Monday, January 15, 2007

iPhone: Is it Really Worth it ?

iPhone = iPod + phone + internet + Revolutionary technology ;)

Finally, after years of refusing rumours, Jobs unveiled the new iPhone (I hope that's what it will be called, if they win the lawsuit raised against them by CISCO) in the recent highly anticipated and eagerly awaited MacWorld Conference. Jobs and his team concealed and hid the product so well that even insiders in Apple didn't know about the product till it was shown in the conference.

iPhone is releasing only in June/July in US, so its too early to comment on its current specs. But from the keynote and the website we can infer the following -

(+) - Video iPod
(+) - Wifi, bluetooth and other connectivity options
(+) - A rich text Safari browser
(+) - Too Sleek and Sexy for a smartphone
(+) - Intuitive Interface
(+) - Accelerometer (cool)
(+) - Multitasking OS (MacOSX)

(-) - Keyboard
(-) - Dev. platform not open for 3rd party developers
(-) - Bundled apps
(-) - Broadband Wifi still expensive
(-) - Expensive

So how much do you pay for it. 499$ and 599$ for the 4 GB and 8 GB editions with an AT & T (formerly Cingular) carrier

My take: The touch sensitive screen could work both ways as we aren't sure if it's scratch and smudge resistant. It did look pretty responsive but I am still not satisfied by the screen keyboard. SMSs and typing word docs could be hell of a task.

Moreover, Jobs said he does not want to open the platform for 3rd party dev. as a single bad app could bring down the entire service network. Well, I don't suppose Cingular's network is so bad that it can be brought down by one malfunctioning app. It seems likely that Jobs is trying to close the platform for certified MacOS dev. only.

The current apps bundled are all internet intensive apps. Google Maps, widgets etc, which need a reliable wifi service. For people living in other countries, it could be difficult to get one cheaply.
Also, Steve didn't mention a single office app, which means will have to buy it seperately from Apple, adding to the existing cost.

It is too early to comment on the success/failure of the product, but one thing is clear, it sure packs a punch, seamlessly integrating the internet with the mobile platform and is surely going to sell a million units in first few days. If it will be as successful as the iPod, only time will tell if it's really worth it.

Monday, January 01, 2007

2006 : Year of Nintendo

Nintendo has had a dream run this year with the Nintendo DS reaching sales figure of 20 million and Nintendo Wii reaching 3.5 million in such a short run. What's so extraordinary is the fact that both of them had a stiff competition from the SONY camp during launch and were touted as underdogs who overhauled the superior products from SONY and set great examples of how understanding the target audience is so important for success.

Nintendo DS had to take on the technologically superior PSP. PSP was leaps and jumps ahead of any handheld console till date. It had amazing games, wifi, ability to watch movies, Mp3s etc. A truly revolutionary handheld console, but SONY's arrogance and bad marketing saw it lose against the DS.

History repeated itself when the Nintendo Wii was released against the over hyped SONY PS3.
Wii has been unanimously voted the gadget of the year.

We will have to wait and see, if SONY can learn from it's mistakes and come back strongly in 2007.