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Sept. 12, 2012, 2:58 p.m.
Reporting & Production

Not too much for news orgs in Apple’s new announcements

The new iPhone 5 looks nice, but there wasn’t a lot for publishers to worry about (or take advantage of) at today’s unveiling.

When Apple has one of its semiannual stage shows to show off new gear, we sometimes do a quick roundup of the implications for news organizations. But today’s announcement of the iPhone 5 (and assorted other tidbits) was pretty light on angles. So here’s just the quickest of journalism-centric overviews:

  • The new iPhone 5 has three microphones — located on the front, bottom, and back of the device. That should make it a better device for journalists recording interviews, something that’s pushed audio recording devices out of the bags and pockets of most non-radio reporters (and even some of them).
  • The new iPod touch promises significantly improved cameras for stills and video, which could make it a more appealing multimedia-capture device for reporters on the go. The iPhone will still be better, as it has been every generation so far, but if you’re using an Android, Windows Phone, or BlackBerry device, it might be a nice addition, although at $299 it ain’t cheap.
  • All of Apple’s media stores — for apps, music, and ebooks — have been redesigned to allow for better browsing and search. They do look nicer, but there wasn’t much said today that indicates news orgs building apps, podcasts, or ebooks will be impacted.
  • The new cameras have what looks like an impressive panorama mode, so look for more widescreen photos coming to blogs near you.
  • The iPhone 5 has LTE, catching up to many of its competitors and allowing significantly faster upload and download of video and other big data. The push to video continues apace, and this will be a small but significant boost.
  • At first glance, podcasts seem to be demoted in the main navigation in the new iTunes, reduced from a visible option in the sidebar to a choice in a pulldown menu. Podcasts were probably the only way news organizations ever found their way into iTunes in the first place.
  • No new details on Siri or Passbook opening up to developers, either of which could be interesting to news orgs. Siri did look significantly improved, though, at least at first glance.
  • Apple gave early developer access to the iPhone 5 to a small set of companies (to prebuild apps that take advantage of its taller screen), and on that short list was CNN. It’s probably nothing, but for years, The New York Times has been the primary news company that gets the promos at Apple events and the early dev access. Has the Times done something recently that Apple might not have liked?

Photo by John Bradley/Wired used under a Creative Commons license.

POSTED     Sept. 12, 2012, 2:58 p.m.
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