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Rumor Roundup: Where don't Apple rumors come from?

Just because it's a slow week for rumors doesn't mean it's a slow week for people saying stupid things about Apple... including quite possibly the dumbest thing written all year. No points for guessing which of these two cited articles qualifies.

Analyst delivers the ultimate insult to Apple, calls it 'the next Microsoft' (9to5 Mac)

Some analyst says something incredibly, mind-bendingly stupid. For some reason, 9to5 Mac decides to pass it on. They don't bother to do any analysis of what he said or provide a counterpoint, merely straight reblogging of the aftermath of some analyst sniffing glue.

Since they dropped the ball, let me give it a try.

"[We] see no precedent that large-size tech companies simply start to broadly outperform again after a tough year or two if the law of large numbers is catching up to them and margins have peaked."

Really? You see no precedent? Because I can certainly think of one, and for a bonus multiplier, it involves the exact company you're dooming and glooming about. It's called 1990s Apple versus 2000s Apple. There's your precedent, Einstein.

Where do Apple rumors come from? Digitimes explains (CNET)

This is not an article from The Onion. This is a seemingly honest attempt at an actual news story from a website that's attempting to portray itself as a legitimate source of tech news.

CNET tried to determine the anatomy of Apple rumors... by asking Digitimes. This is roughly equivalent to attempting to learn about human anatomy from someone who failed veterinary school... who is also blind, and deaf, and has advanced motor neuron disease that has also deadened their tactile senses. And doesn't speak English. Also, it turns out they are actually a dolphin.

Asking Digitimes to shed light on the world of Apple rumors is like asking any of the random hobos who wander around downtown Cleveland and harass people for spare change to elucidate the innermost workings of magnetic confinement nuclear fusion. Oh, you'll get an answer, but if you think that answer will put you within throwing distance of a workable tokamak, then may I suggest giving me your spare change instead of giving it to those hobos in Cleveland? You see, I own this bridge in New York City that's absolutely burning a hole in my pocket...

Digitimes, whose accuracy record started off decent, quickly decayed to 50/50, then got exactly one thing right in all of 2013, is the absolute last source you should ask to provide an exposé on Apple rumors.

Travel to North Sentinel Island, part of the Andaman Island chain in the Indian Ocean (Editor's note: Do not do this. You will die). The natives of this island are one of the last remaining uncontacted tribes of humans on Earth. They are incredibly hostile to all outsiders, but on the off chance they don't kill you on sight, you might try asking them to shed some light on the world of Apple rumors. The astoundingly reclusive Sentinelese, who have likely been isolated from the rest of humanity for thousands of years, who shot arrows at the helicopters that came to investigate their island following the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, would almost certainly be a better source of news related to Apple than Digitimes. These people, who have no knowledge whatsoever of writing, electricity, computers, the Internet, or the iPhone, would be able to provide insight at least an order of magnitude more accurate and helpful than absolutely anything Digitimes could possibly provide.

CNET, of course, didn't bother to mention Digitimes' apocalyptically terrible accuracy record anywhere in its article. The fact that Digitimes provided no actual new insights is simply icing on the cake. Unfortunately, the icing is made of toxic algae, and the cake itself is... well, let's just say it's not safe for lunch and leave it at that.

Here's a summary of Digitimes' insights offered in this article:

  • Overseas suppliers begin manufacturing final-design Apple products 1-2 months prior to launch.
  • Various prototypes and design iterations exist in the supply chain for 6-9 months. These early designs are generally heavily tweaked/modified prior to final production. This is why so many Apple rumors from this timeframe turn out to be woefully inaccurate.
  • Apple and Samsung both control the entire process of producing their products, from design to final shipment.

Such stunning insights. I'm surprised that Digitimes didn't also mention Apple's dedication to producing well-designed, well-crafted products with a simplistic and "obvious after the fact" design ethos.

Tune in next week for CNET's exclusive interview with Samsung's design team, where CNET will ask a probing question sure to provide insightful responses: How does Samsung come up with so many compelling designs, year after year, for its hardware products, particularly its notebooks, tablets, and smartphones?

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