make using technology a joy. They put equal resources into making it safe and secure. Things Apple prioritizes are mere afterthoughts for competitors, until, that is, they see the competitive advance such features give Apple. Activation Lock is one of those features. Unfortunately for competitors, their attempt to copy it has hit a bit of a snag.
The i in business is small, and largely goes unnoticed. Yet, it wouldn't be "business" without it. That is the way it is with Apple in the enterprise. Apple is not the first company that comes to mind when thinking about the enterprise sector. Yet, the post-PC solution of choice among businesses is Apple.
Today, Google has been publicly smacked down by their close partner, Verizon. It all has to do with Google's latest, Nexus 7. When it comes to tablets, Google has delusions of grander, thinking their Nexus 7 is equal to the iPad, only cheaper. Verizon set the record straight in no uncertain terms. This is going to leave a mark.
I have been somewhat hesitant to post this rumor because there are a ton of technical challenges to overcome for this to come to fruition. However, there are also a few reasons to believe that the iPad mini is going retina as early as next month...