Surprise announcement today from Apple and IBM. We’ll see how this agreement will add to Apple’s bottom line. Android is out of the picture in this. Don’t know if this is an exclusive deal for Apple selling devices through IBM.
A must read article. Having read this article before WWDC 2014, I would have been a bit worried. But since WWDC was a blast of new technologies and features, I’m much more comfortable with Tim Cook now.
Quite few people were surprised to learn that Apple will no longer develop Aperture. Many more were surprised to see Apple do the same with iPhoto, an application that was the center piece of Apple’s digital hub strategy back in 2001. As you know, both of these applications will be replaced by “Photos” on Yosemite. But like a few others, I think those apps were outdated and built on a decade old code base at a time where iCloud and iOS weren’t even in Apple’s labs.
Photo management on iOS and OS X was not optimal and were lacking integration in regard to storage. Under the new Apple where iOS team and OS X team better work together, I can see that Apple management wanted to better integrate both platforms so they decided to start fresh and build a better application that will help users with their workflow starting from one device and going to the others. They did the same with Keynote and Pages back in 2013. These apps were made 100% compatible together and available with the same feature set over iCloud.com. Here is how Apple could play the scenario early next year.
After releasing iOS 8.0 and OS X 10.10 in the fall of 2014, users will start to get used to Photos on iOS and learn how they fit in their workflows. iCloud will play a major role here as this will help users store many more photos than their device can actually store themselves. With OS X 10.10, iPhoto and Aperture will see minor compatibility updates while Apple is still working on Photos for OS X. Then, beginning of 2015, Apple will release an update to Yosemite that will include their new photo management app coupled with a last update to iPhoto and Aperture. Upon starting the newly released Photos for the first time, users will be prompted to decide what to do with their current iPhoto library: leave it as is or migrate it to the new Photos format. By doing so, all pictures and most of the metadata will be migrated and optionally made available over iCloud. On iOS devices running with iOS 8, pictures from iPhoto being uploaded to iCloud will start to appear in their Photos library. The same kind of workflow will be available to Aperture users. As with previous versions of iOS, Apple will probably release iOS 8.1 at the same time early 2015. This release could include new photo management and editing features as well.
In the following months of 2015, Apple could release other iOS 8 updates with new Photos features coupled with similar updates for OS X Yosemite’s Photos. From now on, each of these platform will be kept in sync in regard to photo management and editing. At some point, people will be able to delete iPhoto or Aperture as they no longer being updated by Apple.
This is the kind of scenario Apple could play next year in regard to iPhoto and Aperture replacement. People will have choice. Some will stay with Aperture, many will go to Adobe’s Lightroom and iPhoto users will be happy to use a modern and refreshed photo management solution built for the next ten years or more.
With the introduction of the new Photos app and iCloud Photo Library, enabling you to safely store all of your photos in iCloud and access them from anywhere, there will be no new development of Aperture,” said Apple in a statement provided to The Loop. “When Photos for OS X ships next year, users will be able to migrate their existing Aperture libraries to Photos for OS.
Shocker. Apple seems to confuse photo storage (iCloud Photo Library) with photo editing (iPhoto, Aperture). So I guess we’re also going to see iPhoto for iPad go as well. Count me very surprised by this.
If you read between the lines of Apple’s recent announcements, you’ll find that the company is turning user privacy into a key competitive advantage.
To me this is a clear and crucial advantage of Apple’s ecosystem over Google’s. They could even play this card in advertising where Apple could put forward the idea that for many people this is what they ask for: a secure platform where they don’t feed a monster with personal information about them.
New Apple didn’t need a reset. New Apple needed to grow up. To stop behaving like an insular underdog on the margins and start acting like the industry leader and cultural force it so clearly has become.
Apple has never been more successful, powerful, and influential than it is today. They’ve thus never been in a better position to succumb to their worst instincts and act imperiously and capriciously.
Instead, they’ve begun to act more magnanimously.
100% agree. And I think part of the reason why it took Apple so long to come around here was that their recent success has happened so quickly. Just a decade ago, Apple stock was the adjusted equivalent of $2/share. Revenues that quarter were $2 billion. Profit was $106 million.
Apple’s profit last quarter was just over $10 billion — yes, their profit is now 5x the amount of revenue they made a decade ago. The profit is up 100x. That’s insane.
In that span, Apple has gone from the Mac company, to the iPod company, to the iPhone company. And they have a nice little side business in the iPad which is larger than the Mac or iPod ever were.
It can be hard to grow into such rapid success. What do you do when you’re no longer the underdog? You can either still act like you’re the underdog, or you can grow up. Apple is now growing up.
I’m so glad to see Apple doing great under Tim Cook. Apple looks more open, confident, looking forward.
Software updates that are free of charge and so easily installed that the majority of iOS and Mac users are running the latest versions of the OSes (a supermajority in the case of iOS). Apple can release new features and expect most users to have them within a year — and third-party developers can count on the same thing.”
He is essentially saying the same thing that I was saying in conclusion here:
“Apple has the power to augment their offering with whatever features they think will add value to the ecosystem and nearly overnight millions of users will be using them everyday. That is powerful and a real value in itself.”
Apple now has everything they need to disrupt the game console industry in a way that none of them see coming. I predict that we’ll see a new AppleTV update (and hardware) this fall along with a new app extension type for AirPlay. AirPlay will become about more than just streaming video to your AppleTV - instead that’ll simply be one of the things you can do with it. Apps (mostly games, I suspect) will be able to bundle an AirPlay extension inside - just like how apps can now bundle photo editing or sharing extensions as of iOS 8. The key difference is where the AirPlay extension app actually executes - instead of running on your device itself from within another host app, the AirPlay extension app will be automatically uploaded to whatever AppleTV you are currently AirPlaying with and will run directly on the AppleTV natively instead. This means no video streaming lag and minimal controller lag. Your iPhone would then turn into a generic game controller with onscreen controls or, if you have a physical shell controller attached to your iPhone, it activates that instead. The game controller inputs are then relayed to the AppleTV and thus to the AirPlay extension app using the new game controller forwarding feature.
This is a very interesting idea — apps as air(play)borne viruses that “infect” the Apple TV unit. It sounds almost crazy enough to be true.
Remember that while it’s stated to have no internal storage, the Apple TV (the hockey puck variety) does actually have 8 GB of memory. This would certainly be enough for any single app (of which games are almost always the largest) to fully reside temporarily, while playing.
The wild card here in my mind, is the input. The long-rumored new Apple TV box has long been said to be built around some sort of new control paradigm. Will a “magic wand” or some other such controller work with these games as well? Or will there be something else? Or will it simply rely on an iPad/iPhone?
"Because Jobs was such a powerful, brilliant executive, his flaws tend to be swept over. But he had flaws. For instance, he was opposed to putting iTunes on Windows-based computers. However, that was the right call as it led to widespread adoption of the iPod, which kick-started Apple’s comeback. Jobs was opposed to an App Store because he wanted total control over the iPhone’s software. The App Store was the right call.
After Jobs died, I spoke with a former Apple executive, and one thing he said has stuck with me. Basically, Jobs created bottlenecks at Apple because every major decision flowed through him. With Jobs gone, and power more diffuse, it seems as if Apple can do more within its product categories.”
See? Steve Jobs was great but in retrospective can be seen as hindering Apple advances in many ways.
The 2014 WWDC keynote could be considered as one of the best in recent memory. Apple impressed their developers with a ton of new APIs, they delighted (power) users with new features while showing the future of computer programming in an Apple world.
First, let’s talk about the keynote itself. I’m happy to see that Apple keeps creating flawless presentations. On top of brilliant execution, Tim Cook was upbeat, Craig Federighi was inspired and rivalled with Steve Jobs himself as a great speaker and salesman. At this year keynote, the message was clear: Apple’s mission is to build an ecosystem based on devices, operating systems and services, all tightly integrated and working seamlessly together. No new hardware or product category was announced not even a single update and this is a good thing as this would have diluted the message (by having people complain about them and forgetting the rest).
The first subject addressed was OS X 10.10. My first reaction to the redesign of OS X was much better than the one I had last year when I first saw iOS 7. I really like the updated look. It is lighter and clean without going too far. Feature wise, Handoff and Continuity are the pieces of seamless transition of the user working from OS X to iOS without friction. I prefer this kind of integration between two different operating systems over the one size fits all approach of Microsoft with Windows everywhere.
Next was iOS 8 massive update. I was sceptical when Tim Cook said they were about to show the biggest update to iOS since 2007. This kind of statement is often overblown. That being said, many observers were expecting a feature oriented releases and boy Apple delivered.
Everybody will benefit from iOS 8 from casual users to power users. iOS never felt so customizable and powerful with extensions and custom keyboards. Power users will be delighted. The enterprise was also targeted with many new features in regard to MDMs and provisioning. In other words, Apple added a lot of features without breaking the apparent simplicity of iOS. This is not an easy thing to do.
I think Apple wanted to send a message to the most vocal supporters of iOS: the power users. We often look at Apple’s products as being sold to those who doesn’t want to mess with technology. But, power users play a big part in Apple’s success and feeding them with requested features was a good move (there is a yes for a thousand no).
I see people saying that many of the new features announced we’re already available for “years” on Android but the fact is I couldn’t care less since the iOS ecosystem is the one I’m investing and depend on. So I’m happy to see Apple respond and improve things.
Moreover, a first during a WWDC keynote, Apple spent quite some time on APIs and Swift, their new and modern programming language. I think this was a smart move on Apple’s part because after all, WWDC is all about the developers. Reactions to Swift is quite positive and clearly nobody outside Apple saw this coming.
With more than 4000 new APIs, iOS 8 packs a lot of new things but ultimately, it shows that Apple is still capable of pushing this platform to new levels in order to not only improve it but solve new categories of problems.
Finally, this fall, as users update in drove their devices and computers the Apple ecosystem will be completely transformed. We can expect a vast majority of users adopting iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite. Apple has the power to augment their offering with whatever features they think will add value to the ecosystem and nearly overnight millions of users will be using them everyday. That is powerful and a real value in itself.
WWDC would have been really different in a bad way. You may think Steve Jobs was a genius (he was) but at some point I feel he was kind of stubborn and I wonder if he would have agreed to many of the things we saw at the conference this year.
Now this is Tim Cook and Apple today is about openness while stying true to the best part of Apple when Steve was there: focused on building great products and software to work with them.
This piece from Mark Gurman is about the fact that the current beta of iOS 8 has quite a few missing pieces and they don’t compare to leaks he got. One expression to sum this up: iterative design. Another expression really useful here to better grasp what is going on: beta software.
iOS 8 is by far one of the most massive update to iOS since its beginning. Nearly everything has been tuned, revised, augmented with a total of 4000 new APIs. One cannot be surprised to see a few pieces that didn’t make the cut for the first beta. iOS 8 is scheduled for release this fall which is after september 20, four months from here. We can expect at least 5-6 betas. We should expect more tweaks here and there, just like we saw during iOS 7 gestation.
A nice one from John Gruber on the subject of iterative design at Apple.
Now a more interesting question: do I prefer the leaked HealthBook back in march or the one currently shipping in iOS 8 beta 1? The leaked version which is pretty much based on the Reminders and Passbook apps seems to offer a better interactive experience. But, what do I know?