Apple launched 2 new iPads at their event on 22nd October 2013. An obvious question that popped in everyone’s mind after the event was why are they still selling the iPad 2 even when its 3 generation behind the current one. Why have they discontinued the (relatively) newer generation models of the iPad and still keeping one that is more than 2 years old? What is more surprising is the fact that it is being sold at the same price as the new iPad mini with the retina display ($399). Considering the much faster specs of the iPad mini and retina display, it is difficult to fathom why anyone would like to buy the iPad 2 at the same price.
The answer is simple: Education & Corporate customers. iPad 2 was a huge success owing to the great response received by the iPad. So much so that many educational, healthcare and corporate institutions jumped up to deploy iPads in their ecosystem. Many government institution also sanctioned iPads in government schools and offices.
Now these bulk orders, especially the ones coming from government organization have a lengthy process before the procurement can be done. Typically, tenders are invited from vendors and then after many approvals, procurement is done. Any change in the product needs to go through the same process again.
This is probably why Apple is keeping the iPad 2 running. There are probably many educational, government and corporate orders running which need iPad 2 to be procured in bulk. Until these contracts are renewed for a newer version of the iPad, Apple will most likely continue selling the iPad 2.
Another set of customers this might cater to is the customers on a tight budget who prefer big screen over any other spec in the device. These customer will most likely prefer to buy the iPad 2 over iPad mini just because of its larger screen because they don’t care about how fast the device runs. They just need the tablet with the largest screen.
Apple launched the iPad Air and iPad Mini with Retina display at their press event on October 22, 2013. The iPad Air is the new flagship model in the iPad line which boasts some very impressive specs:
What is impressive is that Apple has managed to juice up the power, reduce the size & weight and still maintain a 10 hours battery life. The new iPad follows the form factor of the iPad Mini with thinner bezel on the sides. The name air comes from the incredible light weight of the device. The iPad Air is priced at the same price points as the previous generation iPad.
Apple also announced the iPad Mini with retina display at the event. According to Tim Cook, retina display was the most demanded feature in the iPad Mini from their customers. The new iPad Mini packs exactly the same features as the iPad Air and differs just in size and weight. The iPad Mini weighs at an impressive 0.73 pounds making it extremely light. It is kept at a starting price of $399 for the 16GB WiFi only model.
What was surprising was the fact that the mini is now as powerful as the air. In other words, the iPad Mini upgrade has skipped a generation. It was previously powered by the A5 processor and has now jumped to A7, skilling the A6 family. It also boasts of all the features of iPad Air. So it is basically just about your personal preference now. I personally prefer the iPad Mini just because of it small, yet extremely appropriate size. With the same battery life and the amazing retina display, it will be very difficult to choose one out of the two for many people.
Apple is also continuing the iPad Mini without the retina display at a starting price of $299. Apparently, iPad 2 also lives on with a starting price of $399.
No word yet on India launch and prices. We will keep you posted. Stay tuned.
Apple has announced November 1st 2013 as the launch date for its latest iPhone 5c and 5s in India. It is no coincidence that the dates fall in the Diwali week, a time when Indians spend money to buy new stuff every year. They have also announced the official prices for the phones:
We did expect a steep pricing of the iPhones this time given the falling rupee, however, what we do not understand is the huge difference of price with the memory bump. For all the previous iPhones, the difference between the price of 16GB and 32GB was not as much as it is this time. And with the reducing cost of memory chips, it is still unclear why Apple has increased the price difference.
Another thing to note is that the unlocked iPhone 5s is available at the same price as the iPhone 5 in the US. So it is not clear why there is such a huge difference in the price of the iPhone 5 and iPhone 5s in India, even after considering the import duties. Even if we convert the price of iPhone 5s 16GB ($649) to Indian Rupees, it comes out to be INR 40,000 approx. In our opinion, the taxes and other duties cannot be that much that the price has to be set at INR 53,500.
Something to feel good about is the fact that the iPhone 5c 16GB is being sold at a lower price than the iPhone 5. Given that it is technically better than the iPhone 5, it clearly shows that making plastic shells for iPhones is a lot cheaper for Apple.
Apple will also continue selling the iPhone 4S 8GB in India at a revised price of INR 31,500. Cases for the iPhone 5S will be available for INR 3,200 and those for the iPhone 5C will be available for INR 2,300.
RCom and Airtel have announced that they will be carrying the new iPhones in India at launch. Airtel has even started pre booking of the phone (in store only).
Apple is running a USB power adapter replacement program globally where you can take a 3rd party USB power adapter to your nearest apple reseller and they will replace it with a new apple USB power adapter at a special price.
The program aims at replacing unsafe or counterfeit usb power adapters which might be potentially unsafe for the users of apple devices. Since it is not easy to test the safety of an adapter, apple is just replacing them with their own adapters at a reduced price. Normally, apple adapters are priced much higher than this special price.
The program is currently running in India and apple is replacing 3rd party USB adapters with apple ones for a special price of INR 839. Note that this replacement program is meant for apple device owners and you have to carry your iPhone, iPod or iPad along with the 3rd party adapter to get a replacement at the special price. Only one adapter will be replaced per device. They will validate your device’s serial number and provide a replacement. You also have to give them your 3rd party adapter for disposal.
The program will be running through October 18, 2013 in India. You can find more details here.
Apple launched the iPhone 5C and 5S at the relatively small press event on Tuesday 10th September 2013. Here is all you need to know about the new iPhones:
For the first time ever, Apple launched two new iPhones. The iPhone 5C (where the ‘C’ stands for color, and not ‘cheap’ that everyone was expecting) is a minor upgrade from the iPhone 5. Its specs are mostly similar with the iPhone 5 except for the following few things:
The iPhone 5C is, apparently, not the iPhone everyone was expecting. I am not sure why people expect things from Apple, given their insistence on secrecy. There were speculations that the iPhone 5C will be a cheap iPhone. And to a certain extent, they are true. If you look at the specs, you will find out that its actually better than the iPhone 5 in almost every regard (except that its a little heavy & a little bigger). And Apple is asking $99 for the 16GB model (with contract). Which is $100 cheaper than the current price of the iPhone 5. Unfortunately, its not as cheap as everyone was expecting it to be. But the other way to look at it is that its an upgrade of iPhone 5 at half the price. And with the various color choices available, it will surely be enticing for a lot of people.
The price for the unlocked 16GB model is $549 plus taxes.
The second phone (and the next flagship device) from Apple is the iPhone 5S. Continuing the tradition, iPhone 5S has upped its predecessor’s specs by leap folds. iPhone 5S is the first ever smartphone to have a 64 bit processor (A7) and operating system. This boosts up the performance of the phone to a whole new level. The phone also sports a new M7 processor which will be dedicated only for monitoring and processing the motion related data for the phone.
The big new feature in the 5S is the fingerprint sensor integrated in the home button. Touch ID, as Apple is calling it, will let you unlock your phone, buy stuff from the App Store & iTunes Store just by placing your finger on the home button. Not sure whether the support will be extended to third party apps to authenticate the user given the security concern, but Apple will need a way to figure out how to do it. And I believe that a team in Cupertino is trying to figure that out as you are reading this.
The phone also has an improved camera system with an innovative flash that has two LEDs. The camera is capable of creating a flash tone depending on the lighting condition of the scene you are capturing resulting in better quality pics with close to reality skin tones.
The iPhone 5S is priced starting at $199 for 16GB. $649 for the unlocked 16GB model.
There is no word yet on the India launch dates for these two models. However, judging by the aggressive marketing and promotion campaign Apple ran in India, we can safely assume that Apple has a very serious strategy for India. The pricing, however, is going to be a big challenge for them given the current downfall of the rupee against the dollar. It is reported that Apple is taking a hit on their margins by not increasing price of the iPhone 5 & 4S in India. I think it is critical for them to price the new iPhones in a range which is close to the current pricing of iPhone 5 & 4S. We will keep an eye on the India launch. Stay tuned for more info.
Apple is gearing up its marketing and promotion schemes in India. After a successful smartphone exchange program (which, like everything else, was copied by Samsung), Apple is now offering to trade your old tablet (including your old iPads) when you buy a new iPad in India.
Under the exchange program, customer will get a minimum of INR 4000 when they bring their old tablets. Additional value is given to old iPads over other tablets.
Here is what you can expect from your old tablet:
[via BGR India]
Infibeam.com is offering a free Apple TV with the purchase of an iPhone 5 16 GB. This is one of the best deals on Apple hardware we have seen in India. The price of iPhone 5 on Infibeam.com is INR 45,500. The offer is strangely only applicable on the 16 GB iPhone 5 variant.
Apple TV was launched in India a couple of weeks back after the launch of iTunes store in India. It offers HD movies on rent and for purchase with free storage in the cloud at very reasonable prices. You can also use it to access your music in the cloud and watch your photo stream photos on your large screen TV. Apple TV is also an amazing AirPlay device and supports AirPlay mirroring which enables you to mirror your iPhone’s, iPad’s or your Mac’s screen on your large screen TV.
The offer is only valid till the stock lasts. So hurry up! To get this deal, click here.
Imangi Studios surprised everyone by releasing Temple Run 2 – the sequel to their wildly popular game, Temple Run. The original game was a huge hit because of its immersive and thrilling, yet simple gameplay. The sequel is no different. It improves upon the prequel with astoundingly better graphics (which are, apparently, built using a much better graphics engine this time), new power ups, new stunts, yet using the same simplistic controls.
You can download the iOS version from here: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/temple-run-2/id572395608?mt=8. The Android version will be released in some time.
Cycloramic is an innovative app which lets you take handsfree panoramic videos with your iPhone 5. The app works with most iPhone models, however, with iPhone 5, it goes on a special mode where you place your iPhone 5 upright on a level, smooth surface and the app automatically spins the iPhone 5 while taking the video. All handsfree! Its an amazing feat that the developers seem to have achieved by generating custom vibration patterns fine tuned for the iPhone 5. Here is a video of the app in action:
Pretty cool eh? If you have an iPhone 5, you can grab the app from the App Store for ? 55. Please note that the automatic spin mode is only available for the iPhone 5. We hope the developers bring this mode to all the other iPhone models in the future.
Google has finally released its maps app for iOS giving relief to a lot of users around the world. After many embarrassing turn of events for Apple, it was inevitable for Google to work on and release an awesome app to users facing too much inconvenience. And they have delivered well.
The new app is beautifully designed and has all the elements one would need from a maps app. The app looks slick and minimalistic, however, it is feature packed with turn by turn voice navigation, transit directions, walking directions, live traffic view and reviews for restaurants in addition to some personalization features. I tried turn by turn voice navigation in India and found it to be pretty accurate.
However, the distance units are not in metric which is a bit inconvenient. To make the distance units show up in metric system, go to Settings -> General -> International and change the Region format to India. Also, there seems to be lags here and there when the app speaks out directions. Even with all these quirks, the app is a welcome for anyone who was used to using the native Google maps apps before iOS 6. The app has already replaced the native Apple maps app on my home screen.
Download the new app from the app store: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/google-maps/id585027354?mt=8