Apple to shift 50 million iPhones in FY '11

Apple seems set to shift over 50 million iPhones worldwide by September 2011, said Bernstein Research analyst, Tony Sacconaghi, last night.

That’s up from an estimated 20 million sales in 2009, the analyst explained – and it is not rocket science, the analyst reckons Apple will achieve these targets simply by retaining its current share of the smartphone market and by making the device available through more carriers.

The analyst expects the smartphone sector to jump 27 per cent a year for the next two years, adding 10.3 million iPhone sales to Apple’s balance sheet.

He also believes wider distribution through more carriers in the US, Europe and Asia could generate an additional 18.5 million sales. And finalising a deal with a Chinese carrier could pop another 2.9 million iPhones into punter’s hands.

There’s a case for an iPhone nano, the analyst believes: “We believe that more aggressively targeting the prepaid market with lower price models or offering an iPhone that does not require a data plan – but still has WiFi connectivity – could significantly expand Apple’s addressable market,” he wrote.

With touch screen prices now in decline (says Digitimes this morning), Apple also has a chance to continue to prune the price of the iPhone 3G.

Meanwhile, here’s an amusing graph from Changewave Research which explains just why the iPhone is gathering ever more consumers to its cause – they’re deeply satisfied with the device.

MSFT pins hopes on Win Mobile 7 – late 2010

Microsoft seems scared, wooing iPhone developers to bring their WWDC-invented ideas to its Windows Mobile platform, while inventing a dual platform pitch to compete with Android and Apple.

Microsoft isn’t expected to introduce a fully updated version of Windows Mobile until next year, but will ship it the upgraded Windows Mobile 6.5 in October. But Windows Mobile partners won’t feel the magic touch – Microsoft won’t be enabling touch interfaces until a little later, in February 2010, reports Digitimes.

(Just how long is it since every other mobile maker began fielding touch? Just saying…).

Then, in typical Microsoft style, the company makes its usual attempt to confuse the market – in future, Digitimes reports, the company plans to lower the price of Windows Mobile 6.5 and keep selling it even after the late 2010 release of Windows Mobile 7.

“The dual-platform strategy will allow Microsoft to compete with Android-based platform using Windows Mobile 6.5 and also compete with iPhones leveraging Windows Mobile 7, the sources asserted.”

Right, we suspect Apple will be looking at iPhone Software 5.0 by then, so we’ll see if Microsoft’s in dev Win Mob 7 has a fighting chance around then. Looking at these figures it seems to us the company’s got some catching up to do. Perhaps it should stick with making Xboxes and mice?

In related news, Microsoft has filed an appeal against the ruling which requires it to stop selling Office or pay a developer a huge chunk of cash – $290 million.

Go analogue, be digital, on your iPhone

Back before Compact Discs there were two other music formats, cassette tape and vinyl. These are beloved of music purists, who pine for that warm, analogue sound.

We can’t bring the analogue back, but we can make the experience a little more nostalgic using this new pair of applications which made their way to the App Store this week: Vinyl DJ and Cassette Deck.

Vinyl DJ (99c) lets you play songs from your iPhone”s music library using an on-screen record player – and lets you mess with vinyl-replicating sounds such as added dust, crackle, scratch and mechanical noise.

Cassette Deck (99c), on the other hand, does the same thing but using a virtual tape player. This lets you “skin” the image on your screen so the cassettes change as the songs cycle. You also get the delight of watching the tape spin, a virtual eject button and more.

We think these low cost apps could be a little retro fun this Wednesday morning.

Snow Leopard GM not booting into 64-bit mode automatically, fix here

For those of you running Snow Leopard on newer Macs, you might be disappointed to know that you are probably running in 32-bit mode.  I have a brand new MacBook Pro and am running 32-bit.  I’d wager that some of you are too.  The problem: no matter how burly the hardware you are running is, Apple automatically puts you into 32-bit mode (Except Xserves).  Let’s take a look at System Profiler:

Would you like to see what it is like to run in the 64-bit world?  First make sure you have the right hardware for the job.  Apple will only let you run 64-bit if you have a 64-bit EFI (see below for workaround).  Here’s a list of kosher Macs from the Snow Leopard release notes:

 

 

Or, use the following command in Terminal.app to see what you’ve got:

ioreg -l -p IODeviceTree | grep firmware-abi 

To artificially force Snow Leopard to boot into 64-bit mode, hold down the 6 and 4 keys during a Shutdown/Restart (had freezing issues with a plain restart), After a slight delay, you’ll notice that in System Profiler, you are now running in 64-bit. 
 You can also use the NVRAM or the com.apple.Boot.plist file to more permanently boot into 64bit mode. Holding the ‘3’ and ‘2’ keys will boot Snow Leopard back into 32bit mode.

Note that it takes significantly longer to boot into 64-bit mode, especially the first time around than a 32-bit restart.  I’m not sure why this is or if it is just a one off.  Also, I wasn’t able to tether an iPhone when in 64-bit mode.  Otherwise things run fine and plenty fast.  Apple is most likely pushing people into 32-bit mode because drivers for printers, etc. haven’t been updated.  Xserves are, again, exempted.

If you have a 64-bit processor but 32-bit EFI (for instance, users of the first generation Mac Pros amazingly have only  32-bit EFI firmware), there is still hope for you.  From OSNews:

So, even if you have a 64bit processor, and you thought you were in the clear, Apple might not give you the option to go 64bit. However, in what probably rivals the Amazon Kindle 1984 thing in most ironic moment of 2009, the hackintosh community has come to the rescue. With netkas’ pcefiv10.1 bootloader, you can boot into 64bi Snow Leopard even on 32bit EFI Macs. So far, it’s not yet known if Apple will enable owners of machines with 32bit EFI to boot into a 64bit kernel in Snow Leopard-final; Apple might offer an EFI update, or remove the artificial limitation. The same applies to MacBooks; it might be that Apple is planning on using 64bit as a selling point to drive people to buy MacBook Pros instead of ordinary MacBooks..

 Obviously using the Hackintosh hack to trick your EFI firmware ventures into the "use at your own risk" territory.  That being said, have fun!

 Thanks to Greg for pointing this out originally.

iTunes get's 25% of music marketshare, but*…

NPD came out with widely quoted numbers today which state that iTunes is responsible for 25% of music sales.  While this is great news for Apple, it is only part of the picture.  Most of Apple’s sales are singles in the $.99 range while most traditional sales are full CDs which are more than ten times the cost.  We’re sure all of the intricacies of the data will be poured over in detail at next month’s iPod/Music event, rather than Apple just throwing up a "We own 25% bitches" logos everywhere.

Apple iPhone surpasses Blackberry in Europe to become #2 smartphone vendor

While still trailing significantly behind Nokia, Apple has passed RIM’s Blackberry to become the number two smartphone vendor in Europe, according to estimates made by Canalys.  The market share increase is staggering (over 1000% growth)!

Other interesting stats: Apple’s iPhoneOS accounts for 13.7% of global handsets.  In the US, the iPhone is 23.3% of smartphones (compared to Blackberry with over 50%).  In Asia, Sharp and Fujitsu trail Nokia who has over 50% of the market.

Apple to release six inch iPod/tablet at September event?

Would you consider a 6-inch iPod touch to be a tablet?

Businessweek spoke to Richard Doherty, a director at market researcher Envisioneering Group on Apple’s upcoming Tablet(s):

"There’s no hotter topic [than tablets] in Asia right now," …Apple has developed prototypes of two different tablet machines—one that resembles a large-sized iPod and boasts a 6-inch screen, and another that features a larger display. Apple may launch one or both devices as early as September, Doherty says. A decision on whether and when Apple takes the tablet plunge lies with Apple CEO Steve Jobs, Doherty says.

Obviously tablets have been tried and failed before.  He has some answers on why Apple’s could be different.  He guesses a much lower cost than has been predicted before as well as 65,000 apps on launch.

Price, for starters. Apple’s tablet may cost as little as $679, Doherty says. Then there’s the Apple software mystique. "Apple has a real opportunity to take the magic of the iPhone interface and give that more real estate to do the tasks," Kay says. "It’s an iPhone, but bigger. It’s something that you know, but bigger." The device may be able to wirelessly access iTunes and Apple’s App Store, which offers more than 65,000 apps such as games, e-books, and calendars. Apple declined to comment for this story.

Really? Apple declined to comment for this story?  Shocker.

But the iPod tablet isn’t the only tablet being built in Cupertino.  Doherty says there is a Mac tablet out there somewhere too.

One of Apple’s prototype devices is able to run all Mac applications, and allows for video and audio editing and graphic animation, Doherty says. Another, which looks like a larger iPod, lends itself to watching videos, playing games, and reading e-books.

This may not be such a boring September after all. Perhaps Apple leakers are saying 2010 for the Mac tablet and 2009 for the iPod tablet?

Add the new Google Caffeine to your search arsenal

If you are like us, you can’t wait to get your mitts on new technology.  Google Caffeine is Google’s wholly new search engine that is faster, bigger (more results) and more accurate.  Try it here:

http://www2.sandbox.google.com/

It also doesn’t yet have any advertising on it.  On the downside, it is in raw beta form so it could be taken offline or experience unforeseen outages.

That being said, why not put the most modern search technology in your search bar?  Kyle Hasegawa has built a little Firefox plugin that adds the Caffeine engine to your search options in Firefox.  You can also change your default search in Safari but it involves editing your Safari application.  Something which may not sit well with a lot of you.

Users of other browsers can feel free to chime in on how to put a little Caffeine in their search below in the comments.

 

Apple grabs one-third of US WiFi traffic

When it comes to active use of wireless networks, Apple’s devices are the fastest-growing clients, according to cloud-based wireless networking company, Meraki.

The company released the first-ever Meraki Wireless Census today, and the results reveal bold increases in the number of wireless-capable devices in use in North America, and even larger increases in the number of Apple devices and handhelds being used.

The number of Apple devices observed, including laptops, iPhones and iPods, grew by an impressive 221%. Apple devices now represent 32% of all the devices seen by this set of Meraki networks in North America, compared to just 14% in 2008.

The census compared activity seen by a single set of 10,000 randomly selected Meraki wireless access points in North America in 2008 and 2009 in order to understand macro-level traffic and end-user device trends.

The number of client devices, such as laptops and handheld devices, observed by the same set of Meraki access points grew dramatically by 41% from 149,687 devices in 2008 to 211,190 in 2009.

Boosted by the iPhone factor, the number of WiFi compatible handheld devices also grew significantly. The number of Research In Motion (RIM) devices observed in North America grew by 419% from 2008 to 2009, and Nokia devices grew by 114%. In 2008, RIM devices represented just 2% of all devices observed, but grew dramatically to 8% for 2009. In 2008 and 2009, Nokia represented 1% and 2% of all devices, respectively.

Sanjit Biswas, CEO and co-founder of Meraki observes: “The growth in devices overall is impressive, but the growth for Apple, Nokia and RIM devices is stunning. It paints a vivid picture about how people now access the Internet, and the trends we can expect for years to come."

Exploding iPhones are "isolated cases", Apple tells EU

Apple has responded to the European Commission’s enquiry concerning widely reported cases of exploding iPhones, saying these are “isolated incidents”.

Officials in Brussels this morning confirmed Apple to be investigating possible causes for these few incidents in which the iPhone screen reportedly spontaneously shattered. Meanwhile the company insists there’s no general problems with its product, said a commission spokeswoman, Helen Kearns.

"At the end of last week, we asked Apple and the member states where the incidents occurred to provide us with information on the matter," commission spokesperson Ton Van Lierop, currently charged with the industry and enterprise dossier, told EUobserver.

The move followed reports of at least three iPhones or iPod music players overheating and exploding in France and Britain.

According to French financial daily Les Echos, witnesses to the most recent incident in Aix-en-Provence, France, reported that an iPhone suddenly began to "crackle and pop like a deep-frier" before breaking apart and hurling pieces of its screen everywhere. Bits of glass hit an adolescent boy in the eye, according to his parents.

If you have Real Player installed you can watch the EU briefing on the matter this morning right here.