Apple has sued Nokia in the U.K. over nine patents, in a continuation of the legal battle that has raged between the two companies in the U.S. over the last year.
According to a statement from Nokia today, "Apple's action is an unsurprising development, which seems designed to put pressure on the ongoing dialogue between both companies." It is not yet clear which patents are the subject of the suit.
Nokia was the first aggressor in the legal war, having sued Apple over the iPhone manufacturer's use of GSM, 3G, and Wi-Fi patents in … Read more
The first reviews of Apple TV are hitting the Web today, and there are, for the most part, no big surprises. (As for the CNET review: Apple has indicated that our review sample will be arriving on September 30; we'll have a full hands-on review with video soon after.)
As expected, the new Apple TV delivers largely the same experience as the previous model, with the addition of an all-streaming rental service and Netflix compatibility, all crammed into a much smaller design. But it's the $99 price tag that's the real attraction here: at that price, the device is likely to become an impulse buy in a way its $229 predecessor never was.
That's the idea, anyway. Unlike the weak competition the first Apple TV faced in 2007, the new one will be entering a far more mature market for Internet TV, with everything from game consoles to Blu-ray players to TiVo DVRs offering the same sort of video-on-demand functionality. Add to that the forthcoming Logitech and Sony products offering Google TV, and the long-awaited Boxee Box product. Already going head-to-head with the Apple TV, meanwhile, is a refreshed line of Roku boxes, with models available at an even cheaper $59 and $79.
Roku got a big boost earlier today with the news that the Hulu Plus subscription service will soon be available on all of the company's existing and forthcoming models. On the surface, that strengthens Roku's pitch as an Apple TV alternative with far more choices. Roku lacks iTunes, of course, but it matches Apple TV's Netflix and Flickr support, plus adds Hulu, Amazon, Pandora, and MLB.TV--in addition to dozens of other, more niche-y "channels" available on its ever-growing roster.
Hulu Plus promises to deliver all current-season episodes of most ABC, Fox, and NBC shows (and quite a bit of legacy content) for a flat $9.99 monthly fee. That means--assuming you're interested in shows from those networks--that the Roku could save you a bundle versus Apple TV, where your best-case scenario (aside from Netflix) is to buy shows a la carte. Assuming a price of 99 cents, that's just 10 episodes on iTunes (say, two to three a week) versus an unlimited number on Hulu during the same month.
Meanwhile, for shows not available on Hulu Plus, Roku users could rent or buy them on Amazon's service, which has matched Apple's 99-cent pricing on ABC and Fox shows. (We're leaving out a discussion of the Roku versus Apple hardware costs, and Netflix subscription is identical--if not less, if you opt for one of the cheaper Roku boxes. That's at least a wash between these two options.)
So, game, set, match Roku, right? Maybe, maybe not. … Read more
App developers praise Apple's iOS for its strong market share and revenue stream, but a huge number see Android as the platform with the most diverse potential over the long haul.
Among the more than 2,000 developers surveyed this past month by IDC and Appcelerator, 72 percent said Android is best positioned to power a larger and greater variety of devices in the future, compared with 25 percent who said the same about Apple. As a result, 59 percent of the app developers favor Android's long-term outlook versus 35 percent for iOS, according to the "Appcelerator … Read more
Apple could release a more svelte iPad by the end of the second quarter of 2011, Goldman Sachs said in an investment report yesterday.
According to the analysts, Apple will keep the 9.7-inch display in the new iPad, but will attempt to make it easier on the grip by reducing its weight and thickness. The analysts also expect Apple to throw in a built-in camera and a mini USB drive for additional connectivity.
The Apple TV is now shipping, according to reports.
Several publications, including Engadget, have been receiving word from people who've ordered the Apple TV that the set-top box has started shipping. The devices are scheduled to arrive at customer homes by the end of the month (that is, Thursday), but as early as tomorrow, the reports claim.
I also preordered an Apple TV. Although my order status currently says that the device hasn't shipped, it has been "prepared for shipment." Apple's order-status page still says that the device will ship by the end of this … Read more
One of the newcomers to mobile advertising is making its presence felt quickly.
Today Bloomberg BusinessWeek published some estimates of how the mobile-advertising industry will look at the end of 2010, and just a few months since Apple's iAds debut it's taking share from mobile-advertising leaders Google, Microsoft, and others.
According to IDC, Apple will close out 2010 with a 21 percent share of the mobile-ad market. That will tie Google, which will drop to 21 percent from last year's 27 percent share. Microsoft's share will sink from 10 percent in 2009 to 7 percent this … Read more
The Peel, a third-party device that apparently can transform an Apple iPod Touch into a phone, will arrive in the U.S. this week ready for demonstrations to potential retail partners.
The Peel's U.S. distributor, GoSolarUSA, has set up an agreement with China-based device creator Yosion Technology to make it available in the U.S. The device is already being sold in China. Under the agreement, GoSolarUSA will work with Yosion to file a patent and distribute the "Apple Peel 520" in the United States.
Created by two Chinese brothers who formed Yosion, the Peel wraps … Read more
With fresh rumors circulating about a new MacBook Air, and a makeover long overdue, what would constitute a great redesign?
The story line seems to be that Apple wants to insert the new portable in between the current 13-inch MacBook Pro and the 9.7-inch iPad, thus the rumors about an 11.6-inch device.
Assuming Apple actually has something like this in the works, I can't help speculating on the design goals for a new Air. Should it be a hybrid tablet-laptop? Should it be just a smaller, more powerful, more battery-efficient version of the current Air and pack features like a killer display?
But before I go any further, let me say that a recent write-up about the Air is spot-on. In short, unless you use the Air day in and day out (which I do), it's easy to mistake it for just another pricey ultraportable laptop. What makes it so different? Above all, the finely tuned distribution of weight makes it feel lighter than it actually is (three pounds). And I could go on and on with seemingly fulsome praise. The keyboard (the best I've ever used in an ultraportable), the razor-thin but stunning display, and the snappy performance, despite its ultrathin design.
My point? The current Air is a tough act to follow. Possibly one of the reasons (the iPad and the updated 13-inch MacBook Pros being others) that Apple has taken so long (two-and-a-half years) to offer a next-generation Air (or that it may not even bother).
Getting back to what a next-generation Air should be. Beyond the updated processor (Intel ultralow power Core i7?), what would be a good choice for the graphics technology? The Nvidia GeForce 320M in the 13-inch Pro? A step up from this?
Apple has made a small but important change to Ping that improves it considerably. It's not enough to make the much-maligned social network a real winner, but it's a good a start: An update to iTunes now allows you to interact with Ping directly from your music player, instead of having to make a visit to Ping itself.
So now you can recommend songs to your friends, and see the music they recommend, at the same you're actually listening to songs.
It's a such an obvious feature that it's hard to believe that Apple didn'… Read more
Despite a somewhat tepid reception last year for an earlier version of the iPhone, customers in China turned out in force today to try to get their hands on the latest incarnation, the iPhone 4, as it made its debut in the country.
According to various reports, more than 1,000 people mobbed the new Apple Store in Beijing's Joy City shopping mall today, and carrier China Unicom said it had taken almost 50,000 preorders for the device in one day. That compares with a mere 5,000 iPhones sold last year during the first weekend that the … Read more