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Posts Tagged ‘Apple’

By Knowlton Thomas

It took the iPad—which some considered to be the most successful product launch ever—just under a month to reach one million sales.

Its next-gen successor, the iPad 2, nearly crossed it in a single weekend.

Analysts estimate Apple’s latest tablet pushed almost one million units during its debut weekend, and keep in mind that this was only a single-country launch. Apple’s shares remain stagnant on the news, but that’s probably because the whole market is slumping over myriad overseas controversies and instabilities.

Lineups for Apple retail outlets began days in advance, snaking through blocks and hundreds of people eagerly awaited Apple’s new device. Stock struggled to keep up with demand, or the million mark may just have been broken.

The iPad 2 launches in Canada and 25 other countries on March 25th.

Reposted from Techvibes Media

Knowlton Thomas is the Associate Editor of Techvibes Media. He is also the Web Editor of The Other Press, a weekly newspaper, and a regular columnist for them as well.

The RIC blog is designed as a showcase for entrepreneurs and innovation. Our guest bloggers provide a wealth of information based on their personal experiences. Visit RIC Centre for more information on how RIC can accelerate your ideas to market.

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By Rob Lewis

Apple’s Steve Jobs emerged from his medical leave last week and walked on stage to standing ovation to unveil the second-generation of the popular iPad.

According to Jobs, the iPad 2 is a “dramatically faster” dual core processor device that is 33 per cent thinner than the original. Some of the new features include cameras that can be used with the iPad 2’s video-conferencing software, FaceTime.

The iPad 2 is shipping March 11th in the US and March 25th in Canada. It will range in price from $499 US for the WiFi 16 GB version to $829 for the 64 GB version that supports both WiFi and 3G.

Apple also announced a new operating system, iOS 4.3, and new accessories for the iPad, including a magnetic cover that automatically puts the device into sleep mode and an HD video output cable that can be used while the device is charging.

During this morning’s event Apple also announced that the iPad has sold roughly 15 million units since it first hit stores in April 2010 and the 100 million iPhones have been sold since their launch.

According to MobileBeat, the BlackBerry PlayBook will hit shelves on April 10th. Ouch.

Reposted from Techvibes.com

Rob is the President of Techvibes Media and Editor in Chief of Techvibes.com.  His diverse background includes stints with International Trade Finance, Web Development, and Enterprise Software and he is a graduate of the University of British Columbia, British Columbia Institute of Technology, and Simon Fraser University.

The RIC blog is designed as a showcase for entrepreneurs and innovation. Our guest bloggers pro vide a wealth of information based on their personal experiences. Visit RIC Centre for more information on how RIC can accelerate your ideas to market.

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By Knowlton Thomas

As Microsoft struggles for relevance in the fast-paced, highly competitive portable device market, chief exec Steve Ballmer promised a Microsoft slate tablet by the Christmas season. Does this mean it will be buyable? Not necessarily—just that we’ll “see” them.

The timing coincides with Research in Motion’s Blackberry PlayBook, a hardware-heavy 7-inch device, and also somewhat with the forthcoming Dell streak, available in a PlayBook size and a 10-inch iPad size. Speaking of the iPad, Christmas is also looking like a good time for Apple to unveil a second-gen iPad, which is starting to look woefully underwhelming as considerably more capable tablets prep for market launch.

Reposted from Techvibes Media

Knowlton Thomas is the Associate Editor of Techvibes Media. He is also the Web Editor of The Other Press, a weekly newspaper, and a regular columnist for them as well.

The RIC blog is designed as a showcase for entrepreneurs and innovation. Our guest bloggers provide a wealth of information based on their personal experiences. Visit RIC Centre for more information on how RIC can accelerate your ideas to market.

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By Stephen Rhodes

A few weeks ago I mentioned that brand is not what you think it is, but what your customer thinks it is. And what your customer thinks  of your company is completely in your hands to control.

Witness the recent list of companies who have done their very best to change how their customers view their brand

Toyota noted for quality, particularly when compared to North American auto makers, has broken its promise with seemingly endless recalls. Google and Facebook have both felt the ire of their customers over privacy issues. Goldman Sachs, the investment bank, has suffered in the wake of the credit crunch in the United States.

In the past two weeks even the venerable Apple has run afoul of its customers with  its new iPhone 4. Apple finally acknowledged a problem with the iPhone 4’s reception but claims  it isn’t in the external antenna design, but rather with the iPhone 4’s formula to calculate signal strength bars. They promise a fix soon but it’s unlikely to remedy the reception problem, just the fact you will now know when you have lousy reception.

And then, of course,  there is BP.

Tom Bergin, of Reuters had a piece in the National Post BP’s colossal PR blunder about the Gulf oil spill.

“BP’s handling of the spill from a crisis management perspective will go down in history as one of the great examples of how to make a situation worse by bad communications,” said Michael Gordon, of New York based crisis public relations firm Group Gordon Strategic Communications.

“It was a combination of a lack of transparency, a lack of straight talking and a lack of sensitivity to the victims. When you’re managing an environmental disaster of this magnitude you not only have to manage the problem but also manage all the stakeholders.”

BP failed to understand the attitude and perception it was building in its customers’ minds.

The rise of Twitter, and other social media tools, allows companies to monitor what people are saying about them but also help them to engage actively with consumers. It also enables customers to communicate with each other, and it is the stories they share that can shape the future of a brand.

Credibility and trust are pillars in brand management. Break the promise with your customer and it’s difficult to recover.

Your thoughts?

Reposted from The Marketing Pad

Stephen Rhodes is President of The Marketing PAD, a full-service strategic communications and marketing company. Read Blogpad or visit  The Marketing Pad online.

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By Ken Cummings

Amidst a flurry of hype and expectations, Apple recently announced its next big idea in the form of a touch-screen, media-centred tablet computer, the iPad.  Reactions to the device have been mixed: some see a stylish but expensive netbook computer that lacks a keyboard and basic features.  Others see the tablet as creating a new market niche, with an emphasis on convenience over versatility.

The most obvious competition the iPad faces is from the established market segment of netbooks: the small, inexpensive PCs that perform most tasks of a full size laptop, albeit with limited processing speeds.

Unlike the iPad, most netbooks have USB ports, replaceable batteries, the ability to run multiple programs simultaneously, built-in webcams and keyboards, and freedom to install programs of all types.

However, in the media release, Steve Jobs made a key distinction: the iPad is not intended to replace a netbook.  Instead, he positions the device between smart phones and laptops; the next step in Apple’s desire to be seen as a maker of mobile devices, not just computers.  The iPad is to be a convenient media portal; a device that resides on your kitchen or coffee table, or perhaps in your briefcase, that allows you to enjoy shows, e-books, photos and the Internet (via Wi-Fi or AT&T 3G data plan).

In this light, the iPad appears as an indulgence but also a device aimed at those with only a casual interest in technology.  It is important to note that the successful iPhone was also never marketed on its technical specifications.

Pricing and the current recession are not insignificant here: the base model iPad will cost $499 USD, which is a large investment for a discretionary purchase.  But Apple hopes that the added value of simple integration with its excellent and popular content delivery systems (iTunes, app store, newly announced iBooks) will convince buyers to commit.

With the mixed media reactions calming, Apple must now prove to consumers that the iPad is a must-have gadget when it ships this spring.

Ken Cummings is an honours B.Sc. student in his final year of undergraduate studies at the University of Toronto Mississauga.   The areas in which he has focused include Biology and Socio-Cultural Anthropology, the latter through which he enjoys examining contemporary human cultures.  Ken is currently investigating Master’s programs and exploring his interest in photography.

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