eXtensions - Suturday 6 May 2017
Cassandra: Apple Worries Settling Down; Thai Unease with Television Systems Including AppleTV; Ethics in Photography
By Graham K. Rogers
Another comment he makes is that while many (too many?) commentators focus on the iPhone as the sole metric of success, this is not all that Apple makes or does and that a reduced focus may be more realistic, with wearables, services and other products. This is how some of us have always looked at Apple.
Looking at a larger picture, sales of phones dropped as a whole this year, so while Apple is affected, this is a problem, that affects other handset makers, including Samsung. Putting the Chinese market in a wider context, Ivan Tang suggests that the figures for all will rise in coming quarters. He also notes that, although sales were stagnant, they were still "huge" and some of those apparently rising stars are expected to face problems in the coming months: Huawei from misleading customers about flash memory speeds; and all the Chinese stars from offline revenue growth.
Others also fret about the lower sales of iPads, when tablet sales all over are dropping. What they fail to take into account is that reduced sales of the iPad is now translating into increased sales of Macs and Apple never worries about cannibalism: it is all going into the same big pot.
With all the doom, a drop in the share price and recommendations from experts to sell, by Friday Apple shares had begun to rise again ($148.96). Warren Buffett was holding on to his, but selling a third of his IBM shares, and others began to note that the figures were not that bad after all. Is any company capable of producing a quarterly income of over $50 billion?
The Apple product was specifically mentioned in an announcement a week or so ago with regard to piracy potential, which suggests that whoever is providing the information is misinformed or has an axe to grind. In the light of dwindling subscriptions - a worldwide problem - there has been some finger-pointing.
The authorities have come out with a slightly altered stance but still the concern is over access to content. In normal fashion here, those in power put together a committee of wise old men from academia (Mass communication) and they are examining the question from certain angles which on the face of it seem sensible, but one might read between the lines to see real intentions. They want to
The authorities and academics are examining the situation in the light of the status quo - trying to apply rules which were created for old media forms. This is apparently what happened when the first attempt to write a law for the internet was made about 20 years ago. I was involved in making this and its problems public in a series of articles I wrote for the Bangkok Post in 1997-98.
By the time I came to write the second article, the draft law was only put out in Thai and I needed help in translation. The pressure, of which I was only a part, led to a public meeting after which the proponent withdrew it. I am not sure if what was eventually enacted was any better.
It is no coincidence (in the light of recent examination of the proposed control regulations on journalists) that that the 1997-98 drafts were based on Singapore laws for controlling radio. That was as near as they could approach back then and there is still the same lack of imagination. As I have written on a number of occasions, with regard to TV delivery, the landscape has changed and those unable (or unwilling) to evolve will be pushed out of the way.
One of the themes concerns the use of metadata and it is easier to show students this with file searches on the Mac and with photographs. Metadata has been used to prove and disprove guilt particularly with the use of time stamps. While plagiarism is unfortunately common with text, it is less so with images, although these are sometimes stolen (even images from this site appear elsewhere with no link or accreditation).
Graham K. Rogers teaches at the Faculty of Engineering, Mahidol University in Thailand. He wrote in the Bangkok Post, Database supplement on IT subjects. For the last seven years of Database he wrote a column on Apple and Macs. After 3 years writing a column in the Life supplement, he is now no longer associated with the Bangkok Post. He can be followed on Twitter (@extensions_th)
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