TidBITS, smartphones, music sales, newspapers, and Google+...

The only Mac publication I read is the Engsts' (not Angsts') TidBITS. If you use a Mac or iPhone, go ahead and subscribe now. It's free so just do it and you'll thank me. I've read TidBITS for maybe twenty years and it's the first place to go for accurate information on all things Apple.

The latest issue links to an interesting chart showing the relative obsolscence of Android and iPhone handsets by tracking their ability to take operating system updates. In other words the chart shows how long this or that phone is able to run the current version of its OS.

But once you look at that chart, keep clicking on Michael Degusta's other charts. Fascinating...

Here's one titled "The Real Death of the Music Industry." (Actually, he means the recording industry.)

Here's one titled "The Newspaper Business Implodes." A couple days ago I wrote a Chicago Sun-Times writer objecting to his trashing of pro-life heroes and I concluded the letter with a statement that journalists' bigotry and intolerance is the reason I'm pleased Craig's List is killing newspapers. Their voice needed to be disciplined so its authority didn't continue to deny God and His justice and mercy publicly.

Here's one titled Digital Subscription Prices Visualized (AKA the New York Times Is Delusional). When the Times recently changed its digital policy, I stopped reading it just as thirty years ago I stopped reading that magazine that lives on Gunderson Drive and makes a pile of money by trimming God's truth. I encourage you to do the same with both publications.

And this one titled "Google's Management Doesn't Use Google+."

I like this guy.

 

 

Comments

I take exception to Mr. Degusta's Android v. Apple chart for a couple of reasons:

1) While his chart is technically correct, it only takes into account official upgrades (the only kind there are in Apple's closed system). The fact is that there is a thriving and more than competent developer community behind Android which continues to offer newer versions of the OS to older phones even after official manufacturer support has stopped (which, sadly, happens all too soon and all too often).

2) Just because you *can* update a first gen iPhone to iOS 5, doesn't mean you want to. I've heard plenty of horror stories from users who upgraded older devices to the latest version of iOS only to find their device practically unusable (UI slowdowns, etc).

3) When there is an Android update all of the features are available to all devices which receive the update (unless there are specific hardware requirements). Not so with iOS. Siri? Only if you have the iPhone 4S. Want wallpapers or multitasking on the iPhone 3G? Sorry, not happening.

All this to say that, as always, all of the facts need to be presented to give a clear picture.

Love,

Your resident Android-loving techno-geek

Have you cancelled "World" yet?

>>there is a thriving and more than competent developer community behind Android which continues to offer newer versions of the OS to older phones

Same with the iPhone. Lots of people have installed Siri on pre-4s models, for instance. Competent and thriving developer community behind iPhones offering every tweak your heart could desire. But most people using either OS are non-techies sticking with what's official.

>>I've heard plenty of horror stories from users...

There were problems when people updated iOS on the 3gs. But you're going to have specific issues with every phone and every OS. The 4 had a bad antenna and a terrible implementation of Bluetooth. The 4s is draining its battery too fast. Apple's working on a fix. Yawn.

>>Siri? Only if you have the iPhone 4S.

Actually, not.

Love,

>>Have you cancelled "World" yet?

Nope.

Love,

>>>>there is a thriving and more than competent developer community behind Android which continues to offer newer versions of the OS to older phones

>>Same with the iPhone.

The difference is that Google and most Android device manufacturers encourage and support the developers (Samsung just hired one of the top developers from the CyanogenMod project for it's Android division) whereas the jailbreakers and Cydia are not very popular with folks in Cupertino. Apple is all about controlling every aspect of the user experience -- which is a good and a bad thing. Good because it ensures mostly smooth operation and easier support. Bad because it takes control out of the hands of the user.

As far as Siri on older iPhones, here is the official word out of Cupertino from today: http://mashable.com/2011/11/09/siri-older-iphones/

Also, my understanding is that, although it's been installed on older devices, Apple is able to block it's use on the server side. Is that correct, or did I miss something.

Love,

>> Google and most Android device manufacturers encourage and support the developers...

Yes, this is the reason there are so few apps for the iPad and iPhone, and developers make so little money off them. Apple makes life difficult for developers.

>>Apple is able to block it's use on the server side.

Well sure. They own the servers. Siri is a processor hog and that's why it's been released for the 4s. It's a sirius tool and Apple wants users of it to be happy. So they doubled the processor firepower in the 4s and may end up eventually not allowing weak processors access so Siri users on weak processors don't get frustrated.

Over and out. Love,

>>>Yes, this is the reason there are so few apps for the iPad and iPhone, and developers make so little money off them. Apple makes life difficult for developers.

Different developers. Those willing to pony up the cash for the license and hardware necessary for development are welcomed by Apple with open arms. Although I would argue that Apple does make things difficult for them, it's just that the return, monetarily speaking, is worth the occasional frustration. I'm talking about the jailbreakers and Cydia folks -- the unsanctioned iOS developers.

>>>So they doubled the processor firepower in the 4s and may end up eventually not allowing weak processors access so Siri users on weak processors don't get frustrated.

Exactly. Which is also one of the reasons that we see older Android devices not getting the official upgrades to newer versions of the OS. Hardware on smartphones is seeing the same Moore's-law type of growth that we saw previously in PC processors, so older devices will get left behind. Users willing to experiment can install newer versions if they want to, but the manufacturer's don't want the headache of trying to support all of the many different devices possible. One of the strengths and weaknesses of the non-centralized (some would say fragmented, but that word has too much of a negative connotation) nature of Android is the variety of devices. Yes, there is truth to the fact that the manufacturers just want you to upgrade to the latest and greatest so that they can fill their coffers, but that's the nature of business and Apple is no different.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not arguing for the superiority of either system; both have good points and bad points, and I am by no means blind to the shortcomings of Android. I just like to cut through the Apple/iOS RDS that seems to have people like Mr. Degusta so utterly enthralled.

Okay, I'm done now :)

Love,

And, yes, I think about these things entirely too much :)

The first version of Tim's comment #3 to Kevin ended with something like "You have your way, I have mine." This was jarring, but why? It's because usually we're talking about issues of God's truth in Scripture here, where we may not say "to each his own". But here, we can.

Even a post about an Ipod can be edifying -- who knew?

There are alot of things to dislike about the iPhone, but I'd been reading alot of the hype surrounding the release of the new Droid Razr, and now that a more thorough review is out, it looks terrible.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/technology/droid-razr-what-you-should-know/2011/11/08/gIQA0hdg1M_story.html

I've been procrastinating for years about getting a smartphone, and several people had told me to look at the new Razr.

No thanks.

The android platform has some advantages, but the execution still seems really shoddy.

Andrew,

If you're looking for a smartphone and are interested in an Android device, I would look at either the new Galaxy Nexus or, for a slightly lower price, the Nexus S. These are "Pure Google" devices, so they don't have a lot of the cruft that bogs some of the others down (one of the drawbacks of multiple manufacturers and service providers putting their own apps and skins on the devices).

Until recently I used a Nexus One, the first of the "Pure Google" phones, but just moved up to the Nexus S, and I love it. I tried the Samsung Galaxy S 4G, but hated the extra layer of stuff that Samsung put on it. When I got a tablet I went with the Xoom for the same reason; no extra stuff.

If you're interested I'd be happy to show you my Nexus S and answer any questions you have.

Love,

I would like to make a comment but my dial-up is too slow.

Just for the record, Apple recently hired one of the top iOS jailbreak devs.

Also, I don't think Siri is limited because of its processor needs. My understanding is that all of the heavy lifting is done on Apple's servers. I think it is simply Apple limiting the functionality of previous phones in order to get people to upgrade. That makes me dislike Apple.

And I upgraded an iPhone 3G to iOS 3 (or was it 4) and yes, it was both supported and completely unusable. So much so that I sold it.

Oh, and I jailbreak my iPhone. :)

>>I think it is simply Apple limiting the functionality of previous phones in order to get people to upgrade.

I don't think so. I've read many articles saying Siri needed the doubling of processing power. The terrible implementation of Bluetooth in the 4 would also be a key factor in causing the 4s to do a better job with Siri.

Love (really),

The iPhone's strength is its simplicity. They know how to design a phone that will appeal to the the masses. A sleek and intuitive UI mixed with the best marketing in the world makes for a popular phone. That being said, they are rarely as cutting edge as Apple Zombies would have you believe. No 4G, NFC, or larger screen made the 4S a major disappointment. Nexus Prime will have all three as does the highly rate GS2.

On a related note, I love how Apple's new iOS basically was them ripping off ideas from the vastly inferior Android phones. Everything is better when Apple does it. Even when it isn't.

>>The iPhone's strength is its simplicity. They know how to design a phone that will appeal to the the masses. A sleek and intuitive UI...

Simplicity that appeals to the masses and sleek is not the same as intuitive. Apple has intuitive nailed.

>>the best marketing in the world...

Yes, and I find most of it repulsive.

>>they are rarely as cutting edge

There have been times when Apple's technology and design haven't been cutting edge, but not for years. Smartphone. Pad. Cast aluminum. All SSD.

>>Apple Zombies

Oh my.

>>No 4G

Cell companies don't have 4G yet--just 3.7G. It's coming but it's not here and what is here is in limited areas. So why not 3.7?

It's always careful choices with Apple. Apple chose to upgrade its processor, but not to implement 3.7 until its implementation doesn't force other compromises like battery life.

>>No NFC

When Apple does it, it will work well. And it wouldn't surprise me if Apple did something more than simply adding NFC. Maybe they'll use their cash hoard to start up a competitor to the boys in Wilmington? Anyhow, watch Apple on NFC--that's my prediction.

>>major disappointment.

For me it's been good. They fixed some significant problems in the 4--particularly upgrading to Bluetooth 4.0. The 4 couldn't stay paired with an earpiece no matter which earpiece was used. With the 4s, it's all better.

>>ripping off

No one's ripping anyone off. I've listened to people talking like this about technology for a quarter century now, and it's all a bunch of chest-thumping. I'm disgusted by Apple's IP/patent lawsuits, but everyone does it and it matters not a whit to me who's threatening whom. Everyone's copying everyone and the one constant is that technologies leapfrog each other.

I'm simply pleased my BT headpiece works now and I agree with Eric Schmidt that Siri will give Google a run for their money.

Meanwhile, back to the graph. Maybe the only serious difference in the smartphone market today is the difference in control over system implementation between Google and Apple. Google should do hardware.

Love,

http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2396221,00.asp#fbid=J55pcFt5TbF

BTW, concerning Siri and the relative importance of processor vs. Apple's NC server farm, here's an interview worth reading:

http://9to5mac.com/2011/10/03/co-founder-of-siri-assistant-is-a-world-changing-event-interview/

And this summary report from Infoweek:

http://www.informationweek.com/news/231700133

Love,

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