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Apple Businesses Technology

Apple To Face Challenge At WWDC 264

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the little-engine-that-had-to dept.
Amanda Callahan writes to tell us that Apple's upcoming WWDC could be quite a test for the Cupertino powerhouse. They will most likely be missing Steve Jobs for star-power and have extremely high expectations to meet in order to maintain their edge. Thankfully it looks like Jobs will be rejoining Apple later this month with a good prognosis after facing severe health issues. "The competition is now catching up. Palm, Google, Microsoft, Nokia and Research in Motion, maker of the BlackBerry, are all at varying stages of developing and introducing their own iPhone-like devices and software, along with easily accessible stores for the small programs known as applications, or apps, that run on those devices. In some cases, those companies are releasing a greater variety of phones, on more wireless carriers around the world, than Apple. To maintain its advantage, Apple must preserve the impression that it is far ahead of rivals when it comes to the capabilities and the 'cool' factor of its devices."
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Apple To Face Challenge At WWDC

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  • by MasterOfUniverse (812371) on Friday June 05, 2009 @02:51PM (#28226775)
    "If they start making products people don't want, and start losing users, then Apple's strategy will run into problems," said Benjamin Reitzes, an analyst at Barclays Capital.
    • by siloko (1133863)

      along with easily accessible stores for the small programs known as applications, or apps, that run on those devices

      Do these run on those hand held thingamygigs? Called 'Phones'?

    • by bkaul (1235970) on Friday June 05, 2009 @03:25PM (#28227187)
      We recently had a local news crew visit my place of employment, a research laboratory. Those interviewed were told to explain things at a "7th grade reading level." I think that explains a lot of the inane comments made by people in news interviews.
    • by RudeIota (1131331) on Friday June 05, 2009 @04:12PM (#28227607) Homepage

      "Amazing insight from Mr Genius"

      "If they start making products people don't want, and start losing users, then Apple's strategy will run into problems," said Benjamin Reitzes, an analyst at Barclays Capital.

      Microsoft
      To be fair, everyone seems to hate the company and have nothing but bitter contempt for all of their products... but Microsoft is indeed doing OK.

      • by ksheff (2406) on Friday June 05, 2009 @04:42PM (#28227897) Homepage
        It's nice to have contracts binding all major PC OEMs to install whatever you shovel out the door. Apple doesn't have that luxury in the smartphone market, so it must continually improve the product, service, and value to the customer. What a concept!
    • by s73v3r (963317)
      This is America. Just because you make a product that people don't actually want or need is no reason why you shouldn't have unfettered success.
  • by DavidR1991 (1047748) on Friday June 05, 2009 @02:57PM (#28226865) Homepage

    "the competition is now catching up"

    Assuming they've kept their edge, that statement is the key: They lead, they don't follow. That's why the competition are catching up to them, and not the reverse. Provided they keep doing that, there is little room for error to occur

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by s.bots (1099921)

      The Blackberry Storm's haptic feedback was the major feature that sold me on it. I was a staunch non-supporter of touch screens simply because I got no feedback about what I was doing. For this reason I think apple has now lost pace (hardware-wise, at least).

      • by Darkness404 (1287218) on Friday June 05, 2009 @03:16PM (#28227099)
        Haptic feedback is a double edged sword though. While SurePress did make sure you were hitting the buttons, it decreased typing speed by a lot. While I could get ~30 WPM on an iPod touch, my typing speed noticeably dropped whenever I typed on a Storm.
        • by s.bots (1099921)

          True enough. If I were doing anything more intense (typing-wise) than cranking out the occasional text I would revert to my keyboard loving ways, but for the time being I'm enjoying the extra screen real estate. Different strokes for different folks, I suppose.

      • by LWATCDR (28044) on Friday June 05, 2009 @04:24PM (#28227735) Homepage Journal

        And yet the Storm 2 doesn't have that clicky screen. It actually seems that most people didn't like what RIM called SurePress on the Storm.
        I have never used it but like everything some people love it and some people hate it.

    • by timeOday (582209) on Friday June 05, 2009 @03:55PM (#28227465)
      Remember, Apple managed to vault from late-comer to leadership in the first place. The blurb is just hand-wringing about things being as they have always been! Competitors are at "all at varying stages of developing and introducing their own iPhone-like devices and software, along with easily accessible stores for [] apps"... "In some cases, those companies are releasing a greater variety of phones, on more wireless carriers around the world, than Apple." That was all true even before the iPhone; Apple was among the last companies to introduce an iPhone-like device! Just as the iPod was one of the later mp3 players on the market, yet became the standard by which others were measured.
    • by EvilNTUser (573674) on Friday June 05, 2009 @04:30PM (#28227775)

      "the competition is now catching up"

      Assuming they've kept their edge, that statement is the key: They lead, they don't follow. That's why the competition are catching up to them, and not the reverse. Provided they keep doing that, there is little room for error to occur

      That's an amazingly arrogant attitude that Apple would do well to not share. Apple may have the edge in ease of use, but they never had an edge in anything else. If the competition can catch up on designing good user interfaces before Apple can catch up on hardware and features, there is actually very much room for error.

      I get that the UI is most important for many, but it's lame to ignore everything else.

      • by cowscows (103644) on Friday June 05, 2009 @06:02PM (#28228587) Journal

        You're right, but you're missing the piece that a lot of people don't see. Creating good software is hard. Cramming a new piece of hardware into a piece of plastic is the easy part. Designing an interface that makes that piece of hardware more useful can be a lot harder.

        That's the only reason why a computer company was able to walk right into the phone market, and on their first try create something that all those old phone manufacturers are now rushing to catch up to. I'm willing to bet that Apple's employees overall spent way more time getting the software right than they did deciding what hardware to put into the iPhone.

        And then the app store is a whole other beast. Apple had a lot of experience from the iTMS, they had a ton of infrastructure in place, and they even already had end-user software in place to tie it all together. Most of their competitors have to build similar systems from scratch. They've got a good example to follow now, but they've still got plenty to figure out.

    • by samkass (174571)

      To maintain its advantage, Apple must preserve the impression that it is far ahead of rivals

      This statement was thrown in there seemingly at random. Why can't Apple just be the best, most usable platform? And why can't it rely on a billion downloaded applications that only run on its platform as some lock-in? Not that I'm *not* advocating Apple continuing to innovate, but why do they have to be held to a higher standard than everyone else?

      • by WCguru42 (1268530)

        why do they have to be held to a higher standard than everyone else?

        Apple's entire marketing and business model are based on their products being better. Some companies base their businesses on having good products at cheap prices. Apple doesn't do that and if consumers don't have the opinion that Apple has far superior products then Apple will have to redesign their entire business model. Mercedes Benz had this problem when they decided to over expand their product portfolio. They were known for producing high quality "german engineered" cars that were significantly be

  • by Tibor the Hun (143056) on Friday June 05, 2009 @02:58PM (#28226871)

    So the competition has millions of devices in user's hands, a unified and attractive app store, and an established ecosystem?
    (And that's even ignoring the music juggernaut on the other side of the coin.)

    Which competition is even close to this kind of market?
    Not trolling, not flaming, just asking.

    Seems like everyone nowadays is granted a writing/analyst position if they can predict the fall of apple, or gloat about the upcoming features coming from microsoft.
    (I'm also not saying that competition is bad, just that Apple right now doesn't face any coherent competition. Take Palm Pre as an example... Different hardware models (for sprint and verizon networks), crashy app store, lack of apps, web-based apps, lack of actual customers, and worst of all, predicted shortages at introduction. WhoTF decided it would be a good idea to have that kind of a release against the upcoming iPhone v3?)

    • It's pretty important to have different hardware when you're working with two different types of radio networks. Apple can't be on both CDMA networks and GSM networks with just the one phone. Companies with both GSM and CDMA phones can have phones on both types of networks.

      • by afidel (530433)
        There are Blackberries with both CDMA and GSM radios, they have a SIM installed by Verizon too. Nice for people who live in a GSM deadzone but travel internationally.
    • just that Apple right now doesn't face any coherent competition

      You are apparently really just speaking of two of Apple's "products" though: iPhone and Music.

      Great. What about hardware, operating systems/software...? I would think the idea behind predicting Apple's downfall is really just counting how many of their eggs are in one basket, and how close others are at taking that basket.

      OTOH, I'm not a fan of "Apple stinks" or "Apple is going down hill fast now that Jobs is gone" comments, either. I also generally dislike the idea that Apple's iPhone is the greatest th

    • by DeathMagnetic (1365763) on Friday June 05, 2009 @03:21PM (#28227147)
      I don't think anyone's predicting the fall of Apple, but rather just stating the obvious. The competition is catching up. Unless Apple unveils some big surprises next week, there's no denying that the competition is positioned much better than they were a year ago. Apple's in no imminent danger here, but they are losing ground, and rumors about the next-gen iPhone suggest that there won't me any major innovations coming from them any time soon (and no, OS updates to include features the competition already has don't count).

      As for the Palm Pre, it hasn't achieved anything yet, much less established itself as an iPhone-killer, but it's a little premature to write it off due to lack of apps or lack of actual customers. It hasn't even been released yet! Most reviews have been very favorable and put it at least in the same class as the iPhone, which is a big step from where we've been for the last couple of years.
      • by Orne (144925)

        From my MBA economics teacher, in today's information economy, a firm now has approximately two years to have market power, then the sheer number of other players in the market will destroy the first-runner's ability to lead. There are too many competators that can hire their own programmers and make their own hardware, competing products are bound to arrive.

        So, Apple has two choices: innovate or cut costs. What will the iPhone+ be able to do that the current one can't do... err, it already does music, ca

        • by One Louder (595430) on Friday June 05, 2009 @03:55PM (#28227467)
          With all due respect, your MBA economics teacher seems pretty clueless about the actual market. Success in the market has almost nothing to do with hiring programmers and making hardware. In the vast majority of cases, it's all about marketing and product positioning, and most market segment leaders have held that position for far more than two years.

          Where's the "iPod killer"? Who's displacing Skype? Where's the auction site competing with eBay? Who's coming up to challenge Google, Craigslist, Amazon, Facebook? Some of these companies have been at the top of the heap for over a decade, with no serious competitor in sight.

          Many of these folks are leaders because of the network effect of their services - something programmers and hardware can't change.
          • by dave562 (969951)
            "Those who can, do. Those who can't, teach."
          • by jhoger (519683) on Friday June 05, 2009 @04:10PM (#28227581) Homepage

            Yeah in my MBA program they just taught that you need to achieve sustainable competitive advantage, and you make strategic and tactical decisions to achieve that. You pick niches with high barriers to entry, or you find ways to establish high barriers to entry. Intellectual property, brand equity, channel development, etc. are all ways to get sustainable competitive advantage.

            Every industry is somewhat different as regards what options exist for doing that.

            • I certainly can appreciate the pure business mindset, but I can never understand it. As a technologist, it is unnatural for me to try and create high barriers for entry to anything. A bit irrelevant to the topic at hand, but your statement made me remember that i will always be a terrible businessman.

              Anyways, Apple has a nice market penetration and mindshare, but the market is far too diverse and the competition way too strong for them to be complacent in any way. The iphone's absolute #1 advantage is the a

          • Skype and Vonage are direct competitors, Google, Yahoo and MS are direct competitors. Craigslist is a direct competitor to Ebay.. Facebook, Myspace LinkedIn are direct competitors. Amazon is a tough one because they aggregate independant e-tailers.Most of these services dont have any REAL brand loyalty beyond familiarity. Being the mo

            • by imamac (1083405)
              Doesn't ebay own craigslist?
            • by WCguru42 (1268530)

              Google, Yahoo and MS are direct competitors.

              And nobody is saying lets Yahoo that. Yahoo and MS might be around but Google dominates that market and has for a long time. They don't have an impenetrable product but until somebody steps up they'll maintain their market dominance beyond that MBA profs magical 2 year limit. The same goes with the iPod, despite all the howling from the /. crowd about product inferiority Apple has managed to maintain it's dominance of the market for quite a long time and it doesn't seem that anyone is coming in to take t

          • by WCguru42 (1268530)

            Where's the "iPod killer"? Who's displacing Skype? Where's the auction site competing with eBay? Who's coming up to challenge Google, Craigslist, Amazon, Facebook? Some of these companies have been at the top of the heap for over a decade, with no serious competitor in sight.

            I would say you're right on all of those except for Skype. And Skype is facing competition from Google which you already had on your list, so no biggie. I would say that the GP is missing the fact that Apple has the possibility to innovate beyond cutting costs. Nobody had thought of (or at least producing) a phone like the iPhone until Apple did it. Innovations are innovative because nobody thought of them beforehand and I'm hoping to see something spectacular (beyond cut & paste, for the love of Go

        • by CuriHP (741480) on Friday June 05, 2009 @03:59PM (#28227497)

          How can you possibly misspell QWERTY? It's spelled correctly on the damn keyboard.

        • by shmlco (594907)

          Well... they can always run with the 40,000 applications in the App Store. A rather significant head start on the 12 demo non-native applications Pre is currently showing in their app "store" (you can't buy anything yet). Even beats out the 25,000 or so Windows Mobile apps Microsoft touts as aving.

          Plus they have the whole game-integration thing going with the iPod Touch.

          Plus binding all of those apps to a larger "pad" media/game/reading device.

          And there's that patent that just popped up on middle-of-the-cal

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Medievalist (16032)

      Without trolling, or flaming, here is my answer:

      On February 3rd, 1637, everyone just woke up. And the price of tulips went down the toilet, and everyone looked around and said "why did I pay more than a tulip's weight in gold for this? It's just a flower".

      Someday, everyone will just wake up. They will put down the ipods, and pick up pennywhistles, guitars, and harmonicas again. That's just how fads work. Tulips and iPhones will still exist, but they won't be fetish objects to otherwise normal people an

      • by david_thornley (598059) on Friday June 05, 2009 @03:58PM (#28227493)

        Tulips and iPhones will still exist, but they won't be fetish objects to otherwise normal people any more, and so their prices will no longer reflect emotional baggage unrelated to function or utility.

        Except that emotional baggage isn't what sells iPhones. It's primarily function and utility.

        I am, of course, referring to easy-to-use function and utility. I can use my iPhone for pretty much any of its intended purposes quickly and without hassling with the interface. That wasn't true of the last phone I had: it did quite a few things, but it never seemed worth figuring out how.

        The iPhone does a whole lot of things simply and intuitively. That means it has more effective functionality, for a great many people, than phones that are theoretically more capable. Moreover, the iPhone is a lot more fun to use.

        This doesn't mean the iPhone is unstoppable. It does mean that an iPhone killer is going to have to be easy and fun to use, and not just laden with functionality and a manual that's more text than the average American reads in a year. It does mean that any iPhone killer is going to be mocked by Slashdot as being lame, of course. Many Slashdotters are quick to label anything they don't immediately understand as irrational and unpredictable.

        Nor do I think people are going to discard their iPods in favor of guitars. People have wanted recorded music since it became available (with the player piano, say). People are going to keep iPods or whatever gets popular instead, and quite a few people are still going to learn to play the guitar, because that fulfills a slightly different need. (And my wife still won't let me practice the nose flute in the house.)

      • by WCguru42 (1268530)

        no sane person thinks $100 a month is a reasonable price for phone service, but they buy iPhones anyway.

        Maybe that's because I only spend $75 a month. Considering what data plans used to cost the iPhone really isn't that expensive. Now, as competition increases the unlimited date rates aren't nearly as impressive as they were 2-3 years ago.

    • by pitchpipe (708843)

      WhoTF decided it would be a good idea to have that kind of a release against the upcoming iPhone v3?)

      Hence the name "Pre"mature.

    • by 0xdeadbeef (28836)

      Not trolling, not flaming, just asking.

      If that is the case, why is your next paragraph a bunch of retarded wharrgarbl?

    • by LWATCDR (28044)

      Yes Blackberry has millions of devices in the hands of users. They now have an app store. I will go with that ecosystem thing.
      Palm and RIM have a lot of experience with Smartphones so yes I would say they are catching up. Android has a lot of developer love but right now in the US is limited to T-Mobile.

      Also Verizon and Sprint are both CDMA networks so no issues. I think Apple will finally have a fight on it's hands with the Palm Pre. It doesn't just have web apps it uses javascript but that isn't just for

    • by iluvcapra (782887)

      Which competition is even close to this kind of market?

      Microsoft maybe, though their problems with getting a good vertical product are endemic, excepting perhaps the Xbox, but is that yet profitable?

      Amazon, but they seem to be happy leaving personal computing, email, contacts, mobile media on the table. But Amazon seems to be much better equipped to roll out a vertical than MS, even if it hasn't demonstrated the complete wherewithal in the hardware department to pull off a media/comm device. Love my Kindle though.

      As Gruber pointed out the other day, the main

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 05, 2009 @02:58PM (#28226875)

    According to reports, Apple will have a slew of iPhones from 4GB all the way up to 32GB.

    The data/rate plans will most likely also change.

    Apple is going to corner the smartphone market from the top down, like they did with the iPod.

    In fact to top things off even further, I bet they spun off Rubenstein and Co to make the "Pre" to appeal to the more RIM business type crowd who see's the iPhone as just a toy, not a tool.

    The fact that the Pre id's itself as a "Apple iPod" to iTunes for synching may mean Apple is turning a blind eye or somehow involved with Pre.

    Oh yea, prepare for a market assault by Apple.

    Short RIM.

  • by Reality Master 201 (578873) on Friday June 05, 2009 @03:03PM (#28226943) Journal

    If their competition is rushing to follow what Apple's doing by making iPhone-like devices, then it's more than just an impression that they're ahead.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Carewolf (581105)

      If the competition is designing new iPhone like devices, they are moving backwards. iPhones were outdated when they appeared, and are even more outdated now.

      If anything the competition is learning from Apple marketing, and is getting better at branding and promoting their mobile devices.

      • by s73v3r (963317)
        If we could get a phone with the features of some of the cutting edge Japanese/Korean phones, but with an iPhone interface, I would be all over it.
  • 30" OLED displays (Score:4, Interesting)

    by carambola5 (456983) on Friday June 05, 2009 @03:05PM (#28226969) Homepage

    Despite being a "developers" conference, I'm calling it. 30" OLED displays. You heard it here first.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      Last I heard they hadn't solved the lifetime problem for OLEDs. I don't think you'll see them in big, expensive products until they do.
    • Apple would seriously like to make new displays higher density, like over 150 PPI, as to coincide with finally shipping resolution indepence in OS X. Just imagine the amount of gloating ;) and in all fairness, it would be deserved - it would look damn good.

      But RI has proved to be quite a challenge, and any progress made would be interesting to see at WWDC.

  • PIM tools (Score:5, Informative)

    by Mr_Silver (213637) on Friday June 05, 2009 @03:06PM (#28226977)

    I'm hoping for better PIM tools. I'm currently using an iPhone at work (I can pick any device so I change regularly) and having spent a lot of time with Windows Mobile I'm missing a lot of its basic functionality. For example with the iPhone I cannot:

    • Sync notes even though there is a notes application
    • Sync tasks, as there is no tasks application (why? it's pretty basic!)
    • Label a calendar appointment as private. Everything is visible to people who have read access to my calendar until I set it on the PC.
    • Set the location of a meeting as free, out of the office or tentative. Everything is busy.
    • Differentiate between tentative meetings and ones that have been confirmed.
    • Snooze a reminder. It either nags you or gets dismissed when you unlock the phone and never comes back.
    • Get the right mouse button to work on an appointment in Outlook that has been created in the iPhone (not sure if that is my work setup as it's very odd)
    • Use something which is lighter than iTunes to manage my contacts and calendar syncing - iTunes is a heavy beast for something which should be running in the background. I never thought I'd wish for ActiveSync.
    • Search the whole device for something. There is a wedding coming up in the next couple of months. Only way to find it? Hunt for it manually.

    Now to be fair, I'm probably limited by the fact I use Outlook on the desktop and have no desire to use MS Push (who wants work emails arriving on a weekend?) or send all my data to Google's services - but some of this is pretty basic that even Palm had in when they were king of the world and pushing out black and white V series products.

    If they put all that in, then I'd never need to go back to Windows Mobile. Fingers crossed.

    • by hellfire (86129) <(deviladv) (at) (gmail.com)> on Friday June 05, 2009 @03:36PM (#28227299) Homepage

      Search the whole device for something. There is a wedding coming up in the next couple of months. Only way to find it? Hunt for it manually.

      That's coming. There will be a whole new search device page coming in OS 3.0. This was explained in the developer preview meeting they had back in march. You can download the video from Apple.com. Unfortunately that's the only thing on your list that was explained in any detail in this developer preview.

    • by StikyPad (445176)

      Fortunately, my only appointments are "Arrive at work" and "Leave work," and I rarely forget either of those.. especially that last one.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      I'm hoping for better PIM tools. I'm currently using an iPhone at work (I can pick any device so I change regularly) and having spent a lot of time with Windows Mobile I'm missing a lot of its basic functionality. For example with the iPhone I cannot:

      • Sync notes even though there is a notes application
      • Sync tasks, as there is no tasks application (why? it's pretty basic!)
      • Label a calendar appointment as private. Everything is visible to people who have read access to my calendar until I set it on the PC.
      • Set the location of a meeting as free, out of the office or tentative. Everything is busy.
      • Differentiate between tentative meetings and ones that have been confirmed.
      • Snooze a reminder. It either nags you or gets dismissed when you unlock the phone and never comes back.

      I also use my iPhone for work and find its PIM tools lacking. What's worse is Apple has apaprently decided to go with data stores that are not accessible to other software apps; so iambic / CESD / et.al. need to create new data files if they want to create an iPhone app. That probably means no push synch, which would make those apps useless for me.

      Of course, that's in keeping with Apple's insistence on total control of parts of teh user experience; which while useful in maintaining the end user experience

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by changedx (1338273)
      I recently replaced my 5-year-old Palm-based Samsung i500 with an iPhone. Overall, it's quite an upgrade, especially in the display screen, sound, memory (16MB -> 8GB), GPS, and downloadable apps. But here is a comparison of what it takes to enter a new appointment with an 5-minute warning alarm:

      Palm:
      1) open (clamshell) phone
      2) press "Calendar" button
      3) use fingernail to click on the timeslot
      4) use Graffiti to enter text
      5) close phone

      Apple:
      1) turn phone on
      2) slide to unlock, passcode if bey
  • by Animats (122034) on Friday June 05, 2009 @03:07PM (#28226983) Homepage

    Apple is about profit margin. [forbes.com] Apple has enjoyed much higher profit margins than its competitors. That's starting to slip as iPhone and iPod prices come down, and the cheaper competitors get better.

    Apple's reaction so far has been to raise iTunes prices. Something better than that will have to be done next.

    • by hellfire (86129)

      That's starting to slip as iPhone and iPod prices come down

      Ummmmm excuse me? Which iPhone or iPod price drops are you talking about? Since the iPhone was out last year it's been $199 for 8 GB and $299 for 16 GB. I can go to the store right now and see the exact same price.

      Apple's reaction so far has been to raise iTunes prices

      iTunes prices did not increase. They adopted a variable price method so popular songs could be more expensive during their popular period while less downloaded songs could be cheap

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        Itunes prices did increase. More songs are using the upper pricing, while very few are using the cheaper pricing -- even on very old music. Also, I think more of that money goes to the label,than Apple. But calling it anything other than a price increase, is the kind of crap I'd expect out of a politician.
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by KaptajnKold (575207)

      That's starting to slip as iPhone and iPod prices come down

      It's not Apples MO to drop prices. Rather, they introduce new models and keep the prices level.

      Apple's reaction so far has been to raise iTunes prices.

      The changed prices in the iTMS has been a reaction to nothing other than the fact that this was a demand posed by the record companies in exchange for them allowing Apple to provide DRM-free versions of their entire catalogues.

  • Heh... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by vjmurphy (190266) on Friday June 05, 2009 @03:09PM (#28227007) Homepage

    "Palm, Google, Microsoft, Nokia and Research in Motion, maker of the BlackBerry, are all at varying stages of developing and introducing their own iPhone-like devices."

    So Apple, as a newcomer to the industry, is now making others in the same space play catch up to them. Real competition is a good thing. Definitely Palm, MS, Nokia and RIM had more than enough time and expertise to make a iPhone like device before Apple did, yet they didn't. So now they get to play catch up. I hope they do create real iPhone killers, because it then puts Apple on the spot to improve.

    • Time != Expertise/"Innovation"/Good Design. :)

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        Definitely true. Palm should have had an iPhone, 2 years before iPhone. Instead they gave up much of their touch-screen real estate to a chicklet keyboard, and other established advantages, to build a blackberry clone. Big mistake on their part.
        • by Chris Burke (6130)

          Definitely true. Palm should have had an iPhone, 2 years before iPhone. Instead they gave up much of their touch-screen real estate to a chicklet keyboard, and other established advantages, to build a blackberry clone. Big mistake on their part.

          Making something like an iPhone that relies entirely on a touch screen means having a software stack that supports it. Once Palm had already made the big mistake of going with a more or less unchanged PalmOS for the Treo, replacing Grafiti with a qwerty pad was prob

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by twidarkling (1537077)

      By "iPhone-like devices," they usually mean "thing with no actual keyboard." I don't want one like that. I like physical keys. Because they actually work. You've always been able to get apps by searching around a bit for Windows Mobile based phones, and probably for others as well, so the App Store idea is just collecting and monetizing them. Frankly, an iPhone isn't that special, beyond the large touch-screen. Everything about it had been done before in one manner or another. Apple just gathered it in to o

      • by tholomyes (610627)

        I like physical keys. Because they actually work.

        Except that physical keys can physically break, too.

        You've always been able to get apps by searching around a bit for Windows Mobile based phones, and probably for others as well, so the App Store idea is just collecting and monetizing them.

        Nah, you've always been able to pay for apps for Win Mobile. So, it's not about monetizing. The biggest problem I found when looking for Win Mobile apps was that it even if you did manage to find the ad-filled webpage that had the file, there was generally no way to distinguish, say, two SSH clients from one another, so you just have to install them both and hope that one of them doesn't fuck up your phone.

      • by shmlco (594907)

        "How about we start getting phones with a good vibrate feature so that I can feel it while it's on my belt?"

        Now be honest here. Is that REALLY why you want a better vibrator????

    • So Apple, as a newcomer to the industry, is now making others in the same space play catch up to them.

      Right, and I think that's why the news media is demanding (wrongly) that Apple blows the door of the hinges at WWDC. They saw Apple go from nothing to an industry leader (in the mobile industry) in the space of a year or two, and they're thinking to themselves, "How can Apple keep that pace up?! They're definitely going to falter!" Bu the truth is Apple doesn't need to keep that pace up. All they have to do is release solid updates that will fix some of the problems people have with their products, thro

  • by VMaN (164134) on Friday June 05, 2009 @03:20PM (#28227133) Homepage

    Multitasking, a memory card reader and installing non apple approved apps.

    Features that apple COULD implement tomorrow, but won't.

    That's why I'm rockin' android and will never buy an iphone in its current crippled state.

    A real shame, as the device definetly has potential. It's not about hating apple, it's about hating that locked down feeling. That is probably not an issue for most people out there, but for me they are dealbreakers.

    • by aristotle-dude (626586) on Friday June 05, 2009 @04:27PM (#28227759)

      Multitasking, a memory card reader and installing non apple approved apps.

      So you would be willing to sacrifice stability, security of your data? If you don't care about stability and the risk for malware, you can always jailbreak your phone and install that kind of crap yourself. A memory card reader? So I take it that you don't use picture software like Picassa or iPhoto to organize your photos? You are aware that the iPhone has 8-16 and potentially 32 GB of storage in the new models built in?

      Features that apple COULD implement tomorrow, but won't.

      They won't because they are interested in serving the majority of customer's needs rather than serving niche concerns at the expense of security and stability as well as battery life.

      That's why I'm rockin' android and will never buy an iphone in its current crippled state.

      A real shame, as the device definetly has potential. It's not about hating apple, it's about hating that locked down feeling. That is probably not an issue for most people out there, but for me they are dealbreakers.

      Good for you. Have fun with your device of your choice but you should realize that your expectations are part of a small niche and most people just want a device that works well on a consistent basis.

  • ... so the only challenge will be crowd control. Hundreds of people playing musical chairs for every major keynote and standing in line for everything from food to toilets. Maybe another 10.000 iPhone Apps. Maybe finding a bigger vault for all the cash... They are on a roll and although nothing lasts forever, this is not likely to stop any time soon.
  • by CHK6 (583097) on Friday June 05, 2009 @04:11PM (#28227587)
    Wow what a horrid technology article. First it informs the readers that RIM is the maker of the BlackBerry (you don;t say!) and that programs are applications also known as "apps"(yet another shocker to me). Then the whole article is about how Apple faces competition from rivals ( I can only muster a blank stare at this moment). Was this article written at an airport terminal before boarding? Wow, what impressive journalism the NYTimes has. They assembled what has to be the best crack team of reporters in the business. Digging deep and bringing the public the most obvious and non-news worthy information to the masses.

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