Rumor Roundup: Not so wounded as we were led to believe
Apple released its quarterly financial results this past week, and it turns out the company is significantly less doomed that many had predicted. It looks like Apple lives to fight for another quarter... unfortunately, that also means three more months of gibberish from "analysts" and other galactically disreputable sources.
This analysis of Apple's profit was off by "only" 30 million dollars, or 7 cents per share. Predicted revenue was $1.2 billion less than what Apple actually made for the quarter. But hey, what's a billion dollars here and there, am I right? Barely even worth quibbling over.
From the article: "Details of just what went wrong are sketchy, as the source for this tale is an anonymous Foxconn staffer." Sounds legit! There's no possible way a source that solid could be wrong, or not privy to the whole story, or just plain making it all up.
It's now reached the point where even Apple's component suppliers can't turn in positive financial performance without it somehow being spun into the "Apple is DOOMED" meta-narrative. LG had a major financial performance gain, but the real story is that it had a sequential loss since the holiday quarter. Gee, I wonder why sales during this past financial quarter might be lower than during the holiday quarter... can't think of anything. Obviously it's all down to Apple "losing its luster." That's it. No other explanation possible, Apple DOOMED.
It Can't All Be True (Daring Fireball)
John Gruber makes a similar point to mine regarding the different takes on LG's financial performance: the media is so drunk on the anti-Apple Kool-Aid that it'll grasp at any straw that seemingly supports its position.
More truly scintillating parts leaks. In particular, the not-at-all-different nano-SIM tray is bound to show up on the front page of newspapers worldwide.
Some analyst says the speculative date for the iPhone's launch is being moved to a later speculative date because of problems implementing speculative technology that no one has been able to prove Apple is even interested in integrating into its products. Got all that? This is pretty much a wild guess sandwich with conjecture sauce. The problem with this sandwich: there's absolutely no meat to it.
I bet if you asked them, 19 percent of North American consumers would want an edible couch made out of nachos. Polls like this tell us absolutely nothing about Apple's plans, or the relative likelihood that any such product exists or will ever exist.
Imagine how stupid and broken Apple's products and business would be if they were guided by market research and polling instead of being generated by people with refined design sense who actually know what they're doing. Actually, it's not all that hard to imagine; that's kind of how Microsoft works now.
Some analyst thinks that Apple and its 4-inch screened iPhone 5 is on the ropes because Samsung makes devices with 5-inch screens. Considering Apple sold over 37 million iPhones last quarter, I'm guessing they're not caught nearly as "flat-footed" as this "analyst" suggests.
Every time I hear about how Apple is scrambling to "catch up" to Samsung, I can't help but laugh. Look at it this way: Apple spends billions of dollars every quarter on research and development in order to design and build products so good they pretty much sell themselves. Samsung instead spends billions of dollars every quarter on marketing and advertising to convince people that its blatant iPhone clones are the best products. It's a small but crucial difference in how the two companies operate.
Every time an analyst suggests that Apple (number one in profits, revenue, consumer satisfaction) needs to be more like Samsung (number one in market share and, um... losing major patent lawsuits), an angel loses his wings.
Someone spins a roulette wheel and lands on "September" for the next iPhone launch. And for some reason, it's reported like it's legitimate news from a source that matters. Reports of weeping sounds coming from Edward R. Murrow's gravesite could not be verified at press time.
Upgraded MacBook models expected to highlight WWDC 2013 (AppleInsider)
Some analyst thinks the "highlight" of WWDC 2013 will be MacBooks with no major design changes. No Retina MacBook Air, no discontinuation of the optical drive MacBook Pro, and allegedly the biggest change to the lineup will be a move to a new processor architecture. Sounds absolutely thrilling. I'm sure Tim Cook will be pleased to make such an earth-shaking product announcement the central focus of Apple's yearly developer conference.
Some analyst -- the same analyst as for the previous rumor -- thinks the Retina display iPad mini has been "delayed" until October. Here's a question: did anyone honestly expect to see this device launch before then anyway? Show of hands. Okay, now all of you with triple-digit IQs, put your hands down. Wow, still lots of hands up...
The same analyst again? Wow, this guy sure was busy this week, as were all the rumor blogs breathlessly reporting every single word he said as though it came from Apple's highest echelons instead of some guy throwing darts at a wall and seeing what sticks. This time, he thinks Apple will sell an iPad mini with no rear camera and only 8 GB of storage to get the cost down to $199 to $249.
Considering how low the margins are on the $329 iPad mini already, I don't really see Apple doing this. And even if the company did, can you imagine the reaction? I can. "The only way Apple can compete on price is by selling a crippled, almost useless version of its already cut-down iPad mini. This proves not only that Apple can't innovate anymore (a tablet without a rear-facing camera? How very 2010), but also that Apple's much-vaunted supply chain advantage is dwindling in the face of increased competition from Samsung and others. Can anyone right Apple's sinking ship? Time will tell, but this new version of the iPad mini may also turn out to be indicative of a huge problem that could shake Apple to the core."
I feel like I need a shower after typing that. I don't know how the hacks at the Wall Street Journal and other anti-Apple financial rags manage to write stuff like that every day without giving in to the urge to exfoliate themselves with a belt sander.
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