Friday Four: New Devices, New Logo, and No Facebook PhoneSeptember 14, 2012 9:08 am ·
With the Labor Day holiday over, the tech world is ramping up for Q4, launching new devices and hinting at the release of even newer ones to come before the end of the year. If this week was any indication, the holiday season will be rife with gadgets for Santa to put under your tree.
First off, Nintendo publicized the pricing for the Wii U in a press conference Thursday. The new system will be available at $299 for a basic set, and a deluxe bundle is offered at $349, including the new Nintendoland game. It’s available for pre-order now and will arrive November 18th. But they also surprised us with a new product called TVii. The application will be integrated into the gaming console at no additional charge on either set. TVii uses the new GamePad, with touch screen, to manage media streaming services YouTube, Netflix, Hulu, etc. It also acts as a remote for your DVR and live TV, similar to a universal remote.
Apple, as usual, is in our news roundup again! They announced the iPhone 5, and we talked about it a little bit, and then a little bit more. It’s very pretty, has a bigger screen, 4G LTE, etc. Current iPhone and other Apple device users are pretty upset that there is a new dock connector. Yet, thanks to Apple’s plan for the fastest roll out yet, financial experts project double the sales in the opening weekend as the iPhone 4. Analysts predict sales of 8-10 million by the end of the year. So much for the recession.
Mark Zuckerberg appeared in public and subjected himself to questioning for the first time since Facebook went public. At TechCrunch Disrupt, TC founder Michael Arrington interviewed Zuck to chat mostly about the company’s state of affairs. Zuckerberg seemed confident and open, expressing faith in the success of mobile app improvements. They also discussed the possibility of a Facebook phone; something that the social media tycoon said is completely nonexistent, despite Arrington’s pleas. As for Instagram’s future now that they are owned by Facebook, Zuckerberg says there are no plans to change the app, and only wants to help grow the company because he believes in them.
Ebay got a new logo that features the same signature colors, but with a uniform font and all lowercase letters. Exec Devin Wenig said the re-design heralds the shift of the online auction house away from auctions and one-of-a-kind items to full-priced, “Buy It Now” style goods in an attempt to keep up with their competitor, Amazon. It reminds me of how my local flea market was once a hub of unique treasures collected over time to be re-discovered, and is now stall upon stall of direct sales reps and cheap new toys from Mexico.
Still, whether it’s gently used goods from your neighbor down the street, a Wii TVii, or an iPhone 5 (and let’s not forget those Kindle Fires from last week), it seems like the tech world has a little something for everyone this year. Now, if you can just keep yourselves off the naughty list for the next few months…