ITy Bytes 7 May Apple Edition are small curated news bytes that you need to know.

In ITy Bytes 7 May Apple Edition

  • Apple – iPad sales up, Mac sales slightly down and iPhone tanks another 15% y-o-y;
  • Apple says no competitive apps in our App Store (well not in so many words);
  • Apple to pay Qualcomm between US4.5-4.7 billion to settle the dispute;
  • Apple tells big porkies about iPhone battery life;
  • Apple three prong chargers recalled;
  • Senator Elizabeth Warren calls for Apple monopoly to be broken up;
  • Apple cannot keep up with Series 2 watch repairs;
  • Four questions Apple must answer but won’t;
  • Samsung and Huawei world domination quest crushing Apple sales

Apple – iPad sales up, Mac sales slightly down and iPhone tanks another 15% y-o-y.

CEO Cook said, “We delivered our strongest iPad growth in six years (22% y-o-y), and we are as excited as ever about our pipeline of innovative hardware, software and services.”

Well, Cook did not mention is that its flagship Macs have taken a beating over Keyboard and Stagelight “gate” issues and iPhone’s have nosedived in China despite significant discounts and incentives to clear stocks. iPhone sales are 17% down quarter on quarter and 15% year on year.

Cook must realise that without significant innovation its loyal sheep won’t be shorn any more. That includes a lacklustre take up of its + services designed to wring every last dollar from its ecosystem.

Apple says no competitive apps in our App Store (well, not in so many words)

The New York Times last week said that Apple had removed or, at least, restricted a total of 11 out of the 17 most popular screen time and parental control apps in the App Store which is used to monitor time spent on iPhones and used by parents to keep an eye on what content their children are accessing.

“In some cases, Apple forced companies to remove features that allowed parents to control their children’s devices or that blocked children’s access to certain apps and adult content,” the NYT reported. “In other cases, it simply pulled the apps from its App Store.”

The move comes soon after Apple’s Screen Time and usage limit tools were included in iOS 12 in September. The app makers impacted by the removals suggested that they were eradicated or restricted for competitive reasons. 

Apple, however, has refuted this blaming that 11 of the 17 hugely popular apps “put users’ privacy and security at risk.”

Apple to pay Qualcomm between US$4.5-4.7 billion to settle the dispute

While Apple did not reveal the settlement, Qualcomm’s latest earning statement does and it shares rocketed 43%.

ITy Bytes 7 May Apple Edition

The agreement included a one-time payment from Apple to Qualcomm, a six-year licensing deal between the two companies, and an agreement from Apple to buy Qualcomm chips.

Apple tells porkies about battery life

UK consumer group Which? tested 50 current smartphones including nine Apple iPhone models. The methodology is here.

The bottom line is that Apple consistently overstated its battery life between 18-51% longer than Which? results. iPhone XR had the biggest battery overestimation for talk time on a full charge. Which? tests, lasted for 16 hours and 32 minutes, whereas Apple claimed that it would last 25 hours – 51 per cent more.

In stark contrast, Nokia, Samsung and Sony all underestimated talk time when compared to Which? tests.

Apple responded (unusual) “We rigorously test our products and stand behind our battery life claims. With tight integration between hardware and software, iPhone is engineered to intelligently manage power usage to maximize battery life. Our testing methodology reflects that intelligence.

 In other words Which? uses real-world tests that other manufacturers all better, and Crapple iOS is worse! Come in spinner!

Apple three prong chargers recalled

Some of Apple’s World Travel Adaptor kits and three-prong wall plugs shipped from 2003 to 2010 with Mac and iOS devices for use in Continental Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Korea, Argentina and Brazil may break and users risk electrocution. More info here.

ITy Bytes 7 May Apple Edition

Senator Elizabeth Warren is a formidable foe

Wanting to “break up Big Tech,” Sen. Elizabeth Warren says Apple should not be able to run the App Store and sell its own apps on it.

Warren’s view is that companies with an annual global revenue of at least $25 billion cannot own both a “platform utility” and own a participant on that platform. She defines that “utility” as a company that offers “an online marketplace, an exchange, or a platform for connecting third parties.

“Apple, you’ve got to break it apart from their App Store. It’s got to be one or the other,” Warren told The Verge. “Either they run the platform, or they play in the store. They don’t get to do both at the same time.”

Warren is separately pursuing Apple to pay a fair share of taxes (about its Irish tax minimisation scheme) and various anti-trust issues that are of interest to the European Union as well.

CEO Tim Cook appears to be saying you can trust Apple but not those low-life’s Amazon, Google and Facebook. “I don’t think anybody would call us a monopoly,” he said.

Well, a monopoly is classified as the exclusive possession or control of the supply of or trade in a commodity or service. Sound’s like Apple’s walled garden to me!

Apple cannot keep up with Series 2 watch repairs

MacRumors has obtained a confidential internal Apple memo stating any repairs of the Series 2 Apple Watch should simply be replaced by a refurbished Series 3 allegedly due to a shortage of unspecified parts.

The catch 22 is that Series 3 replacements require an iPhone 5s or 6 or later to operate.

If you have issues, remember that under Australian Consumer Law you have a right to a full refund.

Apple and Spotify go to war in the EU

Margrethe Vestager, the European commissioner for competition, is said to be poised to launch an inquiry over claims that one of the world’s most valuable companies has behaved unlawfully by abusing the dominant position of its app store in the market.

Spotify, which has reached 100 million paying subscribers, alleges that Apple, one of its fiercest rivals alongside Amazon, is using the store to favour its own Apple Music service. Apple charges digital content providers such as Spotify a 30% fee for using its payment system for any subscriptions sold in its App Store.

Read the detail here

Four questions Apple must answer but won’t

Bloomberg (via The Sydney Morning Herald) poses four questions that Apple must answer to quell investor unrest.

  1. Does Apple believe the iPhone sales decline is temporary?
  2. What’s the strategy behind internet-related services?
  3. What’s the plan to reach the next billion users?
  4. Does Apple have the right expertise at the company to shift direction, if it wants to?

It concludes, “Now is the time for a red-hot focus on Apple’s road map for the future – or its lack of a credible one besides waiting out its troubled patch in China.”

Samsung and Huawei world domination quest crushing Apple sales

They say competition is healthy – it drives companies on to greater things. Samsung and Huawei have been locked in a bitter battle for supremacy, but the crafty Korean is defending its market share and gaining new ground with its innovative Galaxy A, S and Note series.

Huawei, the canny Chinese company, is shoring up its Chinese market share (which is now a huge 50%) and releasing a raft of new products that help to make it a desirable brand (especially to Asians).

But this war has had had casualties with Apple sliding from number two with nearly 20% of market share in Q4, 2018 to around 10% in Q1, 2019.

ITy Bytes 7 May Apple Edition

There was a time when Apple’s walled garden approach worked keeping Apple sheep happy and well-shorn. But the loss of market share means loss of associated services and ecosystem revenue and reliance on higher priced services to prop up failing hardware sales.

The Samsung/Huawei war is attracting those Apple users (especially in Asia) that buy superseded models (an Apple badge is an Apple badge) to the more fully featured and better value Android camps.