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Apple

Apple Q4 2020 Results

The quick take-away from Apple’s Q4 earrings is: record Mac revenue while iPhone revenue is down 20%.

Jason Snell:

Despite the tough iPhone quarter, revenue was a record for the company’s fourth fiscal quarter, at $64.7B. iPhone revenue was $26.8B, down 20% year over year. Mac revenue was $9B, up 29%. iPad revenue was $6.8B, up 46%. Services revenue was $14.5B, up 16%. And Wearables revenue was $7.9B, up 20.8%.

Obviously the huge wave of workers staying home to work during the pandemic has been a boon to Apple’s bottom line. It’s also so interesting to see the huge growth in Apple services — 14 and a half billion is significant by any metric.

John Gruber:

Lastly, it shows how diversified Apple’s financials are getting that iPhone revenue could be down 20 percent year-over-year but the company had record revenue for the quarter overall. A few years ago that was unimaginable.

Check out the charts at Six Colors.

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Apple

Apple Special Event “Hi, Speed”

Today Apple announced four new phones: iPhone 12 Mini, iPhone 12, iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max and a new HomePad Mini.

Updates to iPhone are incremental in nature and can be expected yearly with each new iteration being only slightly faster, more efficient, and more capable. This year’s new set of phones are no exception. Unless you call 50% faster “only slightly”, which is one reason why the title of today’s event is, “Hi, Speed”.

Here are some highlights from today’s event.

iPhone 12

All four versions of the new iPhones contain Apple’s proprietary A14 chip. With circuitry separated by a mere 5 nanometers and 11.8 billion transistors, the performance and efficiency of this chip is the fastest cpu in any smart phone. The only chip even close is last year’s A13 chip.

iPhone 12 Pro back camera

The main reason to want such crazy fast speed is machine learning. It’s the key to computational photography and in turn that’s what makes such great photos from iPhone 12 possible. The iPhone 11 Pro has eight dedicated machine learning cores and this year that number grows to 16. Apple’s new flagship phones are now capable of 11 trillion operations per second up from last year’s paltry 6 trillion.

A14 Bionic is the first 5-nanometer chip in the industry, with advanced components literally atoms wide. Forty percent more transistors rev up speeds while increasing efficiency for great battery life. And a new ISP powers Dolby Vision recording — something no pro movie camera, let alone any other phone, can do.

Also interesting is the inclusion of MagSafe technology for phone charging and accessories. No more worrying about whether your phone is placed on its wireless charging pad correctly because the magnet will straighten itself. I’m also intrigued by the idea of paring down to just the leather wallet attachment shown below with built-in magnetic action.

iPhone 12 MagSafe and wallet

HomePad Mini
Apple HomePod Mini stock photo

It’s been long speculated that Apple needed a HomePod Mini in order to compete in the smart speaker market against lower cost smart speakers from Google and Amazon. It remains to be seen how the sound quality of the HomePod mini stands up to the original but I’ve always wanted to add a second HomePod for the bedroom where the heavy bass isn’t so important, so I’m tempted.

And, as for rumours that the free year of Apple TV+, is going away, it appears to still be on offer that, “For a limited time, eligible customers who purchase a new iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Apple TV, or Mac can enjoy one year of Apple TV+ for free and three months of Apple Arcade for free.”

Here’s Apple’s 51 Second summary of the event:

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Apple

Apple Sets All Time Third Quarter Revenue Record

During Apple’s most recent earnings report call, Tim Cook seemed almost embarrassed to announce that Apple had such record revenue during a worldwide pandemic. But as a shareholder I can’t say I’m disappointed. I’m also excited that they’re once again splitting the stock, this time four to one.

From Apple:

Apple today announced financial results for its fiscal 2020 third quarter ended June 27, 2020. The Company posted quarterly revenue of $59.7 billion, an increase of 11 percent from the year-ago quarter, and quarterly earnings per diluted share of $2.58, up 18 percent. International sales accounted for 60 percent of the quarter’s revenue.

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Apple

iPhone SE 2020

Apple Newsroom:

Apple today announced the second-generation iPhone SE, a powerful new iPhone featuring a 4.7-inch Retina HD display, paired with Touch ID for industry-leading security. iPhone SE comes in a compact design, reinvented from the inside out, and is the most affordable iPhone. The new iPhone SE is powered by the Apple-designed A13 Bionic, the fastest chip in a smartphone, to handle the most demanding tasks. iPhone SE also features the best single-camera system ever in an iPhone, which unlocks the benefits of computational photography including Portrait mode, and is designed to withstand the elements with dust and water resistance.

iPhone SE comes in three beautiful colors — black, white and (PRODUCT)RED — and will be available for pre-order beginning Friday, April 17, starting at just $399 (US) [$599 CAD].

“The first iPhone SE was a hit with many customers who loved its unique combination of small size, high-end performance and affordable price; the new second-generation iPhone SE builds on that great idea and improves on it in every way — including our best-ever single-camera system for great photos and videos — while still being very affordable,” said Phil Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing.

Except this new iPhone SE doesn’t “improve” on small size when the form factor has moved away from the original 4″ size of the original.

I’m guessing the reason for the larger size is that just as the original SE used the form factor and internal layout of the iPhone 5, the 2020 iteration will do the same with an iPhone 8 layout. There is no ready to implement layout of internal components that includes iPhone XS camera, the iPhone 11 Pro CPU and the battery size of the iPhone 8 (which may be required for that high end A13 Bionic processor… I don’t know) that would fit in the original iPhone SE shell.

Michael Tsai:

“So, this is a better, cheaper iPhone 8, but unlike the original SE it seems unlikely to inspire down-switchers. The wildcard is that, if we all end up wearing face masks for an extended time, Touch ID could end up being more important than any new feature in the forthcoming iPhone 12.”

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Apple

Apple Financial Results – Q1 2020

Last October, when Apple released their forth quarter earnings for 2019 expectations were blown away. As a shareholder of Apple Stock, 2019 was a very good year for APPL.

Here is the press release from Apple’s 1st quarterly results for 2020, which includes links to their data summary. Long story short, it’s another incredible quarter for Apple.

The Company posted quarterly revenue of $91.8 billion, an increase of 9 percent from the year-ago quarter and an all-time record, and quarterly earnings per diluted share of $4.99, up 19 percent, also an all-time record. International sales accounted for 61 percent of the quarter’s revenue.

“We are thrilled to report Apple’s highest quarterly revenue ever, fueled by strong demand for our iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro models, and all-time records for Services and Wearables,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “During the holiday quarter our active installed base of devices grew in each of our geographic segments and has now reached over 1.5 billion. We see this as a powerful testament to the satisfaction, engagement and loyalty of our customers — and a great driver of our growth across the board.”

In summary:

  • iPad unit sales were down 11%
  • Mac unit sales were down 3.5%
  • iPhone unit sales were up about 8% but revenue was up a whopping 29 percent. The iPhone 11, 11 Pro, and 11 Pro Max continue as unprecedented hits.
  • Services were up 17%.
  • Wearables up an astounding 37%! It’s fairly obvious that AirPods Pro and Apple Watch are growing like crazy. This is anecdotal but when I first bought my watch I very rarely, if ever saw others with them. Now it seems like I see people wearing Apple watches every day.

Most interestingly, Tim Cook finished his introductory speech mentioning the coronavirus and, while being careful to be sensitive to its human cost, touched on how the disease may affect production. Asian suppliers have recently expressed their concerns about keeping up with Apple’s increasing production order while dealing with a disrupted supply chain due to widespread hospitalizations and quarantines.

Jason Snell has posted the complete transcript of the earnings call, as well his always excellent summary and charts.

Categories
advertising Apple

Shot on iPhone 11 Pro Short Movie “Daughter”

The first day they posted it and it has almost half a million views. While I have to admit it’s contrived as a tear-jerker advertisement (for a product that I already bought), but that doesn’t make it any less laudable as a brilliant short film.

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Apple

John Gruber Reviews Apple’s New Air Pods Pro

My old AirPods no longer keep a charge making listening for more than a few minutes (especially from the left “pod”) quite a challenge. As expensive as AirPods are for them to just wear out after a couple of years makes me hesitant to buy another pair, however, going wireless and the convenience of charging in the case still makes them a very compelling purchase.

Apple, of course, just released the newest iteration of the AirPods (Pro!) and while I don’t have any professional use for wireless headphones, I’m intrigued by their noise cancelling ability and again, that small charging case is awesome. I had been considering other options for my next pair of earphones because noise cancelling is a game changer for the annoying engine noise on long flights.

From Daring Fireball:

Noise cancellation worked really well for me. I own a pair of Bose over-the-ear noise canceling wireless headphones, but almost exclusively wear them only on airplanes and trains. Wearing noise-canceling earbuds on the subway and walking through the city is going to take some getting used to. It’s so good you really do lose sense of your surrounding aural environment.

I was a dummy and didn’t take my Bose headphones on my trip today, so I can’t say how they compare side-by-side on the train, but there’s no question how AirPods Pro compare to regular AirPods. The difference is like night and day. Amtrak trains are pretty noisy—especially at what we in the U.S. so adorably consider “high speeds”—but with AirPods Pro the clackety-clack rumble was effectively blocked out.

Apple AirPods Pro in the hands of a customer.

I’m 90% certain I’ll pick up a pair from the Apple Store at El Paseo Village when I’m in California next week.

Update: I got some new AirPod Pros of my own and although at times I feel they are uncomfortable after using them for a long time — (which earbuds aren’t?) — I love the noise cancellation and would recommend them to anyone looking for a new set of headphones.

Categories
Apple swift

100 Days of SwiftUI

I’ve been dabbling in the Swift programming language lately and after joining the /r/SwiftUI subreddit I discovered a fantastic free online course by Paul Hudson for learning the SwiftUI framework. The basic idea is, spend about an hour a day for 100 days learning about Swift and SwiftUI and then post about it. Slow and steady wins the race.

I’ve been reluctant to write about it because I wanted to try the course out before locking myself into the commitment device of publicly posting about my plan for the next 100 days, however, I just finished Day 6, I love it, and I plan on doing it every day for the next 94 days.

Details of my learning so far after the jump (posted here mostly for learning and review purposes):

Categories
Apple

Everything Coming to AppleTV+

The premiere date (November 1st, 2019) for Apple’s new TV and movie subscription service, AppleTV+ is just around the corner. Here is a list (some rumoured some confirmed) of the shows that will (might) eventually make it to AppleTV+.

The Morning Show (2019) – Trailer
See (2019) – Trailer
Dickinson (2019) – Trailer
For All Mankind (2019) – Trailer
Snoopy in Space (2019) – Trailer
The Elephant Queen (2019) – Trailer
Helpsters (2019) – Trailer
ghostwriter (2019) – Trailer
Truth be Told – Trailer
Servant (2019)

and more… (full list after the jump).

From Apple’s marketing:

New Apple Originals every month.
Always ad-free and on demand.
For up to six family members.
Download and watch offline.
4K HDR and Dolby Atmos.

The new Apple shows, for the most part, look pretty intriguing. And for only $5USD the subscription fee seems pretty reasonable.

Categories
Apple

Apple Special Event 2019

Today Apple broadcasted their annual special (iPhone) event. While the naysayers came out again this year complaining that in the age of leaks today’s iPhone 11 event would be a disappointment, however, the folks in Cupertino did not let me down. CEO Tim Cook skipped over his usual update to get started right away… Here are the highlights.

Apple Arcade
100 “groundbreaking” (I’m not too sure about that) new games for iPhone, Mac, iPad and Apple TV with new games added each month. It will be interesting to see what it’s like in the free trial period.

Apple Arcade available September 19. Your unlimited access costs $4.99USD /month.

Apple TV+
$4.99USD per month — Free for a year with the purchase of a new iMac, Mac, iPad, or iPhone. Launching November 1.

iPad
Apple has updated the iPad. These new standard edition tablets have:

  • 10.2” Retina Display
  • A10 Fusion Chip
  • Smart Connector (previously only available on Pro models)
  • 8MP Camera
  • Touch ID

Seventh generation iPad orders start today at $329USD and will be available September 30.

Apple Watch
I’ve been crazy about Apple Watch when I purchased a first generation Apple Watch back in May of 2015. I’m now on my third Apple Watch (last year I got myself a 4th gen.) and I LOVE IT!.

Along with the 5th generation of the watch, Apple is helping roll out three new health studies:

  1. Apple Hearing Study
  2. Apple Women’s Health Study
  3. Apple Heart & Movement Study

Enroll with the Apple Research App (available in the US App store later this year).

Series 5 new features highlights:

  • New always on display! while still maintaining 18 hour battery life.
  • A built in compass
  • International emergency calling (for cellular capable models)
  • New colours including two models made out of titanium, as well, ceramic is back.

I doubt I will be upgrading if only because my 4th Gen is still serving me so well.

This year’s Apple Watch remain the same in size as last year’s model. The price starts at $399USD and will be available September 20th. They’re keeping the Series 3 in the lineup for $199USD.

iPhone
As predicted, three new iPhones will hit the shelf on September 20th. They are: iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max.

The Pro model comes with three cameras, the standard f1.8 26mm wide lens, a 52mm telephoto f2.0, and a new 13mm f2.4 ultra wide. It also comes with the 12mp camera on the front facing camera allowing new photo abilities such as access to slow motion selfies… they call them slofies.

Apple’s previous flagship chip, the A12, was already the fasted chip in a smartphone. The new A13 Bionic chip extends Apple’s lead with the still fastest CPU and GPU ever in a smartphone, capable of 1 trillion operations per second.

Phil Schiller came out to present the iPhone 11 Pro. Its stainless steel design will come in two sizes — the standard 5.8″ and the iPhone 11 Pro Max at 6.5″. All sizes will come with a fast charge 18W adapter.

The phone comes with a triple camera system, each recording 12mp of data.

The three focal depths and apertures are as follows:

  • Wide 26mm f1.8
  • Telephoto 52mm f2.0
  • Ultra wide 13mm f2.4 (with 120° field of view)

These new iPhone models for the first time make use of the U1 chip. It makes possible a new user interface for AirDrop that uses your direction to orientate your friends’ avatars on the interface in relation to you.

There was also a sneak peek at “Deep Fusion” — Phill described the new technology as, “Computational photography mad science”. Part of that science will allow for “night mode” something that other phones have had for awhile but nevertheless, an interesting improvement on previous models.

The third party app, FiLMiC, looks pretty neat. It allows for simultaneous recording of multiple cameras giving one lots of shot options to edit together later. It even allows for recording both front and rear camera at the same time which will be neat for rollercoaster rides and documentary style interviews. The FiLMic app will be available later this year in the app store.

There is a new Quicktake mode (not to be confused with this Apple QuickTake camera). Allowing users to easily and almost instantly switch from still (or livephoto) mode to video mode.

And last but not least, the iPhone 11 Pro will have improved FaceID with a greater angle of view and is even faster.

The three models are priced starting at

  • iPhone 11 $699 USD
  • iPhone 11 Pro $999USD
  • iPhone 11 Pro Max $1099 USD

Orders begin this Friday at 6:00am MST and shipping starts September 20th. Speaking for myself, anyway, I think it’s just about time to get a new phone.