Greg's bite: Xoom info
TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Greg's bite: Xoom info

By Greg Mills

From what I read about the upcoming Xoom tablet, it may not be the long anticipated iPad killer the PC crowd has been longing for. As I have mentioned in this space, the Tablet OS situation continues to be a problem for the companies that want a piece of Apple's pie.  Motorola, a household name in electronics has scrambled to offer something to compete with iPad. From what is known about Xoom, Apple's iPad is still safe.

Android for smart phones has been tweaked to accommodate a larger screen but will likely have most of the Android underpinnings. I have not read where Android apps can run on Xoom in the smaller mode as in the iOS iPad. Rumors are that Google has cooked up the tablet version of Android and calls it Honeycomb. Motorola has obtained an exclusive right to use Honeycomb for a period of time to allow them to launch Xoom.

The technical specs and price points floated are likely to sink Motorola's boat immediately upon launching. First of all, the Honeycomb OS is completely new, and you know how beta versions of a new OS are. The lack of apps will be another major selling point that is not available to them. The price points floated point to an immediate disconnect as consumers compare Xoom with iPad. You can be sure every new tablet launched will be compared to iPad. What is even scarier for Motorola, they don't know what the iPad 2 will offer that completely blows them out of the water before they can even begin to recoup the cost of bringing the Xoom to market.

Rumors are for a Feb. 17 launch and a price point of US$800. As with the Galaxy Tab from Samsung,  Xoom might have to be sold with a discount from a cell phone company that subsidizes the price with a two year contract for data. Since Apple products are generally perceived as top of the line, tying to sell for a higher price is likely to be hard.  

Sporting a dual core processor and a 10.1 inch color screen the Xoom will look at first blush a lot like an iPad. It comes with physical Bluetooth keyboards, dock and the like. It's advertised to have a touch screen at 150 DPI with "pinch to zoom" interface, 1220X800 Pixels, 720p video playback, upgradeable to 4G, runs Flash, 1G of internal RAM and front and back cameras. The Xoom compares well with the iPad 1, but you have to know the iPad 2 is likely to set a new and higher set of standards that will relegate the Xoom to being a bit player in the slate market.  

Motorola is comparing itself to last year's iPad, and the timing couldn't be worse for them.  Rumors are that iPad 2 will go into production soon and has two cameras, a dual core chip and all the more expensive things the Xoom boasts. If Apple can maintain its price points, the Xoom is toast. Also, pinching on a touch screen to change the size of graphics being displayed sounds vaguely familiar.  

Look for a Federal lawsuit against Motorola claiming patent infringement within a few months of Xoom coming out. It takes a while for Apple's lawyers to get a new patent infringement case into the system, as they are back logged right now.

Never having to look too hard at Microsoft goings on for a good laugh, it seems Redmond has prepared a PowerPoint presentation to suggest "talking points" to help partners understand why Windows based slates are better for them in business than iPads. It seem the recent financial report from Apple stating that iPad already represents 7% of the global PC market hit a nerve.  

Suddenly the little Apple in the rear view mirror seemed much closer. One of the reasons they cited for going with Windows slate computers instead of iPads was due to security issues? Talk about a distortion zone. Windows of any flavor has to rate at the very bottom of the list of operating systems for security issues. Apple need not respond in kind; Windows support techs all know where their bread is buttered. Macs tend to put them out of business. 

Kodak struck out in a patent infringement suit against Apple and RIM for using scaled down "thumbnail" icons to represent full images. You click on the icon to open the full image. One of the defenses against a patent infringement suit is that the patent is invalid due to obviousness. A slippery slope in patent law is where what is ground-breaking innovation to some is claimed to be obvious and not patentable by the company being sued.  

The US Supreme Court ruled in 2007 that: "Granting patent protection to advances that would occur in the ordinary course without real innovation retards progress and may, in the case of patents combining previously known elements, deprive prior inventions of their value or utility." The court wrote this in a majority decision penned by Justice Anthony Kennedy.  Read more: http://news.cnet.com/Supreme-Court-loosens-patent-obviousness-test/2100-1014_3-6180220.html#ixzz1C3Jyvqo2 . Look for the obviousness test to be used by and against Apple in the ongoing patent infringement actions regarding iOS devices.  

The Apple iPad is just being launched in Japan, and the country is going iPad mad. The Japanese are the world's greatest early adopters, and sales in Japan may well exceed expectations as iPad is getting rave reviews and everyone wants one. International sales of Apple product is gaining a lot of traction and may reach 50% of total sales soon. 

Bloomberg posted a story claiming they were sure Apple is going to put a near-field communications chip in the coming iPhone 5 and iPad 2. This allows users to swipe their iOS devices near a credit card terminal that has a near-field radio reader built in to charge things easily. This is particularly helpful with minor purchases such as a meal at McDonalds.

I have a near-field chip in a little rubber credit card CitiBank send me. I put it under the rubber cover on iPhone and now just swipe it to buy gas or pay for things with that credit card. I have mentioned the possibility that Apple would get into the credit card business themselves, but so far they only contract with a credit card issuer for financing options at the online Apple store.

Rumors give and take away features we can hope for in upcoming Apple devices.  The "retinal display" or high definition screens hoped for in iPad 2 may wait until iPad3. Doubling the screen resolution of iPad would give us 2048x1536. From what I read the cost currently for such a display is prohibitive to maintain price points.  

Apple tends to pack more into products at the same or a lower price and, while an HD iPad sounds great, will the extra $100 added to the price hurt sales? Yep, it isn't likely to happen.  Could the $4 billion Apple has prepaid be to allow some screen manufactures to tool up for an HD screen for future iPads? I think that the most likely part they are investing in.  

When RIM engineers were astounded at the battery life on the first iPhone they told management at RIM that Apple mounted a screen and tiny circuit board on a battery, and that is how Apple got the battery life they claimed. Touch screens are the most expensive part of an iPad and having an exclusive supply on an HD touch screen for iPad would certainly lock out the competition for a while longer.    

That's Greg's bite for today.

(Greg Mills is currently a Faux Artist in Kansas City. Formerly a new product R&D man for the paint sundry market, he holds 11 US patents. He's working on a solar energy startup using a patent pending process of turning waste dual pane glass into thermal solar panels used to heat water. Married, with one daughter still at home, Greg writes for intellectual web sites and Mac related issues. See Greg's web sites at http://www.gregmills.info . He can be emailed at gregmills.mac.)

 
AAPL
$116.47
Apple Inc.
+0.16
MSFT
$47.98
Microsoft Corpora
-0.72
GOOG
$537.50
Google Inc.
+2.67

MacTech Search:
Community Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Cobook 3.0.7 - Intelligent address book....
Cobook Contacts is an intuitive, engaging address book. Solve the problem of contact management with Cobook Contacts and its simple interface and powerful syncing and integration possibilities.... Read more
StatsBar 1.9 - Monitor system processes...
StatsBar gives you a comprehensive and detailed analysis of the following areas of your Mac: CPU usage Memory usage Disk usage Network and bandwidth usage Battery power and health (MacBooks only)... Read more
Cyberduck 4.6 - FTP and SFTP browser. (F...
Cyberduck is a robust FTP/FTP-TLS/SFTP browser for the Mac whose lack of visual clutter and cleverly intuitive features make it easy to use. Support for external editors and system technologies such... Read more
Maya 2015 - Professional 3D modeling and...
Maya is an award-winning software and powerful, integrated 3D modeling, animation, visual effects, and rendering solution. Because Maya is based on an open architecture, all your work can be scripted... Read more
Evernote 6.0.1 - Create searchable notes...
Evernote allows you to easily capture information in any environment using whatever device or platform you find most convenient, and makes this information accessible and searchable at anytime, from... Read more
calibre 2.11 - Complete e-library manage...
Calibre is a complete e-book library manager. Organize your collection, convert your books to multiple formats, and sync with all of your devices. Let Calibre be your multi-tasking digital... Read more
Herald 5.0.1 - Notification plugin for M...
Note: Versions 2.1.3 (for OS X 10.7), 3.0.6 (for OS X 10.8), and 4.0.8 (for OS X 10.9) are no longer supported by the developer. Herald is a notification plugin for Mail.app, Apple's Mac OS X email... Read more
Firetask 3.7 - Innovative task managemen...
Firetask uniquely combines the advantages of classical priority-and-due-date-based task management with GTD. Stay focused and on top of your commitments - Firetask's "Today" view shows all relevant... Read more
TechTool Pro 7.0.6 - Hard drive and syst...
TechTool Pro is now 7, and this is the most advanced version of the acclaimed Macintosh troubleshooting utility created in its 20-year history. Micromat has redeveloped TechTool Pro 7 to be fully 64... Read more
PhotoDesk 3.0.1 - Instagram client for p...
PhotoDesk lets you view, like, comment, and download Instagram pictures/videos! (NO Uploads! / Image Posting! Instagram forbids that! AND you *need* an *existing* Instagram account). But you can do... Read more

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

Ubisoft Gives Everyone Two New Ways to E...
Ubisoft Gives Everyone Two New Ways to Earn In-Game Stuff for Far Cry 4 Posted by Jessica Fisher on November 21st, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »
Golfinity – Tips, Tricks, Strategies, an...
Dig this: Would you like to know what we thought of being an infinite golfer? Check out our Golfinity review! Golfinity offers unlimited ways to test your skills at golf. Here are a few ways to make sure your score doesn’t get too high and your... | Read more »
Dark Hearts, The Sequel to Haunting Meli...
Dark Hearts, The Sequel to Haunting Melissa, is Available Now Posted by Jessica Fisher on November 21st, 2014 [ permalink ] Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad | Read more »
Meowza! Toyze Brings Talking Tom to Life...
Meowza! | Read more »
Square Enix Announces New Tactical RPG f...
Square Enix Announces New Tactical RPG for Mobile, Heavenstrike Rivals. Posted by Jessica Fisher on November 21st, 2014 [ permalink ] With their epic stories and gorgeous graphics, | Read more »
Quest for Revenge (Games)
Quest for Revenge 1.0.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.0.0 (iTunes) Description: The great Kingdom of the west has fallen. The gods ignore the prayers of the desperate. A dark warlord has extinguished... | Read more »
Threadz is a New Writing Adventure for Y...
Threadz is a New Writing Adventure for You and Your Friends Posted by Jessica Fisher on November 21st, 2014 [ permalink ] In the tradition of round-robin storytelling, | Read more »
SteelSeries Stratus XL Hardware Review
Made by: SteelSeries Price: $59.99 Hardware/iOS Integration Rating: 4 out of 5 stars Usability Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars Reuse Value Rating: 4.25 out of 5 stars Build Quality Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars Overall Rating: 4.31 out of 5 stars | Read more »
ACDSee (Photography)
ACDSee 1.0.0 Device: iOS iPhone Category: Photography Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0.0 (iTunes) Description: Capture, perfect, and share your photos with ACDSee. The ACDSee iPhone app combines an innovative camera, a powerful photo... | Read more »
ProTube for YouTube (Entertainment)
ProTube for YouTube 2.0.2 Device: iOS Universal Category: Entertainment Price: $1.99, Version: 2.0.2 (iTunes) Description: ProTube is the ultimate, fully featured YouTube app. With it's highly polished design, ProTube offers ad-free... | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

Save up to $400 with Apple refurbished 2014 1...
The Apple Store has restocked Apple Certified Refurbished 2014 15″ Retina MacBook Pros for up to $400 off the cost of new models. An Apple one-year warranty is included with each model, and shipping... Read more
New 13-inch 1.4GHz MacBook Air on sale for $8...
 Adorama has the 2014 13″ 1.4GHz/128GB MacBook Air on sale for $899.99 including free shipping plus NY & NJ tax only. Their price is $100 off MSRP. B&H Photo has the 13″ 1.4GHz/128GB MacBook... Read more
Apple Expected to Reverse Nine-Month Tablet S...
Apple and Samsung combined accounted for 62 percent of the nearly 36 million branded tablets shipped in 3Q 2014, according to early vendor shipment share estimates from market intelligence firm ABI... Read more
Stratos: 30 Percent of US Smartphone Owners t...
Stratos, Inc., creator of the Bluetooth Connected Card Platform, has announced results from its 2014 Holiday Mobile Payments Survey. The consumer survey found that nearly one out of three (30 percent... Read more
2014 1.4GHz Mac mini on sale for $449, save $...
 B&H Photo has lowered their price on the new 1.4GHz Mac mini to $449.99 including free shipping plus NY tax only. Their price is $50 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price available for this new... Read more
Check Apple prices on any device with the iTr...
MacPrices is proud to offer readers a free iOS app (iPhones, iPads, & iPod touch) and Android app (Google Play and Amazon App Store) called iTracx, which allows you to glance at today’s lowest... Read more
64GB iPod touch on sale for $249, save $50
Best Buy has the 64GB iPod touch on sale for $249 on their online store for a limited time. Their price is $50 off MSRP. Choose free shipping or free local store pickup (if available). Sale price for... Read more
15″ 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro on sale for $17...
 B&H Photo has the 2014 15″ 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro on sale for $1799.99 for a limited time. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only. B&H will also include free copies of... Read more
New Logitech AnyAngle Case/Stand Brings Flexi...
Logitec has announced the newest addition to its suite of tablet products — the Logitech AnyAngle. A protective case with an any-angle stand for iPad Air 2 and all iPad mini models, AnyAngle is the... Read more
Notebook PC Shipments Rise Year-Over-Year as...
According to preliminary results from the upcoming DisplaySearch Quarterly Mobile PC Shipment and Forecast Report, the global notebook PC market grew 10 percent year-over-year in Q3’14 to 49.4... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC)- Retail S...
**Job Summary** The ASC is an Apple employee who serves as an Apple brand ambassador and influencer in a Reseller's store. The ASC's role is to grow Apple Read more
Project Manager, *Apple* Financial Services...
**Job Summary** Apple Financial Services (AFS) offers consumers, businesses and educational institutions ways to finance Apple purchases. We work with national and Read more
*Apple* Store Leader Program - College Gradu...
Job Description: Job Summary As an Apple Store Leader Program agent, you can continue your education as you major in the art of leadership at the Apple Store. You'll Read more
*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions (US) - A...
Sales Specialist - Retail Customer Service and Sales Transform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, you're also the Read more
Senior Event Manager, *Apple* Retail Market...
…This senior level position is responsible for leading and imagining the Apple Retail Team's global event strategy. Delivering an overarching brand story; in-store, Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.