Final 2014 prediction: the end of the PC as we knew it

cook-jobsWe’re generally a Macintosh shop here in Santa Rosa. I have Windows and Linux PCs, too, but most of the heavy lifting is done on Macs. Next Wednesday I’m expecting a delivery from B&H Photo (no tax and free shipping!) of four new iMacs plus some software totaling $5,407. I fully expect these to be the last personal computers I will ever buy.

How’s that for a 2014 prediction?

Moore’s Law doubles the performance of computers every couple of years and my old rule of thumb was that most people who make their living with computers are unwilling to be more than two generations behind, so that means no more than four years between new PCs. And […]

Yes, Phil, there is an iPhone Mini

iphoneminiHas Apple peaked? Yes and no. I think the company is still struggling somewhat to find its path following the death of Steve Jobs. But there’s still plenty happening and room for growth in Cupertino. So let’s start a discussion about what’s really going on there. I thought this might be possible in a single column, but looking down I see that’s impossible, so expect a second forward-looking Apple column tomorrow.

The catalyst for this particular column is word coming over the weekend from the Wall $treet Journal that Apple is cutting back component orders for the iPhone 5 signaling lower sales than expected. I’m not saying this story is wrong but I don’t […]

The enemy of my enemy

Nortel Networks, the bankrupt Canadian telecom company, came that much closer to disappearing completely yesterday with the cash sale of its portfolio of 6000 patents for $4.5 billion to a consortium of companies including Apple, EMC, Ericsson, Microsoft, Research In Motion (RIM), and Sony. The bidding, which began with a $900 million offer from Google, went far higher than most observers expected and only ended, I’m guessing, when Google realized that Apple and its partners had deeper pockets and would have paid anything to win. This transaction is a huge blow to Google’s Android platform, which was precisely the consortium’s goal.

Google is the youngest of these companies and has probably the smallest patent portfolio, most […]

By |July 1st, 2011|2011|216 Comments

Will AT&T buying T-Mobile make jailbroken and unlocked iPhones finally legal?

So AT&T is buying T-Mobile USA for $39 billion in a deal that makes perfect sense if you are an RF engineer or a fat-cat telco tycoon, but my question is what happens to all the jailbroken and unlocked iPhones?

T-Mobile and AT&T are the USA’s only GSM wireless network operators, so if you had an iPhone and wanted to dump AT&T to allow things like free tethering, the obvious (and frankly only) way for Americans to do so was by jumping from cranky old AT&T to the much friendlier T-Mobile. And so tens of thousands — maybe hundreds of thousands — of AT&T customer did just that, and were gratefully accepted by T-Mobile.

But now with […]

By |March 20th, 2011|2011|62 Comments

The click of death

A longtime reader checked-in today with one more story of Internet generational change.  We used to call it just disintermediation, but in its later stages this syndrome requires new consumers who may have never even visited a bookstore… or had to.

“The family went to Borders today to look for a book or two. The store is closing. I always liked that store on the Middle River in Fort Lauderdale; watching the boats go by as I read the paper.  Anyway we went, the lines were long in checkout, and the discounts were 20 to 40 percent. So I went to IT to wander around, found a few books, figured the 20-40 percent off scanned the […]

By |February 19th, 2011|2011|89 Comments