BlackBerry’s BBM service shocked the world when it finally went cross-platform last month. While many thought it would be dead on arrival, the app rocketed to No. 1 on the iPhone download charts and brought 20 million new users to the BBM platform within a week. BBM’s stunning success continued and in perhaps the most shocking of all early reports about BlackBerry’s new BBM efforts, the app’s engagement levels appear to be beating rivals. Downloads have slowed substantially since BBM debuted in October and the app is sinking fast, currently holding the No. 76 position on the top free iPhone app chart in the U.S. That position could soon get a boost, however, as BlackBerry makes its popular new BBM app available on Wi-Fi only iPads and iPod touch devices for the first time. More →
September marked the first Apple event in which two iPhone models were announced concurrently. Considering the endless stream of rumors, it failed to shock anyone, but it might be the first step to a more frequent release schedule for Apple devices. AppleInsider reports that after meeting with Apple CEO Tim Cook, Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty believes that Apple will use the introduction of multiple iPhones to start staggering announcements throughout the year rather than piling them all up during the holiday season. More →
Rumors of Apple’s products seeing a growth spurt in 2014 continue to pop up. The latest rumor from PadNews suggests that a 12.9-inch iPad is being tested at Foxconn, and the larger tablet is currently going through UI prototype debugging. Other sources seem to think that the larger screen might come in at a more manageable 11.4 inches. PadNews also claims that the “iPad maxi” will be released in March of 2014, which would put just a five month buffer between the releases of the iPad Air and the new, larger iPad. According to PadNews, there are reports “by major research institutions” which state that the market for 10-inch plus tablets will grow next year, in part due to Microsoft’s Surface tablets. Still, it’s hard to imagine Apple announcing a new product like this so soon after launching its new iPad Air and iPad mini. At the same time, however, the company certainly doesn’t want to go another year without launching any mobile products like it did in 2013.
Apple’s iPhone may have forever changed the world of mobile communications but by 2009 Apple was starting to face some serious competition in the smartphone market from Google’s free-to-use Android operating system. According to a new book written by Fred Vogelstein that’s been excerpted by Wired, Jobs saw the dangers that Google’s platform presented and came up with a bold plan to hold off the Android barbarians that were banging on Apple’s gate. In short, he decided that the best way to maintain iOS’s relevance was to make the iPad. More →
The iPad Air’s opening weekend has finally come to a close, and if you guessed it would look something like the first weekend of the iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c, you might not be wrong. According to Fiksu, within just three days, the iPad Air already accounts for 0.74% of all Apple tablets based on recorded usage of Fiksu client apps. Putting this into perspective, three days after the iPad mini launched it had only captured 0.21% of the iPad market, and the fourth-generation iPad only took 0.15% in the same amount of time. More →
Android tablets have led the iPad in market share for a while now and Windows-based tablets will likely take off at some point as well. Does this make Apple worried? That’s doubtful — the company has shown again and again that it cares much less about maintaining market share than it does about maintaining high margins for its tablets. To back that point up, IHS has put out some research this week showing that while most tablet vendors are trying to compete with each other aggressively on low prices, Apple is sitting back and selling its tablets at high prices and getting high margins in return. More →
The French society of authors, composers, and music publishers (SACEM) is currently awaiting a huge tax payment from Apple. According to French tech site PC INpact, the Cupertino company failed to pay €5 million in 2011 for iPad royalties, and another €12 million for unpaid taxes in 2012. The taxes, known as copie privée in France, apply to any electronic device that can make use of copyrighted material, including books, movies and TV shows. Apple did not pay the copie privée in 2011, which amounted to €5 million, and now the company apparently has once again failed to pay off the tax to the tune of €12 million in 2012, more than double the previous amount. The courts in Paris are demanding Apple pay the tax, but there does not appear to have been any word from Apple on if it plans on complying yet, although the company’s Q4 2013 earnings certainly show that Apple is capable of making these payments.
Apple beat expectations on earnings, revenue, iPhone sales and Mac sales in its fiscal Q4 earnings report on Monday. But the tablet unit remains a thorn on its side, missing modest expectations of 14.5 million units by a hair and coming in at 14.1 million units. This is only a minor blemish on an otherwise stellar quarter. But the sluggish tablet sales did weigh on the share price a bit in after-hours trading, where Apple’s stock immediately dropped by 2%. More →
Apple’s events typically lean on hardware announcements, such as the debut of the iPad Air on Tuesday, but the tech giant took some time to talk about software updates as well, including the revamped — and now entirely free — iWork suite of applications. There must be something in the air today, because not only has T-Mobile taken AT&T to task over tablet data plans, but now Microsoft is joining in on the fun with a savage riposte of its own. More →
Apple took some time to share some impressive sales figures on Tuesday during its latest media event, as the company always does. First Apple reaffirmed that it moved over 9 million iPhones on launch weekend, but later revealed that it has just recently sold its 170 millionth iPad. Apple Insider shares reports from several analysts which indicate that 170 million total sales might translate to just under 15 million iPad sales this quarter, a small jump over last year’s sales for the same quarter. More →
Apple remained silent for most of 2013 and industry watchers panicked as the months rolled by with no major product launches. Well, when it rains it pours. Apple launched the brand new flagship iPhone 5s and the sort-of-new iPhone 5c almost exactly one month ago, and opening-weekend sales absolutely smashed Apple’s earlier iPhone sales records. Now, it’s time for the next few pieces of Apple’s 2013-2014 product puzzle to fall into place. More →
Despite IDC’s report of a marginally better than expected outcome for PC sales last quarter, the personal computer is still in big trouble. Gartner’s latest projections of electronic device shipments for 2013 predict an 11.2% drop for traditional PC sales down to 303 million units in 2013 and an 8.4% drop for the entire PC market. On the other hand, tablet shipments are expected to grow by a monstrous 53.4% this year to 184 million units. Growth in the tablet market is expected to be even larger in 2014 as tablet sales come closer than ever to overtaking PC sales. In fact, the margin between PC and tablet shipments is expected to close from a nearly 120 million unit deficit to just over 18 million units by next year. Although the significant losses in the PC market are worrisome and mobile phone shipments are finally beginning to slow down, “worldwide combined shipments of devices” are still expected to see a 4.2% increase in 2013. Gartner’s full press release follows below. More →
Apple hasn’t unveiled its fifth-generation full-size iPad yet but it might as well have. As is the case with all of Apple’s mobile devices these days, photos, videos and just about everything there is to know about the iPad 5 have leaked out well ahead of Apple’s official unveiling. As is also the case with all of Apple’s mobile device launches, we can likely still expect sales to climb into the millions in the blink of an eye. Last year’s iPad and iPad mini launch saw more than 3 million new Apple tablets fly off store shelves through the first weekend of availability. Will the completely redesigned fifth-generation model help Apple keep its streak of record-breaking launches alive? Here’s everything you can expect from Apple’s next full-size iPad when it is finally unveiled tomorrow during Apple’s press conference: More →