This was one brilliant move from Apple. They reduced the pricing of Apple TV to just 79 euro (69$) making it essentially a no-second-thought purchase for a lot of people. Apple seems to be slowly pushing for its next battleground. The living room. To sweeten the deal HBO is exclusively available to Apple TV and most importantly without having to have a cable subscription. With 15$ per month viewers can watch all shows of HBO. Past and present. For some this is a Godsend. For me though I think it’s a tad too expensive. Especially if you consider that you’re paying 15$ just for one channel. And for content that you might have already seen. I’m sure though this is a great deal for a lot of people. Especially for the Game of Thrones fans (yep that’s not me).
This was a pleasant surprise to me. Everyone expected a Macbook Air update and even though we saw that – along with an update to the 13″ macbook pro – the macbook was the one that packed the most features. Incredibly light (less than a kilo), fanless, with retina display, new USB C protocol, great battery life and force touch technology for the trackpad. As sexy and exciting the new machine looks though, it’s definitely only for all the moms and dads out there. It’s generally aimed at people who won’t do much with their computer.
If you’re a designer and you’re considering this as you’re on-the-road machine definitely forget about it! It has a really low power cpu and an underwhelming graphics card. A combination that basically spells frustration with pretty much every creative software. Sure you will probably be able to do some small things but doing some more intensive and demanding work is probably out of the question. The other thing that limits the possibilities for creatives is the one-port design. This one port is used for everything! Display, charging, connecting external hard drives and accessories! That is very limited especially if you consider that you won’t be able to connect a drive and charge at the same time. You can do either, or! I would definitely consider one if it was a bit more powerful but for creatives the better solution is still the macbook pro. But who can resist the light weight? If only MacBooks pros were that light!!!
This one was what people were waiting for. Apple tried to build even more of a case for the watche’s usefulness. They pursued that with every possible way. Videos, celebrities coming on stage, and live demos. It was definitely a compelling presentation and it surely showed some rich interactions with the watch. Interactions that I thought were more limited, before this presentation. But what Apple “forgot” to mention is that to do all those things the user has to have his phone with him all the time. In a way this defeats the purpose of the device. Surely the technology is not there yet but this requirement is quite restrictive. For years we fought to have fewer devices on us. And we succeeded. You no longer need to carry an mp3 player, a phone, a camera, a watch, and a handheld console with you. You just have your phone and it can do all of the above! It seems though that now we’re going back to this multi device universe.
What is also not helping Apple’s case is the fact that the watch has limited battery. Apple advertises it as an all day device, but at the end of the day it’s yet one more device requiring a charge. Along with your phone, tablet, laptop and who knows what else! Let’s not also talk about what your bag will look like while you’re travelling! Yep! All you needed was one more cable to carry with you!
And then there’s the design and the pricing of the watch. Watches and even more specifically expensive watches are known for their timeless design. People buy them and wear them for years. They might even pass them along to their kids when they grow older. Unfortunately the Apple Watch has neither a timeless design or any of the other qualities that make regular watches stand the test of time (see what I did there? :D). Apple Watch looks like a bulky device that will look outdated and clunky in a years time. But at the same time carrying the hefty price tags of traditional luxury watches. The gold editions of the Apple Watch starting at 10.000 $! Apple clearly wants to compete with the jewellery watches but at the moment it just cannot do. The design due to the tech’s limitation is not there, the battery life is not there, and the technology will be outdated in less than a year let alone 20 or more years. The sport watch edition, starting at 350$ is probably something that makes more sense. It’s relatively affordable and it won’t matter when in a few years time the watch will be worthless. It’s the tech version of Swatch watches. Affordable and expendable!
I will definitely get the sport watch when it’s out, but I’m fully aware that this is not the right time to invest on a product like that. In 2 or 3 generations the tech will probably be there but for now it’s a silly gadget for geeks to play with. It’s a nice toy but it’s just that. A toy!
This is not something a lot of people in the tech industry will care about but as a creative I couldn’t help but notice the meticulous care Apple took on all its videos! All of them were absolutely stunning. From the incredibly detailed 3d models to the elaborate animations and editing. The most stunning one for me was the promo for the macbook (the Design Film) http://www.apple.com/macbook/. It featured one of the most impressive technical illustrations with the most elaborate animations and sequences. The video flowed effortlessly from one feature to the next. With the visuals saying a consistent and insanely detailed story. These videos are a trend Apple started only 2 years ago but I’m amazed how far they’ve managed to come in such a short time. The team producing these videos is a killer team. And it shows through and through. With every new video. Can’t wait to see what they come up with in the next few keynotes!
Overall I would have to say the keynote introduced a lot of nice products and a lustworthy product line. Like all companies they did a few missteps but Apple is a company that can correct its course. And that is even more important than getting it right the very first time!