Articles about Apple

Apple is boring

Apple Store France

Perhaps you have seen such statement somewhere on the InterWebs sometime during the last couple of months and increasingly the past few weeks. It's a meme slowly growing -- and for good reasons. While others innovate, Apple iterates and succeeds unblushingly well. The company is mountains more successful today innovating less and taking fewer risks.

Apple is the new Microsoft, where maximizing margins matters more than innovation. Look how much more successful Apple is by being boring and following where innovators lead. Consider today's Strategy Analytics report that puts Apple and Samsung tied for calendar fourth-quarter smartphone shipments. Such scenario was all but unfathomable two quarters earlier. Yet the foundation laid long before Apple cofounder Steve Job's death, when logistics genius and now CEO Tim Cook managed day-to-day operations. Risk-to-innovation defined Jobs' management style. Cook is more tactical.

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Smartphones: Apple ties with Samsung, Android still growing, Windows Phone still failing

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Samsung is no longer the leading smartphone vendor. According to a new report from Strategy Analytics, Apple caught up with the South Korean maker in Q4 2014, thanks to a record number of iPhone shipments totaling 74.5 million units. The two players now share the top spot on the podium.

How did it come to this? Well, it's simple. Apple's shipments increased from 51 million units by 46.07 percent year-over-year, while Samsung's shipments decreased from 86 million units by 13.37 percent, each converging to 19.6 percent market share. Thanks to the strong performance shown by iPhones, iOS' market share rose also, to 19.6 percent from 17.6 percent a year prior, while Android's market share dipped slightly to 76.7 percent from 78.3 percent.

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Xiaomi: Hand over your iPhone, get a Mi Note flagship for free

Xiaomi Mi Note Pro

Xiaomi is going hard against Apple in 2015. CEO Lei Jun recently gave several shoutouts to the Apple's inferior design quality on the iPhone 6 when compared to the Mi Note.

And now the next step in the battle will focus on swapping iPhones for Xiaomi Mi Note and Mi Note Pro at no extra cost, according to a new report citing Xiaomi's media development director.

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How many iPhones did Apple REALLY sell?

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The official number for calendar Q4 2014 (fiscal Q1 2015), ending December 27, is 74.688 million. Got to admit, that sure looks like a rather large number of iPhones. But how big is it? Really? Apple sold in the one quarter more iPhones than during fiscal years 2007-10 (73.946 million) combined, or twice as many as sold (37.044 million) during the same three months in 2012.

On its own, iPhone generated more revenue, $51.182 billion, than all of Apple in any quarter in fiscal 2012 and, singly, three of the four quarters in each of FY 2013 and 2014. The amount also exceeds every fiscal year through 2009, which revenue was $42.905 billion.

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Microsoft's Windows 10 has tight Skype integration -- are Google Hangouts and Apple iMessage in danger?

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I have been having difficulty staying in touch with friends and family lately. The problem? Everybody is using different services! Apple fans are on iMessage and Facetime. Google users are on Hangouts. Other people embrace Facebook Messager or SMS. Quite frankly, it is maddening. Lately, I have been considering embracing Skype, as it works on Windows, Linux, OS X, iOS, Android and Windows Phone. In other words, I don't have to worry about the platform the other person is on. I can have my friends and family use Skype to get in contact with me.

Luckily, Windows 10 will have Skype installed by default, meaning every user of that operating system can easily access it. I will not have to instruct people how to download and install it -- this is huge. Not only is it installed, but tightly integrated into the OS. Plus, with Lync being transformed into Skype for Business, Microsoft's communication solution may be poised to dominate.

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The Windows 10 presentation gets an A -- for Apple

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Yesterday’s Windows 10 briefing was weird. I mean that in a good way. Microsoft went all Apple on us, aping much of the style and presentation of its rival, right down to the "one more thing" which turned out to be a crazy holographic nerd helmet that was nowhere near finished and can’t yet do most of the things claimed for it. But has potential.

In the aftermath of the presentation tech writers began asking questions like "When did Apple become the boring one?", and that would have raised a smile or two at Redmond. Microsoft needed to shake off its reputation of a firm which makes dull, or flawed "me too" products, and for the main I think it succeeded.

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I sold my MacBook Pro and bought a Chromebook

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Yesterday afternoon, a San Diego State University student bought my MacBook Pro—13-inch Retina Display, 8GB RAM, 512GB SSD—for $1,100. I purchased the laptop from local dealer DC Computers in late-August 2014 for a few hundred dollars more. The buyer's interest was my own: Mac, large SSD, and extended warranty (expires April 2017).

The proceeds go to buying Toshiba Chromebook 2 (two, another for my wife) and Android phone for her. She moves from iPad Air, which has been, since September 2014, her PC—and that experience should be another story (be patient). If time travel was possible, I would keep, rather than sell, my Chromebook Pixel early last summer. The Chromie lifestyle suits me best, and I am excited to be back to it. However, in December, when reviewing the tech products that changed my digital lifestyle last year, including the switch to Apple's platforms: "I can’t imagine using anything else". I lied to myself, and unintentionally to you.

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Xiaomi reveals its iPhone 6 Plus competitors

Xiaomi Mi Note Pro

Chinese maker Xiaomi is going after iPhone 6 Plus with two new premium phablets unveiled today at a special event in Beijing. Called Mi Note and Mi Note Pro, the two Android handsets feature high-end hardware and, in typical Xiaomi fashion, lower price-tags than their Apple-made rival.

Xiaomi is calling both devices a flagship, although, judging by the specs alone, Mi Note Pro is clearly more deserving of the title, as it features the latest-available technologies. It is also better equipped to take on iPhone 6 Plus, which has proven to be quite successful for a phablet.

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Bushel makes Apple mobile device management available to smaller businesses

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Mobile device management is becoming essential for more and more businesses, but solutions are often complex and difficult for enterprises without specialist IT staff to adopt.

Software company JAMF which produces MDM solutions for iOS devices has launched a low cost, easy-to-use solution called Bushel aimed at small and medium businesses.

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Here's how to smuggle 94 iPhones into China (not)

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A man has been arrested for attempting to smuggle 94 iPhones into China by strapping all of them to his body.

Custom officers at Futian Port on the Chinese border were alerted to some suspicious activity when they noticed that the individual had a "weird walking posture, joint stiffness and muscle tension".

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Apple to EU customers: Abusing our returns policy? There's a cure for that!

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Apple has a system in place to deal with EU customers who are abusing its new returns policy, which it introduced in late-December to comply with local regulations. What is it? Well, those in question have to agree, upon future purchases, that they will no longer be able to return -- basically, ask refunds for -- digital content, once it is downloaded (or streamed).

Apple allows its EU customers to return digital content -- apps, music, and videos -- within 14 days after purchase, which has been interpreted by many as a green light to unlimited refunds. Mal-intended users could seemingly buy, say, games, enjoy them until right before the returns period ends, then ask for refunds, and repeat the process as they please. Such a policy could, indeed, negatively impact the bottom line of content creators, but it is, however, not the case.

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Apple CEO Tim Cook fast-tracks 'Je suis Charlie' app

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Apple’s rigorous approvals procedure means it can take quite some time for an app, or app update, to make its way into the App Store. 10-15 days is a typical approval time.

French news agency Nice-Matin created an app which allows users to show their support for controversial French magazine Charlie Hebdo, but was faced with an obvious problem. By the time the app was available in the App Store, support for the 'Je suis Charlie' campaign would have started to dwindle. So the company emailed Apple CEO Tim Cook.

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Samsung's new A7 smartphone is big, fast and thin

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Samsung has long been criticized for making smartphones that look and feel cheap. This has not only been the case with its low-cost offerings, but also with its mid-rangers and flagships -- you don't need to look further than the Galaxy S line -- which is supposed to be Samsung's cream of the crop in regards to design -- to understand the problem.

Fortunately, Samsung has paid attention lately, proof being the introduction of the A lineup as well as the design changes made for the Galaxy Note 4 flagship, which will trickle down to future premium offerings. And, today, Samsung is expanding the A lineup by adding the A7 phablet into the mix. It is the biggest, most powerful and thinnest of the bunch.

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Apple now a more popular camera brand than Nikon -- on Flickr anyway

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If asked to name the top camera brands, the chances are you’ll start with Canon and Nikon, followed by names like Samsung, Sony, Olympus, and Fujifilm. Apple probably wouldn’t make most people’s top five, but it’s long been incredibly popular on Flickr.

The photography website has released its yearly list of the most popular camera brands (based on the number of photos uploaded) and reveals that in 2014 Apple claimed the second spot, behind Canon, nudging photography giant Nikon into third place.

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Apple, Google and Facebook lend support and money to Je Suis Charlie campaign

Apple, Google and Facebook lend support and money to Je Suis Charlie campaign

12 people died in an attack on satirical French magazine, Charlie Hebdo on Wednesday. At time of writing, the situation in France is still unfolding, and technology companies have been quick to show their sympathy for the victims whilst voicing support for freedom of speech.

Google has donated €250,000 (around $300,000) to the targeted Charlie Hebdo title, which is expected to increase its print run more than tenfold for the next issue. The #JeSuisCharlie hashtag has spread across the internet like wildfire as people around the world offer support on Twitter, Facebook and other websites.

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