Mobile Technology News, August 28, 2012
As developers for tablets and smartphones we like to keep abreast of the latest mobile technology developments . This is a daily digest of mobile development and related technology news gathered from the BBC, the New York Times, New Scientist and the Globe and Mail to name a few. We scour the web for articles concerning, iPhone, iPad and android development, iOS and android operating systems as well as general articles on advances in mobile technology. We hope you find this useful and that it helps to keep you up to date with the latest technology developments.
- Intel quad-core ‘ValleyView’ system-on-a-chip coming
Intel will beef up its system-on-a-chip design with quad-core variants and faster graphics.
- Active in Cloud, Amazon Reshapes Computing
- Samsung Case Puts Apple Closer to Google Fight
- Sony to exit PC-use optical drives, say reports
Sony is getting out the optical disk business as it tries to restructure and shift to businesses that are more relevant to current device trends.
- Apple Retail’s Emphasis on Profits Continues, Tied to Operational Perspective of Cook and Browett
Earlier this month, we reported on several changes at Apple retail stores that were reportedly seeing some employees being laid off or seeing recent promotions being retracted, while other part-time employees were seeing their hours reduced significantly, in some cases to zero. Our report was followed several days later by an acknowledgement from Apple that the company had “messed up” in adjusting its staffing formulas for its retail stores.
ifoAppleStore now takes a close look at the situation, tying changes in the philosophy of Apple’s retail experience to the passing of Steve Jobs and the operational focus of Apple CEO Tim Cook and new retail chief John Browett. At the most basic level, Jobs served as the champion for former retail chief Ron Johnson’s vision of Apple stores focused on consumer satisfaction, and without Jobs to protect that vision Apple has slipped into a numbers-focused perspective for its retail operations.
Johnson was champion of customer satisfaction, designing and staffing the stores to provide a superior experience for visitors and buyers alike. He was able to win over Steve Jobs with the concept that revenue and profit should be a secondary goal of Apple’s retail stores.
But in 2009, Jobs took six months of medical leave and put Tim Cook in charge of the company, including the retail stores. Cook is primarily an “operations guy,” sources explain, and his natural focus is revenues and profits, not customers. While Jobs was away, Cook and chief financial officer Peter Oppenheimer began to confront Johnson on his customer-centric retail philosophy—both felt the stores didn’t generate enough revenues to justify operating expenses.
The report claims that Cook hired Browett to replace Johnson, who departed Apple to lead department store chain JC Penney last year, specifically because of his focus on “traditional concepts of retailing” that prioritize revenues and profits as the key performance metrics.
Tim Cook (left) and John Browett (right)
Even with Apple reportedly having reversed a number of the staffing changes that brought the company such significant publicity earlier this month, stores are reportedly still subject to directives reducing workshop offerings for customers and specifying policies on staff evaluation and compensation that prioritize profits over the customer experience and employee satisfaction.
- iTunes Festival 2012 Live Streaming App Appears on Apple TV
Back in May, Apple announced that its annual iTunes Festival in London would be moving to September for 2012, with the event once again offering 30 days of free concerts at The Roundhouse. While tickets to the shows have been awarded on a lottery basis, Apple this year is offering access to the concerts with a number of live streaming options including through the iTunes Festival website, through a dedicated universal iOS app, and through Apple TV.
For those interested in watching the shows on Apple TV, the company has just pushed out an automatic update adding the iTunes Festival app to users’ set-top boxes, making it easy for users to access the shows from the main menu of the device.
This is not the first time Apple has experimented with delivering live content directly to the Apple TV, as the company earlier this year offered a live stream of a Paul McCartney concert through both iTunes and the Apple TV.
The 2012 iTunes Festival kicks off on September 1 with Usher and runs daily throughout the month until closing with Muse on September 30.
- Foxconn International shares fall
Shares of Foxconn International Holdings, the world biggest contract mobile phone manufacturer, slump more than 8% after a dismal earnings report.
- Michael Dell says he is OK with the ‘post-PC’ era
Michael Dell says it’s smooth sailing in the post-PC era. Though that sentiment seems to conflict with recent data from market research firms.
- VIDEO: Are gamers 21st Century athletes?
Meet the Usain Bolts of the video gaming world
- What’s missing in Windows 8 apps
Come October 26, Microsoft will face two battles for Windows 8. Not only does it have to convince people that the OS is worth upgrading to, but it must land with competitive apps. Here’s what they lack so far.
- OS X Lion 10.7.5 Build 11G45 Seeded to Developers [Mac Blog]
Apple today seeded a new version of OS X Lio 10.7.5 to developers for testing. The new version, Build 11G45, arrives less than two weeks after the previous seed, and the build increment of nine suggests that Apple has been continuing to make a number of tweaks to the update in preparation for a public launch.
Apple continues to list no known issues with the update and is asking developers to focus on the same testing areas as in the previous build, which included graphics performance and image and media handling.
- VIDEO: Robot puppetry makes ‘alien art’
Robotic floating light follows exhibition visitors around
- Julio Fernandez: Five Tips for Athletes and Brands to Improve Their Online Profiles
Here are five tips that athletes, brands and you should follow to improve your online profiles and dominate the search engine results page.
- How to hide data in plain sight
Criminals can hide data from surveillance in plain sight
- Is technology killing the lure of company heritage?
Is technology killing the lure of company heritage?
- Tweetbot for Mac Alpha Program Ended Over Twitter API Restrictions [Mac Blog]
Following the introduction of new Twitter API guidelines — the rules by which third-party Twitter clients must abide — Tweetbot has decided to end the pre-release testing program of TweetBot for Mac.
The public Alpha program began more than a month ago to help Tweetbot get feedback on the Mac Twitter client as the developers moved towards final release.
One of the API changes relates to how many “tokens” a particular Twitter app can have, limiting the total number of customers an app can serve without approval from Twitter. In order to protect their ability to sell the maximum number of copies of the app going forward, Tweetbot has discontinued the alpha program and ceased distribution of the app.
As some of you may have already noticed the download link for the Tweetbot for Mac alpha no longer works. Twitter’s latest API Changes means now we have a large but finite limit on the number of user tokens we can get for Tweetbot for Mac. We’ve been working with Twitter over the last few days to try to work around this limit for the duration of the beta but have been unable to come up with a solution that was acceptable to them. Because of this we’ve decided its best for us to pull the alpha.
More than a few pundits have expressed their displeasure with the situation, putting the blame squarely on Twitter. Even so, at this point, Tweetbot for Mac will be available for sale “in the near future” and the developers are merely stopping the public phase of prerelease testing.
- Hillel Fuld: Stevie Brings the Social Web to the Comfort of Your Couch
TV is so 2011! What if we could enjoy the TV experience described above but with content of our choice and the ability to actively engage with that content?
- Google reacts to Apple patent win
Google says it does not want Samsung’s defeat in last week’s patent case to “limit” customers’ access to Android.
- There’s A Wrong Way To Eat Tic Tacs?
Dispensing a Tic Tac seems like a pretty simple task, but recent reports suggest there could be more to extracting the tiny breath mints from…