The Return-To-Growth Edition Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Apple Sees A Return To Growth With Q1 2017’s Record Results, by Josh Centers, TidBITS

Overall, Apple seems to be starting 2017 on solid footing, with successes for the iPhone, Mac, Apple Watch, AirPods, and the company’s various services. However, the iPad continues to be a sore point, and the Apple TV results are distressing. However, the Apple TV is in no danger, since Cook mentioned its importance to Apple’s overall content strategy. And no matter what, Apple seems committed to pushing the iPad as the next step in technology. Since Apple is committed to these products, it needs to do more to make them the best they can be.

Apple’s Services Are Buoying Its Return To Growth As Its iPhone Engine Stalls, by Matthew Lynley, TechCrunch

Looking at the return to growth from last quarter, it also seems apparent that Apple’s slight jump from the first quarter last year was significantly buoyed by its growing services revenue. Apple’s services revenue was up 18% year-over-year in the first quarter, coming in at $7.2 billion. In the first quarter last year, the company reported around $6.1 billion in services revenue. With the $2.5 billion split, that services revenue accounted for a significant chunk of the difference.

iPad Sales Keep Shrinking — Down Another 20 Percent, by Ina Fried, Recode

Apple sold 13.3 million iPads, generating $5.5 billion in revenue. That represents a roughly 19 percent drop in units and a 22 percent drop in revenue from a year ago. [...] CEO Tim Cook added later that there were several factors in the quarter that influenced iPad sales, including a change in inventory levels and component shortages at one supplier — a shortage that continues into the current quarter.

Apple Watch Sets All Time Revenue Record In Q1 2017, by Juli Clover, MacRumors

Apple does not break out sales of the Apple Watch like it does for the iPhone, iPad, and Mac, but according to Apple CEO Tim Cook, the Apple Watch set all time unit and revenue records during the first fiscal quarter of 2017, suggesting significant sales during the holidays. [...] "Other," which includes the Apple TV, Apple Watch, Beats products, the iPod, and Apple-branded and third-party accessories (including the new AirPods), brought in $4.02 billion, down from $4.35 billion in the year-ago quarter.

Apple’s Record Profits Were Helped By A Calendar Quirk, by Vlad Savov, The Verge

But there’s one little asterisk to the whole happy affair, and that’s the fact that Apple’s financial Q1 2017 stretched out to 14 weeks rather than the usual 13, owing to a calendar peculiarity. [...]

Apple rightly makes the point that comparing quarters on an apples-to-apples basis is inadvisable and fraught with confounding factors. It’s something worth bearing in mind when considering the company’s own apples-to-apples comparisons for quarterly records.

This Is Tim

Apple Weighing Legal Action Against Trump Immigration Ban, To Match Employee Donations To Refugee Relief Funds, by Mikey Campbell, AppleInsider

Apple employees are also making quiet contributions and have increased donations to refugee relief funds, which the company plans to match on a 2-to-1 basis, Cook said. [...]

Apple has not yet decided whether to follow suit with its own legal option. Cook declined to comment on the matter, telling the WSJ that "we want to be constructive and productive."

Apple Still Acquires 15-20 Companies Per Year, Cook Says No Size Is Too Large To Consider, by Mike Wuerthele, AppleInsider

"There's not a size that we would not do, based on just the size of it," said Cook. "It's more of the strategic value of it."

Cook stopped short of discussing potential avenues of acquisition for the company, saying that "we are always looking at acquisitions." Apple has purchased between 15 and 20 companies per year, for the last four years.

Tim Cook Says Apple Had ‘No Choice’ But To Sue Qualcomm, by Lauren Goode, The Verge

“You should take from our filing that we viewed it as, we didn’t see another way forward,” Cook said in response to an analyst’s question about the high-profile lawsuit. “[Qualcomm was] insisting on charging royalties for technologies that they had nothing to do with,” he said, claiming that as Apple innovated with new features like its TouchID fingerprint sensors or advanced displays and cameras, Qualcomm would collect money “for no reason.”

Apple CEO Tim Cook: 'The World Needs The US And China To Win', by Matt Rosoff, CNBC

"We need more jobs," Cook told CNBC's Josh Lipton. "Everyone needs to do their fair share. We can do that without trade wars."

Photo Shoot

Shooting With The iPhone In Antarctica, by John Bozinov, Petapixel

Antarctica is the coldest, driest, and windiest continent on the planet, but despite its hostility and isolation, it is home to some of the most incredible wildlife seen anywhere on Earth, making it a paradise for nature photographers like myself.

When I learned that I would be spending two months down in the the region of the Antarctic Peninsula at the end of 2016, I knew it would be a great opportunity to shoot a photography project where I could capture the Antarctic landscape in a unique way.


Linea: An Elegant Sketching App For The iPad From The Iconfactory, by John Voorhees, MacStories

Drawing and sketching apps present difficult interface challenges. On the one hand, they should maximize the space reserved for their intended use – drawing. On the other, they need to include sufficient tools for users to create what they envision. It’s a balance that many apps get wrong. Some are too simple, forcing too many constraints on users, while others are horribly complicated and intimidating to new users. Linea, a new sketching app for the iPad from The Iconfactory, is exceptional because it manages an ease-of-use and approachability that is rare while maintaining just the right set of tools.

Krita Is A Fast, Flexible, And Free Photoshop Alternative Built By Artists, by Alan Henry, Lifehacker

If you’re on the lookout for a digital painting tool and Photoshop is too expensive, Krita is a fast, free, and open source art tool that was developed by artists looking for something that met their needs without a ton of bloat or overhead. Plus, it’s completely cross-platform.

How To Make Electricity (For iPad), by Tony Hoffman, PC Magazine

How to Make Electricity is a fun, interactive way to teach children about electricity and its generation. With a bit of supervision (provided in the Parents Zone section), kids can actually create some of the batteries they experimented with virtually in the labs, as well as embark on other simple projects. If you have a scientifically minded youngster, this app is a safe introduction to electricity (as opposed to my early exploration, which included an "experiment" involving a paper clip, magnet, and wall outlet).

LookUp — The Elegant Dictionary App Comes To The iPad, by Preshit Deorukhkar, Beautiful Pixels

The app makes great use of the bigger screen estate and the custom graphics attached to the words are especially great to look at. It also supports keyboard shortcuts, so you can look something up or navigate around with ease.

LG UltraFine 5K Display, Apple’s External Monitor Solution, Can Become Unusable When Used Near A Router, by Zac Hall, 9to5Mac

LG UltraFine 5K Display has a critical usability issue, however, that doesn’t affect other external monitors: the hardware can become unusable when used within 2 meters of a router.


Chrome For iOS Open-Sourced, by John Voorhees, MacStories

Google announced that Chrome for iOS has rejoined Chromium and been added to the open-source repository.


‘It’s Tricky’: Apple Has Missed The Deadline To Pay $13.9 Billion To Ireland In Illegal Tax Benefits, by Arjun Kharpal, CNBC

Apple has not fully paid the 13 billion euros ($13.9 billion) it owes to Ireland in illegal tax benefits even though the deadline has passed, the European Union's competition said on Tuesday.

"Well the recovery is not done yet but we have been working with the Irish authorizes and we can see that they are moving forward to do the recovery of the unpaid taxes," EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said during a press conference in response to a question by CNBC.

How I Beat My Browser Tab Addiction, by McKenzie Maxson, Tonic

I still keep my computer on, and I still use tabs. But this morning, with the experiment behind me, I sat down at my computer to see just just four tabs in my browser. Just four. That's just barely above the average. I'll call it progress.

Bottom of the Page

We all will just have to work harder.


Thanks for reading.