Watch Makers’ Dilemma!


Traditional Watch Industry is fast facing disruption. It is all transforming into a Smartwatch Industry.

There is a new hush in tech circles. Merger of the Classic Watch Industry and Tech Industry in cross roads as discussions go on. Triggered by countless Android wearable initiatives and smartwatch efforts fueled by the latest Apple Watch rumors. Probably this will be on lesser extent but Watch will probably disrupt the Watch Industry the same way iPhone revolutionized the mobile industry, or just as iPod disrupted the portable music player and music label industry back in the 20s. Apple Spring Forward watch even will be held on Monday.

If “Mobile First” was the success story of the iPhone and follow up wannabies. I have little doubt on the smartwatch and the Internet of Things (IoT) future. What do we gonna call it when things emerge in the wearables first? It’s already mobile so what it would be “Personal or Intimate First” User eXperience has in store for us?

The watch industry will never looked the same after Monday

Here Apple’s legendary execution and scale of Integrated Systems will have an upper hand. Specially HomeKit/CarKit/HealthKit and the extensions of them probably with iPhone and Touch ID integration. Touch ID is Apple’s hidden absolute innovation on the privecy and security issues we faced as the tech industry since the legendary UNIX username and password protocol came in. Watch already seem to make the strongest case for many things to come after the smartphone revolution.

When most seem to doubt why would anyone want to carry a secondary device, when BYOD is in full swing, do we have to carry another? I speculate why would anyone NOT want one if Watch supposed to get us the promised of the following?

Presumably, Watch (all smartwatches someday) can resolve

1. All our access worries (Home, Car, Door Keys, proximity cards, etc.)
2. All our wallet worries (Credit, Cash, Reward Cards, Clubs, Memberships, etc.)
3. Identity worries (National ID, Driver License, Logins, Social Security, Insurance, Health etc.)
US government has just endorse Apple Pay I heard. *Please read the footnote.
4. It will probably do some of the smartphone functions better than imagined (Fitness, Music, Location, etc)
5. Possible emerge of the HomeKit/CarKit/HealthKit related IoT sub-ecosystems to boost

The first 4 points alone itself is more than enough for Watch to be another game changer device. If things fall well in place as Apple planned, I think Apple Watch V1.0 can trigger all that as it is proposed right now. From Apple Watch V2.0 and beyond we will see the new user cases of the WatchKit that we are unable to see clearly right now, but I am sure we will be taking about “Intimate First” UX in no time!

First WATCH ads appeared on Vogue Magazine, not anywhere near in any Tech Magazine. No surprise. Apple’s message is clear. Not many tech brands can get away with spending near $200,000 grand per page and simply having WATCH on a blank page to give the message. This is where tech circles don’t understand and underestimate Apple. Apple knows how to make technology common place.

It may be specific, For example my dad all he needs will ONLY be the watch, for the first 3 points he will probably LOVE it, We tried but he never wanted or carries a mobile phone, doesn’t need one. Only worry is Mom’s not knowing where the hell he is in the town, the watch probably can resolve that too by ping back in the future which I would love to have on my kids too: -D. This is just two user cases I see for Watch to sell in millions.

Then the question of how do we address the intimacy UX now with already phablet sized and growing phones? Viola! Suddenly the watch makes far more impressive wearable for me than the original iPhone ever did in 2007! or the vaporware Google Glass which kille the intimacy in 2014!: -D

Meanwhile Swiss watch makers like TAG Heuer, the biggest brand in luxury goods group LVMH’s watch portfolio, had until recently largely dismissed the threat of these “smart” gadgets or Watch saying it was not a threat to them. Then suddenly changed the tone to rush up smartwatch projects to rival this such as TAG Heuer. It also seems that TAG Heuer might be starting to realise that making a smartwatch isn’t as easy as it sounds. That’s borne out by the attitude of Biver to the Apple Watch. In September last year, he said Apple’s smartwatch was “too feminine” and “looks like it was designed by a student in their first semester.”

But later LVMH watch chief Jean-Claude Biver says he had changed his mind on the subject. In his Bloomberg interview, Biver is now all for the Watch, claiming that “it’s a fantastic product, an incredible achievement.”


UK Style Magazine runs Watch featured.

“Smartwatches represent a challenge to the Swiss watch industry that is comparable to the appearance of quartz technology. We cannot ignore this tsunami that is coming closer,” Semon said.

Biver, who had already outlined plans for a smartwatch, said he had struck several partnerships and was mulling purchases to help come up with an original upmarket offering.

“We started on the project about four months ago. We have done several partnerships and might also do acquisitions,” Biver, head of LVMH watches and TAG Heuer interim chief executive, told journalists at the brand’s headquarters at La Chaux-de-Fonds in western Switzerland.

But the problem is whatever they come up with TAG Heuer’s smart watch will not sell. There’s no market for it.

As an industry observer as I can see now, be warned. There is a real problem in luxury watch maker industry trying to imitate the smart-watch market yet to be blossomed. Even if smart watch is not poised to break smartphone scale revolution, there will be sufficient clues gathering that watch industry will seriously be disrupted.

There is a technical reason why Apple Watch requires pairing with an iPhone, and TAG Heuer’s or any to be smart watch will need to pair with a smartphone to even have a chance of being as feature-rich as Watch. Technology isn’t there for them to be standalone yet. If you ask Apple why Watch has to pair with iPhone while it can be standalone, Tim would say underline technologies have not emerged yet. There is no chance Tim can have GSM/ GPS receiver and Apple A8 chip in Watch with sustainable battery life even if he wished. So for a foreseeable future Watch will off-load battery and cellular heavy functions to an iPhone.

So no TAG Heuer or Rolex smartwatch has the luxury to off-load its functions to its owner’s iPhone, but an Android.

A Tsunami is coming for the luxury brands

That’s where the problem begins. Android copied iPhone and could sell it to the developing world for a cheaper price to gain momentum. But if a la carte TAG Heuer pairs with Android, can they make it cheaper falling in to the Casio and Citizen level? or a Chinese made level? Or else can they engineer it higher than Apple (or Google) would do? Also Apple isn’t going to re-engineer iOS for TAG’s specific benefit, so TAG’s smart watch won’t pair with an iPhone the way Watch does.

In order to have even a remote chance of being as feature-rich as Watch, then, TAG’s smart watch will sure have to pair with an Android phone. However, TAG Heuer wearers aren’t Android fans. Rich people buy TAG watches, but rich people don’t buy Android phones. They buy iPhones, Alas!

Watch Edition edition would be as premium as any Swiss made gold.

Ultimately, this is the basic dynamic of the entire luxury watch industry. Replace TAG Heuer with Rolex or any other high-end Swiss watchmaker, and you see the problem is exactly the same.

A Rolex smartwatch need to pair with an Android phone to be anywhere near as feature-rich as Watch, but Rolex users don’t buy Android phones. So on and so forth. None of their smart watches would sell. There are no rich-people-who-use-Android-but-buy-luxury-watches to wear.


Korean LG Web OS Smartwatch


Chinese unrivelled Huawei Smartwatch


Beautiful Withings Activité Smartwatch

Over the next decade with few versions of Watch becomes more powerful, Google and the China have time to catch up. Almost all watches will become smart watches, just as how all cell phones have become iPhone clone smartphones. The luxury watchmakers who tires to make smart watches will fail because they don’t know the tech, there won’t be a niche market for their already niche luxury products. Even the luxury watchmakers who don’t try to make smart watches will still see their market continuously shrink.

They’re damned if they do and damned if they don’t. I would call this as “Watch Makers’ Dilemma!” The watch industry will never look the same after Monday, 9, 2015.

Jony Eve has subtly put this in to context in an interview with his mellow words because he doesn’t want to be too dramatic on this, but the message is now very well written.

“Switzerland is fucked”.

NOTE *Apple have mentioned the usability of Apple Pay with the watch, but I failed to see how Touch ID get used here with Apple Watch, Do we have to pull iPhone to OK a payment with Touch ID? Then the purpose is probably lost so how would Apple will implement this? Also in the long run I wish there is a Touch ID in the back of the watch strap. Because I sense we are in a “Peak iPhone/ Smartphone” era as speculated that still has to carry over the burden of legacy. A Touch ID Sensor for authentication, or a secondary method. On March 9th Apple’s Spring Forward Watch event we may see how Apple actually would implement this if they launch Apple Pay along with Apple Watch.



Debate over bigger is always better and Apple’s stance on iPhone screen size has I think a reason to stay the same.


As a designer I always liked bigger flagship displays since the nineties, like this SONY Trinitron Sun Microsystem monitor which I used for many years. Fast forward a decade and what you get on Samsung Galaxy S4 handheld (Is it really a mobile?) which display I love is almost the same pixels crammed up to 5 inch of that 21′ SONY behemoth of the past. On contrast still Apple’s latest iPhone 5s have lesser pixels and smaller 4 inch size regardless of critics but it doesn’t really mean any less usability for practical reasons. So here is the facts.

PLEASE NOTE: I tinker every OS, explorer most gadgets I get just for fun, but the only practical use I get from any of these smartphones is making calls and browsing web other than occasionally play a game. That’s it. So this may differ with your actual usage. But smartphone’s sheer success was due to desktop class mobile browser before the App era. And this isn’t necessarily a technical rundown, rather a routine I observe everyday from early Android Froyo days to today 4.2 Jelly Bean. On iPhone front this has been almost the same from iOS 1.0 to iOS 7 now from 320X480 3GS to today’s iPhone 5 retina display. Rendering size is always the same while retina bump-up the crispiness of the text. There is a significant way Apple handles the screen in iOS and Mac OS X. iPhone screen size still remains in the 4 inch region without any practical usability hindrance.

So millions of millions iPhonions have seen everyday bigger screens doesn’t necessarily yield any usability breakthroughs on a mobile. So if you filter the critics, it’s always Android fans who complains iPhone has a small screens. Not iPhone users. This differ when you move up from phone to a phablet or tablet and that is a different use case.

I have picked up and blogs to showcase this

iPhone 5 Galaxy S4
640 x 1136 px 4 Inches 326 ppi 1080 x 1920 px 5 Inches 441 ppi
iOS 6.1 with Safari 6 Android 4.2.2 with Chrome 31.0

Check out the real captures.

Native rendering of as it loads. Is it any “MORE” readable on bellow S4? Actually native loading size of fonts are more readable on the iPhone. Both phones can bump up font size as accessibility feature.

Single double tap zoom to fit-to-screen. This is where the beauty. Is it any “MORE” readable on bellow S4? Single double tab on iPhone makes the site text quite readable and fill the whole full screen in iPhone you just have to scroll down to keep on reading. Where as on S4  you have to fiddle with pinch, zoom, find a fit, loose your read location and make it readable size and then scroll side-ways and up and down side ways to find your location back. This is a pain. For me, this makes a whole world of difference. Of cause you get used to the for both scenarios over the time, but can Android claim this IS better usability? This is worse with the famous Android Screen Lag even with the latest Samsungs flagship S4 and Note 3. Google is trying to fix this with Nexus new 4.4 ART runtime.

Native rendering of as it loads. Is it any “MORE” readable on bellow S4?


Double tap zoom-to-fit the screen. For my aging eyes iPhone is still “MORE” readable. Anyone?


The whole point is here there is no point you seeing more (more lines or content) if you really can’t make use of it. It only helps when you do view pictures or videos on a mobile but never with text. You read one line per round. Perhaps Apple will go 5 inch in the next year iPhone. But it is still a long way from iPhonions clamming to a bigger screen yet. For me Samsung S4 5 inch draws the upper limit of a mobile. Note is out, Next Samsung S5 should get the S Pen. Or what if Apple too will join with my decade older famous Wacom Tablet (S Pen maker) which I have been using since 1998?


Intel still Inside – ARM Outside, that’s where the fun is!


Intel originally was the original DRAM manufacturer. Intel reaped the benefit of their chip designs due to the success of their 386 architecture. Those were the foundation of the PC era, and while they faced nominal competition from AMD, they gained many of the economic benefits of a monopolist more than Microsoft. But for a brief spell around the turn of the century, a “good” computer required an Intel chip.

Throughout the PC period, Intel invested heavily in their chip design. They learned the lesson of DRAM becoming cheap, and were determined to never be second class; their microprocessors would always be superior performers.

The problem with setting such ambitious goals, of course, is that you are usually successful. Intel chips have no rival when it comes to PC performance; unfortunately for Intel, PCs are in decline. Mobile devices, such as iPhones, Androids and tablets, are in ascendance, and there Intel’s core strength in ALL-OUT PERFORMANCE is a 2nd-class citizen in mobiles, until now.

Power consumption is critical, as well as custom logic for specific functions such as graphics, motion, GPS, radios and media decoding. General purpose performance is nice-to-have.

Intel’s identity as a chip designer is increasingly irrelevant.



This is not a marketing gimmick, the only person who believed that already got fired.

After all, nearly all mobile chips are centered on the ARM architecture, from a accidental billionaire small British company due to Steve Jobs fell in love with their energy efficient ARM chips who have been designing chips for old Psion and Palm PDAs. For the cost of a license fee, companies, such as AMD, Nvidia, Qualcomm, MediaTek, Apple can create their own modifications, and hire a foundry to manufacture the resultant chip. The designs are unique in small ways, but design in mobile will never be dominated by one player the way Intel dominated in x86 PCs.


It is manufacturing capability, on the other hand, that is increasingly rare, and thus, increasingly valuable. In fact, today there are only four major foundries: Samsung, GlobalFoundries, TSMC, and Intel. Only four companies have the capacity to build the chips that are in every mobile device today, and in everything tomorrow.

Massive demand, limited suppliers, huge barriers to entry. It’s a good time to be a manufacturing company. It is, potentially, ironically a good time to be Intel. After all, of those four companies, the most advanced, by a significant margin, is Intel.

The only problem is that Intel sees themselves as a design company, due to the huge success of Pentiums.


Today Intel is increasingly under duress. And, once again, the only way out may require a remaking of their identity. So they have just announced the only logical way forward. Ok, me too. Hell breaks loose, Intel will start making those ARM chip, let it be for Apple, Samsung or anyone. Intel is already the best microprocessor manufacturing company in the world. They needed to accept and embrace their new destiny and I think they just did.

From DRAM to Core Processors Design transformation was from a low margin volume business to a high margin one; Investors love that. To go in the opposite direction may take incredible turns, but for Intel, right now it’s the only way forward where the money is.


I saw this on the web. And there are many more rants. Well. For the record this is grossly misinformative. Someone has to set it straight.


So here we go, not knowing the history. Ignorance is a bliss.

It is been said even that Apple got it’s original idea of implementing the modern App Store (There were old Palm OS App Store like concept) having seen the underground developer community (Installer by RipDev and later as Cydia) growing in disguise after the original iPhone was released. It was soon hacked (Jailbroken) and was found to be running Unix variant of Mac OS X. So developers soon started to make unauthorized iOS tweaks, hacks and tools and distributed as Debian packages for the original iPhone before the Apple App Store era came in.

So Control/ Notification center like many modern swipe gesture app/ tweak concepts had been originally populated on (Installer/ Cydia Repo) the iPhone almost from the beginning of the iPhone revolution. Look at the history of Installer and Cydia App Repository later. This particular one is called SBSettings that is how Google got the notification center idea for Android that fandroids are always hammering as Apple copied in iOS 5. Most of these ideas were borrowed originally from the Palm OS , Symbian and Windows Mobile. And then iPhone jailbreak concepts are the original reasons for rooted Android tools, tweaks and widgets thereafter which fandroids are calling themselves as superior tweakability and unique to Android. What an irony!



Just do a Google search on SBSettings and click images. Even almost all notification center themes were there for SBSettings. The successor to the SBSettings is NCSettings later.


And the handy multitasking cards thing these fandroids are jumping on when Apple “licensed” and implemented in iOS 7 is 100% pure Web OS copy. Difference is while Android ripped it off blatantly Apple had officially licensed it from Palm Access (now HP) many years before they put it in iOS 7. And there were many similar Cydia multitasking tweaks (Backgrounder/ Zephyr/ Auxo and many more) even before Apple officially support  multitasking. Oh.. what a shame that fandroids don’t belong to the history! 😀

Palm Patents

And that is the proper ethical way of doing business if someone wants to borrow ideas, they can license it paying the anther. And Apple even sometimes officially hired these original jailbreak developers like Peter Hajas and Comex without just introducing the features later. They did it in a ethical way without just sending them out of business. Check out this few of wonderful Cydia tweaks for iOS from hundreds of others even underground tweak developers can make a living developing them for iOS.

Where Android altogether is a gross shameless copy of iOS/ Java and other technologies prior to it where Google Android head Andy Rubin was working at Apple team, even before the iPhone launch. He and then Eric Schmidt (Early Apple broad member until Steve Jobs asked him to leave when conspiracy leaked) brought many of the original iPhone ideas secretly to the Google Android project. They ripped off others ideas and implemented those concepts as Android. Where it was originally had been Windows Mobile (CE) like rip off as Danger Sidekick project. The rest of the Apple iPhone IP Samsung copied blatantly and popularized it as cheap alternative to iPhone for the none savvy eye.


Well, Copy paste is not a viable/ sound or ethical business.

And now these new found fandroids think Android is heaven send (and not a stolen product) without a history, origin or real business ethics.

In this industry everyone copies everyone. Apple copies Xerox and MS copies Apple. And many other incidents. The difference is most of these concepts are either lab or abandoned or pet or none commercially successful projects (Xerox UI) which either Apple or Microsoft commercialized later and brought in to the mass market. Where as Android is a 100% of a blatant copy of other commercially successful designs and concepts of commercially viable products. In the business ethics this is called a rip-off! And the company which does it pathetically calls others “Don’t Be Evil” while being the best at it.

Another hush.. hush… secret is that everyone does not knows is that later Apple and Microsoft cross licensed themselves and paid third parties officially if they commercially launching any of those implementations. Read the iPhone Legal License Agreement they have officially mentioned all these hired ideas from the beginning where as Google is really try to do it just after Samsung, Oracle and many other various law suites. It is known even the original iPhone name was belong to abandoned Cisco product that Steve personally called the Cisco and informed them that he will be using the name before he announced the original iPhone in 2007. And then brought the rights for an undisclosed amount before it goes commercial. (iPhone was sold a six months later the announcement)

Think of this like this, if someone imitates you one-to-one and try to be yourself to gain the benefits you own as an individual in the society, how would you feel? Pathetic, right? Its a one thing that someone copies something he likes in you and make use or fun of it, say your kindred. But its a totally different thing that someone is trying to pretend and imitate your commercial success 100% for those who are unfamiliar of this exploitation of the market. (commoditization sake).

This is darn cheap practice. I called this in Sinhala a game kade (ගමේ කඩේ) concept which is popularized in many of the rural areas (usually the road ends inside the village) when someone is opening a Grocery Store and being successful for a while with limited village society someone else also get the “smart” idea and opens his own similar grocery shop a little inside the village after the first shop. Soon both undercut each other and get bankrupt without a sufficient market or profit and people go all the way to the town shop again. So it is always the town shop which grows and grows and be successful. When one start a grocery why the other can’t start a hardware or a garage? I have seen this cycle played repeatedly in many areas in my lifetime. This is why I think Apple won the legendary Samsung case.

Nobody calls Blackberry, even Windows CE, Web SO, Palm OS, Newton, Windows Mobile, Symbian or iOS are this kind of rip offs but Android! Others truly have always co-benefited one another. But everyone who knows the history calls Android is a 100% design and concepts wise a stolen product. It reminds me the exacts words Mr Smith (The agent) utters in the Matrix saying who we human are. A plague. : -D

Agent Smith says:

Every mammal on this planet instinctively develops a natural equilibrium with the surrounding environment but you humans do not. You move to an area and you multiply and multiply until every natural resource is consumed and the only way you can survive is to spread to another area. There is another organism on this planet that follows the same pattern. Do you know what it is? A virus. Human beings are a disease, a cancer of this planet. You’re a plague.

This is what Android is becoming. An Ice Cream Sundae put on a cup, bucket, basket or any container is still an Ice Cream Sundae! Period. It doesn’t really give the mobile world the vibrant differentiation it needs. This all happened before in the Windows PC era. People got lost the choice.

Google openly praying “Don’t Be Evil” moto but being evil at best ripping off Apple iOS and made money with ads on Android. It killed Microsoft Windows Embedded and web advertising business for others giving it free. It gave an easy access OS to counterfeit cheap Chinese and (Only Samsung and LG exploit it to make money) manufactures wings to compete in the heavy R&D budget viable business companies like Palm, Apple, Blackberry and Nokia to push them out of business with cheap common products. This is not natural selection. Android is profit squeezing enforced product suffocating one another.

At is killing the market choice just as Microsoft did in the 80’s as Windows commoditization. Everyone who lives in that history knows the drill very well. I have lived that generation where MS Windows and IE stagnant  for more than a decade without a single innovation, version update or choice. See now after Firefox liberated us from Internet Explorer, the sheer amount of wonderful browser choices with new innovations we got

Luckily with history old experience of Microsoft ripping off its all core ideas and values as Windows and MS Office, vision, moral  and innovation intact Steve ran Apple remained as a choice and later pulled off the iPod marvel to resurrection. Apple was the only survivor of golden PC era after Microsoft started the chain reaction industry wise-copy-paste PC business to flourish. People did really lost the choice. What drives Apple forward is their legacy in innovation. And they are the only one who can still Drop the Legacy.

This rather too much complicated for these infancy fandroids minds to understand.

I have nothing but a pity for these ignorant fandrods’ big blindfolded shameless rant. Most don’t see it yet but Android is in a self-indulge stabbing killing spree. It will eventually kill all these wonderful pre iPhone manufactures out of business. Trust me on this, Apple is not in the threatened species here. They are the only survivors of the Windows world and the surviving innovator of the PC world. They know the best that how to survive in this Android onslaught. Recent iOS 7 is just a simple answer to it. But Blackberry to Nokia to Palm do not.

For others there is no real choice left now and Android is all-out killing Nokia, Windows Mobile, Blackberry and Plam like genuine rival OS platforms out of the market. I like choice. We are as consumers quickly loosing the real choice in the open mobile market. Remember those early PC vendors like IBM, Packard-Bell, Hewlett-Packard, Compaq, Gateway and even Dell now? Likewise believe me it’s not a pretty world to be. Android again dragging the tech world to the 90’s stagnant once one company dominated Windows PC centric virus plagued world if it wasn’t for the Apple. And they will send all profit shrinking small phone vendors like LG, HTC, Alcatel, even Samsung who rides it all down. I am pretty sure all these companies (even Samsung with Tizen) now looking for a way out of this utter Android lock-out! Just wait till Chinese breed their Androids for cheap as good as Samsung for Samsung to feel the real heat. They already are… And they are getting better and better here.


Can you compete in the commercial world with an imaginative 0 dollar free given phone for 50 bucks a year fucking insane Xiaomi phone deal. It will happen. To understand this Xiaomi thing please read this. When Samsung copies 50% of Apple, Chinese copy 100% of Samsung which running the same Android stock and gives it FREE. Apple will at least have iOS differentiation here to play the game.

Purpose of Droid is to destroy every other business proposition sending them out of business.

No innovation come out the companies with old school vision-less dead unsold OEM products in inventory. Androids only makes money for Google and Samsung for the moment. Soon this will be a dead zone for other OEM manufactures. That’s why Amazon is trying to differ here with Android itself with Fire tablets. Just like Xiaomi I think Amazon will make a phone which will be free given to the Amazon Prime subscribers. Before Windows people had so many PC platforms to choose from. Only Apple survived. Likewise in the past we had so many phones to choose from. Now there’s only two viable phone platforms to choose from just like in the PC world. I don’t like this. Palm dead. Symbian dead. Nokia dead. For BB is too late now. I hope at least MS will do something about this with brought over Nokia at least for us to have option 3 spot so my kid will have a phone other than Apple or Samsung or Chinese crap.

if you want more elaborate history on how our tech world came to be here refer WIKI or Daniel Eran Dilger who write for RoughlyDrafted Magazine and AppleInsider. Otherwise count my words, all this fandroids pushing us to a tasteless cheap copy-cat Chinese grey phone and tablet market. That is downright gross. Google also know this that they know Android got out of control and try to negate it with Nexus and Moto X initiatives with little success. I hope at least Apple will always remain as viable choice to withstand the Android invasion. Like the some inventors who regretted their babies. I hope Google will be pushed to close the Android open flood gates and will eventually focus on the Chromium OS branch.

I know, this is too much dog-food for these fandroids to eat, chew, devour and understand. For some, if Ignorance is a bliss. So be it.



There is an Only One Company in the world which does what it does at its best. If the name of the game is Dropping the Legacy.

Welcome to Apple Incorporated.

Though this article is dated back, the picture i wanted show just came in today.

portsThe new Macbook do away with all the legacy ports but one!

Make no mistake. This may look like moving too fast too soon. Sometimes just look plain pastel crayon color child’s play in iOS 7 release. Give it a year or two. Boom! You will all grow upon with it. Give it a decade you will know no better world esisted before.

ios_7_vs_ios_6_home_screensiOS 7 colors were critizied but adopted very well with the industry.

Years passed since the original iMac, iPod, iTunes, Music Store, iPhone, App Store, Macbook Air and iPad. Many nay sayers started questioning the Apple’s ability to further innovate any of the intended market, let it be the Personal Computer Industry, then the Music Industry or later the Mobile Industry. So for a week or so there are ney sayers and famous Apple doom stories hush… hush.. for a moment.

Then the whole industry knows better than who invented the wheel.

There’s no question that the original iPhone upside down or down up and iOS with multi-touch together make for the best mobile phone ever made.

The can of offhand, dismissive spec bias criticism from the Android fan base that Apple never innovates should be silenced, canned, at least for awhile, given that Apple now sells the only dual-tone LED flash; the only 64-bit mobile CPU; the only 64-bit capable mobile OS; the fastest touch-screen performance phones by far; (we iPhonions all knew this all along) the only wide-scale deployment of Multipath TCP; and the only useful, usable and widely used fingerprint scanner ever placed on any consumer electronic device.

Yes, there’s plenty of petty grousing. And who knows what competitors will ship tomorrow? But as of today, rest assured it’s clear that Apple rules the high tech market and again sets the way forward for rest of the industry.

When BlackBerry OS 10 launched earlier this year, it made iOS the oldest of the modern major mobile operating systems. Web OS, Android, Windows Phone all launched after Steve Jobs unveiled the original iPhone in 2007. (Some well after.) iOS, which had started the smartphone revolution, was facing a world where it was no longer revolutionary, and it was unclear what, if anything, Apple would or even could do about it. After all, it’s difficult if not impossible to change course when hundreds of millions of customers are being dragged behind them. We saw this very well with 2 decades of Windows withheld the tech world from innovation altogether (think of IE browser stagnant until Firefox liberated it)

And Apple as usual is pushing everyone to ditch the legacy just in six years as it ignited the App ecosystem, where as Microsoft took nearly 2 decades and still somewhat carry the DOS legacy.

First when paper became digitized we needed it to remind us of the paper, now we have accustomed and lived that generation
isn’t this now growing up further upon you?

So this is what Apple does. They ditch floppies. They ditch PowerPC chips. They ditch Intel, they re-write the Mac OS X, then port it for the Intel, make it the first 64 bit OS years before others even think of it, make it mobile ready, port it to ARM. They reshuffle their executive teams, shake up the very people who got them to where they were, and they radically change course months into their product cycle. In short, instead of dragging legacy, they get out and push the future forward.

Is there any other company which does it and excel at it? When Palm dis it, they went bankrupt. When Compaq, Dell do it they loose their market. When Microsoft does it they loose their core business model altogether, when Nokia does it they sell their headquarters. Apple do it and build 5 billion spaceship to prove it to the world. In the later days no one noticed, now everyone nags about it.

It’s messy. And iOS 7 is still messy around the edges. I’ve been using it since June, through all the betas, being in software I know its scary and messy. But it’s also damn good. very bold. Excellent even. It’s computationally expensive in a way that will be non-trivial for the competition to match, especially when paired with the equally forward-thinking new Apple A7 and Apple M7 chipsets in the iPhone 5s. That’s good for us, because when competition is hardest, the results are the best. Still Apple pushes it forward keeping others on the nerve.

After the iPhone in 2007 and Web OS in 2009, and then Windows Metro, I wondered often what would be the next. iOS 7 with it’s crayon pastel colors and 1500 new APIs for the developer magic. This is it.

This is the one aspect where Apple might take it.

And most importantly, it’s just the beginning.


Wow! Whatta an interesting week to be a gadget lover!


  • Google announced KitKat 4.4 their next Android love.
  • Samsung unveiled new Note 3 and Galaxy Gear watch
  • Amazon did introduced Kindle Paperwhite 2
  • SONY and LG is putting their new high end series
  • Apple announced their September 10 iPhone iOS 7 event

While all the above seem positive

  • Microsoft announced it brought Nokia for 7.1B Dhah!

From Microsoft point of view this came as no surprise. Stephen Elop (Nokia CEO) is the old Microsoft guy Microsoft send to Nokia as Trojan Horse to get Nokia alined with Windows Phone instead of Nokia marrying the Android army. The only viable Windows Phone licensee for Microsoft while old OEM Samsung, LG, HTC all went to bed with Google beloved Andy. Meanwhile Nokia, from being the most prime mobile phone vendor in the pre iPhone era, are killing themselves of being such a historic company a 6 years ago. It seems to me Microsoft – Nokia got entangled in such a mess that they themselves can’t even get out with their broken swords.


– For Microsoft their lucrative OS licensing system is broken, dead, finished and done with. You can’t sell OS when Google give away such wonderful Android (Chromium too) for free. The problem for Microsoft in mobile is that Android has completely destroyed the value of a licensed OS. They did what Linux couldn’t do and now every darn gadget I know of comes in “Android Embedded” form. No, you can’t sell OS (ecosystem) by the means of hardware as Apple does either if you don’t speak hardware and don’t have the content to go with. Microsoft’s traditional software model is broken and Microsoft doesn’t really know what to do. Bingo!


– No matter how good, you can’t sell your hardware if you waste your chance to build or go with a robust OS and content ecosystem (like Android/ iOS/ Amazon) and brush up your expertise on hardware and logistics to differentiate . So now your Microsoft Windows Phone OS experiment failed that your Lumia hardware is still so good almost everyone (Except MS) wish that it runs Android. Overall it’s now too late to build your own OS while your expertise is on hardware and can’t even go to bed with Android due to your ego and hard ties behind MS. Bingo!

Now what..?

Nokia has already sold it’s Head Quarters year back to recover expenses, can’t recover sales from loss of 90% to 4% market share drop and left with no where to go other than bankrupt. MS on the other hand failed to get traction on Windows Phone from other old Windows Mobile OEM manufactures (or PC) and can’t let Nokia die cos it’s the only Windows Phone licensee which had some success (Lumia Series) which going fast down the drain if it do not pump even more money on it.

So where do we go from here…

and comes the fight of the Broken Swords. The Microsoft – Nokia Merger. Done. Deal.

Now the difficult part. How do we correct that what went all wrong? Will others stay on their laurels (Google, Samsung, Apple, Amazon, Xiaomi) while Microkia get their act under one hood, figure things out and plan ahead to ‘Empire Strike Back’ ? and when? Are there any place left in mobile ecosystems to grow-in profitability? Do customers care? Will enterprise hold their breath till they get this sorted out? Would they?


Gosh, now the Ballmer has left Microsoft with such an ordeal, who would be the next superman, superhero CEO to take up this challenge? Coming MS CEO is gotta be another super CEO like Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, Do we have a candidate? I don’t think that anyone is around there to take up the challenge, have the guts and the vision to drive forward. It’s again the famous “Burning Platform” for both parties and specially for Nokia for this time for real! Ironically Stephen Elop could be Microsoft’s next CEO too!

Then in the Microsoft end, here’s the mess Steve Ballmer leaving for his successor:

  1. Windows 8 and Office have failed to produce break-through turnaround in Microsoft’s gradual decline cash-cow business. It has found no business model to survive in today’s Google and Apple invented could centric App, Service Content ecosystem model. iPad, Android succeeded without MS Windows or MS Office anywhere near them.
  2. The Surface tablets have more or less died in the market.
  3. The company’s just been through a massive top-level organizational change. That process will be disrupted while everyone waits to see if the new structure will stick with the new CEO (unlikely; new CEOs almost always want to change things).
  4. And now Microsoft needs to mesh and fix the Nokia and Microsoft businesses. There’s a cultural challenge. There are also operational challenges. It’s incredibly difficult to manage an operating system to please both your in-house hardware team and your licensees. They always want conflicting things. Microsoft claims it can both license Windows Phone and run Nokia. Whatta bluster, it will not work in practice. It’s an almost ridiculously complex situation. Who could make all of it work? Who has the ego big enough to even try?


Now to match iOS, Android duopoly ecosystem, MS need more than what MS has failed to do. Zune, Win Mobile, Tablet PC, Bing anyone? In a pre WINTEL world there were many PC OS systems, none survived well. Even Apple was 90 days from bankruptcy when MS put money on it to breath. But that genius guy called Steve Jobs turned it around for Apple with a per-determined plan, and then after the iPhone era was also just like that. None survived well. Palm OS, HP Web OS, RIM, Alcatel, Ericsson, Symbian, Meebo and now Nokia all dead and burned their platforms.

I think there may be room for at least 4-5 OS ecosystems in the world, the issue is none has the vision, guts, funds and time to get there while only main one or two can make money on this business. Widows-Mac OS, iOS-Android duopoly proved that. Samsung may be the new Dell and lucky child for the moment while Amazon is the company to look forward as a successor.

MS says it got in to 3rd place in mobile passing BlackBerry, Come on, you are beating already dead horse. You should be at least like Amazon to survive this onslaught. Otherwise MS will only loosing all the money it made on Windows and Office trying to get there as No 3 in mobile and retain it. The issue is they are already there after trying all this hard. But is there money in it? No way! To be successful Microsoft-Nokia would need to find a new business model that will challenge and render obsolete App, Ad and content combined hardware ecosystem business models pioneered by Apple, Google, Amazon and the likes. A very very risky undertaking even for the one time kings of the past to say the least. And to make matters worse they are even loosing their core business competence already. Windows 8.1 anyone?

(This is extracted from the web)
By far the smartest strategic thing either Nokia or BB could have done would have been to accept their weakness – they didn’t have an adequate OS or ecosystem – and focus on their strengths.

  1. BlackBerry should have adopted Android and made it enterprise-ready, with BBM for consumers. And, of course, those hardware keyboards.
  2. Nokia should have adopted Android-stock, and used their unmatched supply chain and distribution to do to their competitors, well, exactly what Nokia had been doing to their competitors for the last decade (if you think Samsung is running over everyone today, in 2007 they could only manage less than half of phones compared to what Nokia shipped.

Both BlackBerry and Nokia would have gotten a good OS and thriving Android ecosystem for free and been able to compete and differentiate themselves on the exact same area they had previously. To put it another way, RIM and Nokia had never been successful because of their OS or ecosystem, yet both decided their best response to iPhone iOS and Android was to build a new OS! Alas!

Building a healthy app ecosystem is probably the most difficult problem in technology even the expert Microsoft could not still do it right.

You need an API that can be built upon
You need an OS that developers want to use
You need consumers who are willing-to-pay
You need a liquid marketplace
You need to overcome the opportunity cost of developers working on other platforms

And so, for BlackBerry and Nokia at last, here came the fall.

Mobile computing will continue to evolve in form of new business models where hardware is not the source of profits but a distribution channel. Chances are that the new Microsoft together with what’s left of Nokia devices will not be a part of this now-showing future.

We will see.


Samsung along Androids flood the market here.

This is a cheapest dishonest, mean, pitiable, shabby, sordid version of iPhone 3GS, Anyone?

I’ve been running a small Apple products related shop in Colombo suburbs in Sri Lanka and have seen how our markets behave.

1. Our mobile market is very active and lucrative business right now growing super fast as anywhere else.

2. As anything else it IS preliminarily price sensitive.

3. We have very competitive GSM market with 5 neck-to-neck operators in a small 65,610 square kilometers. (Dialog GSM, Mobitel, Etisalat, Hutch and Airtel)

4. Few have repeatedly tried a subsidized model without any sort of success. Subsidized phones with contracts can not be sold here even if the phone is FREE given. Contract free, top-up, SIM swappable phones sell like hot cakes. We are a predominantly a prepaid market.

5. At the current market price (20.05.2013) cheapest new iPhone 5 costs Rs.100,000/- or 795USD here. Whatever brand recognition or hype Apple has, which is waning now you can not convince many persons to spend that kind of money on a phone even if they have money unless he or she is an Applacoholic. Rs.1 LAK is a mind barrier.

6. Our market always had phones for every sweet market spot. Traditional cheap Nokia and Chinese phones, luxury Nokia and Samsung clan had anyway got it all covered. From 20USD Feature phone to near 900USD Nokia N95 marketing had always flooded the market from the past.

7. Phones were phones, all dumb phones. None expected more than that unless a fashion or status statement as Nokia Vertu or the latest flagships according to the time.

In 2007 Apple iPhone DID change all that, everywhere.

8. Now after 6 years we (Asia) still don’t get iPhones. Walk in to any phone shop, they all have but condemn Chinese Androids and now recommend Samsung Galaxy as the De-facto Smartphone over once dominant Nokia. And the cheapest piece of Samsung Android sells as Galaxy Y (Android 2.3) for Rs. 15,000/- or 99USD a sweet package. Roughly a monthly wage of young worker.

9. After iOS 6.0 maps debacle and near impossible iPhone unlocking, bricking new bootrom 3GS killed even the refurbished market dead which I was based on. So from last year Apple advocate me and my company also had to start offering Android without having any other resort for us to survive.

10. No official iPhone (3GS, 4, 4S or 5) can be obtained by any of the 5 operators we have. Not even the grey market here now have iPhones for the above reason either.

11. Samsung is the new SONY. From TVs, to Smartphones to the electronics. Samsung is now well renowned, positioned and portrayed as the highest profile consumer brand and riding the waves. Locals have bad perception for Chinese. But they also catching up. No one knows nor they care that Samsung DID copied Apple or use the off-the-shelf Android. Or what is the real values of the Apple ecosystem can bring in for the users, as an option of choice at least. Most they want is to go online, Facebook, Google, play a game and have fun on their phones, have VOICE calls on their tablets. Quality, value, integrity and market differentiation apart Android now provides it all. I guess this is exactly the way commodity PC market grew on the 80’s and even my neighbor Indian market is heating up.

12. iPad has no Voice Calling Facility has perceived as very negative for Apple tablets here. More than Samsung, cheap Chinese Tabs which runs the latest Andy 4.2.2 sold in this regard.

13. Apple iOS 6.0 update brought few real surprise for the Apple’s remaining fanfare here. Google Maps which always had worked near perfect for them, which any darn corner of the street name can be looked upon was suddenly gone. Apple crowd was pretty used to it. Now Apple Maps killed the chance even to search the main cities here I live in, Imagine?

14. Samsung and carrier backed Android marketing is in full swing! Apple brand name is never heard of in any of the media circles for new breed of people who look at my iPad units at demo desk and ask, what is this tab? Is it Chinese? Don’t you guys have Galaxies? What the heck?

15. There was a notion Apple is considered a BMW to a Toyota. Not quite, I never buy that, not quite so in consumer electronics.

16. Where is Apple? From my point 8 to 15 Apple has no iPhone to showcase. So Apple is not been in the talk show lately.

17. Even car DVD setup and TV market is now warming up to Android embedded devices. When they all come in 4.3 Jellybean it’s almost iOS for almost everyone here.

If Apple don’t make junk products. There should be some ways they might move forward from here: They can surely figure out a way.

A cheaper strategy that do not hinder Apple’s own values better be put in to action soon.

I can see 2 ways around this.

(i) They figure out how to make a low-cost iPhone that’s not “piece of junk” (Well Galaxy S3 Mini)

(ii) They just can’t figure it out so can make the old 3GS or plastic iPhone 5 as unlocked iOS 7 device and market it aggressively.

Just look at the Samsung portfolio you will soon see how to differentiate. I know it is a soup of 90 devices a year marathon. But it DID remarkably well to established the Android Platform for Google and Galaxy Brand for Samsung. So ain’t Apple smart enough to figure out at least three (5 ideally) sweet market spots out of this soup???

As far as I can see this doesn’t have to be a demographics view, rather price and feature points, hardware or software differentiation for people with various needs who don’t care about the other.

You cater them all or soon you will be serving no one.

iPhone Category 1

Generally the cheapest iPod/ feature iPhone for

1. School/ Education (Safety/ Being in touch/ Locate/ Academic Apps) 2. Early Teenage/ Laborer/ Worker (Fun/ hyped/ iPod Nano like/ Basic Apps)

iPhone Category 2

Average Premium iPhone for

3. Late Teenage/ Worker/ Starter Executive (Fun/ Work/ Special Features/ Laser Measurements/ IR)
4. Junior Executive/ Manager (Management/ Work/ Special Features/ Projector/ Laser Pointer/ NFC)

iPhone Category 3

High Premium Designer iPhone for

5. Affluent/ Celebrity (Hype)
6. Specific high-skill professional market (Photographer, Doctor, Scientist, eCommerce/ Merchants)

This is at least 3 iPhone models. When Apple don’t respond to the market. This is happening right now .

In the Asian market.

i. Someone who makes a smartphone that is basically as good as the iPhone-or at least “good enough”- which radically undercut the iPhone on price and features. Now showing, Samsung Galaxy low end and other Chinese Android copies. They gather up the volumes.

That’s what tends to happen in consumer technology markets. And Apple’s massive profit margin leaves it highly exposed to this kind of competition.

ii. If a high-end smartphone market radically undercuts the iPhone on price, Apple will either be forced to sit and watch as it loses sales to the cheaper competitor-or match the competitor’s price. This is what Verizon did with original Droid which kicked off Android, it didn’t have much effect then on Apple there, but got wings in the Asia when Samsung dig it deeper. “Thermonuclear War” Anyone?

For Eg: Samsung still sells S3 and even S4 now 100USD cheaper than iPhone 5 now

Then this has to alter a bit of Apple iPad internals too. Mini and big iPad seems ok. But they sure has to be integrate two main features missing now seem to be a main-stream here, though iPad is the declining pioneer.

i. Add Voice Calling Facility
ii. Integrate handwriting Wacom Pen for productivity apps

Macs had long relationship with Wacom. I used it on my Mac since year 2000. I wonder how it slip through an Apple and got in to bed with Samsung? Samsung S Pen is high productive seller for professionals. Even software guys I know now prefer it over iPad.

I hope Apple make itself heard this chapter very clearly.

Goes unheard, Other than that I have personal business which I like to be Apple success focused, I have no personal bearings on this. I either can sell Apple,Samsung or Chinese brands in my shop for the same profit margins, sometimes even higher margins cos I portrait them against Apple prices. But I like the choice to be remain viable for my customers. Like what Mac vs PC brought to the world on personal perspectives. Any gain or market loss for Apple is a market loss for the Apple platform, hence iTunes, iPods and future Macs innovations to come. Killing it for whatever the ignorance with that 150B of cash pile is a shame to the man we all knew as Steve, the greatest visionary-marketeer of our time.

Platform Wars was or is as fierce as or more fearsome in the 2012 as the 90s Windows PC vs Apple Mac outcome.

I am sure Apple don’t feel the heat yet, but it’s apparent:

It’s all over 80 to 90 all out Mac-PC war again. Since PC won we consumers got lost the real choice and suffocated the PC innovation waves up until Apple itself shakes it with iPad. Bear in mind this had a long serious negative effect on both hardware and software innovation for years.

To wait another decade that to happen in mobile again is nightmare!

NB: After I wrote this article these reports come from India. Now Apple is reportedly pushed out of top 5 mobile players in India. I imagine this picture will be much worse, if Apple do not act on this fall 2013. Period.

Apple in India