They could release a revolutionary 60-inch 4K TV for $99 with built-in nanobots to assemble and dispense free smartwatches, and people would complain that it should cost $49 and the nanobots aren’t open enough. — Marco Arment, correctly calling out the current pessimism surrounding Apple in the press (and on Wall Street) while also arguing for an “iPhone 6” moniker for the next iPhone — or really anything but the “iPhone 5S”. (via parislemon)
The Next Xbox Will Take Over Your TV -
Tom Warren for The Verge:
The functionality will work by taking a cable box signal and passing it through to the Xbox via HDMI, allowing Microsoft’s console to overlay a UI and features on top of an existing TV channel or set-top box. We’re told that this is a key part of the next-generation Xbox and that it will go a step further than Google’s TV implementation thanks to Microsoft’s partnerships with content providers. Extended support for various cable services will be rolled out gradually, but the basic functionality will be available at launch.
While Google TV obviously went nowhere, I view this as a smart play by Microsoft. The content partnerships are key. Let’s hope they can get all of them in place.
On the other hand:
Coupled with this TV functionality, Microsoft’s next-generation Kinect sensor will also play a role in the company’s TV focus. The Verge has learned that the next Kinect will detect multiple people simultaneously, including the ability to detect eye movement to pause content when a viewer turns their head away from a TV.
I really don’t understand this functionality. It sounds like a stupid novelty in the new Samsung Galaxy phone, and I think it’s worse here. Given how many people now “watch” TV with a second screen, is it going to pause every three seconds?
Executive found to run Apple Retail; looks familiar -
Erica Ogg for GigaOm:
Ron Johnson is out as CEO of J.C. Penney. After less than two years on the job, it’s not quite clear what the next step would be for him. Luckily for him, it just so happens that Johnson’s former employer, Apple, has an opening for someone with his qualifications: SVP of Retail.
Yes, that’s Johnson’s old job, the one that he held for more than 10 years. And he was really, really good at it.
Sometimes you can go home again. This should probably be one of those times.
The retail team would be so excited to have him back.
Doing it wrong: Just over a year after he started, Ron Johnson is out as J.C. Penney’s CEO. Johnson, who built his career on the conception of the Apple Store, tried a bold strategy of across-the-board price cuts to buoy the department store chain, only to see that strategy totally fail in the marketplace. Johnson will be replaced by Mike Ullman, the man Johnson replaced in 2011. (photo by Thomas Iannaccone/AP)
Ron Johnson WAS Apple Retail. He made it what it was. Sad to see that he couldn’t find success at his next venture. Then again, that man is sitting on so much money from the Apple stock he cashed in, he’s really just working for the fun of it these days.
iPhone naming: when simple gets complicated -
My (meaningless) vote is that the next iPhone should be christened iPhone 6, not iPhone 5S. If it’s worthy of being a new model, it’s worthy of having its own number.
I agree. What constitutes an “S” update versus a numbered update increasingly seems a bit arbitrary. Yes, even if the device looks the same.
If Facebook wants Home to really take off, it needs to realize that we don’t live in a world as beautiful as its marketing campaigns. It could limit “Cover Feed” posts to those only from your closest friends, or it could selectively analyze photos for quality content tagged to popular locations. — Ellis Hamburger: Facebook Home is beautiful, but what if your friends aren’t? (via thisistheverge)
The T-Mobile iPhone 5 Could Save You A Bunch Of Money -
Steve Kovach of Business Insider did the math on T-Mobile’s new “un-carrier” plan for the iPhone:
Now compare that to the $2,020 two-year cost of owning an iPhone 5 on T-Mobile. You’re saving $580 in most cases. (Sprint comes close with its 450 minute plan, but keep in mind you still get unlimited minutes with T-Mobile. If you talk a lot on your phone, you’re still getting a better deal with T-Mobile.)
He takes into account not only the cost of the phone (after T-Mobile’s non-subsidy subsidy) but the cost of the plans as well. It’s not exactly cheap, but T-Mobile is the clear winner here from a pricing perspective. From a coverage perspective, that’s another matter…