Editor's desk: Big Apple Apple

Editor's desk: Big Apple Apple

I've been in New York City all week at the temporary Mobile Nations HQ working on some amazing stuff. We're not finished yet, which means I can't announce it yet, but I also can't wait to tell you all about it. In the meantime, here's some catch-up on the CrackBerry party, the Facebook event, and what Apple's up to with iOS 7 and the iPhone 5s...

Facebook angst

Who could have predicted the post-Facebook not-a-phone launch would be even more annoying than the pre-Facebook not-a-phone launch? My only guess is that the reality was less interesting than the tease, and analytical desperation followed.

  1. We kinda knew what it was going to be going in
  2. What it means for HTC, who currently earns almost no profit off mobile, is unclear but certainly sub-optimal. Why not brand the phone with Facebook front-and-center and get some of that halo?
  3. It's not an Android fork, but that doesn't mean it's not an Android intermediation. Google made Android the way it is to grow market share quickly at the expense of keeping control. Facebook is taking advantage of that. Clever girl.
  4. The target audience for a Facebook not-a-phone was never unclear -- it's for people for whom Facebook is, in large part, the primary purpose of the internet. For others, it will be less breakthrough experience and more deal-breaker.
  5. Person-centric interface may not be new but it's also not a panacea. Sometimes I'm thinking apps. Sometimes I'm thinking people. Both approaches force me into a model that may not fit my requirements for the moment. Ultimately, we need better interface, not just different.
  6. The Facebook not-a-phone means absolutely nothing to Apple or the iPhone right now. No. Period. Thing. Period. If you're posting BS Apple-is-doomed linkbait based on what Facebook did or didn't say or do last week, please stop it. Maybe surrender your keyboards for the good of journalism, the internet, and our collective sanity.
  7. The Facebook phone means a lot for Facebook. Social has always been migratory, and Facebook was web-centric in an increasingly mobile-centric world. Google's Android may eventually be Google+ and Google Now. If Facebook doesn't want to be the next Friendster (ask your grand parents), they need to adapt. This was the next stage of that.
  8. No, I don't get the point of Facebook's first commercial either.
  9. Phil Nickinson and the Android Central crew killed it at the event, and are doing a great job on follow up. Check them out. Especially Phil's post-mortem.

iOS 7, iPhone 5s, and beyond

In case you missed it earlier in the week, a bunch of Apple reporters got together on Branch to discuss what we'd heard about [iOS 7, iPhone 5s, iPad 5, upcoming events, and more.

Here's my take, with links to all the good stuff.

New Crack City

The big news for everyone not-us this week was the CrackBerry party at 1 Oak. I don't know how they managed to secure that venue, but it was fantastic. It was also filled to over-capacity, as 260+ CrackBerry faithful flooded the place. BlackBerry was nice enough to set up a booth in the back and show off the as-yet-unreleased BlackBerry Q10 full-QWERTY keyboard device.

A ton of iMore readers showed up as well -- it's a cross-platform world now, folks, get used to it! -- and I got to spend a great evening talking mobile with the incredibly engaged, incredibly intelligent Mobile Nations community. Nothing in the world better than that.

Maybe we should start thinking about an iMore event...?

Photo by David Lundblad, taken outside Apple 5th Avenue on a Canon 5D Mark II, 24-105mm

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Rene Ritchie

EiC of iMore, EP of Mobile Nations, Apple analyst, co-host of Debug, Iterate, Vector, Review, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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Reader comments

Editor's desk: Big Apple Apple


So people are saying there is going to be a cheaper iphone, but my question, why? I mean, will be good as the normal iphone? Also, i hope the new ios will have more features and better design

I used to wonder this same thing, but it does make sense. First, it rarely behooves a company to exclude customers. Some may point to the "Apple tax," but that's hardly a valid argument. You get what you pay for, and even the lower end Macs from a few years ago are still running strong and seem like powerhouses compared to even some new PC's. (flame war in 5, 4, 3...) Also, they are in a position now where they could produce a cheaper phone. This wasn't the case when the iPhone was first released, and has only become so as more have been sold. They could easily increase their market share by introducing a cheaper iPhone with the same iOS and features, but utilizing a lower storage capacity that relies more on their cloud services, the exclusion of 4G, and a cheaper casing. Viola! Everybody wins. The people that don't mind spending extra for the new and shiny get theirs. The people that don't want to spend a lot but still want to remain in the Apple eco-system get theirs. (Let's be honest, they're just going to slap an ugly case on it anyway, why pay for aesthetics?) and Apple collects more as they exceed the capacity of the phone and spend more for expanded iCloud storage.

I'd certainly think about buying a 4 inch qHD iPhone with a lesser processor, camera, and material. I probably wouldn't because I have my gripes with Apple aside from their pricing (although pricing is a factor on why I don't have one).
Although it is possible that if Apple releases a lesser iPhone it might only be available in emerging markets. From their perspective, buying last year's iPhone or the one before that at $99 or free is similar to a cheaper iPhone. Granted, it isn't very cheap to buy it unlocked, but not many people do so in America at least.

Yes, iMore event! That would be awesome. And I agree, this is a cross platform world and I believe it is because each major operating system brings something unique to the table that makes it so hard to choose a platform. I wish I hadn't had to sell my HTC Rezound and Blackberry Bold 9930. I miss being able to mess around with all of them. In a perfect world I would get the Blackberry Z10, HTC One, the next iPhone and the Nokia Lumia 928. And when the new platforms come out, Ubuntu Phone, Tizen, Firefox OS and Kindle Phone, I would want one of each of those as well. To play around with and use on WiFi and save my data and voice plan for my main device. That would be awesome, but I would be carrying around 8 phones all the time ha ha.

Re: "If you're posting BS Apple-is-doomed linkbait based on what Facebook did or didn't say or do last week, please stop it."

Yay! Thank you for that, Rene.

As far as Facebook goes, why would I want to use their new "home" when they can't even make their own app function properly? I'm glad it's not available on iOS personally. I don't need my homescreen covered in Facebook info and eventually ads. No thanks. I'm glad now that iOS is in a "walled garden" lol.

Good wrap-up of events. I like the idea of an iMore event. That could be cool and fun. I guess it would depend where it is going to be held.

iMore event at my place? Good? Ok, it's official. Rene's got food, and drinks. just remember your already bitten Apples.

I'm glade that Apple is making a Cheaper iPhone. Because it gives those who are On a Budget Income can Afford the iPhone's.

I'm truly happy Apple is seriously considering creating, or is already creating a budget iPhone. They have been alienating themselves from the lower markets for too long. I think its time for them to finally enter those markets and broaden their audience. This will definitely give their share a boost, as well.

"The target audience for a Facebook not-a-phone was never unclear -- it's for people for whom Facebook is, in large part, the primary purpose of the internet. For others, it will be less breakthrough experience and more deal-breaker."

This is the key that most are not understanding... While many don't see HTC First as having much advantage, but for teenagers and anyone else whose life revolves around Facebook... it is most certainly a great offering. I don't like it and am quite happy with my iPhone device right now and if I do switch in the future, it'll be to Windows Phone again most likely... But i know a few people personally who are extremely enthusiastic about HTC First for their own reasons.