Another year, another month, another Good Reads. In case you’re new, every month, we’ll be sharing the best, if slightly longer, reads about the wonderful world of Apple. Sometimes there will be think pieces on why Apple’s design has strayed from the path, or why Tim Cook is the worst CEO since Steve Jobs, but the only thing we know for sure is that they’ll always bring a kind of discussion to the table that we don’t generally see in the daily news. Bring your own Instapaper account or read-it-later service of choice, because this is Good Reads.
- With Apple’s financials being released earlier this week, it’s time for some in-depth analysis on where Apple is going with all that cash. With close to two thirds of Apple’s revenue coming from the iPhone, Neil Cybart of Above Avalon writes that Apple is currently the iPhone company, but given that Apple themselves have predicted iPhone sales falling off next quarter, what’s next?
[…] there are clues that Apple not only has little interest in that strategy, but has already been thinking of new products in an effort to move beyond the iPhone. Management is aware that iPhone growth will not continue indefinitely and that at a certain point Apple’s resources will be better spent coming up with new products that can do an even better job at making technology more personal.
Apple’s latest acquisition is LearnSprout, an education analytics company. LearnSprout is used by educators to track student performance and other metrics, and with Apple’s renewed focus on education tools with recent iOS features, this kind of software acqusition makes perfect sense and lines up with previous Apple acquisitions.
With Apple’s latest quarterly financial results out in the open, the graphs of how Apple is doing compared to previous quarters come courtesy of Six Colors, who publish the graphs themselves in six colours. 68% of Apple’s Q1 2016 revenue came from the iPhone, which should give you some idea of how important the mobile device is to Apple’s bottom line, and while growth in other areas isn’t completely insane, Apple is still in a very good position, financially.
I think Apple’s latest financial results just managed to sneak in, and while the analysis is yet to come, Apple has reported a record first quarter. Briefly: revenue was at $75.9 billion, with $18.4 billion in profit. TechCrunch writes Apple sold 74.8 million iPhones, 16.1 million iPads, and 5.3 million Macs during the period ending December 26, 2015.
Anandtech published their iPad Pro review over the weekend, which is significant not only because the iPad Pro is one of Apple’s most different tablets yet, but because it also brings a new set of technologies to the table that ensure tablets stay relevant, at least for the next few years. First-party accessories alone are where the iPad Pro “earns its “Pro” moniker on the basis of its accessories”, but the Apple Pencil means that it’s “shockingly good as a pencil/pen and paper replacement”.
Apple will be opening Europe’s first app development centre in Italy, partnering with an institution in Naples to deliver specialised iOS app development training. The press release from Apple isn’t big on details, but says Apple will be working with partners all over Italy to deliver complementary curriculum in order to create additional opportunities for students. Whatever this means, this can only be a good thing for the app ecosystem.
Apple’s latest app is Music Memos, which is described as an app to quickly capture your song ideas whenever inspiration strikes. It’s essentially the music version of Notes musos have been looking for, recording high-quality uncompressed audio from the iPhone’s microphone or via an external microphone. You can even add backing drums and bass, which takes cues from your recording and intelligently adjusts according to how you’re playing.
Remember the Samsung vs Apple court case that raged on for weeks and months, years ago? The legal battle, which started over five years ago, has finally had some “results”, if you can call them that: Ars Technica says that one month from now, Samsung will be banned from selling certain smartphones in the US for infringing on Apple’s patents. But here’s the thing: the newest device involved in the case is now so old it’s irrelevant and already no longer sold, meaning the actual impact from thousands of man hours is a more of a moral victory, rather than anything else. Feel free to draw your own conclusions about the patent and legal system.
After supplying Apple with her late husband’s will and death certificate, Apple asked for a court order from a Canadian widow before they would supply with her late husband’s password to his Apple ID account. But if you were looking for controversy, that’s where this story ends: after the media was involved, Apple implicitly acknowledged it went too far, Apple allowed the woman access to her husband’s Apple ID.