Tag Archive for ‘Business Insider’

The Nano and Shuffle Discontinuation

As you may have heard, Apple quietly discontinued the iPod Nano and iPod Shuffle yesterday. The move wasn’t done alongside a press release or a statement, Instead, Apple simply removed the items from their online store. And people noticed. The news was later confirmed by Business Insider, who received confirmation from Apple that the Nano and Shuffle were, indeed, discontinued.

The Nano and Shuffle will still be available in some retail stores while supplies last, but this news leaves the iPod Touch as the only “iPod” branded product in Apple’s lineup. You’ll get more storage for your money with the iPod Touch today, though. Apple has increased storage capacities on the two models — 32GB for $199 and 128GB for $299.

The first-generation iPod Nano was the first Apple product I ever owned. I received it as a Christmas gift in 2005 and it marked a turning point in my computing life. Prior to owning the iPod, I was a dedicated PC enthusiast. I was enthralled by graphics cards, motherboards, processors, and all other forms of computer components. All I wanted to do was build computers and set them up. But the iPod changed that.

The iPod Nano acted as the halo product that everyone claimed it to be. From the moment I connected the iPod Nano to my PC and configured it in iTunes, I was hooked. I had never interacted with a device that was so easy to use and fun to manage. Nothing felt like a chore. Once I had my sync settings just right, I could connect the iPod once a day and all of my new music and podcasts would automatically transfer. It was like magic.

The iPod Nano allowed me to dip my toes in the water before jumping in the following year by purchasing a MacBook for college. If it wasn’t for the iPod Nano, I might never have fallen in love with Apple design aesthetics and acquired a dozen or so Apple devices over the past twelve years.

I can imagine my story is no different from millions of others who first realized how great computing devices could be when they purchased an iPod. But it’s time to put the Nano and Shuffle out to pasture. The smartphone, being The One Device that it is, has completely obliterated the dedicated music player market. The Nano and Shuffle served their roles well, but there’s no reason to sell a single-purpose device when the iPhone can do everything the iPod could, and more.

Pour one out for two of the best halo products Apple ever had.

Apple Store Employee Says iPhone Battery Replacement Plan Is a Mess ➝

Ben Gilbert, reporting for Business Insider:

One longtime Apple store employee told Business Insider the battery replacement takes anywhere from 20 to 45 minutes. It may not sound like a lot of time, but for store employees, those replacements add up.

In the case of the employee we spoke with, even though they’re not in a flagship store in a major city, the staff is seeing anywhere from 15 to 30 battery replacements every day — that’s limited by the number of replacements that can be conceivably done in a workday by a single Apple Store technician. Their store “takes in more than we replace in a day,” they said.

This is exactly why I’ll wait until after Christmas to get my battery replaced. As annoying as it is to have these problems, I’d rather deal with it for another couple of weeks than have to wade through the crowds at the Apple Store. They’re already busy enough during the holidays, but this battery replacement program seems to be making things much worse.

Nest to Shut Down Revolv Home Automation Hubs ➝

Rob Price, writing for Business Insider:

Just over a month ago, Revolv updated its website to announce that it is closing down completely, pulling the plug on its existing products in May. “We’re pouring all our energy into Works with Nest and are incredibly excited about what we’re making,” wrote Revolv founders Tim Enwall and Mike Soucie. “Unfortunately, that means we can’t allocate resources to Revolv anymore and we have to shut down the service.”

Shutting down Revolv does not mean that Nest is ceasing to support its products, leaving them vulnerable to bugs and other unpatched issues. It means that the $300 devices and accompanying apps will stop working completely.

This is a great example of why I’m avoiding this whole smart home trend. I don’t want a botched software update, an internet outage, or the manufacturer’s future decisions to effect the use of my home appliances.

The Exclusive Merchandise Available at Apple’s Company Store ➝

Matt Weinberger, writing for Business Insider:

There’s really only one place on the Apple campus that welcomes visitors: A small Apple Store, located right at 1 Infinite Loop, and open to the public.

Mostly, it’s nothing special among the 463 Apple Stores in the world — wooden tables, lots of glass, and a Genius Bar.

But in addition to the standard selection of Apple gadgets, it’s the only place anywhere on earth where you can buy a special selection of official Apple merchandise.

As a long time Apple fan, I’ve always wanted to take a trip to Cupertino to visit the company store. I would absolutely love to purchase a few of those t-shirts and notebooks.

Fresh Masque iOS Security Flaw Puts iPhone Users at Risk ➝

I guess Android isn’t the only mobile OS with security issues. Although, you can rest assured that Apple will issue updates to the effected devices — something that can’t be said with such certainty about Android manufacturers.

Business Insider: Apple in Talks to Launch an MVNO ➝

James Cook:

Sources close to Apple say the company is privately trialling an MVNO service in the US but is also in talks with telecoms companies in Europe about bringing the service there too. […]

There is no guarantee Apple’s service will launch beyond a test phase, and if it does, it will not roll out anytime soon. Telecoms sources say Apple is looking long-term with its MVNO and could take at least five years to fully launch the service. Apple has been in talks with telecoms companies for years over its MVNO plans, those sources say, adding that it’s an “open secret” among carriers that a virtual Apple network is on the way.

One of the biggest pain-points for iPhone customers is in the interaction with cellular carriers. If Apple launched an MVNO they’d be controlling the entire experience and giving their customers a way to use Apple’s flagship products without having to deal with some of the worst offenders in terms of customer service.

Update: Looks like this rumor’s already dead.

Arcuri on 4-Inch iPhone 6c ➝

Timothy Arcuri claims that all signs of a 4-inch iPhone 6c in Apple’s supply chain have disappeared. This is unfortunate if it proves to be true, but Arcuri’s track record has been spotty at best. I did a quick search on MacRumors and of the four predictions I found, he only got half of one right. This certainly doesn’t disprove the prediction, but I’d take it with a grain of salt.

Evan Williams on Twitter and Developers ➝

Julie Bort, writing for Business Insider, quoting Twitter co-founder Evan Williams:

The API was, “One of our strategic errors we had to wind down over time,” Evans explained. “It wasn’t a win/win for developers, users and the company.”

But Twitter needs to do something to bring developers back, he suggested. “Twitter should be more of a platform than it is,” he said, hinting that this is exactly what Twitter is working on now, not waiting for a permanent CEO.

“There are a lot of things going on. New products, new source of revenue,” he says. When pressed on what those new revenue streams looked like, he says. “I’ve already said too much.”

Williams is currently a board member at Twitter and I hope that he still has enough clout to ensure that this “hinting” turns into more than just rumors. I would love to see Twitter back to its glory days of 2007-2008, but in order to do that they need help from third-party developers.

Twitter is a lot of different things to a lot of different people — a social network, a news feed, a micro-blogging platform, etc. Giving third-party developers a more robust API would allow them to make clients that could play to whatever strength a given user prefers from Twitter. And, improving developer relations along the way would help reassure them that access isn’t going to be functionally revoked like it has been in the past.

I’m cautiously optimistic.