October 20, 2011
One of the bigest current storys in the technology world is about Apple (again!) and their just released update to their phone and tablet O/S.
iOS 5, as it is known, has a wealth of new features and toys to play with, and is paired with new hardware - the iPhone 4S. As with any update there are a plenty of new features to like, some changes to hate, and the odd little wrinkle.
But, on a larger view, people are always asking 'what does this mean ?'.
It used to be the case that Apple was seen as a leader, and any new piece of kit from them was the biggest news for days.
This time around, one thing that struck me was that although the news topped the technology pages it wasn't the first item on the main BBC news anymore.
I think there is one key reason for this, and it's down to Apple's aggressive marketing of previous devices. Because Apple charge a premium for their phones compared to cheaper Android or Symbian based devices many people who wanted the very latest phone last time around got locked into a long contract of around two years in order to get the phone as cheap as they could.
And now, not long after the June 2010 launch of the iPhone 4, a lot of people are either locked into the rest of their contract, or looking at having to pay for an upgrade, rather than get one free as a renewal bonus in another 6 months.
For this reason, I think even with an amusing butler to speak too,the iPhone 4S and iOS 5 will be a lot slower to take up than we've seen in the past with Apple devices.
This may give Microsoft, and to an extent the new Google/Motorola partnership, time to catch and introduce their own updates.
Someone is going to fill the hole left by Nokia, and the game is starting to play out right now.
Posted by Tom Chiverton
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