Tuesday, September 10, 2019



The announcements from Apple today were significant in a few ways.

The announcements from Apple today were significant in few ways.

It was significant, I suspect, that Tim Cook did not begin with the usual status report. He said it was because there was so much to announce. But was it because the "status" did not have the status of his usual status report?  There were, in fact, a lot of announcements, but they seemed all too lightweight. Was he trying to boost their significance, by going right to them?

The most interesting reveal was not that Apple+ would sell for only $4.99 per month ("for your whole family!" he exclaimed). It was that he was seeding the subscriber base for the service by giving away free subscriptions for a year with every new Apple product sold. (That's only $60 worth, of course, but a lot of new subscribers.)

At least two of the new shows seem very promising: the Jennifer Aniston, Steve Carell, Reese Witherspoon series, THE MORNING SHOW, and a series, SEE, whose premise is that all humans have gone blind, but now children are born that can see.  It may be just a "protect the baby" action flick, but if, as it claims in the promos, it delves into what humanity would be like if no-one could see, it could be profound.

The game streaming service, Apple Arcade, at $4.99 / mo, is also interesting -- although, since all the games are new and unique to Arcade, they come with no existing traction.

The hardware announcements were the usual improvements in almost every facet of hardware, but nothing new and exciting. The software improvements in camera technology may be useful for some people. Slow motion selfies, or slomofies, are likely to find both popularity and ridicule.

Several of the promotional/informational videos shown were brilliantly made.

In a discussion of the chip technology, it was mentioned that they now have built-in Machine Learning Hardware, right on your phone. While Apple has emphasized they respect privacy, this suggests a new, broad front for privacy invasion, as every manufacturer adopts similar technology: What is the phone learning about YOU, and who can learn what they -- the phone (and other objects you have around you all the time) -- are learning???

Prices were generally lower. With high resolution photos, home videos, videos from Apple+, plus more powerful Apps and games, many users may need to upgrade phones with lots of memory, raising the actual cost.

There was no mention of AR/VR/MR.

In summary, this seems to be a year of building the services segment, trying to maintain sales, and waiting for major new products (next year?) with: 5G capabilities, AR/VR/MR innovations (?),  and (hopefully) some totally new ideas!




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