If you didn’t follow the blogosphere last week you missed some rumors about forthcoming products.
Some details about this leaked out last week. Of course we haven’t seen anything at any of the trade shows yet so I give this stuff little credence, and deem it as vaporware until I see something official. The detail that has most people barking is that the putative PS4 is a potential used game market killer. The reports claim that the PS4 will lock games to a users PSN account. When someone else tries to install the same copy of the game to another PS4 they will be forced to pay a fee. So no more cheap after market games. If this is true it makes one wonder how the Game Stop, and Game Fly’s of the world will fare.
There have been rumors of an Apple television for a few years now, and Steve Jobs always insisted that they weren’t going there. Now it seems they are headed there. If they indeed do end up making a TV I suspect it is going to be much more than a TV. It’s going to have to be revolutionary because TV sales are flat right now. Just a few months ago I remember seeing bargain basement prices at Best Buy because they were trying to burn off all their inventory of those 3D sets that never sold. If Apple is going to spend a lot of money on development of a TV it’s going to be something killer or else.
HD sets gave way to 3D which gave way to smart TV. Regarding the smart portion of the sets I think that is going the way of set top boxes like the Roku, Apple TV, and to a lesser degree the Boxee Box, and Google TV..and maybe even the Xbox which released the Comcast app last week. Sony has a few services offered on its PS3. I think the TV is immaterial. People want a nice display, but will continue to use these third party devices to play the role of portal. If Apple expects people to buy their TV in droves for prices that Apple can command it is going to have to be something amazing. I’m not sure what they can offer. After all it’s a TV.
The only thing I can think is that it will act as the center of the iMac, iPad, Apple TV experience with an iTunes subscription service on board. Honestly what would drive sales of the Apple television would be apps or exclusive access to a streaming service that you can only get via an Apple set. Perhaps it is something that would compete head to head with Netflix? The driving force here is going to have be apps or exclusivity. After all that is part of what makes the iOS experience so much fun. The apps with perfect presentation,and execution that you can only get on one set of devices.
Apple 5” Retina Device for 2013 from reliable Chinese sources, and Samsung execs.
I wonder how much traction this type of device would get considering that over 3 million people shelled out money for the new iPad already. Unless they are shooting for some new niche market, or something in the enterprise I think they will only be competing with themselves. Samsung has the Galaxy Note 5″ that they are getting good reviews for. As far as I am concerned 5″ is too big for a phone. I use a Samsung Galaxy S2 which has a 4.5″ screen. It was an upgrade from an HTC EVO sporting a 4.3″ screen which was big enough for me to read, and small enough for me to control the device one handed. On the go we want a single handed device. With so many already owning a tablet, and possibly a large cell phone once again I don’t see this taking off. Then again it is Apple. Cult of Mac reported on it last week.
Apple 7.85” iPad for a sub $300 market
This could make things interesting. They would directly compete against the Kindle Fire, and Nook Tablet. The killer app here would be the fact that you could access iBooks, Nook, and Kindle plus Zinio, and other e-magazine providers all on one device along with having the refinement of iOS versus the one size fits one of Nook’s, and Fire’s skins. I hate to say it, but this may be the eReader you get your mom. Just keep in mind you’ll have to set aside some time for FaceTime with her. I guess the big question is are you willing to go $50-100 more to get the Apple experience. Apple Insider reported on last week.
That’s about it for now. With a new week beginning we begin the next rumor cycle.