Posts Tagged: Apple

You’re a left wing iPhone using pinko

No seriously it’s true that’s just what you are according to some new research that found the left favoured iPhones while the right favours the Blackberry (that hissing you heard just then was me dropping my 8500 into my tea).

The research was done in the US around the hotly contested race for the governorship of California. What it found was that iPhone users prefer probable Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jerry Brown and Blackberry users prefer the Republican Meg Whitman (the former CEO of Ebay).

iPhone users support Democratic candidate Jerry Brown over Republican candidate Meg Whitman 57% to 31% while Blackberry users support Whitman over Brown 47% to 38%.

I am betting that if the research was done in the UK we would see a similar left/right technology split. The research throws a fascinating light on the politics of technology. Apple with its cool design and sleek look has always had a particular liberal creative appeal as part of its brand giving it an almost rebel brand status that eschewed the dull corporatism of rivals.

It’s interesting to see that as Apple products have become almost
ubiquitous, and much more widely owned than when it was simply a
computer firm, its original market appeal does not seem to have
been greatly diluted.

I’d always suspected that as ownership became more widespread via the iPod and iPhone so would the character that makes up its customers and while there has been some change that we can lay at the doorstop of ubiquity apparently not as much as I’d once thought.

Apple owners it appears (whether they closely identify with the brand or claim not to: like me) are still broadly residents of the liberal left.

The research from new technology a identified a couple of other useful nuggets worth checking out as the general election approaches in the UK.

It found that a “supermajority of voters” use Facebook and that the social networking site is not just for the kids. We already knew that, but with 62% of the under 50s on it that gives you a lot of people to work with.

Facebook has more than doubled in size since the 2008 presidential race and with its broad appeal its role in a California governorship race or a general election might not be huge but it is not to be ignored. It can do something for your political campaign wherever you might be running.

The research also found that nearly half of voters follow candidate’s Facebook and Twitter profiles with 40% of social media users supporting or following candidates via Facebook or Twitter.

We read last week about Facebook’s rise as a place to read news (it is now the fourth biggest and apparently ahead of Google News) the research had more evidence of this trend with 26% of voters saying they read political news and information via social media sites.

Social media is quickly becoming the political norm and as pollster Ben Tulchin puts it “candidates need to adjust with the times or be left behind”.

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The verdict on Apple’s iPad – view from the blogs

It is only hours later but already many blogs are saying the iPad is not all that it is cracked up to be. It is apparently a large iPod Touch or maybe it is more than that depending who you read. Whatever it is or not it seems a little too early to be pouring so much cold water on the launch.

People are saying some really nice things and voicing some disappointment. That was bound to happen. The hype was out of this world.

The tablet was going to save the publishing industry in terms of books, magazines and newspapers and now they don’t seem to think so, but they don’t know this for sure as it is all too early and no one has really seen the content. It is as if we had the speculation and then the launch and now the second wave of speculation like some endless carousel.

It is the content that will make or break the iPad. Okay, price as well, but we kind of already knew that. Apple does not do cheap, but it has also sold 250 million iPods; it is a $50 billion company and the biggest mobile app firm in the world. Nice numbers. What is certainly true is that the iPad is beautifully designed and great to use and you don’t get that cheaply. What you get cheap is a make-do bargain netbook PC and they do a certain job.

What they don’t do is even half of what an iPad can do even at this stage, but it is definitely a pricey luxury product and not the universal piece of tech that will quickly create a solid revenue stream for content providers.

People are saying it might take a year. Well that makes sense. If this is after all a device that will have a revolutionary impact (rather than being revolutionary par se) then it will take time for that content to be created and come forth and for that revolutionary change to take place with predictions of three to four million selling in the first year (let’s not forget the famous Slashdot comments writing of the iPod).

As for content. It seems almost like people have not had the time and maybe this was all rushed. People were under whelmed by the New York Times app. Clearly they wanted to be part of this, but the iPad seems more about what the paper will do with its paid content system and that isn’t arriving until 2011 and by then one imagines the app will have been better developed and finessed.


It’s fast and beautiful
BusinessWeek The half-hour or so I spent playing with the iPad at its San Francisco unveiling yesterday was much too short a time to evaluate it authoritatively. What I can say is that it’s fast, beautiful and loaded with potential. I was struck by its speed and responsiveness. In the photo application, for instance, I could race through hundreds of photos in a blur.

Boy is it light The iPad’s really light and thin, weighing only 1.5 pounds and measuring half an inch thick. It was like holding a chubbier iPhone with a prettier face. You can tilt the iPad any direction, even upside down, and the screen will flip to display an upright image.

Great for browsing If you thought the iPhone’s browser was nice, you’ll love the tablet’s version of Safari. It’s been blown up and some of the buttons have been rearranged to better suit a larger screen.

It is just cheap enough
BusinessWeek “At that price, they’ll sell millions,” said Hakim Kriout, a portfolio manager at New York-based Grigsby & Associates, which owns Apple shares. “It’s very, very affordable for what it does. This is going to add a huge revenue stream for Apple.”

Ideal for that novel
Valleywag The silver lining for print media was in books. Jobs showed off an “iBook Store,” an iBook app for e-books, deals with five huge book publishers (Penguin, HarperCollins, Simon & Schuster, Macmillian and Hachette) and a format based on the open ePub spec. Jobs even said that textbooks would be a big part of it.

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Apple names tablet computer the iPad

Apple’s long awaited and endlessly speculated about tablet computer is called the iPad and CEO Steve Jobs has called it “a magical truly revolutionary product”.

The launch taking place live now in San Francisco comes ahead of a March 1st shipping date. The iPad has just under a 10 inch screen and is ultra thin like many of the rumours had speculated. There is nothing on the Apple site yet so difficult to work much out from this pic.

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Apple tablet/iSlate day as confirmation and more details leak

Today is the day and at 1700 GMT Apple will launch its tablet computer that as far as we know is called the iSlate. We know it is definitely positively and absolutely happening as last night a book publisher leaked details.

Last night Terry McGraw, the CEO of McGraw-Hill, went on CNBC and sung like a canary risking the wrath of Steve Jobs (apparently this can be worse than Khan).

He told the business news channel that his publishing firm had been working with Apple for a while as had a “consortium of other publishers”. We know this also includes the likes of News Corporation owned Harper Collins.

On Monday we also heard that The New York Times was forming a new “reader applications” business to be headed by Yasmin Namini. The NY Times has been linked to the Apple tablet story several times and it is expected the paper will be one of the key early content partners.

The paper obviously said that the timing of its new unit was “coincidental”, but it had to say that as the NY Times building is presently weighed down by a non disclosure agreement so large that it is said to fill an entire room.

Terry McGraw also said that the Apple tablet (he also referred to it as the tabloid) would be based on the iPhone operating system.

“We have worked with Apple for quite a while – the tablet is going to be based on the iPhone operating system, and so it will be transferable. So what you’re going to be able to do now… we have a consortium of ebooks – we have 95% of all our materials that are in ebook format on that one – so with the tabloid you’re going to open up the higher education market, the professional market. The tabloid, the tablet is going to be just really terrific.”

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Pay wall experiments to produce a pile of corpses in year of "media destruction"

Paid content is going to be messy business according to research out today. Ovum says that pay wall experiments by traditional media in 2010 “are virtually guaranteed to produce more corpses than successes”.

Any bets on the corpses? Ovum says it’s predicting that 2010 will be another year wait for it…”creative destruction for media”.

Did the person writing this just see ‘The Road’? Creative destruction sounds like a media apocalypse.

It says this destruction will come as traditional print and broadcast attempts to “relocate, retain and monetise their audiences online” and it holds out little chance of success.

Ovum says it is sceptical about the chances of success as traditional media attempts to reverse a decade of providing content for free. It says the industry is trying to “defy economic gravity”.

Advertising unlikely to return

It says with advertising in developed markets “unlikely to return to positive growth until 2011” the primary winners of attempts to move to paid-for content will not be media conglomerates themselves, but service and technology vendors.

What does that mean for The Times, which plans its paid content leap in the spring, or for Emap, which has already gone down the paid content route.

After the hammer blows landed in 2009 Ovum says 2010 will be about more technological evolution and business model experimentation.

Its Key trends for 2010

• An increasing volume of premium content will be pushed behind pay walls as audiences are asked to pay through micropayment accounts, as well as their clicks and eyeballs.

• The slow global bounce back in advertising revenues will polarise structurally weakened traditional media and new media in developed markets. Print media will continue to haemorrhage circulation and advertising income.

• Traditional media groups will look to sustain operating margins in the face of continued advertising market volatility by cutting cost from production and distribution operations.

• Former competitors in traditional media sectors will look to collaboration strategies to support pricing for premium content and prevent audience channel switching. A wave of consolidation is likely as media ownership rules are relaxed in distressed markets.

• Emerging markets will see an influx of traditional media groups and technology vendors from developed markets, but are likely to be disappointed when they find home-grown media brands and technology vendors reluctant to relinquish market share.

• Apple to play an interesting role with its iTunes as a micropayment platform and its promised Tablet device that could open new avenues for premium digital news.

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Guardian’s iPhone App sells 9,000 in two days

Some welcome news for The Guardian. Its Apple iPhone app is a hit and has racked up 9,000 downloads in the first two days it has been available in the Apple App store.

Guardian News & Media might be wishing it had pushed the boat out a little more and upped the price. The £2.39 for the app seems like a steal and has propelled it to the number one slot in the UK Apple App chart (paid).

So far the figures work out at £21, 510 minus the 30% that goes to Apple givivng GN&M a grand total of £15,057, according to PaidContent.

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The future of publishing: Sports Illustrated tablet computer demo

This is pretty cool. Time Inc has produced a demo of what Sports Illustrated might look like on a tablet.

With Conde Nast supposedly developing tablet versions of Wired and its other titles for Apple’s talked about tablet computer this really does look like the future of publishing.

Conde Nast has said it will have a version of Wired magazine ready for Apple’s gadget by the middle of next year. This Time Inc video, done as a was collaboration with The Wonderfactory, says Sports Illustrated will be ready next year as well and really shows how things might commonly look only a year or two down the line. Things are starting to come together at least in the sense that publishers are developing the products. Quite when we have tens of thousands of tablet computer or e-reader owners is something else.

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Is Apple finally ready to welcome The Beatles to iTunes?

Can you hear it? The nothingness? The strange and gratifying
silence that only comes once a year. The unnatural calm that precipitates out
of every Apple September event?

Everyone is holding their breath, mouthing the same wordless
question: Just what the hell are Jobs and Co going to drop on Wednesday?

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Apple getting social with iTunes

A new month, and a new salvo of Apple rumours to wade
through – this time concerning iTunes, with the web salivating over the
prospect of an iTunes/Twitter/Facebook/ partnership.

Thing is, it ain’t gonna happen.

Read more on Apple getting social with iTunes…

iTunes kiosks coming to an airport near you?

A patent filing uncovered by industry blog AppleInsider
shows that Apple has plans to develop a series of wireless iTunes ‘kiosks’ or
download hubs where users can load content on their iPods before travelling.

Read more on iTunes kiosks coming to an airport near you?…