Oh Apple. Bringer of Shiny Objects, Smooth Interfaces, and Patent Violation Lawsuits... You're like the abusive sugar daddy of gadgets. You constantly shower us with prospect and the fantasy of awesomeness, then remind us why we're your bitch. No wonder Apple Fanboys get picked on so much... I make fun of my abused housewife of a sister all the time for putting up with her man. That was a joke. My sister's the husband beater.
Jump through and read the rest of the AAPL related highs, lows, and WTFs.
Valve brings Steam online gaming deployment system to Mac in April. - Good.
The most exciting news for me last week was Valve's announcement that they plan on releasing a native Steam client for the mac, bringing cross-platform playability to Half-Life:2, Portal, Team Fortress 2, Left 4 Dead 2... essentially all of the Valve catalog. The Mac has been scoffed at for the lack of popular gaming support, but in recent years picked up some credibility with EA releasing some of their catalog to the Mac. Steam accounts for well over half of the digital game purchases, and acts a a cloud based game deployment system with automatic updates, game state saves (play on your PC, then pick the game back up on your Mac from where you left off), and a rich multiplayer community. This is a giant step for gaming on the mac, and the best part is, I can finally play all my Valve games again... Even though I bought the games in 2006 for PC, they will work on my MacBook Pro the instant Steam drops in April. [Via - Wired]
50,000 iPads pre-ordered in the first few hours - Good.
Apparently launching a product people have been feigning for years to get a hold of will yield you a decent amount of attention. Early March 12th, the Apple store refreshed the iPad page, allowing pre-orders of the new Apple tablet, promising an April-ish delivery. The iPad starts at $499 for the WiFi only model... are you getting one? I will eventually own one, partly because I think it could be [casually] useful, partly because it's shiny, and partly because I want to turn it into a super expensive OSC controller for my VJ rig. Unofficial reports are showing around 120,000 were pre-orded on March 12th alone. [Via - TUAW]
Apple purged "sexy" apps from store, now wants to ban "lazy" apps. Good/Bad.
The iPhone App Store is not open, nor is it free or even fair. Apple likes it that way, and part of how they provide such a solid experience to the iPhone (and now the iPad) is by controlling the content that you use. In the last few years, we've seen Apple approve and deny a litany of apps, from tether tools, to boobie jigglers, and of course 3rd party apps that provide features that Apple plans to release when they feel like it. This time around, the liquidation is more of a "final solution" with Apple deciding that a number of apps on the market just don't provide enough functionality and therefore are in danger of disappearing if they don't change their evil slothful ways. Apple went full prude and shit-canned all the sexy (adultish themes, though not all were NSFW) apps a few weeks ago... and this second purge probably won't be the last. The good news is: there might be a few thousand less apps to sort through, the bad news is: if your favorite website's RSS iPhone app doesn't have notifications or lasers, it might disappear some day. [Via - TechCrunch]
iPad will ship sans a few standard apps.. like a calculator. - Bad.
The iPad is amazing, revolutionary, and totally half-baked. That doesn't really matter though, as it's an Apple product and 50k+ were sold in like two hours, but it does mean when you unbox your new "precious" don't expect all the stock apps you see on an iPhone/iPod Touch. The reason was design based: Apple didn't quite know what to do with all that extra space and upscaling some of the standard apps like calculator, clock, stocks, weather, and voice memos just didn't look right. Mayhaps in OS 4.0 they'll reappear, but for now, you best look for a free solution on the App Store in April. [Via Daring Fireball]
Apple suing the pants off of HTC for Android Patent infringements. - Ugly.
This is the part of the smartphone evolution where Apple kindly reminds everyone that they invented everything and will shoot your cat if you steal their IP. Really, this is awful, as Apple recently dropped a massive lawsuit on HTC, regarding 20 alleged patent infringement on the design and implementation of the Google Nexus One, and the My Touch 3G. Some of the patent claims include:
- slide to unlock
- multi-touch gesture
- multi-tasking (although Apple denies 3rd party multitasking, the core apps like iPod can)
- power management
- notifications for system events
- heuristics (the method by which your phone figures out how what your finger commands mean)
- GSM signal clarity boosting
Apple's complaint calls for the cessation of HTC Android sales/imports in the US. Google is standing strong behind its favorite device manufacturer, and promises to provide all the legal support HTC needs to battle Apple. This could very well end up to be a very expensive case for HTC, leading up to licensing costs for certain features to remain. Patents are great an all, but recently have been getting in the way of innovation. Apple suing HTC, Apple suing Nokia, Nokia suing Apple, Kodak suing Apple, Apple suing Microsoft... Apple has all the right in the world to sue, but it's a dick move. If Apple had their way, every phone would but the iPhone would have to go back to the days of windows mobile 5. Those were dark, horrible days, the days where smart-phones were for geeks and totally uncool. And there was no grindr. [Via - AppleInsider]