2018 iPhone Aims To Disrupt Mobile Carriers

“Many people repeat the past. I’m not interested. I prefer evolution.”

-Issey Miyake

(Source: Flickr)

Throughout the history of the iPhone, there has been one thing that’s been by its sides this whole time: a SIM card. However, this may be disrupted soon as the grand debut of the eSim is coming. The eSim is a chip that is soldered to the phones circuit board, as opposed to a chip that’s inserted into the phone.

Apple wants this for a couple reason. For one, they have been trying to get rid of all ports on the iPhone to make it completely waterproof (remember the headphone jack?). However, the main reason is that it would allow users to switch carriers over the air at any time. Users would no longer have to get a new SIM card by mail or in person, increasing efficiency. Let’s say you are receiving poor service in a location. You have the ability to switch carriers on the whim without going to get a new SIM card.

(Source: DazeInfo)

Although this is a huge benefit for the users of the phone, it demonstrates a huge disadvantage for all mobile carriers. Being that users can switch carriers at any time, companies such as AT&T should be scared they’re going to lose business. This move would strengthen Apple’s customer relationships as they are more attached to the phone and less so the carrier.

Apple has already started implementing the use of this technology in their Apple Watch 3. The company uses eSIMs from STMicroelectronics for that model and are expected to continue to use them for the upcoming iPhone.

On April 3rd I Know First algorithm issued a bullish forecast on AAPL

AAPL gained 22.5% since this forecast

This bullish forecast for AAPL was sent to the current I Know First subscribers on April 3, 2018.

To subscribe today click here.

Apple Quietly Rolls Out New MacBook Pros

“The digital revolution is far more significant than the invention of writing or even of printing”

– Douglas Engelbart

(Source: Apple)

With a new Apple device usually comes a big conference broadcasted to the world. However, that was not the case with Apple’s MacBook Pro, which got a revamp on July 12. The new laptops are, as Apple puts it, “the most advanced Mac notebook ever.”

This brand new reboot clocks in at 70% faster performance for the 15 inch mode and up to twice the performance for the smaller 13 inch model. The company states that device will be able to compile developers code faster than any machine. With SSD capacity doubling, Apple is hoping to bring in more developers to their platform. And yes, battery life has increased to last all day.

(Source: Apple)

The new computer also adds the T2 Chip, which adds extra security. The chip delivers enhanced system security through a new encryption storage system. The chip also allows users to say “Hey Siri” prompting Siri to pop up on the laptop.

You may recall our previous article where we talked about the problem with Apple’s butterfly keyboard. It seems Apple has fixed many of the problems with it, making typing quieter, softer, and less clicky. More importantly, the new MacBook fixes the previous dust problem that caused the keyboard to break. Now there is a silicone membrane underneath each key to help protect the mechanism from debris.

To sum up perfectly the new MacBook Pros, Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president, stated, “Now with 8th-generation 6-core processors, up to 32GB of system memory, up to 4TB of super fast SSD storage, new True Tone technology in its Retina display and Touch Bar, the Apple T2 chip for enhanced security and a third-generation quieter keyboard packed into its thin and light aluminum design with all-day battery life, it’s the best notebook for pro users.”

The 2018 MacBook Pros are available for purchase right now.

AAPL hiked following the announcement of the new MacBook Pros

(Source: YCharts)

On April 3rd I Know First algorithm issued a bullish forecast on AAPL

AAPL gained 22.5% since this forecast

This bullish forecast for AAPL was sent to the current I Know First subscribers on April 3, 2018.

To subscribe today click here.

Google’s Former Head of AI Looks to Propel Apple’s Machine Learning

“Artificial Intelligence is a tool not a threat”

-Rodney Brooks

                                                                                                                 (Source: Flickr)

A couple months ago, John Giannandrea, the former head of Google’s search and artificial intelligence division, joined Apple. Reporting directly to Tim Cook, Apple stated that they wanted John to run Apple’s “machine learning and A.I. strategy”. The company is confident in his ability to utilize AI while keeping customers privacy intact.

Apple recently updated their leadership page to include John’s position with Apple, which is Chief of Machine Learning and AI strategy. The company is now combining the machine learning and AI team under John’s leadership. Thus, Core ML and Siri teams are working under one umbrella for the first time.

(Source: Apple)

This is a big win for Apple because they are currently lacking in the AI industry, mainly due to their protection of privacy causing limitations on data collection. Compared to competitors, such as Facebook and Google, Apple is leagues behind in development. John could provide great potential for the growth of Siri and other machine learning technology.

This also has the potential to make advancements for HomePod which uses Siri, a speaker similar to Amazon’s Alexa. The HomePod only has 6% of marketshare, so an expanse into a more knowledgeable Siri could bring it into more homes. Also, with the new Apple maps roll out happening soon, the company hopes for AI to make it more powerful and accurate than ever.

AAPL has been down this week, along with the DOW.

AAPL and DOW (Source: Yahoo Finance)

Apple Surpasses Streaming Giant Spotify

“The worlds most famous and popular language is music” – Psy

As of this week, Apple Music has surpassed Spotify’s paid subscriber count in the United States, making it the number one streaming service in the country. According to Digital Music News, Apple music, with a growth rate of 5% and over 20 million U.S. subscribers, is growing faster than Spotify. However, Spotify still holds the reign worldwide with over 70 million subscribers compared to Apples 45 million.

This is a big win for Apple, but it will be hard to get a global win on Spotify. The majority of iPhone users reside in the United States, so it is easier for them to use Apple Music since it is built into iOS. That being said, Spotify has an advantage on Apple due to it’s free streaming feature. Although they have to listen to ads, Spotify has 170 million users with the inclusion of those who stream for free.

(Source: Gear Patrol)

Apple does have an advantage over Spotify in a couple areas. For starters, Apple Music has 10 million more songs than Spotify. Also, being that Apple is such a giant company, it is easier for them to snatch exclusive albums. For example, Dr Dre’s highly anticipated album, Compton, was only available to be streamed on Apple Music upon release. As Apple releases more exclusive content, it will bring more Spotify users over. Also, with Apple’s upcoming video streaming service, there is rumored to be a package that combines both the music and video services, another source of new users.

To better compare the two, rap star Drake released an album on both streaming services. Spotify advertised the album like crazy, placing the rapper into virtually all their playlists. Unfortunately, their efforts did not pay off as Apple Music users streamed his album, Scorpion, 170 million times to Spotify’s 130 million in the first 24 hours of release. So, although Spotify has more subscribers, they seem to be less engaged with the content.

AAPL up past week, beating the DOW by 1%.

AAPL & DOW (Source: Yahoo Finance)

Apple Aims To Better iPhone Performance and Price

“If there’s a way to do it better – find it”- Thomas Edison

(Source: Flickr)

As fall approaches, so do the rumors of the brand new iPhone. This year Apple is planning to do something that everyone can rally behind: cut iPhone prices. Ming-Chi Kuo, Apple’s most prominent insider, has stated that new iPhone prices could be fewer than $300 their current price.

There will be three phones revealed this year: a cheaper iPhone X at $600, iPhone X at $800, and iPhone X Plus at $900. The upcoming iPhone X is clocking in 10% faster than past single core performance and an increase of ram from 3gb to 4gb. Although not as big of a performance upgrade as any other iPhone release, Apple is putting most of the improvements in iOS 12 to increase speed and fluidity.

New iPhone Renders (Source: Macworld)

 

The upcoming iPhone is also rumored to be incorporating a USB-C to Lightning Cable with purchase. The company seeks to have compatibility within all Apple devices, since the new MacBooks don’t support the current USB-A charger. The new charger would give up to 18W, allowing fast charging, which charges an iPhone to 50% in under 30 minutes.

USB-C to Lightning (Source: Apple)

Apple’s stock has been volatile the past week.

AAPL (Source: Yahoo Finance)

Apple’s Upcoming Product Updates Build On Predecessors

“We’re very simple people at Apple. We focus on making the world’s best products and enriching people’s lives” -Tim Cook

(Source: Wikimedia)

 

Apple Maps From The Ground Up

When Apple Maps was launched in 2012, it was met with nationwide controversy as the GPS service was imprecise and users were ending up at the wrong destination. Apple plans to change this as they have been rebuilding Apple Maps from the ground up for four years. The iOS map app currently uses third party data for mapping, which is unsatisfactory for Apple’s ability to make the best mapping platform possible. Thus, the new Apple Maps will rely on first person data collected from iPhone user data, providing more accurate and precise directions. The use of iPhone data allows Apple Maps to find the quickest routes possible, since it uses user data to locate traffic and how individuals get to their destination. Also, to provide accuracy, the company has deployed Apple vans across the country to take photos and map out roads.

Rebuilding Apple Maps is the only way the company believes it could create the best mapping software possible. Apple SVP, Eddie Cue, stated, “We have been working on trying to create what we hope is going to be the best map app in the world, taking it to the next step. That is building all of our own map data from the ground up.” The new Apple Maps will first be available to San Francisco on iOS 12, followed by a U.S. roll-out.

Apple Maps Car (Source: Flickr)

AirPods Get Luxurious

Apple’s ludicrously successful wireless headphones, AirPods, are rumored to be getting a high end version in 2019. Reports coming out are stating that the new AirPods will have noise cancellation, water resistance, biometrics, and an increased range. One of the biggest issues surrounding Apple’s Beats and AirPod line is that they aren’t antiperspirant, preventing users from working out with them on. So these higher end headphone will solve the problem and widen Apple’s headphone market to the fitness sector. In recent years, the company has been promoting positive health and one way they are advancing this is through biometric sensors. Biometrics will allow runners to see their heart rate and view their workout progress through the Health app.

AirPods (Source: Flickr)

Apple’s stock has been volatile this past week, dipping slightly late Friday afternoon.

AAPL Price (Source: YCharts)

Apple’s iOS 12 Beta Brings Helpful and Fun Features

“Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower” – Steve Jobs

(Source: Wikimedia)

On June 26, Apple released the iOS 12 public beta. By joining the Apple Beta Software Program, iOS users can test and help strengthen upcoming software updates before world wide release. Coming this fall, iOS 12 looks to make many improvements, both helpful and fun.

Even Faster

With this new version, iOS performance is significantly enhanced. Without a lag, there will be a 70% faster swipe to camera, 50% faster keyboard display, and twice the speed of launching Apps. Ever want to FaceTime with your whole family? Well now you can. Apple is rolling out Group FaceTime, the ability to video chat with 32 people at once.

Apple’s Fun Side

This new update is adding a lot of fun tools to joke around with and make your Android friends jealous. With state of the art face tracking technology, you can now have an Animoji, in your spitting image, track your facial movements and record personalized messages. Apple has added four new Animoji in this update.

(Source: Apple)

 

Cutting the Addiction

It’s fair to say an alarming portion of the population is, whether they know it or not, addicted to their smartphones. Apple knows this and is here to help. They are introducing Screen Time. This brand new feature monitors the amount of time you’re on your iOS device and displays it, helping you choose wisely usage time. Apple is hoping parents will utilize this information for their children; they added a time check feature that limits the amount of time your children can be on a certain app, such as games.

Another Blow to Facebook

As evident from our other articles, Apple takes privacy extremely seriously. They are taking that “fundamental human right” even further in iOS 12. Now, Apple will begin blocking websites from tracking your data without your permission. This prevents advertisers from targeting ads for you, a huge blow to Facebook who utilizes this data collection methodology.

AAPL was up following the release of the iOS 12 Beta.

AAPL, 6/26 (Source: Yahoo Finance)

In a Rare Move, Apple Admits to Faulty MacBook Keyboard

“Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.” – Steve Jobs

(Source: Pixabay)

In 2015, Apple ditched their classic keyboard design for a new, sleeker keyboard with a “butterfly” mechanism for their MacBook and MacBook Pro line. Apple claimed this new keyboard was 40% thinner, making it much easier and fluid to type.

Consumers started reporting that the keyboard was faulty and that just a tiny bit of dust caused the keyboard to repeat letters or not respond properly. Being that these devices started at $1,299, users were mad that Apple was not making an effort to address such a fault. Three years and three lawsuits later, Apple has finally stated that they will fix the faulty butterfly keyboard, free of charge.

In other news, analyst Eric Ross of Cascend Securities stated that, iPhone’s supply chain was “healthy and growing again”. This may be due to the restocking of the iPhone X, which is selling better than expected, causing suppliers to revamp selected parts for the device. Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty stated that the upcoming iPhone will be at cheaper cost as Apple looks to drop prices by 2%. So, this increase in supply may be for the new iPhone, releasing this September, which the company expects to sell greater quantities than last year.  

Apple’s stock was down .64% on Friday as an escalated fear of a trade war mounted a dip in the market.

(Source: Yahoo Finance)

Apple May Take a Hit From Escalating Trade War

You want to be the pebble in the pond that creates the ripple for change”- Tim Cook

(Source: Wikipedia)

The Building Trade War

On Monday morning, President Trump ordered the United States Trade Representatives to find $200 billion worth of Chinese goods to tariff. China responded by putting a tariff on $50 billion worth of U.S. goods. Trump has since threatened to enact yet another tariff on the country. Such escalation is sparking fear of a “trade war”.

A trade war spells trouble for Apple, a company headquartered in California and who manufactures mostly in China. The United State’s biggest import from China is smartphones, totaling $70.4 billion in 2017. JP Morgan has stated that “A substantial portion of China’s exports are western products manufactured locally — [such as] Apple (AAPL) iPhones.” Almost 20% of Apple’s revenue comes from China, as the company shipped over 41 million phones there. Although Apple has received reassurance from President Trump that they would not be on the list of items subjected for the tariff, the tech company still may be affected.

(Source: Wall Street Journal)

Will Tariffs Take a Bite out of Apple?

Apple has been increasing its inventory by 3.3 billion in preparation for possible repercussions. The company has many rightful worries on when and how they may be affected. Tariffs may affect Apple’s suppliers, causing major delays or a rise in costs. Fear also spawns over the possibility of a repeat of 2016: Apple services being banned by China. In doing so, China could make a huge push for citizens to use Chinese smartphones over American ones. Also, if China were to tax iPhones, prices would rise and Apple would be driven out of the market.

How the Market Reacted

Apple’s stock has slumped since the announcement of the additional tariffs.

(Source: YCharts)