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Never will the iPad fold, The Event & Lessons are back – some great news this week

Apple Views – it looks like we are getting closer to a folding iPad

28 February – 4 March 2022

Affordable phones

Apple is the premium, high-end supplier of gorgeous products, right? But with the ongoing rumours of a 5G SE iPhone coming at the Peek Performance event, it is possible, that Apple have seen a gap in the market, and it’s one they can fill too. Steve Jobs instilled the Apple the ethos of “don’t ship junk”, and they have stuck firmly to that mandate over the years. As this phone is to be based on the chassis of an existing iPhone, all of their R&D costs, have, at this point, been recovered. Mark Gurman suggested, in his Power On newsletter, that Apple could be aggressive and sell them as low as $199. Going that route, they could pick up on some Android market in countries such as South Africa & Asia. Obviously, in winning over more users, it would then start to tie them in to the fabled Apple ecosystem too. In turn for selling a cheaper SE handset, they could then pick up sales from the App Store, and potentially from AirPods and Apple Watches too. It makes total sense. It’ll be interesting to see what the men in suits at Apple think.

iPad

Fold me!

Cupertino just doesn’t like things that fold. Here we are in 2022 and still not a foldable anything is among their range — yet! The folding iPhone is on hold yet again, but rumours surfaced last week from Ross Young, the wholly reliable screen analyst. It would seem that the company have been working on a foldable 20 – inch display that kind of looks to be a hybrid of an iPad and a MacBook. Although release, set for 2026, as I mentioned in the latest Minus Sixteen podcast (https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-minus-sixteen-podcast/id1608899642), I just cannot see it. Typing on an iPad screen has always been clunky, and they have never wanted a touchscreen MacBook of any kind. My take is that Apple are merely showing what they are capable of, but have no intention of it ever becoming a reality.

Teach me tonight

In-store classes and lessons are again about to start in US cities that have no local mandates to wear masks in public places. Masks will still be provided in store for those wishing to use them. All Apple staff will be wearing them though. Apple hope to resume classes later this month, in time to coincide with whatever products they launch at the now confirmed Peek Performance special Event. Makes me happy to know these are back. In-store lessons are how my Mac Odyssey started!

The Event is here

Apple finally announced that the special event would indeed take place next week on 8 March, as rumoured. Peek Performance will stream at 10 a.m. PST, which is 6pm UK GMT. The invite went out with a 3D variation of the original six colour Apple logos. The logo is again an AR animation. To view it, open the invite on your iPhone and tap the logo. Although the company are, as ever, tight-lipped what will actually be launched at the event, the invite art and tagline will drive speculation as to what we can expect. Apple started the hashtag #AppleEvent — so use that official hashtag in any Tweets you post between now and the event. I will certainly be blogging after the event, and possibly even post a video on YouTube too. Best get subscribed then, huh!

Twitter is doing what?

On the subject of Twitter…. After the surprise success of their Spaces’ audio platform, it seems Twitter are keen to launch their podcast platform. There is already a ‘Podcasts’ tab hidden in the Twitter app, reports Jane Manchun Wong. The tab currently reveals few details, but suggests Twitter is certainly considering their podcast position. The more podcast platforms, the better — and I am sure Twitter would do it well.

Brothers in arms

This week, Apple entered in to the political arena by openly declaring to sever all ties with Russia. In a statement, Apple announced they have “paused all product sales in Russia”. Not only that, but they have also removed RT News & Sputnik from the App Store outside of Russia. This proves that sometimes it is not all about the dollar.

Its beta time

Apple WatchOS 8.5 is now released in beta version, at least to all developers. This version comes one week after the previous beta and a couple of weeks after the company made available watchOS 8.4.2 to all users. From what I can tell, the only addition is support for new emojis such as heart hands & biting lips. By all accounts, a pretty lame update.

It struck me like a bolt of lightning

Can you believe it! It is now ten years since Apple introduced the lightning cable to us. The now semi-retired Phil Schiller was the man given the task at that time of selling us this cable. It was toted as “the modern connector for the next decade”. Well, that never really happened in all honesty, did it? All of us, virtually universally, wish the darned thing would disappear. It has way outlived its welcome. Launched on the iPhone 5 in 2012 it has since appeared on every iPhone release since. At that time, it was a departure from the ubiquitous 30 – pin connector that we had become so accustomed to. Now, however, every other Apple product (barring AirPods Max), and indeed, tech in general, has moved over to USB-C. How much longer until we have a completely port-less iPhone, I wonder? I am sure we’ll never see a USB-C connector on an iPhone.

Pass the hotdogs

It would seem Apple is a front-runner for a $2 billion deal for NFL Sunday Ticket rights. Apple & the NFL are in discussion over streaming Sunday Ticket games. Along with Apple, Amazon & Disney are also interested in securing the deal. NFL Sunday Ticket, for those unfamiliar, is an out-of-market sports package that broadcasts NFL regular season games every week. The package, currently sold by DirecTV, with packages ranging from $290 to $400 per season. Apple, clearly eyeing the live sports market currently, as they are said to have had serious talks to screen Major League Baseball games too. Apple’s plans to add live TV offerings to Apple TV+ is unclear. It’s unlikely that NFL Sunday Ticket would be included in the $5 per month Apple TV+ tier. It could well be an optional add-on at a higher price. Apple isn’t going to pay $2 billion for an NFL Sunday Ticket deal just to give it away now, is it! Live sports on Apple TV seems inevitable somehow, wouldn’t you agree?

It’s big, it’s bold, and it’s here

If schematics from Jon Prosser are to be believed, then it looks as if the notch on the range of iPhone 14, due for release this fall, just took an ugly turn for the worse. The first images appeared on the Korean blogging website Weibo. The findings, which seem to be corroborated, indicate it is not only going to be the two-part ‘hole & punch’ design, but also big. Very BIG! Ross Young, however, disagrees, saying it will be smaller than first thought and centred too, unlike the recent schematics. The whole notch thing, I reckon, is overblown, right? Am I alone in not giving a damn about it?

More bargains

Looking for a cheap Apple Watch? Then visit Amazon now. To shop, visit the category page for the Apple Watch and look for the Bonus Savings message on eligible models. Top picks include the standard 41 mm GPS Apple Watch Series 7 in multiple colours. Both GPS and GPS + Cellular models from the Apple Watch Series 7 line are currently on sale at Amazon. Act quickly! Available in the US and certain other countries too.

Chips anyone

The worldwide demand for chips remains at a critical stage. Many of the world’s leading chip suppliers have up’d their expansion projects. TSMC will start construction on a new site in Japan this April. Suppliers are struggling to secure enough 28 nm production capacity to fulfil the orders they already have. Typical, Just when we thought things were getting better!

The holiday is over

Google has told employees this week that, as cases of COVID-19 recede in the Bay Area, they will have to return to their physical desks on 4 April. The Google Campus is in Santa Clara County, where Apple too are located. Speculation is now high that Apple may follow suit.

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Originally published at https://www.talkingtechandaudio.com/blog on March 4, 2022.

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