Week in a Nutshell #9

Welcome to the ninth episode of the 'Week in a Nutshell’ series.

Apple Watch announcement event on Monday was definitely the highlight of this week. I read lots of articles about Apple Watch and the new MacBook which looks absolutely gorgeous.

Headlines:

  1. Everything You Need To Know About The Apple Watch
  2. Hands-on with the new 12-inch MacBook with Retina Display
  3. The Story Of Crossy Road. Mobile Game App that Made $10 Million in 90 Days

 


Everything You Need To Know About The Apple Watch

I'm not a smartwatch fan at this point. I have been using my LG G Watch for nearly 3 months now and I can't say that it has changed my life. Current capabilities of smartwatches definitely make them a good smartphone companion but actually I do not miss it when I forget wearing it on a given day. Mirroring smartphone notifications on your wrist is not a good enough motivation for me to keep on wearing the watch and reminding myself to charge it every other day.

I wear a wrist watch since elementary school but I recently realized that I started looking at my smartphone to check time instead. So, wearing a wrist watch turned into a purely apparel decision for me rather than the need of timekeeping and I believe this is true for many people. You make a personal statement about your taste, personality and also your socioeconomic status based on the wrist watch you wear every day. Apple is aware of that and I believe this is the reason why they are launching 3 different Apple Watch models,  Watch,  Watch Sport and  Watch Edition with interchangeable watch straps.

 Watch Edition model is the most speculative model as it has 18-Karat Gold case with the starting price of $10,000. It could cost you more depending on the watch strap that you choose. Apple is definitely targeting the upper segment customers with this model and also benefitting from lots of PR and word of mouth activity since everyone is talking about its price and pricing strategy. Watch is a tradition, a culture for some people. Owning a Rolex or a Patek Philippe watch is mostly a family tradition and basically owners pass these watches to their next of kin. Value of these watches increases as time passes. However, I assume you might need to change your  Watch every other year just as you change your iPhone. Time is the enemy of smartphones and smartwatches because it decreases their value over time as newer models surpasses the old. Therefore, I'm not sure if  Watch Edition model will be able to attract demand from this customer segment.

I just want to be clear. Apple will sell lots and lots of  Watches and boost its revenue and profits by launching a new product category. This is for sure. However, I believe  Watch performance in the long run might be similar to the iPad tablet category whose growth rate is declining compared to the high performing iPhone business.

Let me know what do you think about Apple Watch? Are you planning to buy one?


Hands-on with the new 12-inch MacBook with Retina Display

New version of the Macbook Air product line was also introduced during the Apple Watch event and Apple decided to remove the 'Air' word from its name. New MacBook is an engineering beauty. As an Electronics Engineer, my jaw drops every time Apple introduces a new Air device such as the original MacBook Air and the iPad Air. It takes another level of engineering to create hardware devices that thin. 

There are lots of complaints about the new Macbook not having any standard USB, ethernet or display ports. Apple stick with only one USB-C port to make the device thinner. However, I don't agree with all those complaints. Here is my take;

1) Personally, I don't use any of the USB Ports. I don't use an external hard drive since I store everything on Google Drive. I don't charge my smartphone over the USB port. I don't use an external keyboard and mouse but even if you do, most of the external keyboards and mouses support bluetooth connection. Every software that I use for both work and personal purposes are cloud based. I even don't need to install anything on my laptop. I don't use ethernet cable for internet connection, I use Wi-fi instead. So, I actually don't need a USB port for any of these. First MacBook Air received similar complaints when Apple removed the DVD drive but in reality, most of us stopped using DVDs and CDs for majority of our needs. 

2) My only concern is not having a dedicated Display Port to connect an external display. I'm used to using a larger monitor as my primary display at work so I believe I'd need to buy a dongle to be able to charge the MacBook and connect it to an external display at the same time. There will be dongles to increase the number of USB-C ports. This is Apple's classic monetization strategy to monetize its customers over the accessories.

3) New MacBook only weights 2.03 pounds (0.92 kg). It could be the perfect laptop for those people who spend lot of time commuting or conduct lots of customer visits. Basically its as light and thin as a tablet but without the touchscreen. 

4) Front facing camera is only 480p. I'm mostly surprised by this as many laptops and smartphones have a standard 720p front facing cameras.


The Story Of Crossy Road. Mobile Game App that Made $10 Million in 90 Days

Yes, you read it right. Crossy Road made $10 Million in 90 Days. Crossy Road is a nice combination of the famous retro game Frogger and the recent big hit Flappy Bird.

Crossy Road proves that one more time that minimalistic graphic design and simple gameplay mechanics could lead to great success in mobile application market.

 


We came to the end of the ninth episode of ‘Week in a Nutshell’ series. If you enjoyed this post, I'd be happy if you could comment, share, like and/or recommend it. 

Thanks,
Birkan