Rumours and Rumours and Rumours, Oh My!

With only a few weeks remaining until Apple reveals the new hardware it has been working on the tech press is naturally filled with rumours. The audio jack will be removed, dual cameras, OLED screen bars and countless other supposed rumours and hearsay that ‘people familiar with the matter’ or ‘unnamed sources’ seem more than willing to share.

Now I realise that these sites have to meet their daily post quotas and usually any attention grabbing headline with the word Apple in it is bound to generate some interest, be it positive or negative, but things appear to be getting out of hand this cycle.

There have not only been the usual rumours but now it seems a fresh cry has joined the chorus. That being that this year’s iPhone will be so lacklustre in new features that you’ll most probably be better off waiting until 2017 before upgrading.

What appears to be the main reason for this? Well, it relates to the fact that next year is the 10th anniversary of the iPhone and some believe Apple will really push the boat out for that model and load it with countless technological treats that we can only gawp at in wonder from way back here in boring old 2016. For some even the 2017 model is not good enough and it’s the 2018 model that we’ll ‘really’ want.

Now I want to give these publications the benefit of the doubt and trust their opinions are shared in the best interests of us mere consumers, however, I can’t help but feel a little cynical when I read these articles. I understand Apple has its detractors and I can see why some of the choices it makes can infuriate users and commentators, not to mention bewilder the competition and analysts alike. But to believe that Apple’s flagship device, the device that earns the most every financial quarter, would be allowed to lapse and lay stagnant for twelve, or even more ridiculous, twenty-four months is almost laughable.

These devices that we use are not rushed and pieced together a few months before launch. They are worked on for years. In an interview Jony Ive has discussed how as Apple was preparing to launch the iPhone 4 his team was already working though the form factors for the iPhone 6.

Apple is a long term company, especially when it comes to hardware. They are in the enviable position that they do not need to rush to market. Whereas other technology companies may release a number of different devices throughout the year and hope the sales are significant enough to earn a profit, Apple, until recently with the iPhoneSE, releases one model (albeit in two different sizes) but they still need it to be a successful in real terms. They need to make this one phone the best they can because they will not be able to correct it for another 12 months following the launch. They also have to build enough units to satisfy the enormous demand, a daunting logistical nightmare that they usually handle competently.

I have no real clue what Apple will announce this coming September, and from the looks of it neither do most of the tech press. This is not their fault as Apple is one of the most secretive companies around, something that is not surprising seeing how many of their designs are copied shorty after launch.

As a result it is no wonder the tech sites and press scramble for every morsel of information, no matter how outlandish, how brazen or, ironically, how predictable (it will be thinner and faster). Fortunately Apple will soon reveal their new devices and there will be a few glorious hours when rumours will take a backseat to actual facts. So once Tim Cook takes to the stage next month enjoy that brief respite, as it will only be a few days, I’m sure, until we’ll start hearing about the iPhone 7S or iPhone 8… and apparently this one will read your mind, an ‘informed source’ tells me.

Google+ for iOS released

According to a Google+ post by Vic Gundotra, VP at Google, the official Google+ app for iOS should be rolling out “in the next few hours.” The app is actually available now, at the iTunes App Store.

Google+, Google’s contender in the Social Network war, was released only a few weeks ago and is already garnering millions of users and critical acclaim. The question of whether or not it can beat Facebook is on everybody’s minds, but it’s way too soon to know for sure. However, getting a timely release of an official iOS app is definitely a step in the right direction. It’s certainly the most successful social release by Google since they tried and failed (in most places) to create a social space for themselves with the ill-fated Orkut. A few more flops down the line, and it looks like Google might actually be getting its act together on this important front.

We haven’t seen any word about a Google+ iPad app, but we’re pretty sure that will be soon to follow. Facebook took its sweet time releasing an official iPad app, and Google will certainly want to cash in on that shortcoming. Google+ has tried to find ways to let people import their contacts and social connections from services like Google, but Facebook has always been conservative about letting their data go to other companies, and has tried to block Google from taking their data (and possibly users).