Apple Updates iBooks Author With Updated EULA

Recently, Apple announced iBooks Author, a new application that simplifies the process of creating and selling digital textbooks through its iBook store. However, with any new thing Apple announces, there is is controversy that is caused among the media. For this particular software, controversy was created due to the software’s licensing, which specified that anything created within the software could only be sold via the iBookstore and not any other marketplace. Due to this, Apple was once again deemed as “evil.” Confusion was caused due to the way Apple worded its end user license agreement (EULA) for iBooks.

iBooks Author

Today, the company has clarified its EULA agreement by rewording it. Apple has now addressed this issue by releasing an update to iBooks Author that includes a modified licensing agreement to clarify that Apple claims rights only to the .ibooks document format itself. Also, authors are free to distribute their content in non-.ibooks formats however they wish.

Before the update, the EULA used to read:

“(i)if your Work is provided for free (at no charge), you may distribute the Work by any available means;
(ii) if your Work is provided for a fee (including as part of any subscription-based product or service), you may only distribute the Work through Apple and such distribution is subject to the following limitations and conditions: (a) you will be required to enter into a separate written agreement with Apple (or an Apple affiliate or subsidiary) before any commercial distribution of your Work may take place; and (b) Apple may determine for any reason and in its sole discretion not to select your Work for distribution.”

Now it reads:

“If you want to charge a fee for a work that includes files in the .ibooks format generated using iBooks Author, you may only sell or distribute such work through Apple, and such distribution will be subject to a separate agreement with Apple. This restriction does not apply to the content of such works when distributed in a form that does not include files in the .ibooks format.”

iBooks Author 1.0.1 with the updated license agreement is available for free via the Mac App Store. Yup, Apple was indeed trying to restrict authors after all…

Apple Was the Only Phone Manufacture That Saw Significant Growth Last Quarter

You know the iPhone 4S? The so-called phone that nobody wanted? Well, it turns out it has been a solid hit for Apple. With over 37 million sold last quarter, Apple’s marketshare and install base has significantly benefited from this. Today, a new report from Comscore, a research firm, reveals that due to the rapid fading away of RIM’s BlackBerry US market share throughout 2011, new data shows that there is an indication of a stabilizing slowdown in RIM’s losses as well as a consistent slowdown of Android’s growth. On the other hand, Apple continued to be the only phone manufacture to see growth in the quarter. Mind boggling for a phone that isn’t “open,” isn’t it?

The new data reveals that Android significantly benefited from RIM’s US lost market share, which decreased from just over 30 percent in January down to 16 percent. No surprise here, but what surprising is that while Android benefited from RIM’s loss, Apple continued to steadily grow its share throughout the year. Apple saw an increase from 25 percent to 30 percent over the year.

Comscore iPhone 2012 - 1

According to Comscore, the only two platforms that gained share among platforms was Android and iOS. Android saw an increase by 2.5 percent and Apple grew by 2.2 percent. RIM, the burning ship, still continued to fall 2.9 percent for the fourth quarter while Microsoft and Symbian showed no sign of change. What’s funny is that Comscore still does not distinguish between Windows Mobile and Windows Phone 7, which has yet to gain significant share in the US.

Comscore iPhone 2012 -2

In addition, just yesterday, it was reported that Apple had become the third largest mobile phone manufacture. Doomed and losing indeed.

Rumor Regarding Apple Event in February Debunked

Yup, it is that time of the year again. The time of the year where media goes all crazy over iPad 3 rumors and reports on every single one, but luckily there are still a few sane reports that come out. A few hours ago, a Japanese blog Macotakara reported that Apple would be holding a “strange” type of event in early February for the iPad 3. The author was unable to provide further details on what exactly a strange event would entail.

When I first read this, it drove me nuts. “Strange” type of event? WTF was that even supposed to mean? I knew it was nonsense right off the bat, but luckily a more credible journalist thought the same way too. The Loop’s well-connected Jim Dalrymple reported a few hours after that Apple won’t be holding an event in February. Dalrymple has been reporting on Apple for over 20 years. Not only is he right, but if you take a look a back at history we can conclude that his sources are accurate:

iPad:

Announced: Jan 27, 2010
Released: Mar 5, 2010

iPad 2:

Announced Mar 2, 2011
Released: Mar 11, 2011

So indeed, it does look like an iPad 3 event will be held in March with it also becoming available in March. My thoughts regarding what we can expect with the iPad 3 can be read here.

Apple Has Become the Third Largest Mobile Phone Manufacturer

You know that company declared doomed many times? Yeah, that one. The one named after a fruit. Well, Apple has been moving up the charts in all categories. Just last week, it was reported that Apple had once again become the world’s largest smartphone maker. They dethroned copy-cat Samsung in order to do so.

IDC 4Q 2011 phone estimate
Worldwide Mobile Phone Sales in 4Q11 in Millions of Units (Source: IDC)

Today, research firm IDC revealed its estimates of worldwide mobile phone sales for the fourth quarter of and full-year of 2011. What’s most notable is that that Apple moved past LG to claim third place in the rankings for the first time. Since 2010, Apple was rapidly closing in on LG, but fell back into fifth place behind ZTE during the third quarter since customers held off in anticipation of a new iPhone. Turns out, the phone that nobody wanted (iPhone 4S) was enough to move Apple up in the year’s final quarter and by a large enough margin that it was able to pass LG in full-year numbers as well. LG saw shipments decrease from 30.6 million units in the fourth quarter of 2010 to 17.7 million phones in the most recent quarter, while Chinese handset maker ZTE had 17.1 million.

IDC 4Q 2011 phones

Just last week, Apple reported a massive blowout quarter and reported that it sold 37.04 million iPhones. In addition, Apple’s CEO Tim Cook said “Apple’s momentum is incredibly strong, and we have some amazing new products in the pipeline.”

Tim Cook on New Retail Chief John Browett: ‘The Best by Far’

Just yesterday, it was announced that Apple had appointed John Browett as the new Senior Vice President of Retail. Browett left his position as CEO of Dixons Retail. That night, while I was reading my Twitter timeline, I noticed that people were expressing concerns among those familiar with Dixons, which operates stores under a number of names including Currys and PC World. Turns out, it wasn’t just people on Twitter who were expressing signs of concern.

John Browett

Now, in response to the criticism MacRumors reader Tony Hart reports on his blog that after emailing Apple CEO Tim Cook with his thoughts on the company’s selection of Dixons CEO John Browett as the head of retail, he received a personal response in which Cook said that Browett was “the best by far” among the candidates he talked with about the position. Geez, took a genius to figure that one out didn’t it? I mean come on, did folks really think Apple didn’t know what it was doing?

Tony,

I talked to many people and John was the best by far. I think you will be as pleased as I am. His role isn’t to bring Dixons to Apple, [it’s] to bring Apple to an even higher level of customer service and satisfaction.

Tim

Prior to the role of CEO of  Dixons Retail, Browett held excecutive positions at Tesco PLC including CEO of Tesco.com. Also, he had previously adviced retail and consumer goods clients at Boston Consulting Group. Speaking of Tim Cook, which other company’s CEO replies to emails so promptly?

AAPL off to a Fantastic Start in 2012

Recently, bloggers and media have been suggesting what Apple should do with its nearly $100 billion in cash pile and why the company is doomed, but what they fail to point out is the tremendous growth Apple’s share price is seeing. There’s no other tech company stock right now which is seeing growth like this. Today is the last day of the month in January, which means that the stock trading for this month came to a close. Apple’s share price growth for the first month of 2012 is notable as MacRumors points out.

AAPL has seen a monthly gain of over 50 points that has increased its price by nearly 13%. This is due to the blowout quarter the company reported a week ago, but since, then the share has seen solid growth and closed at yet another record high of $456.48 today after touching $458.24 earlier in the day. In fact, just last week the company’s share price soared past $450.

AAPL Jan 2012

Just yesterday, it was reported that the company may soon sell as many iPhones in China as it sells in the rest of the world combined! With that being said, Apple is now also the world’s most valuable company with a market cap that tops $425 billion.

Apple Updates Final Cut Pro X with Multicam Support and More!

Last year, Apple released a brand new version of Final Cut Pro called “Final Cut Pro X.” When it was first released, the company was receiving a lot of criticism for the lack of features. As a temporary solution, Apple posted a FAQ in response to the criticism and questions from customers. Then later on, Apple promised that it would address the criticism in a future update. Finally, that day has come. Today, Apple has released Final Cut Pro X v10.0.3, which is a significant update to the video editing application. This update addresses some of the customers’ criticism.

Apple today released Final Cut Pro X v10.0.3, a significant update to its revolutionary professional video editing application, which introduces multicam editing that automatically syncs up to 64 angles of video and photos; advanced chroma keying for handling complex adjustments right in the app; and enhanced XML for a richer interchange with third party apps and plug-ins that support the fast growing Final Cut Pro X ecosystem. Available today as a free update from the Mac App Store, Final Cut Pro X v10.0.3 also includes a beta of broadcast monitoring that supports Thunderbolt devices as well as PCIe cards.

FCP Multicam
Multicam editing in Final Cut Pro X v.10.0.3

One feature that was requested was multicam editing, and this update offers that once again. Apple says the software automatically syncs clips from a shoot using audio waveforms, time and date, or timecode to create a Multicam Clip with up to 64 angles of video, which can include mixed formats, frame sizes and frame rates. In addition, a customizable Angle Editor lets you use the Multicam Clip to make precise adjustments, including playing back multiple angles at the same time to seamlessly cut between them. AppleInsider offers a more detailed look on what the new update has to offer.

Final Cut Pro X [Mac App Store] is available in the Mac App Store and is priced at $299.99. Apple also offers a free 30-day trial for download.

Apple Appoints John Browett as New Senior Vice President of Retail

John Browett

Last year, it was reported that Ron Johnson (the man behind the Apple Stores) had decided to become J.C. Penney’s new CEO. Then a few months after, it was reported that Apple was looking overseas for a replacement. Now, today morning, Apple announced this morning that John Browett has joined Apple as their new Senior Vice President of Retail. Browett is leaving his position as CEO of Dixons Retail.

Apple® today announced that John Browett will join the company as senior vice president of Retail, reporting to Apple CEO Tim Cook. Browett comes to Apple from European technology retailer Dixons Retail, where he has been CEO since 2007. Beginning in April, he will be responsible for Apple’s retail strategy and the continued expansion of Apple retail stores around the world.

“Our retail stores are all about customer service, and John shares that commitment like no one else we’ve met,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “We are thrilled to have him join our team and bring his incredible retail experience to Apple.”

Prior to the role of CEO of  Dixons Retail, Browett held excecutive positions at Tesco PLC including CEO of Tesco.com. Also, he had previously adviced retail and consumer goods clients at Boston Consulting Group. John Browett has a degree in Natural Science from Cambridge University and an MBA from Wharton Business School. Apple choosing someone from overseas may come as a surprise, but it should be noted that Steve Jobs wanted to recruit someone from abroad.

In Europe, Dixon Retail is one of the largest consumer retailers with over 40,000 employees.

 

Morgan Stanley: Apple Estimated to Sell Up to 40M iPhones on China Mobile and China Telecom in 2013

Last week, it was reported that Apple had once again become the world’s largest smartphone maker. Turns out this was due to the fact that Apple sold 37 million iPhones last quarter alone! Now, Morgan Stanley believes that Apple will partner up with both China Telecom and China Mobile “over the next year” to make its iPhone available on all three Chinese carriers. That may not sound amazing, but what does is the fact that Morgan Stanley believes that the company will be able to sell up to 40M iPhones in China alone in the next calendar year. This means that Apple could soon sell as many iPhones in China as it sells in the rest of the world combined!

iPhone China Morgan Stanley
Credit: Morgan Stanley

Remember, Apple sold 37 million iPhones last quarter worldwide, but this estimate is for one country alone. Analyst Katy Huberty suggested the huge untapped potential for the iPhone in China. According to her, Apple can only possibly reach 10 percent of the 150 million “high-end Chinese subscribers” in the country through its current partnership with China Unicom. Last year, Tim Cook said that Apple was only “scratching the surface” in China. She says that she sees a base case of 26 million incremental iPhone sales in China during the 2013 calendar year with the addition of China Mobile and China Telecom. Her bull case suggests 40 million units for an increase of $10 in earnings per share.

iPhone China Morgan Stanley
Credit: Morgan Stanley

The analyst also suggests that if Apple sees a 20 percent penetration of China Mobile’s subscribers as the company has reached with China Unicom, the iPhone maker would be able to sell 24 million handsets on China Mobile alone next year. Due to the fact that 3G and smartphone penetration in China is “increasing at a fast clip” she believes that the company could sell as many as 36 million units on China Mobile in 2013.

In China, China Mobile is the world’s largest carrier, and offers service to an estimated 120 million high-end subscribers who pay more than 100RMB ($16) a month. The final 10 percent of high-end subscribers are on China Telecom, the third-largest carrier in China.

I’m trying to think of another company that is expected to sell as many phones in China as it sells in the rest of the world combined. Anyone?

Interview with Ben Lang, the creator of Notification Control

Ben Lang is an 18 year old entrepreneur. He’s the founder of EpicLaunch and MySchoolHelp. Recently he’s been working on the marketing team at Wibiya and also launched Notification Control. You can follow him on Twitter @benln.

Ben Lang

Me:  What was your first leap into entrepreneurship? Why did you want to become an entrepreneur?

Ben Lang (BL): When I was 14, my grandfather gave me his camera equipment to sell online. Once I understood how profitable it could be, I started selling other people’s stuff for them for a commission.

Me: What difficulties do you run into as an entrepreneur? How do you overcome them?

BL: Time is an issue. I always find that there’s not enough time to work on everything I want to be doing. I’m always trying to optimize my time management to get the most done.

Me: Your project Notification Control has seemed to create a lot of buzz. Tell us, how you thought of the idea for Notification Control?

BL: I was inspired by the success of MyPermissions.org, a simple site for cleaning app permissions. I thought it might be an interesting experiment to see if I could make something similar yet different that could also go viral.

Me: What motivated you to create Notification Control?

BL: Email sucks. I always find myself unsubscribing from newsletters, changing my notification settings and deleting emails. So I thought it might be a solid idea to create a simple site to manage all of your email settings from most of the popular social networks in one shot.

Me: When did you start blogging? What motivated you to become a blogger?

BL: I started blogging a few years ago about my eBay business. It helped me gain clients and build credibility online. Since then I’ve continued to blog about my experiences and share what I’ve learned over time.

Me: Do you have any advice for teens who want to become an entrepreneur?

BL: For teens who are interested in the web but aren’t particularly technical (like me), my advice would be to get started by building WordPress sites. Once you have some idea, get Launchrock up on your site, test it out, see if people sign up. Then go for it, WordPress is easy to learn and just do whatever you can on your own. If you need help, there’s always the Internet out there.

Me: In your opinion, what makes a great entrepreneur?

BL: I’m a huge fan of those entrepreneurs who accomplish great things but stay humble and down to earth. There are some truly amazing entrepreneurs out there who continually help others out.