Interesting developments to come - See what made the cut...|
Apple Inc. Introduces New Mobile Operating System
Apple Inc. (AAPL) 24th annual Worldwide Developers’ Conference, known as WWDC,
will kickoff on Monday June 10 and run through June 14. Apple CEO Tim Cook along
with other top Apple executives are expected to preview the latest versions of
iOS and OSX, the two operating systems that power the Apple family of computing
devices including the iPhone, iPad, MacBook Air and MacBook Pro computer. The
new devices are not expected to be released out onto the market until later
2013. The investment community has expressed considerable doubt about Apple’s
ability to live up to its past record of product innovation as well as the tech
giants ability to maintain the high profit margins that dwarf those of other
tech hardware firms.
Apple design head, Senior Vice President of Industrial Design - Jony Ive was put
in charge of the “human interface” of all the company’s products including
software, has teamed with Craig Federighi. Updates for the year as well as the
new mobile platform to be called iOS 7 are expected to show distinct changes.
The iOS design is expected have a flatter appearance as Ive moves the company
away from skeuomorphic design principles which consist of digital interfaces
that imitate the appearance of their non-digital counterparts. Changes are
unlikely to dramatically alter the way users interact with their iPhones and
iPads but, could greatly change the look and feel of iOS devices. As the front
faces of most mobile devices are increasingly dominated by touch screens, the
software user interface is likely to become paramount for aesthetic
Since the fall of 2012 when Apple unveiled full re-designs of almost its entire
product line, the company has been virtually silent on new products.
Definition of skeuomorphic - ornament or design on an object copied from a form
of the same object when made from a different material or by another technique.
Annual E3 Conference
The annual E3 - Electronic Entertainment Expo - conference will kickoff at the
Los Angeles Convention Center beginning Monday June 10 and will run through June
13. Not only mega named tech companies but also, video game publishers from
around the world, will be on hand.
Center stage is expected to be taken by Microsoft (MSFT) and Sony (SNE). Xbox is
expected to host the start of the event at 12:30pm ET while PlayStation
conference is expected to begin at 9:00pm ET.
Electronic Arts (EA) is expected to showcase “Battlefield 4” along with other
upcoming sports titles. EA conference may include a peek at a game under
development with partner Respawn Entertainment. Respawns co-founder Vince
Zampella tweeted last week that EA will have “a little surprise for the EA news
conference on Monday.”
Gamers will be focused on details of the capability of new consoles expected to
deliver next-generation games and content.
Federal Reserve $85 billion-a-month bond purchase program
A move that continues to keep interest rates at historic lows - the
unprecedented $85 billion a month bond purchase program by the Federal Reserve -
is on the table to be phased out. On the mind of investors, how will the move
affect the already fragile economy. As long as the economy shows signs of
weakness, the long the bond purchase program by the Fed, will continue. The Fed
is highly concerned of the reaction of Wall Street or potential over-reaction by
Wall Street when the Fed begins to make a move with the bond purchase program.
Ultra-low interest rates is not putting cheap money where it is needed. While
the inflated stock market provides temporary stimulus with investors feeling
rich but, the real economy is feeling little if any stimulus.
Fed inflation objective for 2013 is below 2% but most inflation measures are
running well below those forecasts with many officials expecting inflation to
move back toward their 2% goal later this year.
Most of the money the Fed pumps into the banking system goes into Treasury bond
and is kept in interest-bearing accounts at the Fed itself or finances
speculative plays like investments in vacant houses. Ideas such as the Fed
directly lending to business enterprises, to the public or student debt have
been discussed. The Fed could refinance housing debt at far lower interest
rates, a move the desperately wavering economy needs. With banks too shy and
risk-aversive to help businesses and home owners, the Fed could make a strong
move to turn the economy around by taking the lead in the beaten down financing
sector - lend a hand to those qualified but shut down by the banking sector.
The Fed’s policy-setting Open Market Committee on May 1 declared that “fiscal
policy is restraining economic growth” and raised the concern that the inflation
rate was too low. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke said a cut in the
bond purchase program will not occur until the unemployment rate falls to 6.5%
or less. Atlanta Federal Reserve President Dennis Lockhart said last week, "We
are approaching a period in which an adjustment to the asset-purchase policy can
June 10, 2013