Below is a complete transcript of iLounge’s live coverage from Apple’s iPad media event, held on January 27, 2010. Updates are presented in reverse chronological order; photos from the event can be seen on iLounge’s Flickr account.
12:09 PM: A brief update for those still watching this feed - we just went hands on with new Accessories. There’s a new VGA to Dock Connector Adapter ($29) for attaching the iPad to a projector or monitor. A Camera Accessory Kit ($29) that comes with a USB adapter and a SD card reader in one package, two separate pieces, to let the iPad import photos from a camera or card. The Keyboard Dock ($69) with a normal keyboard grafted on to the front of a plastic dock. A standard Dock ($29) with audio and dock connector ports on the back. And an Apple case ($39) made from plastic and microfiber, with a front flap that folds backwards to serve as a stand. Finally, there’s a new 10W power adapter that is included with the iPad or sold separately for $29; it uses a Dock Connector but obviously supplies more power than a typical USB port. There’s nothing amazing about any of these items, but they’re all coming.
Apple today announced a new range of accessories for its iPad tablet computer. Among the offerings are a new VGA to Dock Connector Adapter ($29) for attaching the iPad to a projector or monitor, a Camera Accessory Kit ($29) that comes with a USB adapter and a SD card reader in one package, two separate pieces, to let the iPad import photos from a camera or card, and a Keyboard Dock ($69) with a normal keyboard grafted on to the front of a plastic dock. A standard Dock ($29) with audio and dock connector ports on the back will also be available, as will an Apple case ($39) made from plastic and microfiber, with a front flap that folds backwards to serve as a stand. Finally, there’s a new 10W power adapter that is included with the iPad or sold separately for $29; it uses a Dock Connector but obviously supplies more power than a typical USB port. Notably, Apple’s iPad design page also notes that it will be compatible with Bluetooth keyboards such as the Apple Wireless Keyboard via its Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR connection. All of these accessories are expected to be available on or around the time of the iPad’s launch. Several more photos of the new iPad accessories appear below; for more, check out our Flickr photostream.
Alongside its announcement of the new iPad tablet computer, Apple announced its new iBookstore, an iTunes Store-like storefront for electronic books that lies within a new app called iBooks. Similar to the iPhone application Classics, the new iBooks application presents all purchased books on a virtual bookshelf showcasing the cover art. All books will be offered in the ePub format, and the iBookstore will feature books from both major and independent publishers—logos for the publishers Penguin, Simon & Schuster, HarperCollins, Macmillan, and Hachette book group were shown during the announcement. Notably, some books shown during the demo were available for as little as $4.99. The iBookstore will be available at the iPad’s launch.
Apple today unveiled its new iPad, an iPhone OS-based slate tablet computer capable of running “almost all” of the apps available in the App Store, as well as new apps tailored specifically for the device. The iPad physically resembles an oversized iPod touch, with a 9.7-inch, 1024-by-768-pixel screen dominating the front and a black bezel surrounding it. The back is made from a solid piece of aluminum, with a 30-pin dock connector and speaker on the bottom, and volume, sleep/wake, and headphone ports around the other sides.
“iPad is our most advanced technology in a magical and revolutionary device at an unbelievable price,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “iPad creates and defines an entirely new category of devices that will connect users with their apps and content in a much more intimate, intuitive and fun way than ever before.”
Photos of the new iPad tablet computer can be found in our Flickr photostream. Also available is a standard 10-minute Apple iPad interface walkthrough video on YouTube, or watch a higher-resolution, 12-minute version of the video on Vimeo. We’ve posted a third version of the video in 720p HD on Vimeo!
In its negotiations with book publishers, Apple has been pushing for e-book pricing in the range of $10-$15, according to a new report. Citing publishers that have met directly with Apple, the Wall Street Journal reports that Apple is asking publishers to set two price points—$12.99 and $14.99—for hardcover best sellers, with fewer titles offered for $9.99. Under this scheme, publishers would set their own book prices, with Apple taking a 30% cut, the same it takes for regular paid apps published and sold on the App Store. The report also states that Apple was in “11th-hour” negotiations with publishers, some of which are hesitant to sign up with Apple due to the fact that they would receive lower per-book revenue than they do from Amazon, which is taking a loss on many of its $9.99 offerings. Apple is expected to announce details of its tablet device at its special media event later today.
A handful of new photos purportedly showing Apple’s upcoming tablet have been published online. Engadget reports that it received the images from an anonymous source; the images show a tablet-sized device bolted inside some sort of testing frame, with a home button at the bottom of the tablet when held vertically, what appears to be a dock connector port directly below that more holes to its right, another set of holes on the left-hand side of the device, which would be the bottom when turned for horizontal use, and, in a couple of the images, a large-screen version of maps running on the screen. A fourth image shows an iPhone resting on top of the screen to provide scale. We have included one of the images below for those readers who’d like to stay clear of any spoilers prior to Apple’s announcement; click through to Engadget for the rest.
Update: Another image, supposedly showing the tablet’s back casing, has appeared online, originating from weiphone.com. We’ve added it to the images below.
In an interview with CNBC last evening, Terry McGraw, CEO of major publishing firm McGraw-Hill, confirmed not only that the company would offer its books for Apple’s upcoming tablet, but that the device runs iPhone OS. When asked about rumors that the company had been working on getting their textbooks ready for the tablet, McGraw responded, “Yeah, Very exciting. Yes, they’ll make their announcement tomorrow on this one. We have worked with Apple for quite a while. And the Tablet is going to be based on the iPhone operating system and so it will be transferable. So what you are going to be able to do now—we have a consortium of e-books. And we have 95% of all our materials that are in e-book format on that one. So now with the tablet you’re going to open up the higher education market, the professional market. The tablet is going to be just really terrific.” A video of the interview appears in embedded form below; McGraw’s comment about the tablet begins around the 2 minute 50 second mark. [via Mac Rumors]
This week’s featured photo is from our iPhones Around the World gallery, and shows an iPhone aboard the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower as it sails along the Suez Canal in Egypt. To share your photos and to be considered for our Photo of the Week, you simply need to submit your own photo to one of our galleries. So get out there, take some pictures with your iPod or iPhone, and maybe your submission will be our next Photo of the Week!
The U.S. International Trade Commission has launched an official investigation into whether Apple infringes on Nokia’s patents as the Finnish company has claimed. “We are pleased that the ITC has moved quickly to begin [its] investigation,” said a Nokia spokeswoman. Nokia first sued Apple in October 2009 claiming patent infringement, and was soon after countersued, with Apple claiming Nokia infringes on 13 of its patents. In December, Nokia filed a complaint with the ITC alleging that Apple infringes on the company’s patents “in virtually all of its mobile phones, portable music players, and computers;” less than three weeks later Apple filed its own complaint with the ITC, asking it to block Nokia imports to the U.S. The ITC has yet to decide whether it will launch a similar probe of Nokia based on Apple’s request.
A newly awarded Apple patent suggests the company has been working on a way to display different user interface modules based on proximity instead of touch. Originally filed in September 2005 and awarded earlier today, the patent entitled “Proximity detector in handheld device” describes a system that employs one of a number of different methods for detecting when a finger, stylus, or some other object is place above, but not directly on, an area of the screen. Once the presence is detected, an appropriate user interface element is displayed, and the user can interact with the element via proximity gestures or some other form of input, such as touch. Notably, the images included with the patent appear to depict a tablet device, as opposed to a smaller handheld like the iPhone or iPod touch. As with all Apple patents, this filing does not necessarily represent any future product release from Apple, but offers evidence of the company’s research in this area; continue reading for images from the patent. [via Patently Apple]
Google has launched a new web-based application for the iPhone OS, allowing iPhone users to access its Google Voice service via the mobile Safari browser. The new app is built using HTML5, and offers access to a streamlined version of the Google Voice inbox, the ability to display the user’s Google Voice number as the outbound caller ID, the ability to send and receive text messages for free, and more. Apple rejected Google’s native Google Voice application last July, and also removed several competing third-party solutions, leading to an FCC inquiry. The new web app is available at m.google.com/voice and requires a Google Voice account, a carrier-provided voice plan, and iPhone OS 3.0 or later.
iLounge’s editors are heading to San Francisco to provide live coverage of Apple’s ‘creation’ media event. The event will be held at the Yerba Buena Center For the Arts Theater, and will begin at 10:00 a.m. Pacific Time, or 1:00 p.m. Eastern Time. Apple is widely expected to debut its long-awaited tablet at the event, and may also unveil a beta of iPhone OS 4.0 and an accompanying SDK. As we have done in the past, iLounge.com will take you to our streamlined special event page starting an hour or so before the event; you can set your bookmarks ahead of time to live.ilounge.com, and we will also be updating our Flickr account before and during event with new photos.
Also, don’t forget about our Limited Edition iLounge.com iPhone case auction for charity. We’ve put one of the remaining Limited Edition iLounge.com Speck CandyShell cases for iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS up for auction, with all proceeds going to the Red Cross Haiti Relief & Development fund. The auction will end on Jan. 28, 2010 at approximately 11:00 Pacific Time.
Update: iLounge’s editors are on location outside of the Yerba Buena Center For the Arts Theater waiting for the doors to open. Be sure to check our Flickr stream for more photos, and watch this page—and our official Twitter account—for further updates leading up to the event.
Apple is putting pressure on U.S. television networks to lower their pricing for TV shows offered on the iTunes Store, according to a new report. Citing people close to the discussions, the Financial Times reports that Apple is suggesting that episode pricing be dropped form $2 to $1, bringing prices more in line with that of full-season DVD sets. The push is seen as part of Apple’s long-term strategy for the tablet, and help spur demand for TV shows on the iTunes Store, sales of which have “frustrated” company executives. A person familiar with the talks said Apple “is looking to change pricing dynamics. That’s what they did to the music industry. The difference between the TV industry and music is this one has good economics.” The report also states that Apple has been floating the idea of a lower-cost, $30 video subscription service, but has so far met with resistance from most of the networks.
During Apple’s First Quarter 2010 Financial Results Conference Call, Apple CFO Peter Oppenheimer and Apple COO Tim Cook made several comments concerning its media-related products, including the iPod, iPhone, and Apple TV, as well as U.S. cellular partner AT&T. In his opening statements, Oppenheimer said that while traditional iPod sales declined, sales of the iPod touch were up 55% year-over-year, boosting the iPod’s Average Selling Price (ASP) by nine percent.
The iPhone saw “very strong” growth in several international territories, and has been a “runaway hit” in Japan, with sales up over 400% year-over-year. iPhone sales were also up over 500% from the year-ago quarter in the Asia/Pacific market, because of Korea and other newly added countries, including China. Specifically, Cook revealed that the iPhone passed the 200,000 activation mark in China earlier this month, and that the company is very focused on quality at the point of sale and quality of customer experience, in order to build the brand for the long term in that market. In the corporate market, 70% of the Fortune 100 are now actively deploying or piloting iPhone. When asked about iPhone inventory levels that sat at roughly 2.7 million units in the channel at the end of the quarter, including demos and in-transit inventories invoiced to carriers, Cook said that Apple is completely comfortable with the number, adding that Apple could have sold a lot more units but elected not to because the company is managing inventories very tightly. The implication, we felt, was that a transition from 8GB iPhone 3G models to 8GB iPhone 3GS could have achieved this.
In regards to the company’s accounting changes, Oppenheimer explained that the company has settled on estimates of $25 for iPhone and $10 for Apple TV software updates which will be taken from the selling price and deferred over time, but did not provide any specifics on how the company arrived at either number. Both executives also praised Apple’s financial team for rapidly facilitating the switch to the new accounting principles. When asked about Apple’s recent acquisition of mobile advertising firm Quattro, the executives said that the company wanted to acquire Quattro to offer developers a way to easily monetize apps, especially free offerings, adding, “we’re going to work hard to provide developers a great opportunity and we’ll see where it takes us.”
Finally, when asked about the potential effect recent criticism of AT&T might have on Apple’s and the iPhone’s brand, the men hailed AT&T as a great partner, noting that the two companies have a working relationship that pre-dates the initial launch of the iPhone, and that AT&T has more mobile broadband usage than any carrier in the world. They also pointed out that iPhone customers have a great experience in the vast majority of locations, that AT&T has very detailed plans to address its network problems in cities, and that Apple has reviewed the plans and believes AT&T will make significant progress towards fixing them.
Reporting its first quarter financial results today, Apple said it sold 21 million iPods during the holiday quarter — an eight percent decrease compared to the same quarter last year. Despite the drop in unit sales, revenue from iPod sales actually increased one percent year-over-year, to $3.391 billion. Apple also sold 8.7 million iPhones in the quarter, a 100 percent increase year-over-year, and up from 7.4 million units in the prior quarter. The company posted revenue of $15.68 billion and net quarterly profit of $3.38 billion, or $3.67 per diluted share, representing all-time revenue and profit highs, compared with revenue of $11.88 billion and net quarterly profit of $2.26 billion, or $2.50 per diluted share in Q1 2009. Sales of Other Music Related Products + Services were up 15% over the year-ago quarter, and up 14% from Q4 2009, to $1.16 billion total. That category includes iTunes Store sales, iPod services, and revenues from Apple and third-party iPod accessories. International sales accounted for 58 percent of the quarter’s revenue.
Notably, Apple has applied new accounting principles to its iPhone and Apple TV numbers, and is accounting for the sale of both products as two deliverables. As explained in the company’s 10-Q filing with the SEC, “The first deliverable is the hardware and software essential to the functionality of the hardware device delivered at the time of sale, and the second deliverable is the right included with the purchase of iPhone and Apple TV to receive on a when-and-if-available basis future unspecified software upgrades and features relating to the product’s essential software.” The rules also result in the recognition of “substantially all of the revenue and product costs from the sales of iPhone and Apple TV at the time of sale.” The change in accounting rules explains the discrepancy between the Q1 2009 financial numbers mentioned above and those originally reported.
“If you annualize our quarterly revenue, it’s surprising that Apple is now a $50+ billion company,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “The new products we are planning to release this year are very strong, starting this week with a major new product that we’re really excited about.”
“We are very pleased to have generated $5.8 billion in cash during the quarter,” said Peter Oppenheimer, Apple’s CFO. “Looking ahead to the second fiscal quarter of 2010, we expect revenue in the range of about $11.0 billion to $11.4 billion and we expect diluted earnings per share in the range of about $2.06 to $2.18.”
Apple will announce its first quarter 2010 financial results later today. As it has done in the past, the company also plans to conduct a conference call to discuss its fourth quarter results; the call will begin at 2:00 p.m. PST and will be available as an audio webcast.
Bach Technology, a new company made up of some former MP3 developers, has unveiled MusicDNA, a new digital music file format. Similar to Apple’s recent iTunes LP offerings, MusicDNA files would contain both music and a range of other media, including video of recent performances, album artwork, song lyrics, and more. The format is expected to launch this spring.
Apple will announce Verizon Wireless as one of the available cellular data service providers for its upcoming tablet device, according to a new report. Citing unnamed sources, the New York Post reports that Verizon will be named as one of the tablet’s carriers, a move that would open the door for a Verizon-based iPhone, although AT&T’s exclusive deal with Apple is not expected to end until June. Reports of Verizon’s potential involvement with Apple over the tablet date back to April 2009.
A team from the New York Times has been working with Apple at the company’s Cupertino, CA campus on a tablet-formatted version of the NYT iPhone application, a new report claims. Citing a person with knowledge of the matter, the LA Times reports that the team has been in California “in recent weeks,” working on a large-screen version of the company’s app that would incorporate video. The report also notes a recent Condé Nast press release that mentioned the company is working on content for “the anticipated tablet from Apple.”
Apple CEO Steve Jobs has been making bold claims about the company’s upcoming tablet to senior Apple executives and close friends, according to a new report. Citing multiple independent sources, TechCrunch reports that Jobs has repeatedly stated that the tablet “[W]ill be the most important thing I’ve ever done.” Previous reports have indicated that Jobs was giving the tablet his full personal attention following his return to Apple last June.
Belkin is now shipping its TuneCast Auto Live FM transmitter for the iPod and iPhone. The TuneCast Auto Live offers device charging though a vehicle’s 12-volt lighter outlet, in-line controls with an LCD display, two programmable preset buttons, and ClearScan technology that automatically scans for the clearest frequency available. In addition, TuneCast Auto Live also features integration with Belkin’s ClearScan Live application for iPhone and iPod touch, which utilizes the iPhone 3G’s and 3GS’ GPS to find the clearest FM station based on location-based user feedback, and also allows for control of the FM transmitter and music playback. Belkin’s TuneCast Auto Live is available now in North America and sells for $80; it will be available in Europe in March and in Asia and Australia beginning in April. For more information on the TuneCast Auto Live, see our First Look article.
Don’t forget to get your entry in for our Sena Cases Engraved Giveaway. In our Giveaway of the Month for January, iLounge and Sena Cases are giving away 10 Sarach Leatherskin cases for iPhone 3G/3GS, with free engraving. To enter, simply fill out and submit the form on the giveaway page—the giveaway will end on January 31, 2010 at 11:59PM Pacific Time. Good luck!
With nearly 600 votes from iLounge readers, our latest poll—“Which 2010 Best of Show winner are you most excited about?”—has ended. Readers were given a choice of any of the 14 2010 CES Best of Show winners, all but three of which came from different companies, including a wide range of products such as apps, cases, earbuds, and other accessories.
Case-Mate’s custom case designing platform iMakeMyCase.com was the overwhelming winner, capturing 37% of the vote, followed by the innovative Parrot AR.Drone, a remote quadricopter controlled via an iPhone app, with 19% of the vote. Voting was much closer among the remaining winners, with the Speck See-Thru Satin for iPhone 3G + 3GS receiving 7% of the vote, the iHome + Sleep App and iHome iP2 tied with 6% of the vote each, and the iHome iA100, JayBird BlueBuds, and Scosche Bluetooth Plug-and-Play Handsfree and Streaming Audio Car Kit all receiving 5% each. The XtremeMac TuffWrap Accent received 3% of the vote, Incpio’s Dotties Case, the Just Mobile Xtand Go, and Vestalife’s new Earphone Range all received 2% a piece, and the Dexim Power Case for iPod nano and Maximo iM-790 headphones received 1% each. Thanks for all your votes!
Our new poll focuses on Apple’s upcoming tablet. We’d like to know whether or not you will purchase the tablet if it requires you to sing up for cellular data service. Will you buy it regardless of the pricing of the plan, or only if the pricing and data service terms are reasonable? Or perhaps you’ll only buy it if it’s Wi-Fi only, or maybe you’re just not interested in it no matter what the features and services might be? Our new poll, “Will you buy the Apple tablet if it requires you to sign up for a cellular data service plan?” lets you answer that question. You can find the iLounge Poll in the left-hand column of the main iLounge.com home page. Cast your vote today!