Brilliance or Donkey mode?

The Guardian gives us two stories. One is of course all about the iPhone 7. At https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/sep/07/apple-iphone-no-headphone-jack-second-generation-watch we see the revolution of another iteration by Apple. The interesting side is that the head jack is no more, so no headset plugging into your phone. The quote “one that tech pundits predict could have consumers staying away in droves” is one that I find debatable. You see, the article goes on (via two sides) on how head jacks need to remain. Yet Apple decided on a model that is more waterproof. A statement that I find slightly debatable as there is still a lightning connector and speaker holes. Yet that could be an error on my side. What is striking is the quote “Apple announced another new product on Wednesday – AirPods, a pair of barely-larger-than-earplugs headphones that Schiller said use a new kind of chip to deliver a “magical experience” without the usual hassle of Bluetooth pairing and un-pairing“, which means a new era of listening technology. I will not go deeper into that side, especially as I have no idea on the Airpods, yet one side unmentioned is that these ways of transmitting ‘audio’ means that the battery will see a new level of draining. Whether this is better or worse than the head jack is one I can only speculate on. What is a given is that these moves are usually paired with the gravitas of cajones that tends to change the technological battlefield by a fair bit, so it might not be a donkey idea but a brilliant one. Time will tell which one it is. So far Apple remained quiet on the field of true technical innovation so the bar is open on the gamble, but the fallout could be one worth watching.

The other side gives us the consoles. The lacking brilliance of Sony has been evident for a little while and now that they have released batch 1 of the PlayStation Pro for this November, pre-orders are off the hook. Yet in my view, this is more definitely going to be the Donkey idea for a long time. Apart from the price which is not too bad, the massive issue now is that they are offering 4K gaming. Now apart from it not actually being 4K gaming (for now), those in charge of this were blatantly lacking brainpower when setting together this package. You see 1TB just does not cut it. Consider 4K.com (at http://4k.com/news/unsexy-hard-drive-technology-needs-to-keep-up-with-4k-4872/) gives us “Given that a single minute of full ultra HD 4K video in native resolution takes up a full 2 GB of storage memory, large amounts of drive space become more crucial than ever before“. Now, games and movies are not the same, but consider that cut scenes are still going to be large and the average game has at least 30 minutes of cut scenes. That’s 60GB, which exceeds the Blu-Ray disc, which is not an issue for 4K Blu-ray’s, but how about your storage? What happens when you run out of space? I warned about this with the initial PS4 and 500 GB, so I updated to 2TB immediately. Now, that does not worry me, because I am not the average player, yet let’s not forget that after 10 games, the 500 GB edition had run out of space, what do you think 4K gaming will do with a 1TB drive? To equip that system with anything less than 2TB was sheer stupidity!

Even Microsoft saw that one coming and gave all these new versions a 2TB drive. It is likely that the Scorpion will have more than 2TB, but we will have to see. So not only did Sony drop the ball on hardware, they did it TWICE in a row, the same mistake. It seems that someone there is not thinking things through!

By the way, do not take my word for it, Sony themselves announced the new Blu-ray standard with a 1TB disc in March 2014, so I reckon that they are creating their own slippery slope all by themselves. Microsoft only needs to release the original Mass Effect trilogy on 4K within 6 months of releasing Andromeda and Sony could lose a massive stake in the gaming population. EA has clearly said that this would not happen, yet Microsoft has an option it did not have ever before, it has a title both gaming sides revere and desire. If that becomes a XB1 exclusive, Sony would end up crying a river of losses.

 

Still there is now a given we have not seen until these new systems, Sony botched the ball a second time and this time, the Sony fans might not be as forgiving as before, not only because of the initial PS4 launch fiasco (most day one games were not ready and the big title was delayed by well over 40 weeks). The issues that some faced with HD space, an issue most had not experienced on the PS3 gave more stress than people bargained for and the clarity of drive space is a lot more obvious on the PSPro than it was on the PS4.

So even if we see Sony to be in the ‘not so bright mode’, where should we see Apple? As stated before, I am not certain as there is no way to expect how the people will react to the new requirement of Airpods, the fact that the phone will now be waterproof could be the quality band aid the iPhone fans will accept as a trade-off. However, at $229 they are not the cheapest solution, so that also counts against them. Anyway, with the lightning adapter the old solution remains operational and if that cable is included with the iPhone 7 (yea right!) Phone owners would not have anything to complain about. Time will tell how Apple is seen. I think that they took a bold step in another direction and that might not be a bad thing.

Another part I found debatable was the quote Julie Ask, VP and principal analyst at Forrester Research made. When we see “They’re not trying to win the race to the bottom like [competitors] Samsung or Huawei; they tend to go after the middle-class consumer that can afford the products“, we have to wonder what her data proves. Not unlike the claims she made on Bloomberg, there are a few sides that are actively ignored. For one, Huawei is NOT a bottom competitor (the quote was very peculiarly phrased), Huawei has shown to be an Android top runner and has been giving a stronger bang for the buck than the iPhone has been giving for the longest of time. My issue with Huawei is not the quality of hardware, but the limiting of availability of the higher models is an issue, one that seems to be due through agreements with the telecom companies, which is a big no no in my view. Which now also reflects back to the iPhone, which is now standard have larger sized phones, making Huawei trail. This is what the show from Apple revealed. Now for the fun part, I mentioned on my blog on July 28th 2016 how stupid this move was in the article ‘What we waste away‘ (at https://lawlordtobe.com/2016/07/28/what-we-waste-away/), so less than 8 weeks later I am proven correct in more than one way. So not only is Huawei not offering a decent storage driven system, it is likely to lose a lot of market share as the 32GB Huawei P9 is pretty much the same price as the iPhone 7 128 GB Jet Black. How did Huawei not see this coming? Let’s not forget that (rumour) their CEO would be able to ask PLA Unit 61398 (Chinese Cyber warfare) what Apple was planning to do, nobody in charge there considered calling the honourable Ren Zhengfei informing him on the actions that ‘Imperialistic America’ was planning (read: Apple CEO)?

Brilliance can be found in all levels of technology, yet many of the players here seem to have been asleep these last 8 weeks.

Anybody for pancakes?

 

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