Win an Apple iPad! Enter Right Now!

  • Comments: 13
  • Written on: February 5th, 2010

You can win Apple’s latest creation, the iPad just by being a part of the nationally-syndicated Living Digital radio show! The Living Digital show covers today’s technology from cell phones, to 3D TV to your personal computer with a special focus on how your technology impacts your life. The show airs from 2-5 PM CST […]

Will 2010 Be the Year of the Slate PC?

  • Comments: 7
  • Written on: February 2nd, 2010

If 2009 was the year of the netbook then 2010 may be the year of the slate PC.

Apple’s iPad tablet device on follows the demonstration of an HP tablet device (also called a slate PC) at the CES.

As the recession hit the US in 2009, computer sales were only 2.8% up in the US as compared to a 24% increase in 2008. In fact the first three quarters of 2009 were awful for computer sales across the country – until netbooks saved the day in Q4.

The idea of a 10″ touch screen device that has the power of a notebook and the size of a netbook intrigues me. I can see moving my front desk employees off their desktop PCs and onto iPads or Slates.

Size and Options Mater

I thought it was really interesting that Apple is only introducing the iPad in one size. Apple is clearly targeting the iPad as a lifestyle device while PC manufacturers are targeting the slate form factor as a flexible and useful productivity tool.

Its almost like apple is lining up another Mac vs. PC battle that they can never win – a proprietary Apple device with a closed software distribution channel and PC with flexible devices with customizable options and a ton of inexpensive software already in the pipe.

It’s all About the Content Stupid

While PC manufacturers will most likely sell many more slates than Apple will iPads, the real money is not in the device its self, it is in the content that is consumed on the device.

Apple will be releasing its new web-based version of iTunes later this year, which will allow Apple users to synchronize their content between multiple devices like an iPhone, and iPod and an iPad.

Apple followed a similar release model with the iPhone. When the 1st generation phone was released it was lacking in many basic cell phone features (ability to shoot video, picture messaging, etc) yet Apple released it anyway. They needed to get a device in the market so developers would begin building content.

As the content grew, so did iPhone’s advantage over other smart phones and subsequent versions could be subsidized to include more features because Apple was making it back on the content.

I would expect a similar model for the iPad. The 1st generation device has no webcam, yet has software handles for video calling for example. I would expect subsequent revisions of the iPad to add additional features as the content growth allows.

How do you think the iPad will do?

iSlate Won’t Be a Low-Price Device

  • Comments: 26
  • Written on: January 6th, 2010

There has been a lot of chatter all over the web regarding Apple’s expected announcement of the iSlate tablet device on or around January 26, 2010.

There are a lot of people with a lot of ideas about what the iSlate tablet is, what product niche it is designed to fill in Apple’s product line, what its features will be, and how much it will cost. While no one knows the specifics yet, I believe a lot of the rumors are slightly off-base.

Everyone is wrapped up in what Apple has ordered from suppliers, what the iPhone can do, Apple’s supposed need to compete with netbooks, and pure desire for something new from Steve Jobs.

Many of the people turning the crank on the rumor machine are fogetting some of the known Apple quantities:

  1. Steve Jobs doesn’t chase market niches – he redefines them
  2. Steve jobs has publicly stated that netbooks are substandard hardware
  3. Apple risks cheapening its brand by selling a sub-$1000 computing device
  4. This is a lifestyle device – people will not buy it because the need it. People will need it because they want it

Rather than getting all caught up in the expected specifications, whether or not it has an OLED screen, or attempting to decode vague requests to iPhone application developers for more high-resolution apps, I am going to make three general Thorstradamus predictions:

  1. There is a distinct possibility that the late January announcement is about an improvement in the iPhone. I peg this at a 60% chance. Apple is about the software & apps, and they’re just not there yet.
  2. If the announcement is about an Apple tablet, it will cost more than $1200. It may be re-released later at a lower cost as Apple did with the iPhone
  3. I do not think Apple will launch a device designed to compete with $400 netbooks EVER

What do you think? Post a comment below to go on the record. Let’s see who is right on this one!

http://www.engadget.com/2009/12/23/apple-planning-event-for-january-with-high-res-iphone-or-small/

Earn Big Money by Infecting Macs With Malware

  • Comments: 4
  • Written on: October 1st, 2009

apple-logoAn affiliate network called the Partnetka is working hard in Russia to bring malware to your beloved Mac at a bounty of $.43 per infection.

Affiliate networks are nothing new on the web – in fact they are much more common than you might imagine. The basic concept is that webmasters run websites that people go to. They use their websites to promote products and services and gt a piece of the action when people buy.

It turns out that according to ZDnet that this network was offering a $.43 payment for every Mac that could be infected and handed over.

Most Mac infections come in the form of DNS changing Trojans that are downloaded in relation to porn videos.

Affiliate networks are pay-for-performance deals. This means that someone out there somewhere intends to make more than $.43 on every Mac they can infect. The days of the Mac being an invincible platform are clearly numbered.

How Not to Respod to a Marketing Campaign
Courtesy of Apple’s Stupid Lawyers

  • Comments: 1
  • Written on: August 1st, 2009

There are a lot of ways to measure the effectiveness of a marketing campaign. You can look at market share gained, revenue generated, or response rates. But sometimes the true measure of an ad’s effectiveness is not in these numbers.

A truly brilliant marketing campaign makes your competitors whine. It makes then call their lawyers. It makes them grasp at any straw to make the bleeding stop.

There is truth to the saying “thou dost protest too much.” If you get your competitor to respond in a direct way to an indirect advertisement you know you are doing something right.

If Your Competitors Squawk, Keep Doing It

If something in your advertising – a word, phrase or concept – draws the ire of a competitor there is usually something about what you are doing that they are afraid of.

Take this recent example:

Microsoft recently launched a series of TV ads called Laptop Hunters.

Scott Long Adds Years of Experience to Schrock’s Lincoln Service Center

  • Comments: 5
  • Written on: May 5th, 2009

I tend to welcome my employees unofficially on my blog once they have worked for us for a few weeks and we know they are the real deal.

In fact, it’s almost an inside joke among Schrock’s employees that once you make it on Thor’s blog you know you are good to go.

If that’s the case, then I am happy to report that Schrock’s newest employee, Scott Long, is good to go. Scott will be taking on a management role in the Lincoln Service Center.

Scott brings an official Apple certification to Schrock as well as additional HP and Dell certifications. Anyone who has been through the certification process for these three companies understands the training and experience required to gain these certifications. His presence in the service center will help us keep our turnaround times to same-day or next day.

Should I Buy a Psystar Macintosh Clone?

  • Comments: 107
  • Written on: January 24th, 2009

I am seriously thinking about buying a Psystar Mac clone. I am a little nervous about what might happen if they lose their case with Apple, but its still hard to justify spending $5,048 on a true Power Mac when I can get the same thing from PsyStar for $1,903.

The hardware is nearly identical, the software IS identical, so my experience should be almost the same as well, right? Here are some of the PsyStar positives and negatives that are weighing on my decision.

Doomsday Approaching for Apple’s Mac?

  • Comments: 6
  • Written on: January 7th, 2009

If you have been following the Apple v. Psystar saga over cloned Mac computers you might get the impression that Psystar is just trying to make a buck selling inexpensive clones of a popular Apple computer system.

But according to legal filings, Apple thinks that Psystar might be part of a “Pirates of Silicon Valley” style assault on Apple’s future in the computer market. And they might be right.

If the door is legally opened to those who might want to make Mac clones, large manufacturers like Dell, HP and others would be racing each other to deploy Mac clone systems at breakneck speeds.

This end result is what fuels the conspiracy theory that some other person, persons, or competitors are providing aid to Psystar to keep their legal options alive. Some sources believe that this support is the reason Psystar has been so belligerent in the face of resistance by Apple.

The Truth About Mac vs. PC

  • Comments: 1
  • Written on: December 27th, 2008

One of my technicians at Schrock Innovations forwarded this video to me.  Compared to any of the Mac vs. PC commercials out there, this one is more truthful than any I have seen.  Enjoy!

Cyber-Guerrillas Sneak up on Hillary Clinton With Apple Macintosh Parody

  • Comments: 0
  • Written on: March 20th, 2007

I have been privately warning politicians locally that they need to be aware of the impact that anonymous online activity can have on a political campaign. It seems that politicians, at least on a national level, are starting to wake up about the threats and opportunities posed by the Internet and websites

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