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tech wars

Apple Reignites Tablet Market with iPad Air as 'Confused' Competitors Fumble

Posted by Sheila Shayon on October 22, 2013 04:11 PM

Confirming rumors, Apple today unveiled an updated line of iPad tablets and Mac computers and laptops, capitalizing on the market's renewed interest since its record-breaking iPhone launch last month.

But the tablet market is becoming nearly as saturated as the smartphone market, with new entries from Amazon's Kindle line, Nokia, Microsoft, Samsung and more, so Apple is hoping improved displays and more agile devices are enough to lock-in its market share.

Apple, which counts iPad sales as its second-greatest source of revenue behind its iPhone line, unveiled a slimmer, faster tablet, the iPad Air, which features the same 7.9-inch form as its predecessor but sports an improved processor, lighter (1lb!) design and Retina display. The $499 device, which is pricey compared to Amazon's line of Kindles, including its new HDX, will also come with Mac's operating and work software free of charge.

Apple also unveiled a faster, lighter MacBook Pro with new desktop operating system Mavericks (which upgrades Mac OS X), as well as as the new cylindrical Mac Pro, whose futuristic look promises "screaming speed" and functionality.

In a major shift in strategy, by giving away Mavericks for free, along with free downloads of iWork and iLife, it's a tacit acknowledgment by Apple that software is a means to sell hardware—and that it's now in the shareware business.Continue reading...

tech wars

Rivals Gear Up for Renewed Tablet War Ahead of Apple's iPad Event

Posted by Mark J. Miller on October 21, 2013 05:22 PM

The world is gearing up for Apple’s latest event Tuesday, during which a new line of iPads is expected to be presented. Following a record-setting launch of its new iPhones, the Cupertino, Calif.-based company is putting its weight behind its tablets, as they are the second-biggest source of revenue behind the iPhone and are apart of one of the hottest personal tech markets to date. 

But while last year's iPad Mini helped keep Apple on top of the tablet heap, there are seemingly more competitors added daily to the race. For instance, Amazon with its Kindle line of devices is challenging Apple by keeping its price point lower on its latest HDX tablet, while Samsung is providing customers with a wide array of sizes and colors. And not to be left out, Microsoft is holding its own event on Tuesday to introduce the next version of its Surface tablet, with the hopes of attracting corporate clients.Continue reading...

tech wars

Samsung, Apple Look to Wow Consumers with September Product Debuts

Posted by Sheila Shayon on August 27, 2013 05:12 PM

The near-saturation of the handheld smartphone market is ushering in a new era of wearable devices, with top tech companies neck-and-neck in the race to debut the latest and greatest personal mobile product. Doing so could potentially lock-in customers to the brands' range of smartphones, tablets and TV platforms. Unfortunately for struggling Apple, it looks like Samsung is going to beat it to the finish line. 

Samsung's executive vice president of mobile, Younghee Lee, confirmed that the company would be "introducing a new wearable device concept called Galaxy Gear" at the IFA Consumer Electronics Fair in Berlin on Sept. 4. 

The "Gear," arguably a smartwatch powered by Android, has a 2.5-inch non-flexible display, 320x320 resolution, a dual core processor and is designed to complement the mobile experience.Continue reading...

tech wars

Tech Wars Continue as Smart Watch Race Gets More Crowded

Posted by Sheila Shayon on July 16, 2013 04:49 PM

Another major brand is entering the smart watch race as reports say Microsoft will release a Surface-branded watch in 2014. The news comes on the heels of reports that Apple is engaging is a hiring spree to bolster its iWatch team as the company combats some engineering issues. Others rumored to be entering the smart watch race include Samsung, Google and LG while Sony has released its newest version of its Android-powered smart watch and startup brand Pebble is selling out at Best Buy stores. 

Apple fueled iWatch rumors when it applied for a patent in Japan, the latest in a string of trademark registrations around the globe that could indicate that the tech company is moving foward with the development of its much-rumored wearable device. In fact, the Silicon Valley leader may be preparing to make a broad investment in wearable technology following its hiring of YSL chief Paul Deneve for "special projects."

Apple is also reportedly making moves to aquire Primesense, the Israeli 3D sensor company behind Microsoft's Kinect technology, for $280 million, according to Israeli news source Calcalist.Continue reading...

tech wars

Grumpy Wall Street Aside, Revenue-Rich Apple Sees a Lot to Smile About

Posted by Sheila Shayon on January 24, 2013 03:32 PM

Apple's flat profits and lower-than-expected iPhone sales dominated coverage of its Q1 2013 quarterly financial earnings call on Wednesday and sent it stock sliding, but the company cited several reasons why it sees a lot of opportunity ahead. 

Its revenues, after all, were reported at a record $54.5 billion — an 18% increase over the same quarter last year — with profits of $13.1 billion.

And despite news that Mac sales are down 21% year-over-year (with general PC shipments down 6% globally) CEO Tim Cook was quick to say the downturn was due in part to the success of the iPad — a "huge opportunity" for the company, he said.Continue reading...

tech wars

Is Samsung Galaxy Note Out Of Tune?

Posted by Anthony Zumpano on September 2, 2011 12:51 PM

Is it a tablet? Is it a phone? Perhaps both, maybe neither. And whatever it is, it comes equipped with a stylus.

When Samsung unveiled the latest member of its Galaxy family, the Note, at the IFA trade show in Berlin this week, the brand heralded a "new category of product, developed through Samsung's deep consumer understanding and insight." 

For the brand’s sake, hopefully Samsung’s understanding and insight includes the knowledge that a similar bigger-than-a-smartphone-smaller-than-a-tablet Android device with a 5-inch touchscreen, the Dell Streak 5, ended its yearlong streak of confusing and annoying consumers when it was discontinued a couple of weeks ago.

“But don’t compare the Note to that piece of impractical hardware,” Samsung might be saying. “Our device, which we’re calling neither a phone nor a tablet – and don’t call it a phablet – has…wait for it…a stylus.”

Samsung might be going out on a limb to promote the Note as part of a new category, but that brand message was part of the initial appeal of the iPad: a mashup of disparate devices you already owned to create the latest all-in-one device you suddenly can’t live without.Continue reading...

tech wars

Did Apple Doctor Evidence in German IP Suit vs. Samsung?

Posted by Abe Sauer on August 16, 2011 02:00 PM

Apple, it seems has a new app: the iJerk.

First, over the weekend, Apple opened a store in the Conestoga Mall in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada -- right on the home turf of RIM. But hey, it's just business. It's not Apple's fault the BlackBerry-maker's PlayBook is flailing in the marketplace. But then, there's the Samsung lawsuit, and your baby.

In a lawsuit filed in German court against the Samsung Galaxy Tab, alleging intellectual property theft, Apple claims the Tab "copies all distinctive elements of equipment of the iPad 2." Apple submitted photo evidence of the Tab and iPad side by side. But, as German site Webwerld (English here) discovered, it seems Apple doctored photo evidence in which the 1.46 aspect ratio of the Tab has been altered to appear to be only 1.36, much closer to the iPad's own ratio of 1.30. Continue reading...

tech wars

RIM's New BlackBerry 7 Models - Impressed?

Posted by Mark J. Miller on August 4, 2011 10:00 AM

When Research in Motion put out its first Smartphone with a touch screen, the Storm, in 2008, it was met with some thunder. A few critics found the usability lacking.

So now the company has tried again. This time, it is releasing two new phones with touch screens as well as three without. There must be safety in numbers.Continue reading...

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