Rumors of both a bigger iPhone and bigger iPad stole the tech news show last week. Welcome to another edition of “Last Week In Tech”.
Apple News and Rumors:
13″ iPad Set For March Debut?
Apple rumors are buzzing with news of a bigger screen iPad. Apple may be working on a new 12.9-inch screen iPad. This new, larger iPad is rumored to be released in March of 2014. This rumor comes from the Chinese tech log site PadNews, who claims it received information that Foxconn, Apple’s primary hardware manufacturer, is in the middle of testing production of a larger iPad. PadNews also reports Foxconn has given the rumored iPad the name “iPad Maxi.” This may just end up being nothing more than a rumor as Apple are known for testing various screen sizes and form factors for a many devices.
iPhone 5s/5c Repair Services Hit Apple Stores
The L.A. Times reported trained Apple Store employees will soon have the ability to repair a user’s damaged iPhone 5S or 5C iPhones. Previously, Apple employees were only able to repair the iPhone 5. Employees will be able to make repairs to screens, batteries, motors, cameras, and speakers. The fingerprint scanner on the 5S will not be repairable at Apple Stores, though, because of it’s unique nature.
HTC Posts Loss In Q3
The Taiwanese manufacturer continues to struggle while revenues declined again in the fourth quarter. The company’s revenue for Q3 this year was $1.6 billion. That’s a sizable drop from the $2.4 billion in last year’s Q3, and $4.54 billion for the same quarter in 2011. The gross margin was 20.4%, down from 25% last year, while operating margin was -7.4% compared to 7% in Q3 last year. According to Reuters, HTC said it intends to keep its operating expenses low in October to December — at around T$10 billion, or 24% below the previous quarter’s T$13.1 billion. The company will now focus on sales of more affordable handsets as well as new flagship M8 (One II) smartphone in 2014.
BlackBerry CEO Out, Sale On Hold
The once dominant Canadian smartphone producer Blackberry has announced it is abandoning its efforts to find a buyer. BlackBerry’s largest shareholder, Fairfax Financial, had declined to purchase Blackberry outright, but would have joined other investors in injecting $1 billion back into the business. The company also announced that Blackberry’s German CEO, Thorsten Heins, has stepped down after less than two years at the company. Heins has been replaced on an interim basis by former Sybase CEO, John Chen, who will hopefully (but unlikely) lead the manufacturer back to greatness. Good luck, John.
T-Mobile Adds 1 Million Customers In Q3
The nations 4th largest carrier is making waves in the wireless industry with its “un-carrier” strategy. Last week the German owned carrier reported it had a net gain of more than 1 million customers in the third quarter this year, highlighted by a net gain of 643,000 branded postpaid subscribers. T-Mobile now has 45 million customers, up from 33.3 million it had at this same point last year. T-Mobile stated it now expects branded postpaid net additions for 2013 to be between 1.6 to 1.8 million, up from its prior guidance of 1 million to 1.2 million. The success is not only from the new strategy, but also thanks to the addition of the iPhone (5S, 5C, 5) and T-Mobile’s JUMP upgrade plan.