All items in the category "Opinions"

Full category list for displayed posts: Featured stories, News, Newsstand, Opinions, Top stories

The problem with Becoming Steve Jobs? Too much Steve Jobs

The world needs more insight into how Apple works, but you won't find that in Becoming Steve Jobs. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

The world needs fresh insight into how Apple works, but you won’t find much of that in Becoming Steve Jobs. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

One of Steve Jobs’ favorite recordings was The Beatles working on version after version of “Strawberry Fields Forever.”

The new Jobs biography, Becoming Steve Jobs, is like that recording: It serves up fresh takes on oft-told stories from Apple’s history, this time with more sugarcoating.

Read the rest of this post »

Gold fever makes Apple Watch devs chase the dream

Ladies and gentlemen, the 18-karat gold Apple Watch Edition, which is an aspiration, price-anchor, according to Reddit. Credit: Apple

Are Apple Watch apps an 18-karat opportunity for indie developers? Photo: Apple

With high development costs and uncertain prospects, now is a risky time to build Apple Watch apps. But like many other indie developers, I’m working on one anyway.

The Apple Watch gold rush is about more than money.

Read the rest of this post »

Everything I wanted to know about gold Apple Watches, I learned on reddit

Ladies and gentlemen, the 18-karat gold Appel Watch Edition, which is an aspiration, price-anchor, according to Reddit. Credit: Apple

Ladies and gentlemen, the 18-karat gold Apple Watch Edition, which is an aspirational price anchor, according to reddit’s users. Credit: Apple

We all know that professional industry analysts often say the darndest things, but the Apple Watch has unleashed some truly muddleheaded commentary, especially from people who get paid to know better.

There are the customary and entirely predictable predictions that the Watch will fail — just as the pundits predicted the iMac, iPod, iPhone and iPad would bomb. This kind of commentary is so knee-jerk and silly, it’s best to just ignore. But then there’s a higher tier of analysis that says the Watch’s success depends on apps (duh, yeah) or the device’s potential for upgrades (completely wrong).

I’m interested in smarter takes on Apple’s strategy, pricing and marketing. Surprisingly, some of the most insightful commentary I’ve seen is on reddit — known generally as a salty hangout for spotty teens and weirdos. Here are some key points outlined by reddit users.

Read the rest of this post »

Why the $10,000 gold Apple Watch really winds me up

"You like me, you really like me!" Photo: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

The super-expensive gold Apple Watch Edition is enough to get your knickers in a twist. Photo: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

When Steve jobs co-founded Apple, his vision was to democratize technology.

At the time, computers were for governments and rich corporations. Jobs wanted everyone to have their own computer — a crazy idea back in the ’70s. The slogan for the original Macintosh was “the computer for the rest of us.”

For the next 30 years, Jobs worked hard to realize that mission. Although Apple has never made the cheapest computers, in general, the trend has been cheaper and more accessible, from the Mac to the iPhone. For most people, Apple’s products are largely affordable.

This is why the gold Apple Watch Edition — which starts at $10,000 — bugs me. It’s not a watch for the rest of us. It’s a watch for everyone but us. It’s a watch for the one percent.

Read the rest of this post »

Survival of the fittest: Apple Watch versus fitness trackers

Will Apple Watch win the fitness-tracking race? Photo: Nathan Rupert/Flickr CC

Will Apple Watch win the fitness-tracking race? Photo: Nathan Rupert/Flickr CC

Apple Watch is entering the race to become the leader in wearable tech. And dedicated fitness trackers like the Nike+ FuelBand, Fitbit and Jawbone Up may struggle to keep up with Cupertino’s pace.

Few people remember the MP3 players that iPod left in its wake. Smartphones overtaken by iPhone shared a similar dismal fate. Could fitness wearables be next on the endangered list?

Read the rest of this post »

Tim Cook’s ‘proud to be gay’ essay is important, historic and brave

Photo: Andy Ihnatko/Flickr

When Tim Cook talks, people listen. And that’s a good thing. Photo: Andy Ihnatko/Flickr

Gay rights are the civil rights issue of our time, whether in the marriage chapel, the emergency room or the workplace.

That’s why Apple CEO Tim Cook’s decision to proclaim he is “proud to be gay” in a powerful personal essay is an important and truly historic act.

Read the rest of this post »

Why Apple Pay is the future

Apple Pay. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

About to test Apple Pay at the local Walgreens. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Critics are fond of saying Apple doesn’t innovate any more. But Apple’s new electronic payment system, Apple Pay, is innovation of the highest order. After a relatively smooth rollout this week, I honestly believe Apple Pay is the future of payments.

Even so, Apple Pay must clear some big hurdles if it’s to become the universal standard. For now, it’s limited to Apple’s latest iPhones and a relatively small number of retail partners, but the basic system — using your fingerprint to validate a purchase on your mobile phone — is the way we will pay for goods and services in the future.

Once again, Apple has shown the world how things should be done.

Read the rest of this post »

Everything’s better and faster. How could Apple be so boring?

Tim Cook bores the world with even more amazing Apple products. Yawn. Photo: Apple

Tim Cook bores the world with even more amazing Apple products. Yawn. Photo: Apple

Was Apple’s livestreamed iPad event really such a big yawn? Search Twitter for “#AppleEvent yawn” or “Apple boring” and you’ll see tweet after tweet bemoaning the boring nature of Thursday’s press conference. It got so tedious for some, there were dozens of photos of napping dogs.

“Most boring Apple event ever,” tweeted one. “Bring back the Chinese translation.”

Maybe some of those folks are being facetious, but there’s a grain of truth in the tweets: Nothing about Thursday’s event, except for maybe Stephen Colbert’s crackup comedy bit with Craig Federighi, was super-compelling on the surface. Many of the specs had been leaked (some even by Apple itself), and the rumor mill proved pretty accurate in the run-up to the presentation.

Still, this was no Phantom Menace. I mean really, what were people expecting? Jetpacks, aliens and electric cars?

This is Apple’s big dilemma right now: How do you top yourself when you make the best products in the world?

Read the rest of this post »

When Twin Peaks enters the iPhone era, things are bound to get even weirder

Photo: Natasha Masharova/Flickr CC

How will director David Lynch bring Twin Peaks into the smartphone era? Photo: Natasha Masharova/Flickr CC

When Twin Peaks mesmerized us with its weird mix of mystery, mysticism and Americana in the early ’90s, smartphones didn’t exist. But even if the iPhone had already conquered the world, it’s possible nobody in the small Pacific Northwest town that served as the show’s setting would have owned one.

The forested fantasyland of Twin Peaks was a purposely backward backdrop upon which series creators David Lynch and Mark Frost could project their twisted vision of the darkness that lurks below the wholesome surface of American society. While the show was set in 1989, the small-town setting was a deliberate throwback to ’50s-style innocence, which was quickly shattered by the discovery of a beautiful teen’s corpse.

When Twin Peaks resurfaces in 2016 on Showtime, the cultural landscape will have changed radically from where the series left off a quarter-century ago. What kind of fascinating freak show will Lynch and Frost craft as they bring the show into the digital age?

Read the rest of this post »

6 ways Apple could make the iPhone better than big

6 ways Apple could make the iPhone better than big

The iPhone 6 received rave reviews when Apple unveiled it at the Flint Center last month, but not many people have been eager to talk about it’s shortcomings, until now.

In today’s Cult of Mac video we breakdown the biggest disappointments iPhone 6 users have griped about since the device went on sale two weeks ago. What should Apple improve to make the phone better? Find out what the next generation iPhone still needs and more in this informative video.

Subscribe to Cult of Mac TV to catch all our latest videos.