While Benny is on a well-deserved holiday, I’ll be looking after the news – bear with me until normal service resumes.
In an unusual move, Apple has killed Schrödinger’s MVNO by explicitly denying it is working on such a thing. Business Insider had previously reported that Apple were in talks to lease network capacity from an established operator and sell directly to consumers in the US and Europe. The company normally does not comment on rumour, much less issue unambiguous denials like this. One to keep an eye on.
In a world first, Telstra appears to have confirmed carrier billing is available for Apple Music. New and recontracting customers will receive a free 12-month subscription; after this point, Telstra will bill the customer directly for the ongoing subscription by linking their Telstra account to an Apple ID. No word on whether this will be an available option for other telcos, either here or elsewhere in the world.
In other Telstra news, the telco has announced a partnership with Roku for their Telstra TV service launching in September. The Roku 2 will be used to deliver access to streaming platforms and other applications yet to be confirmed. The set-top box in use will be the current version released in April 2015; the internals are identical to the simultaneously-released Roku 3, which differs only in its remote having additional capabilities.
My favourite software house Panic have released a huge update to their Status Board app for iPad. The design has been updated and several new panel types have been added. The app is now free with the new panel types available via in-app purchase; however, these are free for existing users.
Finally, there are new betas of OS X 10.11 El Capitan available in both developer and public flavours. Hit up Software Update to get yours.
The featured image above is from Panic and Campo Santo’s upcoming game Firewatch, which I’m really looking forward to.
Every month, we’ll be bringing you a selection of the best, if slightly longer, reads from around the web about the wonderful world of Apple. Sometimes we’ll feature think pieces on how Apple is (or isn’t) doomed, other times it will be some good old fashioned analysis of Apple’s latest product, strategy, or service. Bring your own Instapaper account, because this is Good Reads.
- Neil Cybart of Above Avalon took one look at Apple’s latest financials and came to one conclusion: the iPhone is taking over Apple. July marked the eighth anniversary of Apple’s revolutionary mobile phone, widescreen iPod with touch controls, and a breakthrough internet communications device, and with over 726 million iPhones sold, the iPhone-train doesn’t look like its slowing down anytime soon.
From a financial and business perspective, the iPhone is the only product that matters. The iPhone is amassing so much power at Apple, it is difficult to imagine any product being able to dramatically surpass the iPhone in terms of importance over the next five years. Apple will be the iPhone company for the foreseeable future, and that classification introduces opportunities and risks that Apple will need to navigate over the coming years.
MacRumors brings us the news that while Apple is still the largest vendor in the tablet marketplace, it’s no longer the once dominant player, at least in terms of market share. The numbers from IDC tell most of the story: Apple sold 10.9 million tablets in Q2 2015, but for the first time, fell below 25% of the worldwide tablet marketshare.
Ars Technica’s review of the sixth generation iPod touch says it’s a device that has been mostly overshadowed by the iPhone, but still has its uses. While the internals of the latest iPod touch might be of the same calibre as its iPhone relatives, the iPod touch just lacks hardware compared to the iPhone: there’s no vibration motor, ambient light sensor, GPS, or flash. Still, it’s unlike any other music player in its category, and it’s amazing to think that after all these years, there’s still no real iPod touch competitor.
First people wanted a bigger iPhone. Now people want a smaller iPhone. Business Insider reports one analyst saying that Apple considered making a four-inch version of the iPhone 6, but scrapped the idea after realising they would be cannibalising sales of the iPhone 6.
Apple’s latest micro-site explains why there’s nothing quite like an iPhone, complete with snazzy animations and parallax-scrolling. In keeping with their recent “if it’s not an iPhone, it’s not an iPhone” ad campaign, Apple says that they believe phones should be more than just a collection of features, running through other features that make the iPhone unlike any other.
Jim Dalymple says Apple Music is a nightmare, and he’s not alone. He writes that using Apple Music for even the simplest of advertised tasks felt like a burden, encountering unexplained difficulties and having to use convoluted workarounds for tasks that should have, like the old Apple adage goes, “just worked”. A summary of his woes at Six Colors echoes his sentiments — I know people were afraid of Apple moving music to the cloud, and it turns out, for good reason.
A transcript from iMore on what Apple CEO Tim Cook said during yesterday’s quarterly earnings conference call tells you everything you need to know about Apple’s financial state. After covering off the iPhone, Mac, services, and Apple in China, Cook spoke at length about the successes of the Apple Watch so far, talking about the high customer satisfaction of the device and how Apple will be working with institutions to advance medical research using data gathered from the Apple Watch.
The story for Apple’s quarterly financial results continues as it always has: a profit of $10.7 billion in Q3 2015 compares favourably to $7.7 billion in the year-ago quarter, and international sales now account for 64% of the quarter’s revenue, according to Apple’s press release. Tim Cook says there’s been a great start to the Apple Watch, and while specific sales numbers of Apple’s wearable haven’t been released by the company, perspective on Apple Watch sales numbers means we probably won’t know how it’s going for years to come.
When Apple kept the 16GB storage tier but ditched the 32GB, pretty much everyone though it was a strange move. Why not ditch the 16GB and start the storage capacity at 32GB instead? A new rumour claims they might be doing just that with the release of the next iPhone, with this year’s iPhone refresh to drop the 16GB capacity and start from 32GB.