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The Media Apple

Apple Leaves Journalists Jonesing 277

Posted by Soulskill
from the irony-noted dept.
Hodejo1 writes "Apple traditionally has big product announcements in the early spring, so around February both the mainstream press and the tech blogs began to circulate their favorite rumors (the iWatch, iTV). They also announced the date of the next Apple event, which this year was in March — except it didn't happen. 'Reliable sources' then confirmed it would be in April, then May and then — nothing. In withdrawal and with a notoriously secretive Apple offering no relief the tech journalists started to get cranky. The end result is a rash of petulant stories that insist Apple is desperate for new products, in trouble (with $150 billion dollars in the bank, I should be in such trouble) and in decline. The only ones desperate seem to be editors addicted to traffic-generating Apple announcements. Good news is on the horizon, though, as the Apple Worldwide Developer Conference starts June 10th." This was in evidence last night, as Apple CEO Tim Cook spoke to the press at the All Things D conference. Cook's statements were mostly the sort of vague, grandiose talk that gets fed to investors on an earnings call, but it's generating article after article because, hey, it's Tim Cook.
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Apple Leaves Journalists Jonesing

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  • Who cares? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 29, 2013 @07:18AM (#43848941)

    ^ that is all

    • Re:Who cares? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by MightyYar (622222) on Wednesday May 29, 2013 @07:45AM (#43849067)

      I'm a Mac fan, and I think the iPhone is all right. I'm not an Apple hater.

      That said, I completely agree. We are now reporting about non-news as news?

      • Re:Who cares? (Score:5, Interesting)

        by SJHillman (1966756) on Wednesday May 29, 2013 @07:46AM (#43849087)

        It's sort of like having a small child or a puppy. It's when everything is quiet that you start to wonder what they're up to.

        • by lxs (131946)

          Also like a small child or puppy, the average owner will spam everybody else with updates and pictures until they are sick of it.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by sycodon (149926)

        Apple is now Just Another Tech Company run by MBAs and Marketing jackwads.

        If Steve were here, he would tear the entire iTunes team a new asshole and then fire them all.

        • Re:Who cares? (Score:5, Insightful)

          by chrish (4714) on Wednesday May 29, 2013 @08:38AM (#43849497) Homepage

          While I agree with the first part (and hey, they can coast for a decade, so maybe they've got ample opportunity to get moving again), I don't agree with the second part.

          iTunes sucked hard for many, many years while Jobs was at the helm, its awfulness isn't a feature of Tim Cook's days.

        • by quadrox (1174915)
          I don't quite see your point - he has had YEARS to do that, and still never did.
        • Apple is now Just Another Tech Company run by MBAs and Marketing jackwads.

          If Steve were here, he would tear the entire iTunes team a new asshole and then fire them all.

          Steve should have fired the team that makes the Windows version of iTunes. That software is in the same league as "The most shittiest software in the world" such as Samsung Keis. iTunes especially is just so much junk.

      • Re:Who cares? (Score:4, Insightful)

        by tlhIngan (30335) <.slashdot. .at. .worf.net.> on Wednesday May 29, 2013 @10:25AM (#43850463)

        That said, I completely agree. We are now reporting about non-news as news?

        Because Apple stories bring in ad revenue. A lot of it, in fact. If you can attract Android fanboys and Apple-haters to the mix, you can count on a good chunk of ad revenue.

        So Apple non-news is the media's attempt to bring some Apple story ad revenue back.

        Journalists are hurting for money too, you know,

        And Apple's positioned themselves to be the "premium, but accessible" brand. Unlike Google (who simply are ho-hum because they're splashed across the vast majority of web searchines), and Samsung (who you see everywhere for everything - from lowly crap to high end smartphones and appliances).

        And Google I/O was a huge bust in terms of reporting. The PS4 and Xbox One announcements tended to be yawners.

        Only Apple stories can bring in crowds from Apple fanboys, Android fanboys, Apple haters, and the general public - it won't be long until even the Apple-haters have haters ("I remember when hating Apple was COOL..."). Android stories bring out some Android fanboys, and a few Apple fanboys, but otherwise not much of a stir. Microsoft stories (including Xbox) similarly - the anti-Microsoft rhetoric has died down. Even Google can't seem to pull in crowds.

        Except it seems that Apple has throughout its entire life a steady supply of fans, haters, and people interested in their product.

        Hell, it won't be long until you see "Tim Cook - help a starving journalist and announce *something*".

      • by gorzek (647352)

        Apple's not announced any amazing new products! Apple is doomed! SELL SELL SELL!

        I don't care much about Apple either way, but the way people speculate about it is so silly. Of course, this is the company that manages to meet its own stated revenue targets but takes a stock hit for not meeting third-party analysts' made-up targets. All I can do is laugh.

    • Tech journalists. Which seem to be the second worst journalists out there. Financial sector journalists are pretty shitty at what they do, political reporters are generally pretty terrible at doing anything more than regurgitating press releases. But at least both have some importance and occasionally you get decent reports. Tech journalists, on the other hand, seem to be little more than advertisers. And not even very good ones at that. Aside from gawker buying that iphone prototype, I can't think of
  • journalism (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Tom (822) on Wednesday May 29, 2013 @07:24AM (#43848955) Homepage Journal

    A good example to watch.

    A successful company, ahead of its markets, does not need a new product every 6 months.
    Journalists, on the other hand, do need news.

    • Re:journalism (Score:4, Insightful)

      by SJHillman (1966756) on Wednesday May 29, 2013 @07:31AM (#43848995)

      It does when "Buy The iDevice++" is their business model. There's a lot of 3 to 5 year old iDevices out there that are still perfectly suited to what their owners actually need, but Apple has made a metric fuckton of money by convincing people to upgrade every year even if they don't need any of the new features. At it's heart, Apple has become a marketing company that happens to also sell what they market. Without that marketing power, iDevices would have all the popularity of the Zune.

      • by Sockatume (732728)

        The mobile phone industry was built around getting people to buy new phones every year (18 months, towards the end) for a long, long time before Apple came on the scene, and there weren't new features - needed or not - as an inducement.

        • I used the generic iDevice rather than the specific iPhone because they use the same model for iPods and iPads. Although iPods have pretty much faded from the spotlight now, that's what Apple began the entire iDevice trend with long before the iPhone was even a rumor, much less a product.

          • by Sockatume (732728)

            I don't think the tablet market is sufficiently saturated that they're selling iPads primarily to people that already own one, yet. (You may be interested in this piece [asymco.com], which shows through stats just how saturated the iPhone market is, though.)

      • Re:journalism (Score:5, Informative)

        by MrMickS (568778) on Wednesday May 29, 2013 @08:15AM (#43849313) Homepage Journal

        It does when "Buy The iDevice++" is their business model. There's a lot of 3 to 5 year old iDevices out there that are still perfectly suited to what their owners actually need, but Apple has made a metric fuckton of money by convincing people to upgrade every year even if they don't need any of the new features. At it's heart, Apple has become a marketing company that happens to also sell what they market. Without that marketing power, iDevices would have all the popularity of the Zune.

        I think that you are completely and utterly wrong on how Apple views their customers. You are listening to too many rabid fanbois and reading too many awesome tech journals.

        Looking at phones in particular: before the iPhone came along software upgrades, though possible, were generally a pain. This was further complicated by carrier software versions preventing manufacturer updates being applied. In general you bought a phone and the software was fixed. Apple continue to support older versions of phones with new software releases with as much feature parity as won't impact the experience. Their aim is to keep their customers happy so that when they come to replace their device they will buy it from them. The philosophy is to build the best that they can and build customer loyalty.

        I've had two iPhones, a 3G and a 4S. The 4S is still good enough for pretty much whatever I want to do so I can't see me upgrading this year unless the next phone does something magical. When I come to replace I'll buy another iPhone. Why? Because it does the job I want it to.

        • I think it's two things related to the software.

          1. As you say, there are software upgrades put out regularly, you're not stuck with security holes or old useless phones.

          2. Even though the software and devices are upgraded, they stay almost exactly the same from revision to revision. There are new features, but the iphoneX+1 still works almost exactly the same as an iphoneX. That is the important part. People hated having to relearn the interface of their phone every time they got a new one. It's still an is

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by shadowrat (1069614)
        While device buying is profitable for apple, i don't think their model entirely revolves around getting you to buy the next device. It's more about digital purchases and locking you into their ecosystem. They are perfectly happy for you to keep your 3 year old device as long as you continue to use their cloud storage, buy mp3s on itunes, and get every new angry birds.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Anonymous Coward

          Actually everything I have seen says that Apple makes little to nothing on selling music, apps, storage, etc. Sure they generate tons of revenue, but Apple claims most of that revenue pays for the service, royalties, etc. Remember Apple only gets 30% of every dollar in Apps sold. A lot of apps are free, in which case Apple is losing money operationally. Only Apple and the record labels know how much Apple hands over to the record labels on every song sold.

          However, making the ecosystem work with all the devi

      • by swb (14022)

        There's a lot of 3 to 5 year old iDevices out there that are still perfectly suited to what their owners actually need,

        You are either that guy with the latest of everything who thinks he knows what everyone else needs (and it is always less than what you "need") or you are that guy with a prepaid flip-phone who sends emails to webmasters because there aren't enough ALT tags to keep Lynx usable.

        Speaking as someone with every iPhone since the 3G still running at home, this statement can only be true for very

      • Re:journalism (Score:5, Informative)

        by Dixie_Flatline (5077) <vincent DOT jan DOT goh AT gmail DOT com> on Wednesday May 29, 2013 @10:18AM (#43850359) Homepage

        I'm still on my iPhone 4. I have no particular need to upgrade every year. I've been buying Macs for a long time, and I always sold them when I ran out of AppleCare...I'm hardly on a 1-year upgrade cycle. Now I'm actually still using a 4-year-old iMac and an even older MacBook. (We bought a new Mac Mini to run computational experiments, but it's headless.)

        In fact, most of the people I know are still using their iPhone 4. I know one person with an iPhone 5, and he came from a Windows phone.

        If there's a policy or climate of consumption, it's societal, not due to Apple's marketing. The idea that you should update as often as possible isn't new to computing. Heck, it's not like it even started with computers. I've known plenty of people that leased cars just so they could get a new one every couple of years. Consumption is the curse of the current capitalist framework that we live in. That Apple exists and exploits that system somewhat shouldn't be pinned on them; they're just a symptom.

        I MAY upgrade to what Apple announces this year, but I might not. I may my own determinations based on what my needs are.

        Apple doesn't make vast changes to its products year on year. It adds a new feature or two and releases an upgraded OS to a lot of people for FREE. And here's the irony: Android owners are constantly ragging on Apple for this. "Oh man, nothing new out of Apple! Why should I buy their stuff?" They can't win around here. Either they're not making crazy big changes that would force you to buy a new item, or they're releasing new, upgraded products TOO DAMN OFTEN. No way to win.

        • by AmiMoJo (196126) *

          In fact, most of the people I know are still using their iPhone 4.

          Slashdot should have a "-1 worthless anecdote" mod. Not singling you out in particular, just sayin' that Slashdot is full of "everyone I know..." and "it is/isn't good for me, therefore it is/isn't good for everyone".

          • Anecdotes aren't data, I know, but my worthless anecdote was a counter to the worthless assertion that the parent made. :)

  • by shortscruffydave (638529) on Wednesday May 29, 2013 @07:25AM (#43848961)
    Apple seems to be more about the rumours and the stories about their products nowadays, more so than being about their product innovations. Makes me think of 'C' list celebrities, who are really famous for being famous rather than for anything substantive that they might actually do
    • by Sockatume (732728)

      You read an article which is entirely composed of speculation about Apple's future product roadmap, and you come away with the conclusion that Apple's fame isn't about its products?

      • by cdrudge (68377)

        If you're referring to this /. artcile, I read an article speculating about journalists speculating about what Apple might possibly do sometime. Maybe.

        • by Sockatume (732728)

          Yes, but it's demonstrably an interest in Apple's actual products, and not just fame-for-fame's-sake. There's a difference between rampant speculation about the new Star Wars film (because people really care about Star Wars, the end product) and rampant speculation about Harrison Ford's personal life (because fame).

      • where are the new products now? where is the innovation now? where is the creative vision now?
    • by sootman (158191)

      Sure, they created the iPod, then the iTunes music store, then the iPhone, then the app store, then the iPad... but what have they done lately? They should be introducing breakthrough products at least annually, right? And that time they had the most profitable quarter of any company in history... that was, like, over a year ago! Stick a fork in'em -- they're done.

      Guess what folks -- Apple is going to continue to do nothing... right up until the day they do something.

    • by neoshroom (324937) on Wednesday May 29, 2013 @08:17AM (#43849329)
      What's Apple famous for again? Yup, they are famous for being famous.

      Well that and popularizing the graphic user interface everyone uses in the first place [wikipedia.org].

      And for having a pretty decent Unix-based operating system [stackexchange.com] while Ballmer drives Microsoft off a cliff [forbes.com].

      And for designing the first mp3 player that the mass-market embraced [mashable.com].

      And for ushering in the change from feature-phones to smartphones [bgr.com].

      And for creating an earthquake in the tablet market such that in the future it is predicted more tablets will sell than PCs [macrumors.com].

      But yeah...they are just famous for being famous...

      ...Until they release a TV with a kinect-like interface running iOS. And then Sony's PS4 and the Wii U crashes and burns, (which is sort of already happening...sales on the Wii U are very poor [geek.com] and Sony's electronics wing isn't doing well either [nytimes.com]), while everyone is playing Angry Birds on their new Apple TV platform and we get umpteen-million articles about the "New Console Wars," which are now between Microsoft and Apple.

      Of course then a couple years will go by and people will forget all of history and again claim that Apple is just famous for being famous. Such is the cycle of Slashdot.
      • by drinkypoo (153816) <martin.espinoza@gmail.com> on Wednesday May 29, 2013 @09:33AM (#43849951) Homepage Journal

        Apple has had great timing.

        All of this stuff was bound to happen around when it happened. Apple saw these things coming and was there at the right time, as opposed to first. But then they always just make a shiny shiny, and half-ass it, because that's enough to get most of the dollars. You know, just like everyone else.

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by Anonymous Coward

          Apple has had great timing.

          All of this stuff was bound to happen around when it happened. Apple saw these things coming and was there at the right time, as opposed to first. But then they always just make a shiny shiny, and half-ass it, because that's enough to get most of the dollars. You know, just like everyone else.

          I have to disagree with you here. I think Apple created their own timing. The only thing they waited on was broadband internet access. When it was introduced, the iPod blew people away; the iPad did something that Microsoft failed to do for over 10 years: get a tablet to be accepted and used by the general public. I would guess that you could give MS another 10 years and they still wouldn't understand the tablet market without what Apple had done. Google wouldn't have even considered creating An

        • Timing is a skill. If you don't believe me, ask a sharpshooter.

          Or, hell, ask actual entrepreneurs. Some people are too early to market. Some are too late. It's been said that timing is everything, and not just for Comedy.

          But yeah, hey, it's just timing. If it's just timing, why don't YOU do it?

      • What's Apple famous for again? Yup, they are famous for being famous.
        Well that and popularizing the graphic user interface everyone uses in the first place [wikipedia.org].

        Introduced 29 years ago, by Steve Jobs.

        And for having a pretty decent Unix-based operating system [stackexchange.com] while Ballmer drives Microsoft off a cliff [forbes.com].

        Introduced 13 years ago, by Steve Jobs.

        And for designing the first mp3 player that the mass-market embraced [mashable.com].

        Introduced 12 years ago, by Steve Jobs.

        Introduced 5 years ago, by Steve Jobs.

        Introduced over 2 years ago, by Steve Jobs.

        See where I'm going with this? We all know Apple's history. The point is: what insanely great innovations have they unveiled since the death of Steve Jobs?
        Answer: NONE.

    • Apple seems to be more about the rumours and the stories about their products nowadays...

      I sense you must not be familiar with the Mac community. Rumors are the norm.

      You can spin that to be a bad thing, saying, "They have rumors because there's nothing of substance." You could spin it to be a positive, saying, "The market is so excited about Apple's products that they engage in wild speculation." Regardless, the Mac rumor mill has been spinning for decades, and this is not something that has emerged "nowadays".

  • by puddingebola (2036796) on Wednesday May 29, 2013 @07:27AM (#43848977) Journal
    Just a rumor, but I heard it's the iBlender, which will revolutionize kitchen appliance. But will it blend itself?
    • by SJHillman (1966756) on Wednesday May 29, 2013 @07:36AM (#43849013)

      Not only will it blend* the most hipster smoothie you have ever tasted, but the sleek iBlender can also play music** and videos***, make phones calls****, get you lost in your travels***** and more!

      *Blades sold separately in the iTunes store.
      **Requires iTunes
      ***Requires AppleControl iMplants
      ****Requires monthly tithing
      *****Feature, not a bug. Just ask our lawyers.

  • Jonesing? (Score:4, Funny)

    by rossdee (243626) on Wednesday May 29, 2013 @08:13AM (#43849293)

    WTF is Jonesing ?

    Are they drinking poisoned cool ade? (Rev Lim Jones)
    Speaking in a deep voice? (James Earl Jones)
    Singing Tenor (Tom Jones)

    I'll admit I wasn't born in the USA, but English (English) has been my main language for over 50 years

    • Re:Jonesing? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Sockatume (732728) on Wednesday May 29, 2013 @08:19AM (#43849361)

      When faced with a new word it is often prudent to attempt to deduce its meaning from context. Given that the article is about journalists "in withdrawal" and "cranky" due to a lack of new Apple news, what do you think that "Jonesing" could mean?

    • by Xest (935314)

      I think it's a twist on the saying "Keeping up with the Joneses" which basically means trying to compete with the neighbours in the context of a middle-class suburban class war, i.e. "Mr Jones next door has a new Porsche, this means we'll have to get a better model!".

      In other words they're saying that because Apple hasn't come up with anything newsworthy the media is having to make up stories to try and out-compete each other for views and that one paper saying "Is Apple running out of ideas?" will be follo

      • by LDAPMAN (930041)

        Err, No....http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=jonesing

        "Exhibiting a strong craving or desire for something eaten, imbibed, or taken as a drug. Comes from opiate culture."

      • by shmlco (594907)

        "Jonesing" is drug slang, usually used in regard to heroin. It means I need my next fix, and I need it NOW.

        • by Xest (935314)

          I'll have to hang around with more heroin addicts to make sure I know all the slang in future.

  • This is a typical Apple product cycle state.

    Apple typically has a "big year" followed by nothing. Feast followed by famine.

    2012 saw major and minor updates of almost every product Apple makes including new product roll-outs.

    So I fully expected 2013 to be a very slow year for Apple announcements and full of wild speculation and rumor mongering about what they are planning next. This has been a trend for Apple for almost 15 years since they rolled out the first iMac that iconized their iProducts into stuff p

    • You contradict yourself. First, you rightly point out that there will be fast years and slow years, and that people forget history in the slow years with their silly predictions of apple's doom.

      You then forget history yourself when you bring up pointless bs about their stock price. Seriously, zoom out the stock chart to show the last 5 or 10 years, and you will see in context that the drop of $300 is merely correcting an anomaly. From 2009 to 2011, aapl had sustainable growth. Then in 2012 there was a crazy

  • My lame rumor seed (Score:3, Informative)

    by zarmanto (884704) on Wednesday May 29, 2013 @09:29AM (#43849917) Journal

    Okay, I'll toss one out just for fun: I think the smart money is on an iPhone 5S announcement on June 10th, which will be a minor speed bump, and the new Mac Pro will wait until one of Apple's short-notice-press-conferences in the fall. I have no evidence for the Mac Pro speculation, other than what Cook has publicly stated about their timetables... but I have anecdotal evidence for the iPhone 5S: According to Sprint employees that I spoke to just yesterday, supplies of the current iPhone 5 are starting to dry up. (They couldn't find me the 64GB models at all... I ended up settling for a pair of 32GB models that they had shipped to the store.) When Apple starts to close off the supply chain for a given product, that's usually a good indicator of an impending replacement, and if memory serves, previous reports have suggested that Apple can flush almost their entire supply within about a week. With the WWDC just around the corner, that seems about right to me.

  • ...because, hey, it's Tim Cook."

    Um, yeah, no kidding. How are the clicks on *this* article doing, non-jonesing Slashdot editors?

  • Journalists have to make up news if there is none. If there's no crime, they'll make up something else for you to freak out about, because "225,000 people enjoyed a quiet, uneventful night at home" does not sell papers.

    Just because journalists are idiots, does not mean Apple is actually doing anything wrong.

  • ... there is no story.

  • by robp (64931) on Wednesday May 29, 2013 @10:08AM (#43850229) Homepage

    To any tech journalists upset that Apple isn't spoon-feeding them product news: Get out. Just leave the business. Please?

    Seriously, if you don't know to do your own digging for a story or don't want to, you're in the wrong line of work. And there are plenty of other people who would gladly take your place.

  • by tlambert (566799) on Wednesday May 29, 2013 @11:56AM (#43851721)

    It's somewhat reasonable to be worried ... if you are an investor. No one else should much care. So ignore all the journalists who are not business/financial in nature.

    Historically, Apple has an approximately 6 month announcement cycle which corresponds to biannual major public events, one for developers in the fall, and one for everyone else in the spring. At these events, it alternately announces its new desktop/laptop hardware, and then its new iDevices.

    This is one of the few times they've missed their spring announcement in almost a decade; the last time was when Tiger slipped shipping for over six months, and that coincided with a claim of a new 18 month development cycle which lasted only one release cycle. This was actually occasioned by some major management screw-ups internally, coinciding with the first major drop-off in Steve's health.

    Apple has been pretty religious about keeping to this schedule, even through the power shift in 2008/2009 when the taller Oompa Loompsa realized they were more or less in charge of the steering wheel of the chocolate factory, should they want to fight each other to steer.

    The iPhone 5 was more or less a fizzle. They're selling OK, but the difference in aspect ratio, made for economic rather than design reasons, combined with the maps change and other changes resulting from non-renewal of contracts with third party vendors, including Google, made it probably the worst launch for an iDevice and an iOS release in Apple history. Technologically, they are a step away from design being the goal in a design/cost tradeoff, and a step backwards in system software.

    Mountain Lion sold well, but only because they dropped the upgrade price to practically nothing. It was a more or less bug fix release for things that should have never been released in Lion in the first place, and the "Game Center" was a non-feature (no games), and the "Message Center" was moving iOS features into a desktop OS, which makes sense for some of them, but when Facebook integration failed to materialize, even in updates, it's potential utility went down.

    It's pretty clear I called the code on the patient way too early myself, but given that it's hovering at around 60% of its high of about 8 months ago, I'd say it was a matter of "when" not "if" the product pipeline would be drying up.

  • by shuz (706678) on Wednesday May 29, 2013 @01:41PM (#43852897) Homepage Journal

    It would seem reasonable that Apple and Intel, two giants in tech industry, would partnership with Intel's new Haswell chipset. It is well known that Intel wants to compete more in the "mobile" computing markets. Apple has a solid foothold in the market and can benefit Intel greatly but putting Intel chips in all of their new products. If Apple has the "next big thing" planned already then they may also be waiting for June 3rd/4th to make any announcements following Intels expected unveiling of their new chipset designed primarily for the mobile markets. If this is the case then Intel will start the hype, Apple will build on the hype, ?, profit.

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