Editorial

Twitter raises API walls, seems intent on starving out traditional apps

Twitter has announced the upcoming version 1.1 of their API, and provided yet more "direction" to Twitter app developers. First, it's important to remember that the sky isn't falling. The Twitter apps you use today will still be usable tomorrow. The community you enjoy right now will still be with you for the foreseeable future. Yet reading the pronouncements, it's impossible not to realize that Twitter's plans for those apps and that community will change them, soon, and forever.

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Could Apple sell a $200 iPad mini, and how would investors react if they did?

Lately on iMore, and other websites, there has been a lot of discussion around the idea of Apple selling a lower cost tablet. So I thought it would be worth writing about this topic from the perspective of an Apple investor. Is a cheaper tablet a good idea? Is it necessary?

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Siri OS: Could natural language be Apple's next big leap forward?

Another idea we've been talking around a lot, both in articles and on the iMore show and the Iterate podcast, is the future of Apple's virtual personal assistant, Siri and what it means for current graphical user interfaces. While working on the iOS 6 Siri previews, however, it began to coalesce. Watching the WWDC 2012 keynote, Apple senior vice president of iOS, Scott Forstall showed off the updates planned for Siri in iOS 6, and used an interesting turn of phrase -- "you can even tap to watch the trailer right here in Siri".

Not "using Siri". Not "with Siri". "In Siri."

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Where's the Samsung shaped dent in the universe?

I'm going to zag instead of zig here and do something different for this week's editor's desk column. Instead of several topics I'm going to focus on one. I'm going to put words to something that's been nagging at me for weeks, months, and years. And I'm all out of mincing and sugar coating...

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iPhone 5 preview: New, smaller Dock connector

Way back in February, iMore learned Apple was planning to ditch the traditional Dock connector to go with something smaller. With the next iPhone, new technologies like LTE 4G networking will need every millimeter and milliamp of battery they can get, while AirPlay and Wi-Fi sync are reducing the need for physical cables.

The moment rumors of a new Dock port emerged, many expressed hope it would feature a MagSafe-style connector, like Apple's MacBook line of laptops. Symmetrical, it could be plugged in without worrying about up or down, and magnetically coupled for better ease of use. Others simply wanted to make sure all their old Dock accessories would still be compatible and still work.

Compatibility is an easier topic to look into, if only slightly...

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Making dollars and sense of Apple’s enormous share of mobile computing profits

For the last few years, industry pundits have been reporting on the surprising gap between Apple’s share of shipments compared to its share of profits. Investors care more about profits than market share.

On Monday of this week, John Paczkowski of AllThingsD wrote another one of these stories, quoting a report from analyst Tavis McCourt of Raymond James. Tavis is a sell-side analyst, and we’ve met many times at various trade shows and analyst events. I think he’s a smart guy, so I am happy to pay attention to stuff that he writes. And it does raise a really interesting question...

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Why iOS 6 is more about Apple than new user features

We've talked about iOS 6 and it's unusual focus at length already, but it's been in bits and pieces, scattered across a range of articles, and tangential to other points. I think it's valuable to collect it all together, though. Unlike any full point release before it, iOS 6 is more about Apple, their platform, and its future, than it is present user attraction. And it's worth collecting that, exploring why it is, and looking at what it means for iOS users.

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X11 and the disturbing trend of Apple removing functionality from OS X

OS X Mountain Lion not only ships without X11, but actually removes X11 from your computer when you upgrade. If you're not familiar with X11, it's a networked graphical user interface that geeks and systems administrators alike use all the time, every day to connect to and run various UNIX applications. It might not sound like a mainstream feature, and it isn't, but it's something that let me and people like me do our jobs using the Mac. It let me connect to work via ssh and use X11 forwarding to view terminal applications, use tsclient, vnc etc... It let me be an Apple customer. And now it's gone.

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Editor's desk: Hold your iPhone dates close, your iCloud account closer

So, we had a bit of a week, didn't we?

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Copying

Blazing trails is hard work. Following them is easy. Whether you're an explorer, twin machetes in hand, hacking your way through the densest of underbrush, a developer launching a breakthrough app into a crowded app store, or a consumer electronics giant, packaging existing technologies in a way that finally makes them exciting and accessible to the mainstream, it can cost a fortune and take a tremendous amount of time and effort to bring a winning product to market.

And relatively little to copy it.

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