It seems like Apple can do no wrong these days, but according to Electronic Arts founder Trip Hawkins, Apple is headed toward a decline. It goes without saying that Apple will not be able to maintain its dominance forever — every company that rises will eventually fall — but Hawkins sees Apple’s decline as beginning relatively soon. “The thing is, it may take another year or two before it starts to decline, but it has to – everything does,” Hawkins told IndustryGamers in an interview. “Everything revolves so much around Steve, and no matter how good his lieutenants are, they’re not Steve. None of us is going to live forever, though I hope he lives for a really long time.” Hawkins went on to note that games made by Digital Chocolate, the mobile game lab he left EA to launch, will “always be in the App Store,” though he says it would be great if Apple were more open. “I think it would be an incredibly positive thing for the industry if Apple decided to support all of the web standards, because then Apple could be the best about everything. Right now they make a conscious choice. They want you to be in the App Store rather than the browser, so they cripple the browser,” Hawkins griped, though he noted that the closed model hasn’t had a negative impact on Apple’s iOS business at this point. More →
A U.S. District Judge in Texas has ruled that patent holding firm Personal Audio cannot seek additional damages from Apple relating to a patent that the Cupertino-based company was recently found to be infringing. Personal Audio was awarded $8 million last month when Texas judge Ron Clark ruled that Apple’s iPod was infringing one of its patents covering playlist implementation. Following the win, the holding firm filed a second lawsuit alleging that additional Apple devices such as the iPhone 4 and iPad 2 also made illegal use of this patent. Judge Clark said Friday, however, that the $8 million in damages Apple paid in early July is all Personal Audio will see from Apple related to this patent. “The court finds that the jury’s selection of lump sum as the appropriate form of reasonable royalty clearly represents a damages award giving Apple a fully paid up license that covers all past and future use of the patented technology,” the Judge said in his decision. Personal Audio has not indicated how it will respond to the judge’s ruling. More →
Amazon has updated its Kindle for iOS application with support for magazine and newspaper subscriptions. iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch users can now browse, purchase, and read from more than 100 newspapers and magazines, complete with high resolution color photos, and the company confirmed that more content is on its way. Amazon customers with existing subscriptions can find recent issues under the “Archived Items” menu inside the application. The update also removes Amazon’s Kindle Store button from the the app now allows users to share quotes and passages with Facebook and Twitter friends. Kindle for iOS version 2.8 is available in the iTunes App Store for free.
Patent holding firm Personal Audio LLC is suing Apple for patent infringement surrounding IP covering playlist implementation on multiple Apple devices. The firm was recently awarded $8 million from Apple by a Texas judge who found that the Cupertino-based company’s iPod made unauthorized use of Personal Audio’s IP. Now, the firm’s new suit alleges that additional Apple products are infringing on the same patent. Devices covered in the new complaint include the iPhone 4, the fourth-generation iPod touch, the iPad 2, the fourth-generation iPod shuffle and the sixth-generation iPod nano. Apple has made headlines countless times over the past few months as a result of suing nearly all of its major mobile competitors for patent infringement. While some companies believe Apple should focus on building innovative products instead of suing all of its competitors, Apple seems to think its IP is being used illegally and therefore must be protected vigorously. Apparently, Personal Audio holds a similar belief. More →
Apple on Tuesday reported earnings for the third quarter of fiscal 2011. Shares of Apple Tuesday were trading at near-record levels as investors expected Apple to post its biggest June quarterly earnings ever, and the company didn’t disappoint. Wall Street was predicting revenue of $24.92b, a whopping 58% YoY increase, and Apple’s revenue for the June quarter came in at a mind-blowing $28.57b. Analysts predicted 16.5 million iPhones, 4.2 million Macs, and 7.8 million iPads with actual sales coming in at 20.34m iPhones, 9.25m iPads, and 3.95m Macs. Press release is after the break:
A Dutch Apple blog named AppleSpot reported on Friday that Apple will launch a new 3G iPod touch in September. Similar to options available for the iPad Wi-Fi + 3G, users would have the option of purchasing the 3G iPod touch directly from a wireless carrier with a data plan. We’re expecting a possible iPod/iPhone/iPad refresh in September, and so it’s entirely possible that Apple is considering creating a version with a 3G radio. Such a device could also help carriers lock in more data plans and would continue to boost Apple’s presence among the flood of new Android handsets. Our only gripe with the whole story is that AppleSpot doesn’t have a proven track record reporting on Apple rumors. Plus, a 3G iPod touch would be just a little weird given that we expect every major U.S. wireless carrier to announce the next generation iPhone. More →
Last week Samsung filed an official complaint with the International Trade Commission (ITC) asking the government body to block the import of Apple’s iPod, iPhone, and iPad. Apple flipped the tables on Samsung and has filed its own complaint with the ITC asking that it block the import of Samsung’s tablets and smartphones, Bloomberg said. The move follows Apple’s request to a U.S District Court in San Jose to block the import of Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 10.1, Infuse 4G, DROID Charge and Nexus S 4G. The legal battle has been ongoing since Apple filed a lawsuit against Samsung in April and accused the Korean phone maker of creating copycat devices that infringed on its intellectual property. Samsung bit back later in April and said that it will do everything it can to protect its own intellectual property. Meanwhile, U.S. courts have granted Apple access to Samsung’s most recent products, but have denied Samsung the same access to the Apple iPhone 5 and iPad 3. The legal battle could place strain on Samsung’s component business, which is expected to struggle during the second half of this year — Apple is the largest buyer of Samsung’s LCD products. More →
Apple’s iOS App Store, which is now home to over 500,000 applications, is currently down according to several tips we have received via email. Preliminary reports of the outage first came in shortly after 2:00 p.m. Eastern. The store is accessible and app pages can be opened, but apps cannot be installed on iPhones, iPads or on iPod touch units. Users report that app updates are not being downloaded either, though available updates to appear on the Updates tab. BGR has confirmed the issues on several iOS devices. Oddly, some users are reporting that installations are working sporadically, while others are not able to install any apps at all. Let us know if the App Store is working for you in the comments below.
UPDATE: Functionality appears to have been restored some time before 2:55 p.m.
One of our Apple sources has informed us that they’ve been hearing Apple’s yearly back-to-school special will be announced at WWDC next month. We have been told Apple will continue to offer educational discounts on computers and either a free iPod touch, or $229 towards the purchase of any other iPod. Our source also let us know that there might be something new in the works, as well… they heard that it’s possible Apple might offer students up to $200 off an iPad with the purchase of a new Mac. If true, this would be pretty great deal. If only Apple could make enough of them…
Thanks, Lindsey S.!
Apple’s next-generation iPod nano may ditch the clip design and instead feature a 1.3-megapixel camera, according to leaked images posted by Taiwanese blog Apple.pro. The overall design of the unit looks similar to the current iPod nano, although there’s a chrome border around the new camera and the metal exterior has a noticeably deeper green hue, which suggests new colors are on the way. We’re a bit surprised at the lack of a clip on the nano, though, as most people we’ve seen with the music player use it — so perhaps it’s possible the clip can be removed to expose the camera lens. Either way, the form factor definitely matches earlier leaks of the next-generation iPod nano. More →
Giddy over Apple’s consistent staggering growth — and seemingly giddier over the iPad — Formula Capital managing partner James Altucher believes that Apple is poised to become the first $1 trillion company. In fact, Altucher thinks Apple could already be a $2 to $3 trillion company. According to Altucher, Apple can basically do no wrong — he believes demand for the iPad 2 will continue to grow and then new products like the iPhone 5 and iPad 3 will send demand for Apple devices through the roof. He goes on to state that Jobs’ eventual departure from the company won’t even have a significant impact on Apple’s future, as many analysts expect, thanks to other great innovators within Apple such as Tim Cook. Apple’s market capitalization is currently around $320 billion, so its stock price would have to balloon to about $1,000 for Apple to hit $1 trillion. Hit the break for an enthusiastic Altucher talking up Apple in an interview with Business Insider. More →
Apple on Wednesday reported earnings for the second quarter of fiscal 2011. Reports from Tuesday suggesting Apple might miss iPad sales estimates were accurate as Apple reported second-quarter sales of only 4.69 units compared to 7.33 million iPads last quarter. Analyst estimates fell between 6 and 8 million iPads for the March quarter. Apple’s iPhone sold 18.65 million units globally in the second quarter compared to 8.75 million units in the same quarter last year and 16.24 million units in the first quarter of fiscal 2011. iPod sales came in at 9.02 million units, down from 10.89 million in the second fiscal quarter of 2010 and 19.45 million last quarter. Wall Street was expecting 16 million iPhones and 9.9 million iPods in the quarter. Mac sales narrowly beat the Street’s estimates of 3.6 million units, totaling 3.67 million units in the March quarter, up from 2.94 million last year and down from 4.13 million from last quarter. Revenue for the second quarter came in at $24.67 billion and Apple recorded $5.99 billion in profit, up 95% from $3.07 billion in the same quarter last year. Apple noted in its earnings call that the earthquakes in Japan will not affect Apple’s supply chain or its products in the third quarter. The company’s full press release can be seen after the break. More →
Following RBC Capital Markets General Manager Mike Abramsky’s lead, JP Morgan analyst Mark Moskowitz on Friday raised his revenue and EPS estimates for Apple’s 2011 fiscal second quarter. RBC upped its second-quarter revenue estimate from $23 billion to $24 billion on Tuesday, citing pent up iPad demand and strong sales of the Verizon iPhone 4 and newer laptop lines. On Friday, JP Morgan’s Moskowitz wrote in a note to investors that iPhone shipments in the quarter were likely stronger than expected thanks to the launch of the Verizon model and the addition of new sales channels for the GSM version of the popular smartphone. As such, he upped second-quarter estimate from 16.6 million units shipped to 18.4 million. Moskowitz raised his revenue estimate for the quarter to $24.42 billion from his earlier estimate of $23.83 billion, and adjusted his EPS estimate to $5.39 from $5.21. Apple will report its earnings for the March quarter on April 20th.