Can Apple create AR glasses that people actually want?

Apple rumored to release augmented reality glasses in 2020

A Chinese securities analyst has reported that Apple plans to release a number of new devices in the first half of 2020, including augmented reality glasses. CNBC

dis-rup-shun: Augmented reality glasses, a different product from AR headsets adopted by some gamers, have yet to become a widely adopted product. Glasses brought to market by players such as Google have been bulky, awkward and provide questionable value. Wearers of Google Glass were labeled “glassholes” as the primary purpose for wearing them seemed to be to impress. Apple took the MP3 player from niche market to mainstream, then did the unthinkable by creating a computer the size of a phone. The company’s watch line continues to gain features, style and adoption. So can Apple make AR glasses a mainstream product? To succeed, the glasses must be highly fashionable, becoming an object of desire. Apple is good at that. Like the Apple watch, AR glasses will need to be developed in cooperation with a hot designer such as Oakley, Chanel, or Michael Kors, for starters. This is a formidable test for Apple, and a good chance to see if the company still has “it.”

Google Cloud begins massive hiring to catch Amazon and Microsoft

Google has hired SAP’s top HR executive to triple in size in an effort to catch Amazon and Microsoft’s booming cloud business. Deutsche Bank values Google’s cloud business at $225 billion. CNBC

dis-rup-shun: The future of computing is in the cloud. The arrival of 5G and the constant threat of hackers and ransomware make cloud computing the best choice in many applications. As reported in May, Q1 market share of cloud vendors pegged Amazon at 33% of the market, followed by Microsoft at 16%, Google 8%, IBM 6%, and Alibaba at 5%. Margins and growth are high in the cloud business and Google wants its share. Google’s ramp up may create some competitive pricing and increase the economic attractiveness of cloud services. 

Tile, stickers, and IOT’s ROI problem

Tile, the company that developed tracking devices for easy to misplace valuables such as keys and purses, is releasing a sticker. The sticker adheres to objects that tiles can’t attach to, and uses Bluetooth with a range of 150 feet. Outside of that range, other Tile devices form a mesh-like network to extend the tracking range, assuming there are others device nearby. TechCrunch

dis-rup-shun: A world of connected devices is a wonderful idea, and being able to track everyday items sounds like the ultimate IoT use case. Tile and its competitors, however, are struggling, and like so many IoT applications, strong profits are not following great ideas. A number of general problems are plaguing IoT applications, including lack of scale, high infrastructure costs, and soft use cases. Perhaps all of these are the same problem, but until consumers are convinced that such connected amenities are staples, they aren’t buying enough for vendors to reach economies of scale and, subsequently, profitability. The road to connected living will continue to be littered with companies that had great ideas before their time. If every product category could enjoy the explosive growth of the smartphone, many of us would already be on the beach.

The worst of the last decade of tech

CNET’s 2010s Decade in Review features some of the worst of the last decade:

  • Robocalls — more SPAM calls than real ones
  • Litigation: Apple vs. Samsung — seven years of court battles that were finally settled for $1 billion
  • Flaming batteries (lithium-ion) in Galaxy Note 7s, e-cigarettes, and Teslas
  • Transportation deaths — 757 Max, Takata air bags, ebikes and scooters
  • Selfies and the fatal version, killfies
  • The end of net neutrality
  • So called unlimited data plans that throttle data speeds
  • Subscription fatigue — the creation of many subscription services and the requirement to join many to enjoy the same shows we used to get
  • Ransomware and cyber crime
  • Loss of privacy to omnipresence video cameras
  • Nearly routine data breaches
  • Social media bullying and hate messages

dis-rup-shun: Let’s add one more – no serious progress towards eliminating passwords and differing requirements for characters across accounts, resulting in memory retention for passwords at less than 50%.