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Thursday 31 May 2012

Apple Loop: The Week In Review, Bringing you a quick look at some of the news related to Apple this week.

Mr. Cook Goes to Washington. Apple CEO Tim Cook met with U.S. Speaker of the House John Boehner at the U.S. Capitol to talk about — well, Boehner, who released two photos of the meetings didn’t say, though it’s a safe bet that tax repatriation was discussed as Apple has a big chunk of cash overseas. How much? About $74 billion of its $110.2 billion was offshore at the end of its quarter in March.

Steve Jobs at the movies. The first photographs of Ashton Kutcher as a young Steve Jobs made their rounds on the Web, thanks to TMZ which snapped the actor in black turtleneck, jeans and New Balance sneakers. Kutcher is playing a young Jobs (who as I recall didn’t really wear a black turtleneck back in those earlier days) for a biopic tentatively called “Jobs: Get Inspired.” In other movie news, Sony said this week that screenwriter Aaron Sorkin (who won an Oscar for his screenplay of “The Social Network”) will write the script for a Jobs’ movie based on Walter Isaacson’s best-selling biography. “I know so little about what I am going to write. I know what I am not going to write. It can’t be a straight ahead biography because it’s very difficult to shake the cradle-to-grave structure of a biography, ” Sorkin told Reuters in an interview. Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak will be an adviser to the movie. Can’t wait for the movie? There are lots of Steve Jobs’ videos floating around the Web, including this compilation and the 1984 spoof of Ghostbusters with cameos by Jobs and Wozniak.

The iCar. Apple board member Mickey Drexler, who is also chairman of retailer J. Crew, told the crowd at a recent Fast Company conference that Steve Jobs liked to reimagine all sorts of products. “Steve’s dream before he died was to design an iCar. It would’ve been probably 50% of the market. He never did design it.” Drexler said that Apple, which has 10 products, will be taking on the living room sometime in the near future.  Sounds like a TV is on its way because I doubt they want to get into the couch business. The World Intellectual Property Organization terminated the domain name, which had been run as an iPhone discussion group by a group that was not affiliated with Apple, after Apple filed a complaint earlier this month. The domain now belongs to a group called Corporation Service Company, which may be a company set up by Apple to hold the domain name. In any case, WIPO decision adds to the fodder that a larger-screen iPhone will be released sometime around October and that it will be the iPhone 5.

Apple defends Siri. In response to a series of lawsuits claiming that the Siri voice recognition technology in the iPhone 4S doesn’t work as advertised, Apple — through its law firm Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher — defended the technology in a 32-page filing on May 10 and asked that a request by iPhone buyers for a class action suit be dismissed. The iPhone 4S, released in October 2011, is “the most successful iPhone launch of all time” and it includes Siri, “a cutting-edge technology still under development” which remains in beta, the lawyers wrote.

“Plaintiffs seek to recover some unspecified portion of their purchase price because Apple’s breakthrough Siri software—which uses cutting-edge speech-recognition technology that enables users to do things like make calls, send text messages or emails, schedule meetings and reminders, make notes, search the Internet, find local businesses, and get directions with voice commands—allegedly “does not perform as advertised.” Plaintiffs do not tell the Court how Siri’s operation allegedly differs from any particular representation they relied on in purchasing their iPhones. They offer only general descriptions of Apple’s advertisements, incomplete summaries of Apple’s website materials, and vague descriptions of their alleged—and highly individualized—disappointment with Siri. Tellingly, although Plaintiffs claim they became dissatisfied with Siri’s performance “soon after” purchasing their iPhones, they made no attempt to avail themselves of Apple’s 30-day return policy or one-year warranty—which remains in effect. Instead, they seek to take an alleged personal grievance about the purported performance of a popular product and turn it into a nationwide class action under California’s consumer protection statutes.

What does Siri think about lawsuits challenging its performance? I asked. Here’s what I got back. “It’s nice of you to ask, but it really doesn’t matter what I think.”

Raj Rajput  [  MBA ] 
Mobile Reviews Expert 

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