July 31, 2013

True new innovations in the technology space only come around every few years, and even rarer are the innovations that have the power to change our day-to-day interactions with our devices. That’s why I was excited when I first heard about the Leap Motion, a little motion control device that promised to alter how we think of using computers. One year since the initial preview, the device is in the hands of the public, and now it’s up to the people to decide if it can change the way we use our computers. Does it live up to its expectations? Read on to find out:

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From 9to5Toys.com:

apple-tv-deal

One of the most highly touted features of the new Google Chromecast is its price tag, coming in at just $35. The Apple TV retails for $99 (Amazon sells it for $96) but includes a more expansive feature set including full mirroring capabilities, a beautiful user interface, physical remote and an abundance of compatible streaming services. In a possible reaction to the low Chromecast price, Apple has dropped a refurbished Apple TV 12% down to just $75 with free shipping. Although, this could be a planned price drop as Apple typically re-evaluates their refurb prices as products go through their life cycle. No matter the reason for the drop, at $75 with a 1-year Apple warranty this is our pick for the best current Apple TV deal. expand full story

9to5toys 

January File Photo

We broke the news yesterday that Tim Cook was in China talking to the local telecoms about upcoming iPhones. It was speculated that along with the confirmed China Telecom, Cook would also likely be going after the big kahuna, China Mobile.

Today, Reuters got a confirmation from China Mobile Ltd Chairman Xi Guohua that Tim Cook did meet in Beijing on Tuesday to discuss the iPhone. The Chinese telecom confirmed the meeting in an emailed statement saying only ‘matters of cooperation’ [iPhone]were discussed.

China Mobile is the largest carrier on earth with nearly 700M subscribers (about U.S.+W. Europe in scale) and is the only carrier in China not to have a distribution deal with Apple. Just getting a conservative 5% of China Mobile’s huge base would net Apple 35M additional iPhone sales.

A deal with China Mobile would likely spur significant additional iPhone sales, especially the widely-rumored cheaper plastic version coming online later this year. The talks come after Apple reported  overall flattening growth in China, Apple’s second biggest market after the U.S.

Apple said last week that its April-June sales in Greater China, which includes Taiwan and Hong Kong, slumped 43 percent from the previous quarter. Greater China accounted for 13 percent of Apple’s quarterly sales, or $5 billion, down from nearly 19 percent in January-March.

It is Cook’s third known trip to China since he took over as CEO almost two years ago. Other things that may come up include Pegatron’s supposed worker violation issues and perhaps even another Beijing scalping problem.

Update: The WSJ confirms the meeting and notes that Cook also met with China Unicom, the nation’s third largest carrier and current apple distributor.

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July 30, 2013

Bret Taylor, former head of Google’s Maps division and CTO at Facebook after selling off Friendfeed, along with co-founder Kevin Gibbs have launched a new collaborative word processor for the iPhone, iPad, and web. The app, called Quip, combines the mobile-oriented word processing of Pages, the shared checklists of Reminders, and the collaborative and sharing features of Google Drive. Documents are stored in folders that can be shared with and edited by teams.

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