I’ve been a pretty big fan of Android for a long time now. Having an open-source mobile operating system that different OEMs can experiment with and customize to their liking has been a huge boon to the tech world and has ensured that Apple (AAPL) won’t have a monopoly on popular smartphones anytime soon. But as Google (GOOG) has refined its operating system over the years and added some great new features, it’s become increasingly hard for me to ignore that fragmentation of the platform is a serious problem that hasn’t gotten any better. More →
I spent last night re-reading stories about Steve Jobs’ life and I realized why he was so different from most CEOs out there: For Jobs, making money was of secondary importance. Now, don’t get me wrong. Money was extremely important to Jobs as it is to all capitalists. Jobs, Tim Cook and company wouldn’t have spent years building up the most efficient production and distribution system in the world if they didn’t care about the bottom line. The issue is more that Jobs never wanted to make money for its own sake: He wanted to earn it by making the best and most original products the world had ever seen. More →
OK, so I admit that I’ve been picking on RIM (RIMM) a lot lately. And in my defense, the company over the past few years has made it pretty easy for me since it’s made a litany of crucial mistakes that have left it in its current dire situation. But the more I’ve thought about RIM recently, the more I’ve come to believe that its BlackBerry OS may have a real chance to escape the same fate as Symbian, webOS or any number of failed mobile operating systems. And the reason for this is simple: RIM’s remaining customers are fiercely loyal to their products and will passionately evangelize on their behalf. More →
After years of trying to push 3D gaming onto PlayStation 3 users, Sony (SNE) is finally waking up and realizing nobody really cared or wanted the added depth. Speaking with Eurogamer, Sony’s UK vice president and marketing director Fergal Gara said that “it’s fair to say consumers have decided it’s not hugely important at this time. It’s a capability we’ve got. It may have a bigger life a little further down the line.” Gara blamed 3D’s failure to explode in the living room on two factors: wearing 3D glasses is a hassle and watching 3D at home is not a focused viewing experience as it is in a theater because of all the distractions from other devices such as tablets.
By now you’ve probably heard about the mini-backlash that’s ensued over Apple’s (AAPL) botched Maps implementation on iOS 6 after it decided to ditch Google Maps earlier this year. But anyone paying attention to the Apple-Google (GOOG) rivalry shouldn’t be surprised that Apple would flop in its first attempt at creating a maps application that’s traditionally been Google’s bread and butter. After all, Apple and Google have two entirely different business models and strategies, and the two companies find themselves competing despite, not because of, those models. More →
People who have been using beta versions of iOS 6 for the past few months have known how awful Apple’s (AAPL) new Maps app is, but for the most part they held out hope that the company would make some serious refinements by the time its new iOS 6 software was released to the public. But iOS 6 officially took flight on Wednesday and sadly, Apple’s new Maps app is still awful.
Updated with Apple’s response to iOS 6 Maps complaints after the final paragraph. More →
If you hang around gaming forums — and, yes I admit I do visit them on occasion — you’ll see a rather large number of disgruntled gamers who pine nostalgically for the great old role-playing games of years past such as Baldur’s Gate, Planescape: Torment and The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind. Unlike today’s dumbed-down action-based RPGs, they argue, these older games offer first-class storytelling and characters, a high level of customization and a deep element of choice that shows players the consequences of their in-game decisions. But for a long time, these gamers have lacked a company that’s willing to create a game that specifically tailors to their needs… until now. More →
The only thing more predictable than the iPhone 5 itself was the world’s response to it. Months of leaks, photos and videos leading up to yesterday’s unveiling meant that we all knew exactly what was coming from Apple’s (AAPL) new iPhone, but years of public response to iPhone launches painted an even clearer picture. Just as in years past, people went into Apple’s event on Wednesday looking for the Cupertino, California-based company to shake the Earth with its announcements. And just as in years past, many were disappointed when all they got was what is arguably the best smartphone on the planet. More →
The early reviews I’ve seen of Google (GOOG) Fiber have been extremely promising but a recent article from Timothy Lee at Ars Technica raises some important questions about the special treatment Google may have received from lawmakers in Kansas City. The most damning statements that Lee cites actually come from some of Google Fiber’s supporters, who have proudly touted the fact that Google was allowed to skirt regulations and obtain special privileges in exchange for bringing its high-speed network to Kansas City. More →
Last year, Amazon (AMZN) turned the tablet market on its head by releasing the Kindle Fire, which featured a then-unthinkable $199 price tag and… not too much else. That’s not to say the Kindle Fire was a disaster in any way, it’s more that it was a low-price tablet in both name and in design that featured good-but-not-great hardware and that lacked key features such as a camera and a microphone. The Kindle Fire’s killer price point helped it move a lot of units over the holiday season, but its sales reportedly sank quickly once Apple (AAPL) released its new iPad in the spring. More →
We’re now just two weeks away from seeing Apple (AAPL) take the wraps off its sixth iPhone and while nothing is certain until Apple makes it official, we have a pretty good idea of what to expect from the so-called “iPhone 5.” Parts leaks, rumors and even videos of the new iPhone housing have been flowing steadily for months now, and they paint a relatively complete picture: We’re looking at a complete redesign that is just 7.6 millimeters thick, a 4-inch display, 4G LTE connectivity, 1GB of RAM and a new unibody aluminum case. More →
There have been rumblings in some corners of the tech press that Google (GOOG) ought to be quaking in its boots in the wake of the Apple (AAPL) v. Samsung (005930) patent verdict because it could give Apple enough juice to take out Android all together. This is highly unlikely to ever happen for a multitude of reasons, but the most important is that Google has a lot of money, a lot of creative and talented people, and a lot of incentive to make sure that Android remains successful. More →
It’s just easier to come out and say it, right? Well, it’s not like anyone that reads what I write here on BGR, or on Twitter, or Facebook, or speaks to me, or watches me, could have been unclear about the fact that I love Apple (AAPL) as a company. I love almost every product the company makes, and I have bought (within reason — OK, maybe not) every single Apple product since around 2003. More →