December 17, 2012

Flash and Brightcove creator shares his vision of an Apple TV (complete with coax dongle)

Shortly after Apple CEO Tim Cook’s comments that the television industry is “an intense area of interest,” Brightcove CEO (and ColdFusion and Flash Creator) Jeremy Allaire has laid out plenty of speculation as to what the Apple television may consist of on AllThingsD this morning. There have been plenty of rumors and mockups before, but Allaire has compiled some new and pretty well done mockups, and he theorized one possible route Apple may take with the television. Instead of just releasing a 46- and 60-inch television set with up to a 4K resolution, according to Allaire, Apple would also include a companion device for $149:

A new companion device for TV that starts at $149, attaches to nearly any existing TV, and does not require customers to buy an expensive new monitor. This is crucial for quickly establishing and maintaining platform dominance quickly and even stand-alone could be a $5-10 billion opportunity….The device will offer HDMI and digital audio output, a gigabit Ethernet port and built-in WiFi, as well as a two lightning ports — one for power, another for the included “coax dongle,” which will connect directly to most existing cable TV hookups to replace your existing cable set-top box.

More speculation is at AllThingsD.

June 26, 2012

Brightcove announced today that it is moving at full steam to help developers create dual-screen television apps for Apple TV using its HTML app platform.

Chief Executive Jeremy Allaire is quite outspoken about Apple’s elusive television set (which jibes with our take), but aside from sounding off about the rumored product not being an actual HDTV, he showcased how streaming high-definition content from an iOS device through Apple TV is an ideal range of interactivity for app developers to tackle.

Brightcove launched its cloud-based App Cloud platform for painlessly building mobile apps just over a year ago, but now the company is making available a free version equipped with an open source SDK and a toolkit for the dual-screen applications market.

According to TechCrunch:

It’s more or less a freemium model for app building. With App Cloud Core you can build and release as many apps as you want. But if you want features like real-time analytics, push notifications, and native ads, you can upgrade to App Cloud Pro for $99 a month. And for those who need an even more robust feature set, there’s an enterprise version for high-volume apps with custom pricing plans based upon usage.

In addition to open sourcing App Cloud, it’s also pushing one particular feature set, which could change the way we watch TV. Its App Cloud Dual-Screen Solution for Apple TV uses a set of APIs that will allow tablet and mobile users to have a truly integrated second screen experience. By leveraging Apple’s AirPlay technology, App Cloud users can create applications that use the mobile device as the search and navigation, while the Apple TV plays back video.

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June 4, 2012

Brightcove CEO: Apple’s cable TV strategy will focus on AirPlay, not an HDTV

While the media is quick to jump on any hint that Apple might be working on an HDTV—and many analysts even pinpoint a late 2012 launch—CEO of video cloud company Brightcove Jeremy Allaire said Apple’s approach to cable TV will not focus on a traditional TV monitor product (via AllThingsD). Instead, he makes the case for beaming content from iOS devices through dedicated cable TV apps using AirPlay. This follows reports late last month that claimed Apple is set to introduce a new Apple TV OS at WWDC this month. Allaire explained:

I believe Apple will seek partnerships with the top cable companies for them to open up their APIs for their EPG, VOD libraries and Network DVR infrastructure so that Apple can offer a superior user experience on top of those services… In such a model, you’d purchase and use an Apple TV device (more on what the devices will actually be below) and use it in concert with an existing subscription from a TV operator, and access the TV functionality as an App. Yes, cable TV will just be an app among what will be tens and then hundreds of thousands of apps on your Apple TV.

As for new devices and software, Allaire claimed Apple’s main focus would be to enhance its current TV platform and integration with iOS devices, while possibly entering the TV monitor business. He further claimed Apple will release a completely redesigned Apple TV set-top box as a “thin black bar,” a “TV monitor” device that includes the same features as the set-top box, and updates to iOS APIs and AirPlay to include “new camera and microphone, motion detection and speech recognition” capabilities:

First, Apple will release a new Apple TV add-on product, though I expect that rather than using the current “puck” design it will instead be a thin black bar, perhaps 1 inch tall and 3 inches wide, that can easily mount to the top of almost any existing HD capable TV set. Like the existing Apple TV, it will have HDMI and power jacks on the back, but it will also include a high-def camera built into it’s face, as well as an embedded iOS environment that provides motion-sensing and speech processing.

Second, Apple will also release a TV monitor product as well with identical capabilities as the updated Apple TV add-on device, but in a design and form factor that presents the Apple brand effectively. Why would they do this when it is such an established market with such long replacement cycles? In short, because they can, and it will be gorgeous and include the latest innovations in display technology, and will sell at a premium price that ensures a reasonable gross margin for Apple.

Third, Apple will provide updates to iOS that include significantly enhanced and improved AirPlay functionality, and where AirPlay capabilities become a more front and center aspect of the iOS experience. Additionally, they will release new iOS APIs for dealing with second screen device capabilities such as the new camera and microphone, motion detection and speech recognition. Developers will be encouraged to build iOS apps that are Apple TV ready, using dual-screen features and motion user interaction, among other things.

April 14, 2016

AAPL: 112.10

0.06
(Photo by Marvin Joseph/The Washington Post)
Comments (4)

With recent spats with the FBI and the Obama administration, Apple’s presence in Washington is growing rapidly. Today it was revealed that Apple hired insider Cynthia Hogan to head up its Washington office. Politico broke the story:

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January 20, 2016

AAPL: 96.79

0.13

Rumors of Apple Car (codename ‘Project Titan’) continue to swirl and there’s plenty time left for Apple to solidify or change its plans, given the expected launch of the new automobile is still five years away. However, that isn’t stopping car company executives weighing in on the rumors. Whilst GM execs diss the idea of Apple investing in an electric car as a ‘gigantic money pit’, an executive from Ford seems enthused by the prospect. In an interview with Trusted Reviews,  Don Butler, Executive Director for Ford Connected Vehicles, said that they welcome competition and thinks technology companies can pull it off.

“We welcome others joining. We welcome the activity that’s in the space. We think it’s exciting. It’s actually changed that we are embracing,” said Butler, speaking to TrustedReviews at the CES 2016 tradeshow in Las Vegas. “So I think Apple can do it. I think Google can do it.”

Watch the full interview in the video after the break …

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January 13, 2016

AAPL: 97.39

-2.57

It’s no secret that former Florida governor Jeb Bush is a huge fan of his Apple Watch. Since the Apple Watch launched, the Republican presidential candidate has gone after the youth vote by showing off his Apple Watch and calling it a better option than Obamacare, despite labeling it unintuitive and power-hungry a few months later.

Jeb’s “iWatch,” as he often calls it, wasn’t dead earlier this week during an interview with the Des Moines Register’s editorial board, USA Today points out, as the presidential hopeful accidentally either placed or answered a phone call on it unknowingly. Jeb explained it away to the Iowa paper by declaring that he’d never had his “bat phone” turn on. Thankfully there’s video of this genuinely amusing moment.

And on the other side of the political aisle, Democratic Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi gave her own Apple Watch an equally entertaining product endorsement during President Obama’s State of the Union address last night …

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August 7, 2015

Post to the community

Chrisann Brennan, the mother of Steve Jobs’ first daughter Lisa, tried to blackmail him into giving her $25M in return for shelving her plans for a memoir of the relationship. Brennan first requested the payment in a letter written in 2005, reports Fortune, before turning it into an ultimatum in an email sent in 2009.

I just do not have a choice anymore… No one is going to be impressed with either of us in this book and it will hurt Lisa who never deserved any of this. The choice is yours […] I am moving as fast as I can to have the money I need to live, it is either you or the book.

Jobs, who had not responded to the letter sent four years earlier, replied briefly, refusing her demand.

“I don’t react well to blackmail,” Jobs wrote back that day, copying Lisa, then 31. “I will have no part in any of this.”

Brennan subsequently went ahead with the memoir. Neither Brennan nor Jobs come out of the lengthy Fortune piece looking good.

July 14, 2015

Taylor Swift’s label exec talks behind-the-scenes Apple Music negotiations over 3-month trials [Video]

The controversy surrounding Apple Music’s launch thanks to Taylor Swift made for an excellent way to drum up some extra attention for the service’s debut late last month. First, Swift, who was already vocal in the past regarding streaming services, penned a blog post knocking down Apple’s decision to offer a free, three-month trial without paying artists for streams during that period. Apple responded to Taylor’s decision to hold back her music from the service and it was thought the blog post eventually inspired Apple to reverse its decision. Swift responded to Apple’s decision positively and announced her latest record would be available on the service, all in the days leading up to the Apple Music launch on June 30.

Today we get a bit of insight into what was going on behind the scenes via a Fortune interview with CEO of Taylor’s label, Big Machine Label Group, Scott Borchetta. The record exec notes that he was already in the middle of negotiations with Apple regarding the terms of the three-month trial when Swift published her blog post without letting her label know beforehand. In the end, Apple was able to gain added attention over its music service launch with Swift’s album featured on day one.

March 26, 2015

Fortune has today named Tim Cook #1 on its list of the World’s 50 Greatest Leaders, publishing an extensive profile of the Apple CEO in which he reflects on the lessons he’s learned in the time he’s been running the company.

Taking over from Steve was not, he said, an easy transition, and he gained a new appreciation for the way that the co-founder had shielded him and the rest of the team from public criticism.

What I learned after Steve passed away, what I had known only at a theoretical level, an academic level maybe, was that he was an incredible heat shield for us, his executive team. None of us probably appreciated that enough […] but he really took any kind of spears that were thrown. He took the praise as well. But to be honest, the intensity was more than I would ever have expected.

Claims that Apple had lost its ability to innovate under Cook’s leadership were, he said, something he had to learn to block out …  expand full story

March 9, 2015

Following today’s keynote address, during which Apple’s executive team provided more details on the availabilty of the Apple Watch, journalists were given the chance to take the company’s first wearable device for a test drive. We’ve rounded up many of the hands-on videos from those who attended the event below…

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February 2, 2015

The day has finally come. It seems struggling electronics retailer RadioShack is finally dead. This doesn’t come as a surprise to anyone who has paid attention to the company at all in the past few years. The chain hasn’t turned a profit since 2011, and several attempts to reboot its image have failed miserably.

How RadioShack reached this point is also no surprise: it failed to keep up with the ever-evolving technology market, choosing instead to attempt to walk the line between DIY hobbyist and mainstream electronics.

While no one would argue that RadioShack’s insistence on keeping one foot in each world eventually led to its demise, it could also be argued that it’s exactly what kept the company around for so long.

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November 24, 2014

Ad Age reports that Chase is running its first TV ad for Apple Pay, focusing on use in small businesses, and featuring Fun lead guitarist Jack Antonoff’s side indie band Bleachers.

The ad, out of creative agency Saatchi & Saatchi, features members of indie pop band Bleachers roaming Los Angeles in the hours leading up to a performance. The musicians make purchases along the way using their Chase Freedom credits cards — but through Apple Pay on their iPhones, not the physical cards.

Chase said that Apple was heavily involved with the ad …  expand full story

September 26, 2014

Consumer Reports released a new video today taking on claims of overly-flexible iPhones that have appeared online recently. Apple noted that only a handful of complaints have come in and gave journalists a look at its testing procedures. Regardless of Cupertino’s claims, Consumer Reports kept its promise to conduct testing that was a bit more scientific in nature than previous YouTube videos.

To address these claims, several different phones were tested under up to 150 pounds of pressure to see when each model would stop “snapping back” to its original shape. The devices tested were the iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 6, iPhone 5, HTC One M8, Samsung Galaxy Note 3, and LG G3.

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September 25, 2014

Not sure what to believe about recent claims that the iPhone 6 Plus has a malleability issue? Consumer Reports says it is in the process of undergoing authoritative testing to find its own answer to the question of whether or not the larger iPhone has a bending problem.

According to their post, Consumer Report will critically test the new iPhones against other popular smartphones using their “sophisticated machinery” which can apply up to 1,000 pounds of force previously used to test the LG G Flex and determine whether or not the iPhone 6 models are more likely to bend than other phones. expand full story

June 4, 2014

Earlier this week we pointed out that several cars were spotted on display in Moscone Center during the morning of Apple’s WWDC keynote. While Apple’s CarPlay technology did not get a mention during the information-dense two hour keynote on Monday, it turns out those cars were used to give CarPlay demoes to press and attendees at the conference.

We already noted Ferrari’s FF model, which has had CarPlay support since the official announcement, and USA Today mentions that a 1965 Ford Mustang was featured as well (with an aftermarket solution offered by Pioneer). However, Apple gave USA Today a CarPlay demo in a Chevy Spark as seen in the video below. Interestingly, Chevrolet is noted as a “committed partner” on Apple’s CarPlay microsite but not included among automakers shipping CarPlay-equipped vehicles in 2014… expand full story

May 16, 2014

We’ve all done it. You put your keys down, and five minutes later you have no idea where they are. You could swear you put your phone on the kitchen table last night, but it’s not there now. You put your bag under the restaurant table and then walk out without it. Doing all three in the same week might suggest the help you need is more medical than technological, but for those occasions when you do one or other of them, Proximo is designed to help.

Bluetooth tags also provides some degree of protection against theft, where you’ll be alerted to any of your tagged items walking off.

There are a number of different tagging systems on the market, with varying levels of functionality. Proximo is one of the more sophisticated, offering five different features … expand full story

After officially announcing its new CarPlay feature for connecting iOS devices to select in-car entertainment systems, Apple followed up with confirmation that we’d also see aftermarket products with support for the feature. Pioneer was one of the first to announce that the feature would arrive on a number of the in-car systems it sells, and today we’re getting our first look at the feature in action on the hardware.

Pioneer gave a few demos of CarPlay this week running on its aftermarket in-car systems, including the video above from MacWorld, and another from DigitalTrends. While both short reviews are fairly positive, there are reportedly a few issues that will hopefully be tweaked by the time CarPlay lands in vehicles later this year: expand full story

April 25, 2014

A local news report last night from Denver’s 9News reveals a scheme setup at Apple stores in Colorado that saw iPhone traffickers convincing people in need of quick cash to sign contracts and hand-over subsidized iPhones. The traffickers would turn around and sell the unlocked iPhones for full retail, off-contract prices, but in exchange their unknowing accomplice is stuck with the monthly payments or faces ruined credit. The report also claims that Apple store employees appeared to be in on the scheme.  expand full story

March 19, 2014

Is this iPhone & iPad screen-protector made from bulletproof glass actually bulletproof? [Video]

You can always count on an Ars Technica review being thorough. So if a company is foolish enough to pitch an iPhone and iPad screen protector as being made from bulletproof glass, well …

I couldn’t let a “bulletproof” claim stand without challenge. Al Trug and the Clear Creek Gun Range graciously agreed to let me come in before regular hours on a weekday morning and mount the second Holy Grail review sample up on one of their targets, this time affixed to my friend Matt’s old iPhone 4.

‘Second’ sample because the company sent two, and reviewer Lee Hutchison had already attacked the first one with a screwdriver and ran it over with his car. As you do. You can see the second video on the Ars Technica site.

March 10, 2014

Apple launched iOS 7.1 this morning after what seemed like an eternity in beta, making the first major update to the mobile OS since it was redesigned last year. Included in the update are several key features such as CarPlay, but also a collection of smaller tweaks and improvements that make system more convenient.

Among those features are two very important ones that haven’t really gotten enough press: huge performance improvements on the iPhone 4 and something called “HFP prompts” in the Maps application…

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