Apple’s A8 system-on-chip isn’t even out yet, but A9 rumor mills are already grinding

Apple is widely anticipated to be launching a presumably quad core, 64 bit, ARM based A8 central processor system-on-ship in a few weeks to power the new iPhone 6 and the next round of upgrades to the iPad Air and iPad mini with Retina Display. The A8 SoC is plenty exciting, but there’s always something newer and faster coming next as chip foundaries vie for Apple orders.

The Best Free Apps for July 11, 2014

if you’re a fan of the Assassin’s Creed series, you’ll certainly be happy to know the newly free-to-play Assassin’s Creed Pirates game headlines this week’s best free apps list. You’ll also want to want to check out the latest from Wizards of the Coast—Magic 2015—and yet another Angry Birds game: Angry Birds Star Wars II.


With an iPhone 6 “phablet” coming, does the iPad mini have a future?

A degree of iPad mini sales cannibalization by the iPhone 6 is inevitable. The operative question is “how much?” If a large enough proportion of potentially prospective iPad mini buyers actually do decide that the compromises imposed by an iPhone 6 phablet as a tablet surrogate are tolerable, then the market will have spoken and it will be goodbye iPad mini.

Is the Mac really invading the enterprise sector?

A survey indicates the iPad holds 90-plus percent of the enterprise tablet market, but others contend it’s not just the iOS making inroads in corporate IT these days. Should Microsoft be worried?


The iPad productivity debate

While it is possible to be productive on an iOS device to a degree, iPad productivity is simply not as high as with a Mac or Windows PC. For some tasks it’s not even close, or not possible at all. The fact is, at this stage of its development, the iOS does not support getting the same work done as on a desktop computer, at least in a timely and efficient manner.


A Mac in your pocket?

Will there ever be a Macintosh so small you could carry it in your pocket—but still connectable with a wireless mouse, keyboard, and AirPlay monitor, to provide a full-featured OS X desktop experience? There are practical lower limits on how small it is sensible to go.

43% of Apple buyers own only one Apple device

Once a customer experiences the low-hassle satisfaction of using an iPad or iPhone, it shouldn’t be a massive task to persuade them that Macs offer a superior PC user experience as well. In that context, increased convergence of OS X with the iOS makes marketing sense—something that appears to be coming with OS X Yosemite and iOS 8.

No relief likely on Apple’s inflated memory prices

Aside from padding Apple’s profit margins, there is no justification for the iPhone and iPad $100 per step-up tariff, and we all know it. But one thing Apple could do to ease the sting of its memory upgrade prices would be to start at a higher base, making the upgrade progression 32/64/128 instead of 16/32/64.


The Best Free Apps for July 4, 2014

On this 4th of July holiday in the U.S., the best free apps include Fates Forever (an online tournament free-to-play game that’s all about player vs. player battles) and SkySafari 4 (a must-have app that uses your iPhone’s GPS and accelerometers to help you identify stars, nebulae, galaxies and more). Also, an iTunes U update is coming soon, so grab the current version for free now.

Apple lawsuit wrap-up for June 2014

It was a slow month for Apple lawsuits in June 2014, with a nice mix of patent lawsuits, intellectual property arguments, and lawsuits coming to a conclusion. But that doesn’t mean Mexico is happy. Nor are WiLAN, Enterprise Systems Technologies, and a few of those blue-shirted folks you talked to at the local Apple Store (especially if they also had backpacks).

Yes, there are MacBooks for price-sensitive buyers

You can get a new Windows laptop for less than $649 or even $499, but those who argue mainly on up-front price when it comes to computers have always epitomized for me Oscar Wilde’s observation about “people who know the price of everything and the value of nothing.” I consider myself a value cheapskate rather than a purchase price cheapskate, a persuasion that has kept me buying Apple computers for the past 22 years.

The Best Free Apps for June 27, 2014

The best free apps include two awesome limited time freebies this week. Captain America: The Winter Soldier was an amazing movie, and now you can play as Captain America in the official game from Gameloft. The second limited time freebie is True Skate. It’s a bit of an older game, but it’s held up extremely well.