Tag Archives: Tim Cook

The WWDC: iTunes Radio, iOS7, and OS X Mavericks

   Apple fans and dedicated consumers were excited when Tim Cook took the stage at the WWDC on the 10th. Very few rumors had been verified before the conference as to what would be announced this year. Things like the iWatch and the iPhone 5S and 6 were anticipated, but Apple decided to push the release of the new iOS and OS X, as well as some new hardware. 

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The iOS 7 may not have been the first reveal at the WWDC, but it may have been the most important. Apple has been running the same visual style on the iOS since the iPhone hit the market, but after a great deal of work they’ve released the newer, more sleek and efficient iOS7. It’s focus is to integrate and layer all functions with more options in every avenue of use. Folders can hold pages of content, photos will be immediately arranged by the location the photo was taken and the date/time, and a heads up display can be swiped up from the bottom of the UI at any point of use. Some speculate that the new iOS looks more like the Android Jellybean, but the functionality and look haven’t been fully reviewed quite yet. Developers gained access to the iOS7 less that 24 hour ago, so there’s still much to be experimented with. 

Another big hit for Apple was the OS X Mavericks (10.9). The new OS hasn’t changed much in look, but has some big new features. iBooks, Apple Maps, Calandar, and the brand new Safari are just some of the new changes Mavericks is bringing to the table. Apple, as always, is setting up the OS to function as smoothly and as efficiently as possible. The system is set up to save power so that your Macbook Air can supply you with full 24 hour use. And the Safari changes are set so that reading articles and roaming through bookmarks is seamless with endless scrolling. Apple will be releasing an entirely new desktop, the Mac Pro.

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The new desktop features components  that are built around a “central thermal core,” and the specs include an Intel Xeon CPU, faster 1,866GHz RAM, and new SSD storage that’s 2.5 times faster than current SSD drives. Dual AMD FirePro GPUs are supported (even though current MacBook Pros use Nvidia graphics), and the system can output to as many as three 4K resolution displays.

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Lastly, Apple has set out to contend with Pandora and Spotify with their own digital station, iTunes Radio. The system appeared easy to navigate and familiarize with, being that such programs have become extremely popular in the past few years, but Apple has added it’s own twist on their radio system. It’s an integrated part of iTunes which can be accessed as easily as the iTunes Store: just a click away. The radio will play whatever bands, artists, or genres you chose and will also give you a purchasing option for individual MP3s. Playlists can be formed and shared with other users, similar to the Spotify function. All of it connects to the iTunes store, so expect an ease of purchasing new music on your desktop or your mobile. All information is distributed throughout your cloud, so your music can stream from your iPhone, iPad, or desktop, regardless of where the purchase and download took place. 

The WWDC did bring some large changes to the table, but Apple stock has not taken a major rise since the conference ended. It’s likely that consumers and investors are waiting for the release of the new iPhones as well as information on the iWatch before business takes a jump forward. We can only wait until the end of the year before finding out. 

-David Collins

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Apple and the D11 Conference

timcAt this year’s “All About the D”, Tim Cook took the stage for the second time as the Apple CEO and representative. Interviewers Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher were immediate in their quest for answers from Cook due to the drop Apple’s stock has been making in the recent months. This year we’ve seen a great deal of competition from HTC and Samsung with the HTC One and the Galaxy S4.

Cook did not receive much time or kindness when asked how he views the company’s decline. Apple has been the leading example for innovative technology since the iPod, but with the death of former CEO Steve Jobs, some have lost faith in the company’s potential future. This is what Tim Cook had to say about the current drop in stock:

“Apple has always had competition to focus on, but our North Star is always on making the best products. We always come back to that. We want to do the best phone, the best tablet, the best PC. I think we’re doing that.” 

Cook reassures investors and consumers that as long as Apple continues to focus on the product quality being the best and the brightest of the generation, that everything will smooth out in time. He noted that the company sold 85 million iPhones, 42 million iPads, and 13 million Apple TVs in the second half of the last year. But interviewer Kara Swisher was not moved by the numbers.

She pointed out that the sales may be high, but faith is low. Apple has not come out with a new product type since Steve Jobs passed away. New iPhones, iPads, and upgrades to all standing systems have been made, but Apple has not pushed past the competition with the “future technology” that was the staple of the company for so long.

Cook was questioned about many of the moves that the competing companies have been making, including the future of Apple TV (which hasn’t received much focus from the company) and Google Glass. Unfortunately Cook never gave any solid answers to most questions, mostly referring to the future of wearable technology as “interesting” and “ripe for exploration”.

The only real information that Cook would comment on is the new iOS that will be displayed at the WWDC in the middle of June. The iOS and the OSX will debut there, promising a smoother and more futuristic system for Apple consumers to get excited about. But it appears that the iPhone 5S and iPhone 6 we’re being promised at the upcoming conference may not provide customers with stunning changes or upgrades. No large details have been revealed, but Cook did speak briefly about the smart phone’s screen size.

“People do look at the size. They also look at things like do the photos show the proper color? The white balance, the reflectivity, battery life. […] At this point we’ve felt the retina display that we are shipping is overwhelmingly the best.” 

After an intense session of questions, it’s come to light that Apple might not be in the lead when it comes to making new and fresh products anymore. Cook has made it clear that their main goal is to make their product clean, smooth, and the best. But will Apple stock remain in it’s slump with this change in company focus? Will consumers stick around if Apple doesn’t remain the flagship company in the world of smart phone technology?

When Tim Cook was asked if he was afraid for the status of the company and the future of their business, he replied with a calm and confident, “absolutely not.”

Hopefully what we see at the WWDC will only add to his statement.

-David Collins

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