By Joel Silva / GovernmentiPhone / 0 Comments

In a recent interview with The New York Times, President-elect Donald Trump said he received phone calls from Apple CEO Tim Cook and Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates after winning the presidential election earlier this month.

Trump told Cook it will be a “real achievement” for him when he gets Apple to make its products in the United States, as opposed to countries like China and Vietnam where many of its current manufacturing partners operate.
I got a call from Tim Cook at Apple, and I said, ‘Tim, you know one of the things that will be a real achievement for me is when I get Apple to build a big plant in the United States, or many big plants in the United States, where instead of going to China, and going to Vietnam, and going to the places that you go to, you’re making your product right here.’
Cook acknowledged the proposition by nondescriptly saying “I understand that,” according to Trump.

Trump said he is confident Apple will turn to U.S. manufacturing based on the incentives he plans to offer the iPhone maker, including a “very large tax cut” and “substantial regulation cuts” for corporations.
I said: ‘I think we’ll create the incentives for you, and I think you’re going to do it. We’re going for a very large tax cut for corporations, which you’ll be happy about.’ But we’re going for big tax cuts, we have to get rid of regulations, regulations are making it impossible. Whether you’re liberal or conservative, I mean I could sit down and show you regulations that anybody would agree are ridiculous. It’s gotten to be a free-for-all. And companies can’t, they can’t even start up, they can’t expand, they’re choking.
A recent report said Apple asked its Taiwanese manufacturing partner Foxconn to study the possibility of moving iPhone production to the United States, although Foxconn chairman Terry Gou is said to be less enthusiastic about the idea due to inevitably higher production costs compared to China.

While campaigning at Liberty University in Virginia earlier this year, Trump said “we’re going to get Apple to start building their damn computers and things in this country instead of in other countries,” while he has also threatened to introduce a 45% tax on products imported from China.

Cook previously said Apple manufactures iPhones in China because the country has put an “enormous focus on manufacturing,” while noting the U.S. workforce has a smaller number of individuals with the “vocational kind of skills” needed.
China put an enormous focus on manufacturing. In what we would call, you and I would call vocational kind of skills. The U.S., over time, began to stop having as many vocational kind of skills. I mean, you can take every tool and die maker in the United States and probably put them in a room that we’re currently sitting in. In China, you would have to have multiple football fields.
Apple also benefits from lower wages in China, where many of its suppliers are located within close proximity of each other. In Asia, Taiwan’s TSMC makes A-series chips for iPhones, Japan’s Sharp and Japan Display supply iPhone displays, and South Korea’s SK Hynix and Japan’s Toshiba produce memory chips for the device.

Apple does have a Mac Pro manufacturing facility in Austin, Texas, operated by Flextronics, but it is a limited effort given the relatively low production volume of its high-end desktop computer.

Cook was personally a Hillary Clinton supporter, hosting a fundraiser for the Democratic presidential nominee in August on behalf of himself. In a company-wide memo issued following Trump’s victory, Cook urged Apple employees to “move forward together” despite “uncertainties ahead.”

Apple as a company showed support for both the Democratic and Republican parties during their respective campaigns, but it reportedly withheld support for the 2016 Republican National Convention due to Trump’s controversial comments about minorities, women, and immigrants, among other subjects.

Source: MacRumors

By mario / iPhone / 0 Comments

Apple accounted for over 100 percent of smartphone industry profits in the third quarter of this year, according to estimates published by BMO Capital Markets on Thursday.

Analyst Tim Long, quoted in the Investor’s Business Daily, said Apple’s staggering 103.6 percent profit share in Q3 2016 came largely as a result of significant losses posted by rival vendors including LG and HTC, and despite Apple continuing to shift fewer handsets year on year.

Based on units alone, Samsung accounted for 21.7 percent of all smartphones sold, with Apple coming in second with a 13.2 percent share. In terms of profits however, Samsung came a distant second to Apple, capturing only a 0.9 percent share.
Samsung ceded market share in smartphone shipments to Apple and Chinese vendors in the third quarter because of its Galaxy Note 7 troubles, Long said. He expects further share loss by Samsung in the current quarter. Apple captured over 100% of smartphone industry profits for the first time, thanks in part to Samsung’s weaker results, Long said.
If accurate, the estimates represent the first time Apple has achieved smartphone industry profits of over 100 percent – an impressive number for a company owning only around 12 percent of the market.

According to the same report, Apple managed 90 percent profit share in the same quarter a year ago. However, this year Apple’s iPhone 7 numbers were undoubtedly helped by Samsung’s hugely damaging Galaxy Note 7 recall and discontinuation, which effectively took the South Korean company out of this year’s flagship smartphone race, indicating Apple’s profit share is unlikely to be sustained in the long term.

Despite the impressive numbers, Apple’s recent third quarter financial results reported its first full-year revenue decline for Apple since 2001, although Apple expects to return to revenue growth in the holiday season on the back of sales of the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus.

Source: Macrumors.com

By Joel Silva / iPhoneMobile / 0 Comments


The Google Pixel XL excels at mobile phone photography, edging out Apple’s iPhone 7 Plus in CNET’s estimation. With video, though, it’s a different story.

My colleague Vanessa Hand Orellana and I spent hours chasing pigeons, children, dogs and sunsets to put the two cameras to the test. The Pixel XL had its moments, but on the whole, we agreed the iPhone 7 Plus captured better video.

Its biggest advantages were color, image stabilization, sharpness, contrast, low-light shooting and zoom, unsurprisingly given its second camera.

The Pixel XL, which offers the identical cameras and image processing as the Pixel, did lead the iPhone 7 Plus in some areas, though. Its autofocus was faster, and it sometimes kept a nice exposure when the iPhone went overboard with brightness. Google’s phone handily beat the iPhone 7 Plus when it came to slow-motion video with sharper imagery, too.

When Apple debuted the first iPhone in 2007, it couldn’t shoot video at all. That’s unthinkable today even for a low-end phone. Good mobile video is crucial in the era of YouTube, Facebook and Snapchat. Even if you’re not into sharing, video is key to chronicling our lives. So it behooves you to pay attention to video quality.

Don’t consider this a final judgment. Much of Google’s approach to photography and videography involves extensive image processing, including its excellent HDR+ technology used for photos. There’s no HDR+ for video, but Google still could offer camera app software updates to address some Pixel shortcomings.

Here’s a look at some of the details of our tests.

Image stabilization

The two phones take a very different approach to image stabilization, a critical aspect of video quality. The iPhone 7 Plus uses an optical approach that physically moves lens elements to counteract the camera motion caused by shaky hands or movement when you’re walking. The Pixel XL uses digital stabilization, which uses motion sensors and image data to try to mathematically compensate for camera movement.

Each has its advantages when it comes to camera size, component costs and other factors, but we found the iPhone’s approach generally resulted in a smoother, more human feel. The Pixel XL would try hard to stabilize a shot, but when it figured out you really had pointed the camera in a new direction, there would be an abrupt stop-and-start shift to the new perspective. This made video jerky. The iPhone wasn’t as good at compensating for the bobbing perspective you’ll often see in videos shot while walking, but it still looked more natural.

And likely because the Pixel XL relies on its processor for stabilization, it struggled when shooting video at 60 frames per second — double the rate of ordinary 1080p video and thus double the number of pixels to process — or when shooting higher-resolution 4K video at 30 frames per second.

Exposure

iPhone 7 Plus videos at times were overexposed, a problem I’ve found in iPhone photos, too, where foreheads and cheeks in the sun are glaring white, orange or yellow. In dim conditions, details in shadowy areas often disappeared into the murk. The Pixel XL handled exposure better overall, though I preferred the iPhone 7 Plus with sunrises and sunsets that are a challenge for any camera today.

The Pixel XL gets a big demerit in one area of exposure, though. When I shot while walking, sometimes the exposure would pulse darker with each footfall. This happened in several videos.

Color

The iPhone generally selected more pleasing, warm tones. In good lighting conditions both cameras were reasonable, but I found the iPhone 7 Plus colors to be vibrant while still natural — perhaps a result of the wider P3 color gamut it uses compared to the Pixel XL’s more limited sRGB range of colors.

Sometimes skin tones with the Pixel XL video had a yellowish cast. I think of this as the “putty effect.” Under warm-hued indoor light, the Pixel XL showed people as too orange. It could switch color settings rapidly, too, in one case switching back and forth distractingly between an orange and blue tint.

Sharpness

Here the iPhone won, perhaps a result of its six-element lens design or better image processing technology that creates the video from the raw image-sensor data. The Pixel XL was usually adequate, but with videos of subjects like city skylines and nature landscapes, the edges on the iPhone were crisp without appearing over sharpened.

The Pixel XL was sharper taking slow-motion video, though. We shot at 240 frames per second, a speedup factor of 8 compared to regular video. Both the Pixel XL and iPhone 7 Plus can only shoot at 720p resolution, which is fine but not as sharp as full high-definition video at 1080p.

Of course, if you want to zoom, the iPhone 7 Plus has dual cameras — 28mm and 56mm equivalent focal lengths — and the 2X setup is much better for portraits, kids who aren’t in front of you, concerts and many other situations with distant subjects. But there’s a big caveat: there’s no optical image stabilization for the 56mm camera. Because of that, and a lens that doesn’t let in as much light, the iPhone 7 Plus uses the wider-angle camera in dim conditions, making it just like a plain old single-camera iPhone 7.

Lens flare

Both cameras suffered from lens flare, the streaked and washed-out areas that result from shooting toward the sun or other bright light sources. The Pixel XL sometimes would produce a ring around the sun even when the sun was outside the frame — the Pixel XL “halo effect” that Google hopes to easewith better processing at least in photos. The iPhone 7 Plus would wash out details nearer the sun and add a green ghost image of the sun diametrically across the frame from the sun. I was disappointed in both cameras, frankly, but the edge goes to the Pixel XL for better contrast and less haze when shooting directly toward the sun.

Autofocus

I enjoyed the Pixel XL’s snappy autofocus, especially its ability to lock in more quickly on close-up subjects. It also did better locking focus during slo-mo shooting, where you’re more likely to notice a longer wait.

Low-light conditions

I had high hopes for the Pixel XL, whose pixels are 60 percent larger than the iPhone 7 Plus’ and therefore in principle are better able to shoot in dim conditions where photons are scarce. Instead, the iPhone gave the Pixel XL a drubbing. iPhone video suffered from the transient jittering of noise speckles, but the edges were sharp, and the noise was far less distracting than the Pixel’s crude, smeary noise reduction. Both cameras struggled at times to catch focus, a common affliction in the dark.

When shooting indoors, the iPhone again showed superior performance, though in smaller rooms, the Pixel XL’s wider-angle field of view is a big advantage.

Front camera

The Pixel XL did a nice job exposing faces and keeping focus, but it sometimes struggled with backlit faces, choosing to silhouette me. Sometimes it underexposed even without silhouettes. I liked its sharpness better, but overall the iPhone did a better job with skin tones and showed a more lifelike degree of contrast.

4K video

For this higher-resolution format, the Pixel XL was nicely exposed, but the iPhone 7 Plus outdid it when it comes to sharpness. And why bother shooting 4K video if you’re not paying attention to sharpness? Again, the iPhone’s optical image stabilization was more natural. On the Pixel XL, I spotted some compression artifacts in even-toned areas, a blue sky and a red ceiling.

Overall, it’s an iPhone victory for video. Perhaps we’ll see a software update from Google that will help it catch up.

Source: cnet