Apple stops swinging for the fences

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Apple's new MacBook Pros with Touch Bar should be hitting store shelves by the end of the week.
Apple's 'new hit product' mindset is demoralizing for employees.
Photo: Apple

The days of Apple busting out hit new products every few years may be over. According to one of the best Apple analysts, Apple has been trying to de-emphasize the “home-run” mindset that made it the most enviable company in tech.

Speaking at the recent UBS Tech Conference, Horrace Dediu claimed Apple’s cultural identity is undergoing a dramatic shift.

Apple will make four more Macs obsolete at end of 2016

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Mac App Store
It's time to upgrade.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

If you own a Mac that was made between 2009 to 2011 it is about to become officially obsolete.

Apple plans to no longer offer support for two MacBook Pros, a Mac mini and MacBook, according to a new report that reveals the devices are set to join the long list of vintage Apple products.

Today in Apple history: iPods take to the skies

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The iPod showed that Apple was more than a computer company.
Good-bye in-flight magazines!
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Nov14November 14, 2006: Apple teams up with a slew of airline companies to offer the “first seamless integration” between iPod and in-flight entertainment systems around the world.

Letting iPod owners use their devices to play music and video content on planes’ seat-back displays using a special dock, the announcement promises to rid the world (or the Apple-owning world, at least) of old-fashioned in-flight movies and airline magazines.

Has Apple become boring? [Friday Night Fights]

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FNF
Are you still excited by Apple in 2016?
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Apple might be the biggest company in tech, with revenues that make eyes water every quarter, but even some fans think it’s getting a little boring in Cupertino.

Friday Night Fights bug Following last week’s big MacBook Pro event, Apple has delivered everything it had planned for 2016. We’ve had upgrades to iPhone, Apple Watch, and the 12-inch MacBook; brand new AirPods (though those aren’t shipping yet); the diminutive iPhone SE and the 9.7-inch iPad Pro.

But was all that enough, or could Apple have done more? None of these releases were really that revolutionary, and investors are still waiting for Apple’s next big thing. So, is it true? Is Apple really boring now?

Join us in this week’s Friday Night Fight as we battle it out over these questions and more!

Apple forgot to celebrate iPod’s 15th birthday

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Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac
Was it really 15 years ago?
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

An important anniversary passed this weekend, but you’d have been hard-pressed to remember based on the lack of recognition it received from Apple.

That milestone event was the 15th anniversary of the iPod, the portable music player that squeezed 1,000 songs into our pockets, sold upwards of 350 million units, and — up until the iPhone — was the best-known product in Apple history.

An illustrated history of the iPod and its massive impact

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DDOMNOUPCv3-P1.tiff

Editor’s note: This weekend was the 15th anniversary of the iPod, the humble digital music player that reshaped Apple.

To mark the occasssion, Cult of Mac is republishing this illustrated history of the iPod — put together to celebrate the device’s 10th anniversary, and originally published on Oct. 22 2011.

An Illustrated History of the iPod

The iPod grew out of Steve Jobs’ digital hub strategy. Life was going digital. People were plugging all kinds of devices into their computers: digital cameras, camcorders, MP3 players. The computer was the central device, the “digital hub,” that could be used to edit photos and movies or manage a large music library. Jobs tasked Apple’s programmers with making software for editing photos, movies and managing digital music. While they were doing this, they discovered that all the early MP3 players were horrible. Jobs asked his top hardware guy, Jon Rubinstein, to see if Apple could do better.

Today in Apple history: iPod shows it has life after iPhone

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Apple released three new iPods, including the first iPod touch, nine years ago today.
Photo: Apple

5SeptSeptember 5: Apple introduces its first new iPods after the release of the iPhone, with the third-gen iPod Nano, newly-renamed iPod Classic, and — most significantly — the debut of the iPod touch.

In doing so, it sets out to demonstrate that there is still plenty of life left in Apple’s iconic portable music player.

Today in Apple history: iPod touch is ‘iPhone without the phone’

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The fourth-gen iPod touch closed the gap between iPod and iPhone.
Photo: Apple

Sept 1September 1, 2010: Apple announces its fourth-generation iPod touch, a version of the portable music player which closes the gap between the iPod touch and the iPhone.

Along with being thinner than ever, the fourth-gen iPod touch’s main innovations include a redesigned form factor, Retina display, FaceTime calling via WiFi, HD video recording, and the same A4 chip found in the iPhone at the time.