From the Editors
"The lights have dimmed in San Francisco's Yerba Buena Center for the Arts Theater, and journo-bloggers have published closing one-liners on their live blogs, uploading final pics of the new longer, skinnier and more powerful iPhone 5," says a journo-blogger at Technorati. "It is time for Apple's annual post-product and OS release ritual, as fan boys (and girls) dance proudly around the fires newly stoked by Apple CEO Tim Cook and crew, while head-shaking iHaters stand just outside the warm, orange-y ring of light, waiting their turn to jeer and mock." Hmm - somebody just got back from Burning Man. Yes, the desperately awaited, completely unnecessary and sure-to-sell-loads iPhone 5 was introduced this Wednesday. The question now: what's so 5 about the iPhone 5?
The satirical Onion was quick with its satirical list of satirical new features, including "Frictionless no-grip casing eases transition from hand to floor," and "Is pathetic piece of sh*t compared to the iPhone 6." But really. Seriously. Somebody might want one. Let's see: TheNextWeb reports that the screen is now four inches high - allowing an extra row of icons! - and the phone is 18% thinner than the iPhone 4S. So you can stack more the same pile. The phone also has faster chips for processing and graphics. And LTE connectivity with a single chip that works worldwide. Also newly designed Apple EarPods, and a better dock connector. And a better front camera. Whew! (sort of). TechRepublic says the new model "lacks a killer" feature, but it's not "lackluster." "The screen is bigger. But the screens on Android devices have grown steadily over the past several years as well. It's thinner and lighter than past iPhones, but so are the latest phones from Motorola and Samsung. It supports 4G LTE. But so do lots of Android devices. It has an A6 SoC, better camera, and longer battery life.
Individually, none of these upgrades are a reason to rush out and buy the phone. What will make the iPhone 5 a hit with consumers is the software and services ecosystem Apple has built around the device. From iOS and the App Store to iTunes and iCloud, iPhone buyers get a complete package -- and one that the company is also upgrading." Who was talking about lacking luster?! Mashable notes that whether you want one now or not, the iPhone 5's response to its Android enemies "couldn't come soon enough. Sales of the iPhone fell off a cliff last quarter....The release of the iPhone 5 should move the needle back up, and some analysts are predicting Apple will sell 10 million units in just the first three weeks." Also, some goofball has composed an awful pop/rap song video about the phone's features. Maybe the least watchable telephone-related music video since the Sims 2 perfiormed Lady Gaga's "Telephone" on YouTube in 2010. Meanwhile, at FastCoDesign a general argument is made that Apple design is wrong. Interface designers need to "stop aping real-life bookshelves and suede calendars like Apple does." Why? Basically, new inventions need new interfaces. For example, the Kindle works great as a book reader, but Apple's book app, with "overtly rendered paper textures" and animated page turns to replicate a real book, is needlessly more "theatrical" than it needs to be.
In other tech news, Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg denied interest in a Facebook phone, according to BGR, because "just doesn't make any sense," which makes sense. He was speaking in his first post-IPO interview, at the TechCrunch Disrupt Conference (TechCrunch of course is our favorite breakfast cereal). Zuck said the company's stock performance has been disappointing and "when asked by moderator Michael Arrington whether the stock drop is hurting employee morale, Zuckerberg quipped: 'It doesn't help'." according to All Things D. Techcrunch itself presents "the best soundbites" from the Zuckerview.
THR has an interesting report on seven ways a Romney win would change Hollywood. Deregulation of course: "Restrictions on cross ownership in major urban markets might be the first regulations to fall under a Romney administration." Also more regulation: on content. Anti-pornography language made it into the GOP platform. "Envision a bunch of guys...endlessly scrutinizing ABC, NBC, CBS and Fox for wardrobe malfunctions." Daily Kos notes that the platform's "crackdown on pornography could pit social conservatives against hotel operators and television providers" like Comcast and Verizon that offer dirty movies.
Speaking of nudity, Facebook, and Apples. How about this Adam and Eve cartoon from The New Yorker magazine that Facebook banned because it showed certain identifying marks that indicated it was Adam and Eve? Explains Media Coder: By Facebook policy, "In a nutshell: even in cartoons, men's nipples are O.K., women's not." That's literally the rule, as Gawker has revealed. Probably a good rule generally to keep the place clean. The NYer called it Nipplegate and in protest presented a new version with the characters clothed, so they really weren't Adam and Eve anymore and there was no joke. But Comic Riffs reports that Facebook relented and allowed the original (sin) comic.