When Icahn tweeted last summer that he had taken a “large position” in Apple, he must have meant large in terms of dollars.
Because his position in Apple is tiny if what he hopes to do is bend the company to his will. That usually requires something closer to a 10% stake (see attached chart).
Icahn is rich, but that rich. He could put his entire $20 billion net worth into Apple, and still own less than 5%.
This may explain why Tim Cook has so far declined take Icahn’s advice and put all of Apple’s $150 billion cash holdings in a massive one-time stock buyback.
Every quarter, the tech world’s market research firms release metrics on how many PCs, phones and tablets Apple reported selling and compare these to estimates of what the rest of the world produced, resulting in headlines that minimize the importance of the world’s largest and most profitable company. You might wonder why.
But if the market share figure is so useless, why does everyone quote it all the time?
Now we get to the key point. Because it’s easy to measure market share — much easier than measuring installed base, which requires large panels of people who you interview on a regular, repeated basis. (ComScore does this in the US, where it provides a picture of the installed base of smartphone users that is consistent back to the end of 2009. Its figures for the three months to September 2013 show a 51.8% installed base for Android — that’s 76.6m — and 40.6% for iPhone — that’s 60m. It’s not 80% Android; not even close.)
Plus “market share” gives journalists who like nothing better than a metaphorical horse race (look at the preponderance of polls, especially in the US presidential election) something to write about. Trouble is, it doesn’t necessarily give us useful information.
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Canada-based telecom Nortel went bankrupt in 2009 and sold its biggest asset—a portfolio of more than 6,000 patents covering 4G wireless innovations and a range of technologies—at an auction in 2011.
Google bid for the patents, but it didn’t get them. Instead, the patents went to a group of competitors—Microsoft, Apple, RIM, Ericsson, and Sony—operating under the name “Rockstar Bidco.” The companies together bid the shocking sum of $4.5 billion.
Patent insiders knew that the Nortel portfolio was the patent equivalent of a nuclear stockpile: dangerous in the wrong hands, and a bit scary even if held by a “responsible” party.
The lawsuits (download the complaint here) make a number of patent infringement charges against Google and big Android device makers, including Samsung, Huawei, HTC, and others. Several of the most dangerous charges, from Google’s point of view, are at the core of Google’s mobile business: Claims that Google infringes patents by matching search terms to relevant advertising on mobile devices. Google gives away Android for free in order to make money via advertising, so this could kill Android if Google loses, or at least force Google and Android device makers to pay very sizable licensing fees.
But there’s also another proposition, a $75-$150 black generic Chinese Android tablet, half the price of a Nexus 7. That proposition is also selling in huge numbers, but it appears to come with a very different type of use.
Why are people buying these? What are they being used for? They’re mostly in China (that’s the pink bar above) and emerging markets and in lower income groups in the west. And it seems that they’re being used for a little bit of web, and a bit of free gaming. Perhaps some book reading. And a LOT of video consumption. In fact, one might argue that for many buyers, these compete with TVs, not iPads, Nexuses and Tabs. But regardless of what they’re being used for, they’re not being used the way iPads are used. In effect, they are the featurephones of tablets.
If this theory is correct, it suggests that Apple’s $300 Mini really isn’t a competitive problem, because the iPad doesn’t yet face a strong competitive threat (quite unlike the iPhone). Rather, there are actually two quite different markets: the post-PC vision, where Apple is dominant, and a ultra-low margin product that’s also called a tablet but which is really a totally different product.
“The iPad, iOS and the entire ecosystem of over 470,000 iPad apps all built with a touch interface are simply easier to use, less intimidating, and often more empowering than many apps that exist only on notebooks and desktops. My kids use the iPad to play games, read, create movies, make music, paint and draw, and a host of other things they would never be able to do on a PC with its mouse and keyboard input. The iPad is not computing dumbed down; it is powerful computing simplified. And simple solutions require sophisticated technology. That is exactly what the iPad and the new iPad Air is–powerful computing.”—The iPad Air –A Truly Mass Market Personal Computer | Tech.pinions - Perspective, Insight, Analysis
O Mail no Mavericks está integrado com o Gmail sem problemas.
Acontece que o Mail parece se comportar de uma forma diferente no OS X 10.9 Mavericks.
O Mail aparentemente está mais “inteligente” e gerencia a sincronização das contas de correio em background, sem qualquer necessidade de intervenção do usuário.
A partir do momento que você configura uma nova conta é necessário aguardar algum tempo para que ele realize a primeira sincronização completa. A partir de então tudo funcionará automaticamente.
E lembre-se, você não está usando a interface web, portanto é preciso aguardar pelo sync.
Mas se você é uma pessoa ansiosa, que precisa de feedback visual e instantâneo para absolutamente tudo que faz no computador, eu recomendo que você dê preferência ao uso do navegador e da interface web do seu serviço de correio - e que reflita se não é hora de desacelerar um pouco (cuidado com a saúde).
Ou você pode deixar o Mail aberto que ele gerencia automaticamente a sincronização das suas contas, a notificação de novas mensagens e a entrega dos e-mails enviados.
Eu tenho ouvido alguns relatos de pessoas que dizem enfrentar dificuldades no uso do Mail no Mavericks com as contas do Gmail.
Boa parte desses relatos provavelmente referem-se ao desconhecimento da nova forma de funcionamento.
Certamente em um upgrade futuro a Apple deverá eliminar mais arestas de funcionamento e melhorar ainda mais o funcionamento do Mail.
O que realmente significa OS X, iLife e iWork grátis para a Apple?
”For Apple, the move makes perfect sense. OS X only runs on Macs, and the revenue that would normally be collected on the operating system is baked into the cost of the hardware, which is usually offered at a higher price than an equivalent Windows PC.”
(What does Apple’s free OS X upgrade mean for Microsoft? - Tom Warren, The Verge)
Vou analisar esse trecho específico do artigo, não me importa todo o resto porque esse trecho aqui é reducionismo, uma visão simplista. “Capitão Óbvio”, entende?
O que esse anúncio realmente significa é que a Apple segue inexoravelmente alterando os paradigmas da indústria e inovando ferozmente em sua linha de produtos e serviços.
Lembrem-se, a Apple não está aumentando o preço de venda do Mac ou de dispositivos iOS pra subsidiar a ação e cada Mac obrigatoriamente já vem com o OS X e iLife, praticamente desde sempre (pós-retorno do SJ). E cada Mac podia receber upgrades futuros tanto do OS X quanto do iLife (pagos). Nessa linha de raciocínio do artigo do The Verge, como encaixar a perda de receita com upgrades e com as vendas do iWork?
A perda é pequena? Ainda assim é uma perda e ninguém rasga dinheiro (muito menos a Apple).
Por isso a conclusão do The Verge está furada. Para entender esse movimento da Apple você precisa olhar o que as atualizações do iOS e o iTunes grátis para Windows provocaram na indústria.
Esse grátis de OS X, iLife e do iWork não significa que a Apple está abrindo mão de algo, mas que está melhorando seus produtos premium.
É o equivalente em hardware a usar uma nova tecnologia de tela, SoC, M7, processo de fabricação, etc. É algo intangível, mas com impacto facilmente quantificável na qualidade e diferenciação da plataforma.
Além do efeito halo - você usuário de PC, agora pode colaborar com usuários de Mac em documentos do iWork sem nem mesmo ter uma conta no iCloud. Mais um gole de água gelada pra quem está no inferno.
Esse é um movimento que faz todo sentido em 2013 e para essa Apple de 2013. E que provavelmente trará muitos benefícios para os usuários e para a plataforma.
Isn't Microsoft's free upgrade only for people who purchased Window's 8? If you're on Window's 7, I believe you have to pay for it. By contrast, anyone who has Snow Leopard or later can upgrade to Mavericks for free.
Yes. That’s a great point that’s largely been overlooked. Have Windows 7 and want to upgrade to Windows 8.1? That’ll be $119 or $199.
“Our competition is different. They’re confused. They chased netbooks, now they’re trying to make PCs into tablets and tablets into PCs. Who knows what they’ll do next? I can’t answer that question, but I can tell you that we’re focused”—Tim Cook, Apple CEO
While in theory Android provides a very modern platform for mobile development, the realities around Android-first are quite different. Startups simply cannot afford to bypass iOS and go Android out of the gate. One could even argue the gap is widening.
Uninformed people who reference innovation frameworks often like to declare that the mobile market has matured to the point of being “good enough”. I disagree. The reality is that software innovation at the app layer is accelerating, and converged hardware / software development costs a lot of money.
If a company does ever manage to fork AOSP, clone the Google apps, and create a viable competitor to Google’s Android, it’s going to have a hard time getting anyone to build a device for it. In an open market, it would be as easy as calling up an Android OEM and convincing them to switch, but Google is out to make life a little more difficult than that. Google’s real power in mobile comes from control of the Google apps—mainly Gmail, Maps, Google Now, Hangouts, YouTube, and the Play Store. These are Android’s killer apps, and the big (and small) manufacturers want these apps on their phones. Since these apps are not open source, they need to be licensed from Google. It is at this point that you start picturing a scene out of The Godfather, because these apps aren’t going to come without some requirements attached.
Apple quite obviously designed the iPhone 5c to compete more effectively against other phones on the market than iPhone 5 had been, and that’s what the data shows it is doing. Apple did not design the 5c to destroy its own profitability, or to make the 5s look really expensive in comparison. That would have been really stupid.
There is one more thing iPhone 5c is designed to do: make iOS 7 an even more attractive platform. Samsung, Google/Motorola and Microsoft/Nokia are introducing new products that make their platforms less attractive: low end devices that are slow and feel unfinished, products that are intended entirely to increase market share at the expense of users’ satisfaction.
Amongst all the nostalgia about Steve Jobs over the weekend, I re-read this piece by Jeff Goodell published shortly after Jobs’ passing, looking back at earlier interviews. The best bit, from a visit to NeXT in 1994:
As I listened to him, I once again thought of Orson Welles – a great genius who did his best work at 25 and ended up doing TV game shows and commercials for crappy wine. When I asked Jobs how he felt about the comparison, he had the wit to make light of it. “I’m very flattered by that, actually,” he said. “I wonder what game show I’m going to be on.”
For the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?” And whenever the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.
—Steve Jobs, Stanford University commencement address, 2005