November 2017

Monday Morning News

Apple’s latest diversity and inclusion report tells us about the Apple workforce. While the overall split between male and female is still about 68% male, 32% female, Apple notes that half of all new hires from the past year were from “historically underrepresented groups in tech”. Female Apple employees have been on the rise, but Apple’s tech and leadership sectors are still skewed towards white males.

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Thursday Morning News

Bloomberg claims Apple is ramping up work on an AR headset in time for a potential release in 2020. Apple’s AR headset will have its own display and use its own chip, separate from other products which use a linked smartphone to do all the heavy lifting. The one thing I’m not really sure about is whether this will turn out to be another Google Glass, or whether this will have real-world applications beyond niche use cases.

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Wednesday Morning News

Six Colors talks about one week with the iPhone X. Jason Snell writes about the differences between the space grey and the silver finishes, the impressive camera, and the need for there to be some other way to invoke Control Center other than a swap down from the top right “ear” (we really need to settle on a common name for those things). There’s also initial thoughts on the iPhone X from MacStories, who extolls the virtues of Face ID as the Touch ID replacement we never knew we needed, while at the same time praising developers for having updated apps ready to go.

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Tuesday Morning News

The New York Times has a story this morning about Apple’s new tax haven, following close scrutiny of its tax practices in Ireland. With nearly US $269 billion in cash, and over $128 billion of that offshore, Apple has reportedly moved its operations to Jersey in what seems like another move designed to avoid taxes. It’s important to note that Apple’s US operations only account for about 30% of its worldwide profits, with the rest coming from overseas locations, making tax havens like Ireland and Jersey strategically important for Apple’s financials.

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Monday Morning News

Apple’s guided tour of the iPhone X tells you about all the new stuff, including how to use Face ID, Animoji, and Portrait Lighting. Ignoring the impossibility of holding an iPhone that still while doing a demo of all the new features, it’s a great, practical introduction to the great iPhone X-only features. There’s also the Apple support article on using gestures to navigate your iPhone X, if that’s more your thing.

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Good Reads for October, 2017

Every month, we’ll be bringing you a handful of openly opined, if slightly longer, reads about the wonderful world of Apple. Sometimes these will be profiles of Apple execs, some smart thinking about the way Apple do business, or perhaps even a video about an oft-forgotten Apple product, the likes of which was never seen again. All I know is, bring your own Instapaper account, because this is Good Reads.

  • It’s pretty easy to see Angela Ahrendts’ influence on Apple Retail. In the three years she’s held the position of Senior Vice President of Retail, we’ve seen an entirely new breed of Apple Stores appear, ones with more of a community feel and focus than the transactional and technical assistance from the stores of old. Buzzfeed’s profile of Ahrendts paints the picture: retail is dying, but Apple thinks they have some ideas that can turn the tide. Now, if only they could do something about taking the entire online store offline every time they need to update it, we’d be in business.

And now, after streamlining and simplifying the company’s e-store, Ahrendts is turning to its brick-and-mortar storefronts, overseeing an ambitious redesign, and taking the reins of an organization that went through a tumultuous 10 months under former executive John Browett, who was eventually fired, leaving Apple retail without a leader for 18 months.

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Thursday Morning News

There’s a lot to take in from iMore’s comprehensive review of the iPhone X. There’s the comparison of the screen to other flagship smartphones from other manufacturers, discussion about Apple’s first OLED screen in an iPhone, and plenty about the new cameras, Face ID, and all the extra features that Apple packed into the iPhone X.

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Wednesday Morning News

The iPhone X reviews are out, and the one you should probably be reading first is the one from Matthew Panzarino — not only because he’s one of the only reviewers thus far to have had the device for more than a few days, but because it reflects real-world usage of the newest iPhone. Panzarino took the iPhone X on a family trip to Disneyland so he could “use the absolute crap out of it” for several days straight, contrasting typical iPhone reviews which are used at home or during the drudgery of day-to-day life. Panzarino’s review also has interviews with a few Apple execs, including Dan Riccio, Phil Schiller, Craig Federighi, and Alan Dye.

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