Monthly Archives: August 2011

iPad 3 Not Coming Until Mid 2012

Finally, confirmation through CNET suggests that full production on the new quad-core A6 chip won’t begin until at least the second quarter of 2012, delaying a next generation iPad (3) until at least June 2012, if not mid to late 3rd quarter in 2012.

A few neat things about the quad-core A6 chip is that it will feature “3D transistor technology” similar to the Tri-Gate technology that Intel announced in May.

If Apple wants to keep a consistent annual cycle of iPad releases there could be a a release in March/April of an iPad 3 with a modified and more powerful version of the A5 processor, but then again Apple isn’t know to cut corners, so don’t hold your breath.

Phew, so the next time someone tell you to wait for an iPad 3, you can safely say “I’m not ready to wait another year!”

iPad 3 Mock Up

A mock up of an iPad 3.

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Steve Jobs Resigns as Apple CEO

Time Cook and Steve Jobs

Tim Cook with Steve Jobs

Two nights ago, the 14-year CEO run of Steve Jobs came to an end. Many speculated that it’s the end of an era and the end of the greatest legacy known to man! (OK, not that massive, but pretty close).

Jobs, rejoined Apple as CEO in 1997 and began the upward battle to bring Apple Computer Inc (It’s formal name at the time) in the 21st century. Under Steve Jobs the company saw a 180 degree turn in profits and then market shares as well as a 9000% increase in the stock price (APPL)

With his keen eye to minimalistic design and attention to detail, we’ve seen the iPod which single handedly brought Apple out from the shadows to the forefront, and then in 2007 the iPhone followed by the iPad in 2010. Three devices that were not only years ahead of the competition, but paved the way for similar technology creations.

I strongly believe that Steve Jobs resignation has been carefully planned and executed. Having struggled with pancreatic cancer, Jobs took his second medical leave of absence on January 14, this year and still made appearances at two keynote addresses this year. He’s truly a dedicated individual and it breaks my heart to see him step down, but he’s doing it with Apple’s best interests in mind.

I also believe that Tim Cook, his successor, was being trained the past few years and behind-the-scenes has been the guy in charge. It was about timing the announcement to allow him to formally assume the role of CEO and continue the legacy.

Thirdly, I’ll assume that while Steve Jobs will stay on the board, he won’t have an active role in decisions moving forward and as much as it pains me to say it, his health may get the better of him. I strongly hope that’s I’m wrong and he has many years of life left!

I bid farewell to the man that made Apple what it is today, and without his intelligence and dedication, even this blog wouldn’t exist, because no one would care.

Below is the exact letter sent to Apple’s Board of Directors and the Apple Community from Steve Jobs.

To the Apple Board of Directors and the Apple Community:

I have always said if there ever came a day when I could no longer meet my duties and expectations as Apple’s CEO, I would be the first to let you know. Unfortunately, that day has come.

I hereby resign as CEO of Apple. I would like to serve, if the Board sees fit, as Chairman of the Board, director and Apple employee.

As far as my successor goes, I strongly recommend that we execute our succession plan and name Tim Cook as CEO of Apple.

I believe Apple’s brightest and most innovative days are ahead of it. And I look forward to watching and contributing to its success in a new role.

I have made some of the best friends of my life at Apple, and I thank you all for the many years of being able to work alongside you.

Steve

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Thunderbolt: The Port to End All Ports

Thunderbolt Icon LogoWhen Apple refreshed its MacBook Pro line of notebook computers, they introduced a new I/O port called “Thunderbolt” in combination with the new devices, based on Intel’s Light Peak specification. It makes a lot of sense, since Apple worked with Intel in developing Light Peak. But why do devices need this port, and what might Apple have planned for it in the future?

Let’s look a little into Light Peak, how it works and what it can do. Light Peak is an optical cable interface designed by Intel with a bandwidth of 10 Gbps currently, with the potential to ultimately scale to rates of over 100 Gbps over the course of its life. The main benefit of Light Peak is that it provides enough bandwidth to both replace data connectors such as SCSI, USB, SATA and FireWire, while at the same time handling the duties of higher performance ports like eSATA and DisplayPort (or Mini DisplayPort, in the case of Apple computers).

Put simply, Light Peak is designed to cover all the bases. In theory, that means it could allow Thunderbolt-equipped MacBook Pros to connect to an Apple Cinema Display, for instance, with just one cable, providing both A/V and multiple data stream connections between the two devices simultaneously. It’s the ultimate single-cord solution.

Getting people to use new port standards isn’t easy, however. USB is firmly entrenched, and even its successor, USB 3.0, hasn’t made much headway yet. But I think Apple has very ambitious long-term plans for Thunderbolt, because in theory at least, the Light Peak-based standard could eliminate the need for port differentiation altogether. Since Light Peak’s capacity ceiling is still a long way off, and because of its versatility, it’s the perfect way for Apple to begin the gradual transition to an utterly wireless future, since in theory, it should be able to satisfy even power user demands for years to come.

Imagine a future where every port running down the side of your MacBook is the same, and all of your devices can connect to any one of them in order to perform their intended function, including data drives, external displays and even your power adapter. It seems utopian, but Light Peak offers the potential to make that future a reality, and with Apple’s ever-growing market share (and influence), it’s in a better position than ever to help usher that future in.

Apple could throw even more weight behind Light Peak or Thunderbolt adoption by using its considerable leverage as a mobile device maker. Rumors suggest it may already be doing just that, if it’s indeed building a Thunderbolt port into a future iPad. The iPad has an entire cottage industry dedicated specifically to making peripherals for just one device, so it wouldn’t be terribly hard to get some of them onboard with creating Thunderbolt-capable accessories. And if said accessories are cross-compatible between iOS (iPhone, too, down the road?) and OS X devices, it shouldn’t take long before we see a healthy cross-section of peripheral manufacturers adopting the standard.

A video demonstrating transfer speed of Thunderbolt ports:

In the bigger picture, with advances in NFC and other wireless communication standards like Wi-Fi Direct, hardware ports and connections are slowly becoming less and less important. Eventually, if technological development continues at its current pace, we may do away with them altogether. But before that happens, I think we could see Apple make a serious move toward a hardware I/O standard that allow it to further simplify its minimalist design principles. After all, this is the company that once famously said of the iPad, “you already know how to use it.” Why not embrace a port that works the same way?

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Evidence That Apple is Working on LTE Technology for Future iPhones

iPhone 4 Side Hero Shot Evidence unveiled today by Forbes suggests that Apple is recruiting engineers to begin field testing of LTE technology. LTE is the fast 4G wireless cellular data technology that is currently rolling out across the U.S. and other parts of the world.

The August 17 or 18th job posting on LinkedIn is for QA engineers that will work with Apples iOS quality team in “qualifying all of the latest iPhone products.

Apple LinkedIn Ad

Apple's LinkedIn Ad Looking for LTE QA Engineers

Although speculation already suggests that this means LTE will be part of the iPhone 5 (which is still rumoured to be released in early October 2011) it’s highly unlikely. Apple itself has stated that “over a one-to two-year development cycle, Apple engineers spend thousands of hours performing antenna and wireless testing in the lab.” Which means we likely won’t see it applied until at least 2013. There’s no doubt that it’s coming to future iPhones, but not ready for an ‘iPhone 5’ yet.

Back in April of this year, Apple COO, Peter Oppenheimer stated that “the first generation of LTE chipsets forced a lot of design compromises with the (iPhone), and some of those we are just not willing to make

Jobs Keynote iPhone 4 AntennaIf anyone remembers the debacle that Apple had to deal with when they re-designed the iPhone 4 which had major real-world antenna issues, you’ll quickly realize that Apple is going to take their time and iron out as much of the kinks as they can before this new technology is implemented for public release.

Currently only 160 million, a little over half, of the US population is covered by Verizon’s LTE network and AT&T doesn’t even have one up and running yet. In Canada, an LTE network was first rolled out by Rogers on July 7, 2011 to Ottawa residents and should become available to Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal, as well as 21 more markets in 2012.

If you’re interested in what LTE technology will improve over existing 3G cellular data transfers speeds, here’s some quick numbers from Rogers: Typical download speeds can range from 12 Mbps to 25 Mbps. As device selection evolves, maximum theoretical download speeds will increase to up to 150 Mbps.

Giddy Up.

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The Angry (Birds) Bra

Is your girlfriend’s birthday approaching and you’re fresh out of ideas on what to get her? Here’s an idea; Introducing the Angry Birds bra.

Angry Birds Bra Picture

Since “Angry Birds” first made it’s appearance on an Apple-relatied product, the iPhone, I figure it fits my blog nicely. The bra, available on etsy.com, available in sizes 34A-38DD.

Details from the site itself:

This bra features the red bird and green pig from everyone’s favorite game, Angry Birds! Hand painted using acrylic paint with a textile medium. It is permanent and washable, and it will come with care instructions.

But if you’re just dying to get your hands on one of these, you may have to wait a little longer – they are currently sold out. Judging by the high demand and success though, I’m sure we’ll see more available in the future.

So what’s next? – How about an Angry Birds bikini?

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