Page 2 – News Debris For The Week of June 18th
Apple’s Handwriting May be on the Wall. Or iOS.
Typing on a tiny on-screen keyboard is something most smartphone users have become accustomed to, but it’s not ideal. And tablet users have the opposite problem: carrying a 12.9-inch iPad Pro while typing is awkward. It’s likely many users of both types of iOS devices would find writing words on the screen more convenient.
If Apple can make this work nicely, beautifully, productively 25 years after the Newton, it would be fantastic. I had a Newton back then, and the recognition technology got to be pretty good. But the Newton was already doomed, mostly thanks to Garry Trudeau’s Doonesbury comic strip.
If this patent reflects a real intent rather than just protecting a possible future effort, we may yet see the rumored, smaller Apple Pencil for iPhone. Now…. Where do we put it? A special, new kind of case? Probably.
• Who should tackle smartphone addiction? Consumers? Tech companies? Or, heaven forbid, government regulators? By a very wide margin, according to a recent Statista survey of 2,200 U.S. adults, that job belongs to consumers. And I agree. While it’s Apple’s job to make the iPhone fun, productive and attractive to use, it’s always up to the users to exercise control over their own lives. With the iPhone, there’s no such thing as predestination. We control our destiny.
• The same goes for obsessive gaming. We all instinctively knew that not eating and not showering while one plays video games, in pajamas, for eight hours at a time is harmful. Previous research has focused on whether playing certain kinds of games results in aggressive behavior in life. With no positive proof, so far as I know. But now, at least, the United Nations World Health Organization has classified gaming disorder as a disease. In part,
Gaming disorder is characterized by a pattern of persistent or recurrent gaming behaviour (‘digital gaming’ or ‘video gaming’), which may be online (i.e., over the internet) or offline, manifested by: 1) impaired control over gaming (e.g., onset, frequency, intensity, duration, termination, context); 2) increasing priority given to gaming to the extent that gaming takes precedence over other life interests and daily activities; and 3) continuation or escalation of gaming despite the occurrence of negative consequences. The behaviour pattern is of sufficient severity to result in significant impairment in personal, family, social, educational, occupational or other important areas of functioning….
The proclamation isn’t without some controversy. At least it gets the discussion started by concretely identifying the behavior and its harmful effects. Parents (or others) who have learned to focus on productive habits, I think, have a hard time convincing those who are addicted to see things differently. And so identifying the behavior as harmful is only the first step in learning how to help these addicts. That’s a tough task, one that I won’t try to explore in any detail here. Some of you readers may wish to weigh in.
• We know Apple is working on original TV content. Here’s the content pipeline: “Apple’s Original Content Is Further Along Than You Think.” But how will it get delivered? That’s the question on everyone’s mind. Chris Smith at BGR explores some of the options Apple has. “Apple’s streaming service might have a secret weapon to beat Netflix: Price.”
With so many streaming options already available, Acorn, Amazon Prime, BritBox, CBS All Access, DirecTV Now, Disney, Hulu, HBO, Netflix, Sling, YouTube to name just a few, as well those offered directly by cable and satellite, consumers are being overwhelmed with paid streaming options. Apple will, no doubt, have great content. The challenge will be in the delivery mechanism and the pricing. No doubt, Eddy Cue will figure it out.
Particle Debris is a generally a mix of John Martellaro’s observations and opinions about a standout event or article of the week (preamble on page one) followed on page two by a discussion of articles that didn’t make the TMO headlines, the technical news debris. The column is published most every Friday except for holiday weeks.