Saturday, December 31, 2011
The late Steve Jobs called 2011 “the year of the iPad 2″ and almost a year after it was introduced, almost 2 years after the original iPad was...
The late Steve Jobs called 2011 “the year of the iPad 2″ and almost a year after it was introduced, almost 2 years after the original iPad was introduced, it remains a product selling in the tens of millions with absolutely no competition in sight.
And that’s a shame because, as a consumer, the one thing I want most is strong, meaningful competition for the iPad.
It’s become a cliche to say “there’s no tablet market, there’s only an iPad market”, but like most cliches there’s more than a little truth to it. Very few people want a tablet. Not in the 10 years prior to the iPad when Microsoft sold Tablet PC to almost no one, and not in the almost two years since when Apple’s competition has tried to differentiate themselves by being more like PCs.
The simple truth is, the iPad was never designed to be a tablet. It was never designed to be a PC crammed into a slate form factor. Like they did with command line on the Apple II, and graphical interfaces on the Mac, and multitouch on the iPhone, Apple strove to make something that was more mainstream, more accessible than what had come before. It just turned out to look like a tablet.
For many people, PCs — personal computers — are anything but. They’re complicated, impenetrable stacks of boxes and webs of cables, with mice that never move right, buttons that never click right, windows that hide other windows, programs that make little sense, and files and folders that are as frustrating to find as they are to figure out how to use. They’re like cars back in the days when you had to be a mechanic to own and operate one, and very few people did.
The iPad is the opposite of that. You turn it on. You click home. You tap an app. You click home. You tap another app. You know where you are and if you get lost you’re always only a click away from getting back to some place familiar. It’s more approachable. It’s more understandable. It does 80% of the things 80% of the people need 80% of the time and that, it turns out, is a huge swathe more than most PCs could ever do for most people.
That’s why Apple is selling a so many of them, and why their competitors aren’t.
Powerful multitasking metaphors don’t help people who think their internet is gone because their browser is lost behind their word processor. Flash doesn’t help mainstream consumers who have no idea what it is, even if their more obscure web video sites don’t play without it. Tegra II processors don’t help wives who just want to know whey their messages won’t scroll without sticking and stammering. Bezel gestures and on-screen widgets don’t help people who just, for once in their technology plagued lives, want simple controls, for a simple screen, that does one app at a time and does it very, very well. Copying the iPad’s look won’t help when the software running it doesn’t work with anything approaching the same simplicity or feel.
Apple understood this back in 2005 when they started work on the Safari Pad concept, and while even they didn’t full get it when they made it manifest in 2010, they got it enough to release the iPad, and they got it even more in 2011 with the iPad 2, iOS 5, and iCloud.
It’s not about being thinner, or lighter, or faster. It’s not about specs or about content. It’s about experience. And now, as we enter 2012, as Apple is poised to release an iPad 3, not a single one of their competitors have gotten that yet.
Until they do, until Amazon or Google or someone else puts the mainstream customer first, every year for the foreseeable future will be the year of the iPad.
We've covered Classic Shell before, but here's the crib note: Classic Shell restores almost every Windows XP-era Explorer feature. The best change, in our opinion, is the reemergence of the 'up' arrow, meaning you now navigate without using the Windows Vista/7 'breadcrumbs' address bar. The status bar yet again shows the total size of your selection, and -- praise be! -- the diabolical Windows 7 Copy File 'copy and replace?' dialog has been replaced with a Windows XP lookalike (image after the break).
New to the most recent version of Classic Shell is the ability to make IE9 look like IE8. With Classic Shell the title bar yet again has a caption, so you can see the full title of Web pages. The current security zone and loading progress indicator have been put back into the status bar, too. If you enable 'Show tabs on a separate row,' it's almost like using IE8.
Finally, Classic Shell replaces the omnipotent Windows 7 Start Menu with the age-old 'classic' Windows 2000/XP-style Start Menu. Classic Shell makes the Start Menu skinable, too, if you're into the kind of thing.
As awesome as it sounds, we've only touched on a small section of Classic Shell's feature set. Check the Classic Shell site for a complete list. There's a few more images of Classic Shell in action after the break.
Download Classic Shell for Windows
But how far did you think $99 would get you?
Ice Cream Sandwich, and a 7-inch tablet -- two things that (for me) that go great together. We got our 7-inch Ainol NOVO7 tablet fresh off the boat, and we're having a look at "The first Android 4.0 tablet in the world." We really don't expect much from these no-name tablets -- especially one that retails at less than $100, but the intrigue of Ice Cream Sandwich running natively on one made it too hard to resist.
Hit the break, and let's have a look.
The iPhone 5 rumoured to be released in the fall of 2012, almost the same time the 4S was released this year is probably the most anticipated iPhone version till date. And the highlight of the next iPhone is obviously its Design, which has caught the fantasy of iPhone enthusiasts all over the world. There [...]
The iPhone 5 rumoured to be released in the fall of 2012, almost the same time the 4S was released this year is probably the most anticipated iPhone version till date. And the highlight of the next iPhone is obviously its Design, which has caught the fantasy of iPhone enthusiasts all over the world. There has been a series of debates and discussions as to what the size of the iPhone 5 will be to what design changes are expected, besides the usual predictions regarding its features.
And the latest one to add to the already rumoured status is news from some ‘insider’ source that the next iPhone will have “rubber or plastic” material built into its case as a new take on the device’s bezel. This is again said to accompany a new aluminium back plate and new antenna system.
However, the irresistible rumours surrounding the upcoming iPhone 5 surely make you ponder at the span it has managed to survive. If you remember, it started sometime after the iPhone 4 was released and soon rumours about an impending iPhone 5 began doing the rounds. But what followed – Apple releasing iPhone 4S, left many on the lurch – surprised, dejected and blown away by its path-breaking feature like Siri.
Will the iPhone 5 come in the way of iTV launch?
The Apple iTV is supposed to debut in the 2nd or 3rd quarter of 2012 and analysts believe that going by Apple’s fabulous marketing strategy, they would not mess things up or diversify attention from each product at the same time. Therefore, it can be well adjudged that the iPhone 5 might make an early launch into the market, which can also be in tandem to its prior summer launches.
BGR in its latest revelation about the most-awaited iPhone 5 has come out with some interesting facts and news.
“Apple is planning to use a rubber or plastic material — similar to the material used in the company’s bumper cases — that will be built into the new iPhone case. In all likelihood, this material will be used as a bezel surrounding the front edge of the phone (like the iPhone 3GS bezel) and it will serve two purposes:
First, it will join the glass iPhone face with a new aluminum back plate. It will also cover a redesigned antenna system that surrounds the device, allowing Apple to build the rear case out of aluminum without having to use a large plastic insert above the antennas as the company does on its iPad 2 Wi-Fi + 3G.
Earlier reports suggested that Apple’s next-generation iPhone will feature an aluminum case similar to the one found on the iPad 2, as well as a larger display around 4 inches”.
What are your comments about this new design revelation? Do you think these changes will add value to the iPhone 5? Share your thoughts.
This article, iPhone 5 Design Rumor: Aluminium Back Plate and Antenna System, was originally published at simonblog.com.