Tag Archives: Apple

Apple’s Ping: Why “$1.29 Buy” is the new “Like”

Post written by Matthew Egan.  Follow Matthew on Twitter.

The addition of a Social Network to iTunes 10 might not seem like a huge deal, you talk about music through comments, maybe rate a song or an album, you’re doing that already.  What we’re not thinking about however is how iTunes has just solidified itself as the Facebook for music, as the portal, as the interface for communication, wrapped very cleverly around a very profitable and reaching ONLINE STORE.Apple's Ping Social Network

Online Store.  Let’s focus on that for a second.  iTunes is an e-commerce product first, a music player second, and now a social network first?  What?  YES!  Apple has created a reason for you not to close iTunes, for you to flip through comments, for you to check iTunes from your phone, for you to make iTunes not just this application that you use to sync your iPhone, but instead a destination for your attention on the web.

Google’s Search Engine is such a profitable powerhouse because Google can profit on your attention.  You need to find things, you need to search, and so while you’re there Google can show you ads and occasionally (something like once out of every thousand) you’ll actually click on one of those ads.

Facebook is the same way.  By having you spend time refreshing Farmville, by having you banter with your friends, sharing photos and resources, Facebook has created not just a Social Network but a DESTINATION.  It is a place you happily sit, refresh, share, talk, brag, rant and learn from.  You can click on ads, you can “like” pages for business, Facebook is making money hand over fist because they have your attention.  Whoever has the most eyes wins.

Enter Apple.  I know some people aren’t huge music buffs, maybe this to some degree is a niche product, but I believe Apple stands to make considerably more PER USER than Facebook, and maybe even Google.  The idea that a song is only $1.29 is such a small number, that we so casually click buy, “Sure I’ll give it a shot” and boom, we’re committed, we’ve made a purchase.  This micro-transaction between the user and Apple is seamless, it’s instant and it puts fifty cents in Apple’s pocket every time you do it.

So now what?  Now Apple not only has the best micro-transaction product on the web, the backing of countless record companies, television stations and movie production houses, but now they also have your attention.  Now Apple’s iTunes IS the destination.  When you’re not playing Farmville, now you might be rapping about your favorite Justin Bieber song with your friends.

Look at the “like” button, look at how easy it is to just click “like” and suddenly you’re part of the marketing engine for that product.  Now look at the new iTunes, look at Apple’s Ping.  Every time I recommend a song, every time I share something I’m watching, SOMEONE in my social circle is going to buy it to watch it.

$1.29 Buy is the new LikeApple has created a peer network where you influence the purchases of your friends, and are then influenced by their purchases as well.

“$1.29 Buy” is the new “Like” button folks.

Apple just changed everything.  Again.

Matthew Egan is the President of San Antonio SEO consulting group Image Freedom.  When not dancing to the blues, Matthew helps web pages like yours get more traffic through content driven Search Engine Optimization.

Apple vs. Google. vs. Privacy

Earlier this year I was published in Entrepreneur Magazine in an article about Google Chrome weighing the pros and cons of Google’s slick new browser, my vote was to stick with Firefox.  This blog will come as a bit of a departure from the normal, but reading the news there is just a lot going on with Google right now that is frightening to me.

Google REALLY wants your information.

In the movie Minority Report Tom Cruise walks down a hallway filled with 3D advertisers able to scan your eyes and cater advertisements specifically to each user.  These advertisers are able to query a database and know what kind of car you drive, where you live, what else you’ve purchased, etc.  This makes for better advertisement success because the content is catered to the user.

It seems that Google is very eager to learn as much as they can about each person, and assign that data to your gmail or Google User account.  Google now owns YouTube, and knows what you’re watching online, Google tracks your search data through Google to know what you’re into, and if you read the fine print of the Google Chrome license agreement you’ll see that you’re agreeing to let Google record all of your online activity so they can send that back to their engineers to further refine their advertisements to you, and map your behavior online.

Maybe this isn’t a big deal, but people are pretty guarded about their privacy.  Google isn’t recording your bank account number, or your social security number, they aren’t capturing your e-mails or selling your information to third parties, but they are using the map of your virtual self to target advertisements your way.

According to a report by Business Insider Apple is receiving more than $100 Million Dollars annually from Google to keep Google the default Search Engine on the iPhone.  The relationship between Apple and Google is starting to deteriorate in no small part because Google wanted the data collected from their Google Maps application on the iPhone 3G to again further target content and advertising to you based on your behavior.

The issue that concerns me, from a search marketing perspective, is that Google seems to want to decide what is right for you, based on your behavior and their algorithm.  This moves us away from an Organic Search format where web sites are ranked based on popularity and are instead ranked on what your internet behavior says about you.

If Microsoft’s history is any indication, I see lawsuits and public fears becoming more and more prevalent as Google’s Chrome operating system hits the market.  How will people feel when they learn that their operating system is spying on them to build the next generation marketing tools?

That dark Minority Report future might not be too far fetched, we may be only a few clicks away.  How much of your information do you want Google to have?  Is it all in the name of a better more targeted experience or does Google seek to turn our personal data into profitable research?

Disapointed at Apple RE: Yellow iMac

Published in Geek Health by

Today my buddy @boynthemiddle posted this link to Gizmodo about a yellowing tint that has caused many iMac 27″ users to be very frustrated.  See my new i7 27″ iMac has a yellowing tint on the lower half of the screen.  Having read many articles about the yellowing, and hearing from @boynthemiddle I too called Apple.

I was told that the engineers at Apple had not yet acknowledged that this was a problem with the iMac.  I just spent a lot of money on this Apple Computer and I sent photographs of my screen with specific sectors of the photo set side by side.  You can see pretty clearly that the bottom section is yellowed, and the top section is pure white.

This is unacceptable.

So now this leaked internal Memo from Apple is deciding to “swap out” our LCD panels through an Apple Store or authorized repair center.  I’m sorry, but that doesn’t sit well with me.  I don’t want a new screen, I want a computer equal to the money I spent on it.  Meaning if I pay a premium, I am going to require a premium in service in return.

I paid a premium.  That’s my part.  I am not getting a premium in return.  That’s Apple’s part.

The idea that my iMac, as powerful as it is, must be opened up and the screen swapped out doesn’t sit well with me.  As we’re seeing lately on Twitter, how accurate is the repair to your car when you get it back on the road?  What if they don’t get the screen in place just right?  This is my livelyhood here, that is why I choose Apple, because I expect the product to work as intended, every time.  I don’t want my baby getting cut open and her parts replaced, I want her replaced, I want a computer that worked as intended from the start.

Am I crazy?  I’m a loyal Apple fan, and part of Apple’s whole plan is that I like my Apple product so much that I talk about it, that my fervor and fandom spreads the Applevirus and you too buy a computer for a little too much money so you can have the cool OS X too.  How does that work when the most loyal Apple customers, the ones who are going to spend the extra for the i7 Quad Core processor, who want the largest screen, are treated like outsourced to India Dell customers?

Not thrilled Mr. Jobs.  This is not the Apple you were looking for.

Hopefully the bad press will cause you to rethink the memo that “sometimes screens have some discoloration, that’s just how LCD’s work.”  Uhm.  No.  Try again.