The month of January used to be a time when Apple revealed revolutionary new products that changed everything. More recently, it's been the month that the company announces phenomenal holiday financials, and sites like iMore begin to anticipate what's to come from the iPhone maker in the spring and beyond.
The last week of January 2022 had a little bit of everything. First, Cupertino announced record holiday profits while introducing its first new betas of the year. Among other goodies, those betas offered a long-delayed new feature first introduced at the Worldwide Developers Conference in June. There was also a Joe Rogan spat that could have a positive (or negative) effect on Apple Music, and a new Apple TV series debut that looks oh-so-good.
Let's get to it!
1. Money, money, money
Despite the continued pandemic, Apple saw record revenue of $124 billion in the October through December quarter, up 11% year-over-year. The company's profits also hit a record of $34.6 billion, rising a remarkable 20%. No doubt, the best iPhones played a role here. Though iPad sales were surprisingly weak during the quarter, despite the launch of the latest iPad mini. Mac sales posted a record $11 billion thanks to the all-new MacBook Pro (2021).
Looking forward, Apple CEO Tim Cook told CNBC that he expects supply chain bottlenecks to ease up in the current March quarter, which should have "solid year-over-year revenue growth."
2. Hello, Universal Control
Slipped into the new developer betas for iPad and Mac this week was Universal Control, which apparently isn't the next AirPower. The new feature makes it possible to automatically use a single keyboard, mouse, and trackpad across your tablet and computer.
Meanwhile, the first iOS 15.4 beta for iPhone included the ability for users to use Face ID even when wearing a mask. The new feature, however, will only work on the iPhone 12 and iPhone 13 series, not older phones with Face ID.
Watch for public versions of macOS 12.3, iOS/iPadOS 15.4, tvOS 15.4, and watchOS 8.5 to launch in the coming weeks.
3. Neil Young vs. Joe Rogan / Apple Music vs. Spotify
Singer Neil Young forced Spotify's hand this week when he demanded the top music streamer pull Joe Rogan's top-rated (and exclusive) podcast from the service — or risk losing his music. Young believes the "The Joe Rogan Experience" spreads misinformation about COVID-19 and vaccines. In the end, Spotify stuck with Rogan and removed Young's music from its service.
Naturally, this led Apple Music to welcome Young's fans with open arms. By the end of the week, a special "We Love Neil" section arrived on the Apple Music app.
4. Welcome to the "party"
Finally, Apple TV+ has dropped the first three episodes of one of its most anticipated new series of the still-young year. "The Afterparty" is a murder mystery comedy headlined by Tiffany Haddish. A classic whodunit, the eight-part series takes place at a high school reunion after-party, with each episode telling a story from a different character's perspective.
Happy February, folks!