What’s up in Fall 2017?

27 02 2017

Here’s a prediction and my secret hope.

Now waiting for Tim Cook on stage.





Tweedledum and Tweedledee

22 02 2017

Apple’s anniversary iPhone coming in fall 2017 will reportedly bring key technical upgrades including an innovative 3D camera system that can be used for a variety of applications, from biometric authentication to games.

According to KGI Securities’ analyst Ming-Chi Kuo the FaceTime camera will sport an infrared transmitting and receiving module.

The new system will enable the forward facing camera to accomplish 3D sensing and modeling. This will be available for a range of unique use cases, including replacing the head of a character in a 3D game, or taking a 3D selfie.

Of course, such a system could also allow an advanced biometric authentication in that the fingerprint scanning is combined with face recognition giving some kind of 2-Step Amuthentication for device unlocking and payment release.

It will even work with monozygotic and dizygotic twins. They may look like Tweedeldum and Tweedledee but their fingerprints are formed semi-randomly as the foetus develops in the womb and are affected by such things as chance fluctuations of hormone levels. Similarly, the pattern of freckles and moles on the skin is caused by random mutations and will vary between identical twins.

Face recognition can only be used to build up more secure multimodal biometric systems which use multiple sensors or biometrics to overcome the limitations of unimodal biometric systems. It can’t entirely replace other techniques.

Hardware does the first step, software the more important second step to identify a person in that it provides algorithms to interpret the data and compare it with a reference image. This can be done accurately or more superficially.

Back to Tweedledum and Tweedledee.
There should always be an option to use a highly secure password to confirm critical actions. The two will learn not to use their birthday.

Read more about

Fingerprint Technology

Facial Recognition

Thanks for dropping by.





6 Months with a Surface Pro 4

22 02 2017

After my retirement in August 2016 I moved over from Germany to Thailand.

My company wants my future support so I got a Surface Pro 4 (128GB, Intel Core i5, 4GB Ram, Type Cover) to keep an eye on the further development of the company’s main application, a tool for auditors based on Microsoft Access as the container for all the data needed to audit companies, Excel for analyses, and Word for documentation of the audit process.

The device serves as a Windows 10 based reference system for the company’s internal software quality control.

Like every technical product the Pro 4 has its pros and cons. The energy management isn’t what I would expect from a high-priced mobile device. Optimization (like Apple did it with its macOS on a Macbook Air) isn’t Microsoft’s strength. Maybe this is caused by the many compromises coming with a newly developed universal platform.

Sadly there is another annoying lack (for me). Neither the Type Cover nor the Onscreen Keyboard sports a BREAK key although it’s needed when debugging code. Shame on Microsoft.

Summary after 6 months …

Battery life is still limited and makes a Surface Pro 4 an immovable property if there are lots of points on your agenda; generation of heat is higher than average and definitely too much for a tablet; showcasing Windows 10: indeed, including its occasional frustrations and aggravations.

There are still some dialogs coming from Windows Vista/7 which do not really match with the Windows 10 design. I hope the colleagues will fix it all shortly.

Ironically, where the Surface Pro 4 falls short is that “tablet” part, not because of the hardware but as the result of an ecosystem that is light on the kind of apps that make a great tablet. The same situation I’m faced with on my Lumia 550.

What remains is a fine and good looking portable PC (I wouldn’t call it a hybrid because it lacks in tablet mode) with which I can successfully work through my GTD list. Not more. Sadly.

The Surface could possibly be beaten by an iPad Pro running macOS. But it wouldn’t be an alternative for me because there is a huge app gap between the Windows- and the macOS-based application line-up. Users are supplied with a wide range of high-quality apps for Apple’s mobiles but they are faced with lots of problems to get specialized business software for their Macs. The Windows mobile “App Gap” finds its counterpart in a Mac “App Gap”.

I already used one of the first convertibles running Windows XP Tablet Edition more than a decade ago. Maybe I have to wait another decade to find the ultimate hybrid.

Note (for the youngsters)
Windows XP Tablet PC Edition was intended for specially designed notebook/laptop computers called tablet PCs. Windows XP Tablet PC Edition was compatible with a pen-sensitive screen, supporting handwritten notes and portrait-oriented screens.

More about Surface vs MacBook …

Surface Pro 4 vs MacBook

Thanks for dropping by.





Apple SWOT Analysis 2017

20 02 2017

Continuously more Ss in SWOT
It’s a Long Way to Tipperary Enter Businesses

Here is a revamped version of my SWOT Analysis including some groundbreaking decisions and engagements including the announcement of partnerships with IBM (2014), Cisco (2015), and SAP (2016).

The deal with China Mobile, iOS in the car, engagement in mobile payment systems with Apple Pay, development of disrupting technologies based on wearables, the partnership with IBM, CISCO, and SAP are essential parts of Apple’s long-term strategy to open the doors of big and medium-sized businesses.

The Indian government didn’t allow the import of refurbished iPhones. The main reason for not granting the application was that it will confront the ’Make in India’ initiative and burden the country with electronic waste. This problem seems to be solved now with the start of “Made in India” iPhones, a first step to break into one of the biggest emerging markets.

Strategic Partnerships …

In 2014 Apple and IBM announced an exclusive partnership aiming to redefine the way work will get done, address key industry mobility challenges and spark true mobile-led business change. With IBM’s unparalleled industry expertise, businesses can take the first step in empowering their workforce through mobile technology. These apps, exclusively for iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch, give enterprises a simple way to solve workflow and role-specific challenges, while transforming industries from the ground up.

Cisco’s CEO Chuck Robbins gave voice to the new Apple-Cisco partnership:

“I’m thrilled about our new partnership we announced today with Apple. We are coming together to optimize Cisco networks for iOS devices and apps, integrating iPhones with Cisco environments and providing unique collaboration capabilities on iPhones and iPads. Together, we will enable mobile apps and experiences that deliver the quality and experience we need while meeting enterprise requirements for management and security.”

But there are also setbacks …

China’s government is always good for surprises. Apple finds itself in new heat with Chinese regulators. News surfaced that its iBooks Store and iTunes Movies services were suspended in the country at the request of government regulators. The services opened in the country just six months ago, with the blessing of the authorities.
With Huawei (8.9% China), Oppo (5.7% China), and BBK (4.8% China) Samsung (20.5% Korea) and Apple (14.4% USA) are under pressure regarding worldwide smartphone sales. In my opinion it doesn’t take a long time until Samsung and Apple will be overtaken by a Chinese company. I think this won’t be a problem for Apple with its strong position in the high-end market but for Samsung.
(Stats 2016 by Gartner)

Summary …

After Steve Jobs’ death many publishing media rumored that Apple’s power of innovation would be over. The contrary is the case and after the tech visionary Steve Jobs the business visionary Tim Cook took successfully control by delegating the technology area.

Companies that continually create value over the long term – meaning decades or more, learn how to ingrain the ability into their corporate makeup; it becomes part of their culture and DNA. They create value, jobs, and growth because of their ability to institutionalize innovation.
(Andrew Taylor, Boston Consulting Group)

About the map …

A SWOT analysis is used to evaluate the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats in a business venture. It’s used in any decision-making situation when a desired end-state has been defined.

SWOTs may look completely different if created from external or involved people. They also may change within a short timeframe depending on business risks of the company itself or its competitors.

Related …

Apple-IBM Partnership

Apple-Cisco Partnership

Apple-SAP Partnership

IBM MobileFirst

Feel free to download my concept map as a PDF file

Apple SWOT Map

Thanks for paying attention.





R.I.P. Windows and Blackberry

17 02 2017

Market share isn’t everything but a good indicator of the developer’s ability to bring the power of mobile devices to the people. It’s not only the price which affects the market (except for emerging markets) but also the

  • availability of high-quality apps
  • innovative approaches
  • durability and design
  • ecosystem
  • continuity 
  • simplicity 
  • support

which convinces people in the long-term to stick with a product/operating system and remain loyal customers.

It must always be kept in mind that iOS runs on a handful of devices whereas the number of different devices running Android is near to 18k.

It’s also quite interesting not to look at the OS but the smartphone sales of the most prominent vendors in 2016: Samsung 20.5% (Korea), Apple 14.4% (USA), Huawei 8.9% (China), Oppo 5.7% (China), BBK 4.8% (China).

To get back on the track is a sheer impossible endeavor for Microsoft and Blackberry no matter what they will do.

We heard about a so-called Microsoft Surface Phone but Mr Nadella’s announcements are hazy. Do they really think they could do something unique so that customers change their mind? Keep on dreaming.

Notes
Stats by courtesy of Gartner, Feb 2017

Chart created with Apple’s app Numbers on an iPhone

Thanks for visiting iNotes4You.





iPhone 8 Pocket

14 02 2017

This is Reliable News

Beside the rumored 4.7″ and 5.5″ anniversary iPhone there will be a 2.5″ pocket version according to KGI Securities’ analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.

Kuo’s track record has elevated his Apple predictions to the level of gospel. He’s been called “the most accurate Apple analyst in the world” by Business Insider and the “most reliable industry watcher on the planet when it comes to Apple” by BGR.

But seriously,
here is what Eddy Cue, top manager of the most valuable company of the world said last week:

‘We all have responsibility’ for fake news.

Fake News

Don’t believe everything you read on the internet just because there is an image with some text next to it.





Lock Screen

12 02 2017

In case you lose your phone and you’re still lucky because an honest guy finds it he easily can contact you via this Lock Screen.

You can create your own individual wallpaper with an image of your choice and e.g. Apple’s app KEYNOTE. Add the image and the text to a slide, take a screenshot and assign it as the wallpaper for your Lock Screen.

More about 

Creating collages

Thanks for reading.








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