The Orange View (on hiatus) Because Apple is great but it isn't perfect

28Dec/11Off

Weighing Apple’s patent war gains and losses

Posted by Aaron Pressman

Excellent overview of the benefits Apple has won in its smart phone patent war so far. While the experts cited were divided on how far Apple should take the fight, I'm in agreement with Chris Marlett, who co-founded an investment bank specializing in patents:

"Apple has the patents, the money and the expertise to go to war," Marlett said. "I just don't see why Apple would seek détente, since they're the clear leader. Until they're hit with an injunction by Google or Samsung, they don't need to get serious about licensing."

-San Francisco Chronicle, December 28, 2011

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27Dec/11Off

Apple’s Thunderbolt hoarding hurt users

Posted by Aaron Pressman

It's been about 10 months since Apple added the super fast Thunderbolt port via an exclusive deal with Intel. And in all that time, besides Apple, almost no peripherals makers have offered Thunderbolt compatible add ons. There is a grand total of one external hard drive available and it costs over $500.

The reason is obvious -- Apple's exclusive deal opened the door for more and more PC makers to opt for the competing USB 3 connection, leading to a much larger potential audience for USB 3 stuff. There are tons of hard drives and other gadgets available for USB 3 users.

Now comes news Intel is supposedly loosening the exclusive. Odd how this news comes just before the originally rumored one year exclusive was set to expire. But, regardless, it's very good news for Apple users who have been stuck with Thunderbolt and denied USB 3.

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22Dec/11Off

Dropbox in your TV?

Posted by Aaron Pressman

Long (and kind of long winded) profile of cloud data service Dropbox and its co-founders, Drew Houston and Arash Ferdowsi, posted over at Wired.com. The most interesting bit to me was at the very end:

And even further in the future, they hope to expand the pool of devices that can talk to each other — basically eliminating your computer as the middle man. A point-and-shoot, they think, could ship pictures directly to your television and family for big-screen viewing — even before you board the flight back home. “Soon you’ll walk into a Best Buy or Fry’s and you’ll see that little box everywhere,” says Houston. “This is the first time I will see my photos or play my music in my living room and it’s not going to be a science project.”

-Wired.com, December 22, 2011

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22Dec/11Off

Apple patent suits land where the iPhone is weakest

Posted by Aaron Pressman

Apple's anti-competitive patent war seems most focused on markets where the iPhone is weakest, Zach Epstein points out:

Whether or not competing products do in fact infringe on Apple’s patents, Apple may have another reason to attack its rivals so aggressively in France and Germany: the company is losing ground. New data from Kantar Worldpanel released on Thursday shows that while the launch of the iPhone 4S was a huge hit in the United States and the United Kingdom, smartphone users in key markets like France and Germany were seemingly not as impressed with the handset.

-BGR, December 22, 2011

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20Dec/11Off

Where ebook prices are heading

Posted by Aaron Pressman

Seth Godin consults his Economics 101 crystal ball to see where ebook prices are really headed. He is assuming rational behavior by publishers to maximize revenue -- I'm not sure that's a certainty.

In a market where the marginal cost is close to zero, prices tend to race to zero as well. Except…

Except when there are no substitutes. If you want Elvis Costello to call you on the phone and wish you a happy birthday, he can charge you whatever he wants, because even though it costs him very little, you have no alternatives. If you want Elvis, well, there’s only one. Take it or leave it.

So our analysis begins with the notion that there will be at least two price points for ebooks.

-Domino Project blog, December 20, 2011

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