India: Why Apple Walked Away

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Date: Wednesday, July 5th, 2006, 08:00
Category: Opinion

Yet he is also a tough-minded executive who knows when to cut and run. That’s why Apple Computer Inc. has shelved plans to build a sprawling technical support center in Bangalore, even as IBM (IBM ) and other tech powers are ramping up. Just three months back, Apple appeared to be on the same trajectory, and there was talk of the company hiring 3,000 workers by 2007 to handle support for Macintosh computers and other Apple gear. Many in India even speculated that Jobs might travel there this year to publicize Apple’s commitment to the country.

It wasn’t meant to be. In late May, Apple dismissed most of the 30 new hires at its subsidiary in Bangalore. (A handful working in sales and marketing will stay on.) Spokesman Steve Dowling would say only that Apple had “reevaluated our plans” and decided to provide support from other countries. Another source familiar with the situation, though, says the decision was cost-driven. “India isn’t as inexpensive as it used to be,” the source says. “The turnover is high, and the competition for good people is strong.” Apple feels it “can do [such work] more efficiently elsewhere.

“The shutdown highlights concerns about the sustainability of India’s fast-track economy. True, India grew 9.3% last quarter and is still home to the world’s largest and fastest-growing offshore outsourcing sector, which last year generated some $17.3 billion in revenues and employed nearly 700,000 people, according to the McKinsey Global Institute. Yet India’s benchmark Sensitive index, or Sensex, has dropped by 20% in the past month as global investors have fled emerging-market stocks. And the outsourcing sector is now plagued by concerns about rising wages. Entry-level pay at tech and outsourcing companies climbed by as much as 13% annually from 2000 to 2004, while salaries for midlevel managers jumped 30% a year during the same period, to a median of $31,131, according to McKinsey and Nasscom, India’s software industry association.

Business Week – India: Why Apple Walked Away

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Subscription Music from iTMS & .Mac

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Date: Wednesday, July 5th, 2006, 08:00
Category: Opinion

The iTunes free music program promotes artists just like radio play does: it introduces the public to a wider variety of music than they might have otherwise known about. It also introduces users to the convenience of downloaded music. Users can try out the iTMS, free and without obligation, and decide if buying music online works for them.
Apple should tie their music promotion into the .Mac service by offering .Mac members additional music tracks and TV programs each week for free. The general public would still get the track or two Apple releases on New Music Tuesdays, but .Mac users would get a special backstage pass that lasted throughout their subscription.
Here’s how it could work…
Contributed by: Daniel Eran, RoughlyDrafted

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The Road to VoIP: PhoneWars

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Date: Wednesday, July 5th, 2006, 08:00
Category: Opinion

Voice over IP is a technology designed to move communications from the existing, old phone system to the Internet. This series of articles looks the benefits and risks of VoIP and how the technology is developing. This first article considers the reasons for, and challenges behind, replacing the existing old phone empire with a new system.

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Contributed by: Daniel Eran, RoughlyDrafted

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BSD & GPL: Different Sources for Different Horses

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Date: Wednesday, July 5th, 2006, 07:00
Category: Opinion

How far can Apple go with open source? Many argue that Apple should decisively push into expanding their open source efforts, but how? There isn’t just one way to embrace open source as a strategy.
This article compares the benefits and the motivations behind two very different styles of open source development: the BSD style license, pioneered by UC Berkeley and MIT; and the GPL invented by Richard Stallman, the founder of the free software movement.
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Contributed by: Daniel Eran, RoughlyDrafted

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Stevenson Fails ‘Report Card’ on Mac Ads

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Date: Tuesday, June 27th, 2006, 09:00
Category: Opinion

apple-getamac-ad.jpgSeth Stevenson writes a column for Slate called the “Ad Report Card,” where he rates the effectiveness of advertising based on his own extemporaneous criteria. Sometimes it’s the concept , sometimes execution, and sometimes he just likes ads because they are entertaining. After watching Apple’s new Get a Mac ads, however, he complained:
“They are conceptually brilliant, beautifully executed, and highly entertaining. But they don’t make me want to buy a Mac.”
Advertising isn’t supposed to make you think you want to buy the product; it is designed to create awareness and results. That subtle difference is something an ad critic should understand, so Stevenson fails the grade.
Contributed by: Daniel Eran, RoughlyDrafted

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Apple & Open Source… Strange Buffaloes?

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Date: Thursday, June 22nd, 2006, 07:00
Category: Opinion

There are far more interesting topics on the intersection between open source and commercial development than the binary-only kernel for Intel non-story. Tim Bray�s Time to Switch? and John Gruber’s Why Apple Won�t Open Source Its Apps both discuss the potential risks and benefits Apple would face in open sourcing their consumer applications, such as the Finder, Mail, iChat and their iLife apps, to worldwide perusal.
Contributed by: Daniel Eran, RoughlyDrafted

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.Macster!

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Date: Wednesday, June 21st, 2006, 09:00
Category: Opinion

Imagine adding Digg and Wikipedia to MySpace, except instead of flashing inverse text on top a stretched out photo of Britney Spears, with some awful pop diva tune set to autoplay, you’d have sharp looking profiles based on classy iWeb templates.
Contributed by: Daniel Eran, RoughlyDrafted

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A Reputation System for .Mac

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Date: Wednesday, June 21st, 2006, 09:00
Category: Opinion

Reputation becomes a richer basis for trust in an otherwise anonymous community. This principle is so useful in rating the value of an individual’s contributions, that it’s commonly found in commerce sites like Amazon or eBay, and in many tech advice discussion forums, including Apple’s support forum.
Contributed by: Daniel Eran, RoughlyDrafted

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The ‘Mac OS X Closed by Pirates’ Myth

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Date: Tuesday, June 20th, 2006, 08:00
Category: Opinion

There are two elements to this myth. The first is that Apple has actually closed open source development for its kernel, or plans to do so; the second suggests that the reason for this has something to do with Mac OS X being used by pirates on generic PC hardware.
Contributed by: Daniel Eran, RoughlyDrafted

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10 Reasons Why Apple Can Kick Start Web 2.0

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Date: Monday, June 19th, 2006, 08:00
Category: Opinion

The problem with all these sites is that to use any of them, you need to log in and create a unique profile. As you navigate the various social networks, discussion forms, and sharing systems, it becomes frustrating that you can’t take your reputation from one place to another, that you can’t update all those profiles centrally, and that you can’t really prove you are SuperDan2006xyz across the various Internet properties, nor can you take much of what you create to use offline. Boo.
Apple, like no other company on Earth, has a solution to those problems because of their unique positioning in a number of areas. Here’s part one of why.
Contributed by: Daniel Eran, RoughlyDrafted

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